5 Reasons Every Restaurant Should Be Offering Instant Pay

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Angela Keen
May 18, 2022

What is Instant Pay? Instant Pay is a relatively new concept to hit the restaurant industry, helping restaurant owners and general managers across the country stay competitive.

In a post-pandemic world, restaurant staff attraction and retention are more challenging than ever. That’s why, as restaurant owners or general managers, it’s crucial to stay on top of the latest trends out there in the industry, including Instant Pay.


In this article, learn more about this new phenomenon and why you should jump on the bandwagon as you read 5 reasons every restaurant should be offering Instant Pay.

What is Instant Pay?

Before diving into the details of why all restaurants should be offering their employees Instant Pay in order to stay competitive in today’s market, let’s first explain what exactly it is.

Also known as earned wage access (EWA), Instant Pay gives employees the ability to access their pay on-demand instead of waiting every two weeks (or whatever your restaurant’s predetermined pay period may be).

Some of the industry-leading Instant Pay providers, including KOHO, provide free payroll benefits to restaurant employees, including the ability to cash out up to 50% of earned pay for each workday on a daily basis.


How does Instant Pay work?

Most typical restaurants have payroll periods that process on a biweekly calendar, meaning employees are paid every two weeks for the work from the previous two weeks. Keeping this in mind, we’ll draw up a very realistic scenario.

Imagine you have a part-time job as a food server at a local restaurant, and you just completed your shift for the day. Through Instant Pay services, like KOHO, your employer is able to verify the hours you worked or the amount of income you have earned, including non-cash tips for you as a food server. 

Once your employer has verified the information, you will gain immediate access to view and link those wages to your preferred payment method, all via the Instant Pay company’s provided software (usually a phone app). Then, it is your decision to access your funds before your regular payday by having your bank account or other chosen payment method linked to the app.


restaurant instant pay

Why is Instant Pay pertinent to restaurants?

It’s no secret that the Covid-19 pandemic brought with it a challenging economy and, regrettably for restaurants, the Great Resignation. Now, as the restaurant industry builds itself back up from the chaos, owners and managers need to consider the perspective of their employees’ current financial states.


In Canada alone, 47% of the population lives paycheck to paycheck, requiring some type of loan or overdraft protection in order to get by on a daily basis. Managing finances can be a struggle with such economic strife, especially if you’re waiting two weeks for your next paycheck. This wait can feel like a lifetime, especially for restaurant workers who depend on tips, which these days are primarily handled in cash-free environments on credit cards, Apple Pay, etc.


Considering all of that, providing employees with the option to pull their working funds before waiting for that paycheck means they have access to interest-free cash the lack of which might otherwise have sent them into further economic turmoil. 


Fintech Instant Pay services, such as KOHO, are focusing their efforts to help swing the pendulum back in favor of the restaurant employees, in turn benefiting restaurant owners and managers worldwide.

5 Reasons why every restaurant should be offering Instant Pay.

Understanding the perspective of nearly half of the restaurant workers across the country is just the beginning. If that’s not enough to convince you, here are 5 reasons why every restaurant should be offering instant pay.

1 - It will boost your employee retention.

At this time in the restaurant ecosystem, employee retention is a pertinent issue that must be addressed by owners and managers. Of the ways for restaurant owners to combat the great resignation, one of the most critical consists of providing fantastic working conditions.

Now, more than ever, employer perks and benefits are being scrutinized by the workforce, who currently have the upper hand in the relationship with such widespread demand of workers across the globe.

In addition to providing your employees with access to funds before their paychecks, Instant Pay services like KOHO have even more benefits to offer your team.


Instant cashback

With KOHO, your employees can earn 0.5% cashback on all purchases, with the ability to earn up to 10% cashback for in-store or online purchases with KOHO partners. KOHO users can cash out their earnings in the mobile app whenever they’re ready.

Build credit history

Anyone looking to improve or build credit scores can work with KOHO to take out a line of credit. But, don’t worry, no heavy interest rates here. For $7 per month, KOHO will take out a line of credit, repay it on time, and help your employees build their credit history.

Earn interest

Employees can earn 1.2% interest on spending and savings accounts, in addition to the instant cashback with KOHO.

Money management

The KOHO mobile app and prepaid Visa credit card work together to help your employees stay on top of their money management through closer monitoring of their budget, spending, and saving.

2 - It will set you apart from the rest. 

The competition is fierce for restaurants these days looking to hire quality staff. In order to stand out from the others, restaurant owners and managers need to offer something unique to entice prospective employees. In an industry that is made up almost entirely of hourly workers who don’t get to cash in on salary benefits, having a service like Instant Pay can make all the difference. 

