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CloudPay NOW: Global Earned Wage Access Without Borders


This past week, CloudPay announced the launch of CloudPay NOW, its latest offering focused on modernizing the way workers are paid globally.

The employer-integrated Earned Wage Access (EWA) solution is a key addition to CloudPay’s offering that pairs its unified database and technology-enabled operating model, with its deep global treasury capability to offer one of the most comprehensive end-to-end global pay solutions available in the marketplace.

How CloudPay NOW Works

CloudPay has enabled CloudPay NOW by leveraging a strategic acquisition it made very quietly in 2019 to boost its mobile payment technology. The solution integrates with CloudPay’s unified global payroll database, including workflow based on client payroll calendars, mobile technology, and its highly adopted global payroll treasury offering. The new offering can support EWA in 130+ countries and 168 global currencies. It further enables digital payments globally and in real-time leveraging established global payment RAILS.

The CloudPay NOW user experience is enabled through apps for both iOS and Android and provides employees with real-time access to earned wages for on-demand pay capability across the countries where CloudPay offers treasury support. Users are offered in-app support with chatbot and live chat options.

The benefit is cost-free for employees (employers are charged on a per employee per month basis) and provides them with early earned wage access, and real-time debit/credit card-based transfers to third parties, including person-to-person and person-to-entity. Because CloudPay NOW leverages a combination of credit and ACH RAILS, withdrawals can be performed in less than one hour, including on weekends, a much faster option than traditional bill payment solutions can provide. Transactions can also be scheduled for future dated payments and transfers based on automated target thresholds.

Further, the solution has been enabled with curated insights, guidance, and tools to support employee financial empowerment and wellbeing. Employers define set “business rules” within CloudPay NOW to guard and control employee access and withdrawals to ensure healthy usage of the capability. Employees can also adjust preferences (within client business rules) to support personal thresholds and limits.

The impact of CloudPay NOW

For employers, a globally unified payroll solution that goes beyond gross-to-net calculation to payroll funding and payment fulfillment offers real value for multinational firms supporting a global workforce. Traditional payroll solutions stop short of global payments, leaving employers to sort time-consuming money movement and foreign exchange complexities, often extending the pay cycle and timeframes for payments to reach employees.

With payroll at the heart of the employee experience, employers across sectors seek more ways to compete for top talent by providing differentiated experiences. On-demand pay breaks down lengthy pay cycles, and empowers employees to control the timing of their pay, boosts financial wellness, and offers them personalization to meet their unique financial needs (e.g., remittance to family members) and aspirations. Early adopters of employer-integrated EWA have seen measurable and impactful results beyond simply driving up direct deposit and digital payment adoption, with positive impacts on talent attraction, hiring, retention, and engagement resulting from deploying the benefit. 

To date, EWA solutions have been most available and adopted amongst U.S.-based employers and employees, with limited solution options internationally. With CloudPay NOW, multinational employers can offer the benefit of an on-demand payment solution to all of their employees globally, something other EWA solutions have failed to provide, as they are often enabled for a single country, or a few at most.

It empowers employees with control to determine how and, more importantly, when their earned wages are distributed. Payroll processing has long favored the employer with lengthy pay cycles, forcing employees to wait as much as a month for their earned pay. Meanwhile, their lives and financial needs are occurring in real-time, often leaving workers to tap risky alternatives to address unplanned expenses. 

CloudPay NOW provides employees with a tool that converges their pay with day-to-day life in real-time and provides tools to support money access and transfers, with insights to make more informed decisions with their earnings to reduce debt, advance savings, or navigate financial challenges as and when they occur.

The future for CloudPay NOW

The launch of CloudPay NOW is well-timed, given the groundswell of momentum building around digital payment solutions and their adoption. With digital payment adoption rising globally and mobile-first experiences fueling consumer expectations for on-demand experiences, the convergence of payroll with these factors has made employer-integrated earned wage access a standard element in modern payroll solutions. Further, in the environment of COVID-19, many firms learned just how challenging yet vital and impactful the ability to move earned wages to employees in a timely fashion can be – particularly those operating with multi-country footprints. Building resilient global payroll operations will require adopting modern digital capabilities like CloudPay NOW and its underlying treasury capability.

With clients now more commonly looking for their payroll vendors to provide treasury services as part of their managed payroll services arrangements, but not all vendors actively offering global treasury support, CloudPay is particularly well positioned to leverage its offerings synergies to boost adoption; its treasury service alone has been adopted by ~90% of its client base and continues to see similar uptake in new deals.

Looking ahead, CloudPay plans to add a digital wallet capability, including a branded pay card solution and is actively advancing its employee wellness support with expanded budgeting and planning tools. The solution is also enabled for (and has a selection of) non-profit relationships (which it continues to curate) for enabling philanthropic donations by users through their earned wages. It is also in-flight with FCA certification, which it expects to complete next year.

CloudPay will also seek to leverage CloudPay NOW to drive additional recurring revenues.  Longer-term, it sees CloudPay NOW as a standalone offering that could begin popping up in vendor marketplaces through integrated partnerships and white label opportunities for reselling the offering. Its in-country payroll partner network will be engaged first, with broader market providers in focus next.

CloudPay NOW already has a sizeable, multinational brand/employer piloting the capability to support 6k employees across 24 entities and 15 countries by the end of summer. The solution is expected to be well adopted by its client base, particularly those firms operating in challenging sectors with high hourly worker populations. 

The addition of CloudPay NOW to CloudPay’s global payroll offering provides a unique synergy to drive adoption for its complete offering amongst new buyers. Additionally, it elevates its value proposition considerably amongst buyers of global payroll services, providing it with a differentiated, end-to-end offering that pairs payroll technology and services, global treasury, and global payments within a single vendor solution.  


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