Wagestream Coronavirus Update

HOSPITALITY SECTOR SLOWDOWN WORSENS WITH 98% 
COLLAPSE IN SHIFTS DUE TO VIRUS SHUTDOWN

London, 8 April 2020 — The hospitality industry has now suffered a 98% slowdown as the coronavirus shutdown continues to weigh heavily on the sector, income streaming provider Wagesteam reveals today.

The number of shifts being carried out by workers in the hospitality industry has fallen 97.96%1
month on month, deteriorating from a 77.6% monthly fall just two weeks earlier2.

The sector has now reached almost rock bottom as industry bosses try to work out how they will navigate a path back to profitability once the pandemic eases.

Wagestream, a platform that allows workers to access their pay as it’s earned without impacting employers’ cash flow, has a unique perspective on the industry. It used aggregate data from multiple workforce management systems to compare the number of shifts available to staff to calculate a like for like decline in monthly activity.

There had been talk early on of hospitality firms trying to provide different services during the shutdown, for example take away and doorstep delivery, to remain in business. However, the analysis suggests that the pandemic has changed the trading environment so rapidly that the pub, bar and restaurant sector has struggled to make that pivot.

The vast majority of these workers are now being furloughed under the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. As personal liquidity is impacted, Wagestream will continue to allow these workers to access their accrued furlough pay when they need it, rather than waiting for the end of the month. Wagestream expects to give over 50,000 hospitality workers access to their furloughed income this week alone.

Wagestream works with businesses across the hospitality sector, It is able to see work patterns of 36,000 hospitality sector workers who would typically fill 120,000 shifts each week.

Wagestream has responded to the Covid-19 crisis by making its income streaming service free to the NHS and its staff, as well as speeding up the client on-boarding process from three weeks to just 24 hours.

Peter Briffett, CEO and Co-Founder of Wagestream, commented:

“You have to remember that the last time a pandemic brought the country to a standstill, in 1918, a hospitality sector of the sort we know today did not exist."

“It’s a human tragedy from the perspective of both people’s health and their livelihoods. It’s clear from these statistics that the commercial and human consequences of the pandemic are so far being managed through widespread use of the Government’s Job Retention Scheme."

“Companies must look after their staff as best they can because, when the social distancing rules are lifted, these workers are their only way to get quickly back to business."

“We are continuing to allow client’s employees to access their accrued furlough pay when they need it and this should take away some of the financial pressures they will be experiencing right now.”

If you need more information or would like to speak to Wagestream CEO Peter Briffett, please get in touch.

Neil Millard | 07803 560 331 | neil@rhizomemedia.co