Welcome to the MoneyPlus Newsletter.
We’re fast approaching the beginnings of the festive season (starting with Halloween at the end of this month!). With exciting holidays to look forward to, it’d be easy for those lucky enough to be relatively untouched by the pandemic to continue over the next few months as if the last year hadn’t had such a strenuous toll on our public health and economy. But spare a thought for the thousands of people who will be left in limbo now that the government’s furlough scheme is ending.
If you’re still on furlough and aren’t sure what happens next, we’ve got all the answers you could possibly need…
The end of furlough.
It’s the last month of the furlough scheme, which ends on 31st October, and since August, employers are now required to meet the cost of pension contributions and National Insurance for employees placed on the scheme, plus pay 20% towards the salaries of staff who can’t work due to coronavirus.
The furlough take-up has been significant, with 9.6 million UK workers furloughed by 1.2 million employers since March this year, making £39.3bn of furlough claims and costing the government an estimated £60bn in total.
However, since the start of September, new Covid-19 restrictions have been imposed that mean over 133,000 small and medium-sized businesses aren’t able to operate efficiently, and more than a million of these businesses are still suffering a fall in turnover.
Companies can no longer make new furlough claims, and companies looking to make between 20 and 99 staff redundant before furlough stops at the end of October legally had to have done so before 17th September.
Now that employers are facing increased costs, there’s a warning that millions of jobs now hang in the balance. So what’s the plan?
The Job Support Scheme.
The current furlough scheme is being replaced by a new jobs support package, the Job Support Scheme, which will come into effect on 1st November, immediately after furlough ends, and will last for six months.
The replacement scheme shifts more of the financial burden away from the taxpayer and on to employers, with the aim to subsidise staff to work reduced hours in the hopes of resisting mass redundancies. For comparison, during the height of furlough the government paid 80% of wages, whereas in this new scheme it will pay a maximum of 22%.
It’s only available to small and medium-sized businesses however, large business can also apply if they can prove their revenue has dropped due to the impact of Covid-19. In addition, employees must have been on the payroll since 23rd September 2020, and they can’t be put on notice or made redundant whilst the scheme is being claimed on their behalf.
How does it work?
In a nutshell, employees in a ‘viable job’ (more on this below) will have to work at least a third of their normal hours, and for the hours not worked, the government and employer will each pay one-third of the remaining wages. This means the employee would get at least 77% of their pay.
The payment will be based on an employee’s normal salary, with the government contribution capped at £697.92 per month.
So, for example, if someone earning £2,000 a month was working half their hours, they’d get £1,000 normal pay. They would then get £333 extra from their employer and £333 from the government.
This is almost the same as the 80% offered under the furlough scheme – but employees have to work at least a third of their hours, instead of none.
Image adapted from BBC.
What is a ‘viable job’?
Now a good chunk of the economy has reopened, the government says its furlough replacement will only support ”viable jobs which provide genuine security”.
These are jobs there is a current need for, and only employees who can work at least a third of their hours will be eligible; for example, a waitress in a partially-reopened restaurant.
This unfortunately means those who usually work in venues that are still closed will not be eligible, and changing spending habits combined with ongoing Covid-19 restrictions may mean that many retail, hospitality, event, and travel workers could lose their jobs when furlough ends.
If you’re still on furlough and not in a ‘viable job’, there’s still hope. As extra support and to help avoid mass redundancies, the UK government will also give firms one-off payments of:
- £1,000 for every furloughed employee kept on until at least the end of January.
- £1,500 for each out-of-work 16-24 year-old given a ”high quality” six-month work placement.
- £2,000 for every under-25 apprentice taken on until the end of January, or £1,500 for over-25s.
Meet the Team.
Mike Hutton – Finance Director
Mike says: “I first joined MoneyPlus in April 2019 and have really enjoyed the challenge of working for such a dynamic business. Having previously worked in the IT and Legal sectors, it’s great that I can experience working within the varied markets and diverse industries that MoneyPlus are involved in. We have a really talented and dedicated team that are embracing the challenge of moving into new markets.
I feel fortunate to have been able to join MoneyPlus at such an exciting time for the group, with the increase in the breadth of services we offer our customers driving rapid growth; particularly in expanding our Energy and Legal customer base. Most importantly, these services aren’t just growing our business but helping us achieve our goal of helping more people with their finances than ever before.
Seeing the resilience in our staff and customers during the pandemic has been inspirational. This gives us a solid foundation to embark on our next phase of growth, which will provide further opportunities for us all to develop together. I’m really excited to see how MoneyPlus develops over the coming years as our brand reaches more and more people throughout the UK.”
Review of the month.
We love reading our customer reviews – and showing them off to the world!
This month’s review (as do all reviews) comes from a very valuable customer, who we are proud to help support through their financial wellbeing journey.
Take a look…
In case you didn’t know, every Friday is #FeedbackFriday on our social media, so if you’d like to see more great reviews, head over to our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!
If you’d like to leave a review for us, head over to our Reviews.io page – we can’t wait to read it!
We like to keep our followers up-to-date with the latest industry news, advice, and offers, so we highly recommend following our social media channels so you can stay in the know…
We’ve partnered with Bloom & Wild for the whole of 2020 to give 5 of our social followers a monthly chance to win a free bouquet! To be in with a chance to win October’s bloom, just do the following:
Simple! (Don’t forget to set your shared post to ‘public’, otherwise we won’t be able to see who shares it!)
Winners will be announced at the beginning of next month, so stay tuned to our social to see if you’ve won.
(T&C’s apply – https://bit.ly/2uhOyZx).
Live Better Blog.
Did you know that we publish a monthly blog, detailing need-to-know updates and advice about the world of personal finance?
We also post positive stories, and hints & tips to help you live better, every day.
Take a look at what we have in our latest blog post…
- Christmas (shopping) is coming early
- Shopping voucher scandal
- Universal Credit ‘lifeline’
- The beginning of the end for unpaid work trials?
- A change in housing demand
- 1 Man, 3 Counties, 100 Miles
Here for you.
If your personal circumstances have changed, or if you find yourself struggling to manage your finances, give us a call on 0161 837 4000, or email us at email@example.com, and we’ll help you find the best solution to get you back on track.