Especially these days, when the majority of the population that has returned to restaurants still prefers cashless payment methods, so that many restaurant workers aren’t able to take cash tips home at the end of the day. Instead, the average worker has to wait for their paycheck to come to reap the benefits of all their hard work.

Not only will integrating an Instant Pay system, such as KOHO, show that you care about your employees, but it will also help build upon your employee retention. 



restaurant instant pay

3 - It will make your staff happy.

Every restaurant owner and manager knows that it's all about the little things when it comes to making your staff happy. Over the last couple of years, our restaurant workers have been through enough. Between switching roles from the front of the house to food delivery, no longer seeing cash tips, and having to cut down on staffing significantly, it's all taken its toll.

It’s time to show your staff that you genuinely care about them and want to help them become more financially successful. With an Instant Pay app like KOHO, you can promote better money management within your team, with features such as building up a credit history, cashback promotions, and interest rates for savings and spending accounts.

Opting for a prepaid Visa solution like KOHO can be a big decision. After all, it is choosing a banking service. Ultimately, your prepaid credit card should be an attractive solution and a powerful tool for your employees. Here’s how.


Better debt management

With the help of prepaid Visa cards and mobile app pairings, like KOHO, for Instant Pay, your employees can get on top of their money management. Since the average Canadian has nearly $73,000 of debt, it’s clear to see that KOHO can become an invaluable tool for your restaurant workers.

Without damaging long-term credit, KOHO allows your employees to set up controls for smart budgeting, like automatic bill payments, automatic savings, and tracking of spending.


Visa is accepted worldwide

Some of the Instant Pay options out there might be limiting in terms of where they can be used. Thankfully, with KOHO, your employees will never have to face this issue because it is linked with a prepaid Visa card. Across Canada alone, Visa is accepted across 44,000 retailers, including most online retailers.

No NSF fees

Non-sufficient fund (NSF) fees can be brutal for people already experiencing economic hardship as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The average NSF fee charged from financial institutions is $45!

Unlike other Instant Pay services out there, KOHO won't allow your employees to accrue any NSF fees. Instead of charging extra fees, KOHO won’t allow the transaction to proceed if there are insufficient funds.

Contactless payments

As the world continues to shift towards more digital transactions, it’s time to bring that reality to your employees’ payroll as well. Instant Pay services like KOHO will help to minimize any worries about surface-borne pathogens through contactless payments. As soon as funds are authorized from your end, employees can gain access right away through the convenience of the mobile KOHO app.


No long-term risk

The average Canadian owes $8,600 in credit card bills at any given time. Owning a credit card is a massive responsibility for anyone, including your employees. Rather than contributing to potential long-term burdens to their credit, why not offer ways to help improve it?

The risk of any long-term adverse effects on credit is wholly eliminated with services like the prepaid Visa card offered by KOHO. Since employees are unable to accrue debt, you can help their financial literacy while building positive habits like living within their budget.


4 - It can integrate with your existing system.

One of the most beneficial features of Instant Pay apps like KOHO is that the technology has evolved to be able to connect with your existing restaurant payroll system (like Push payroll). What this means for restaurant managers responsible for payroll processing is that it won’t add any more to your workload.

By staying on top of your daily payroll with a few clicks of a button on Push, you can immediately give your employees access to their daily work funds. Your employees can enjoy all the perks of KOHO at no added cost to your business or changes to your payroll process.

restaurant instant pay

5 - Because there is no downside!

KOHO has been trusted by some of Canada’s top employers, and it makes sense. At the end of the day, there truly is no downside to integrating your existing payroll system with an Instant Pay service like KOHO.

Offering a whole suite of money management tools, KOHO is a full-service account. Within the KOHO mobile app, employees can take advantage of automated savings features such as RoundUps and Saving Goals. Users can also earn interest on their entire account and cashback on every purchase. KOHO even offers a credit-building tool.

With all of the countless benefits for employees, the results for restaurant owners and operators are nearly limitless.


So why Instant Pay? 

As a restaurant owner, looking for more ways to engage your existing staff and attract prospective employees is becoming increasingly challenging these days. But don’t let this aspect of your business draw you away from all of the other critical responsibilities of your day-to-day operation.

Instead, seek out beneficial and unique opportunities for both your employees and your business. Instant Pay provides users a plethora of benefits employees will be eager to take advantage of, ultimately making your business reign supreme in terms of employee retention.

Best of all, highly intuitive Instant Pay services, such as KOHO, integrate seamlessly with payroll processing systems like Push, making it easier than ever for you to make this new form of payment more accessible in your restaurant.

And, for restaurant owners and managers into integrations and staff retention, check out our suite of integrated applicant tracking system, hiring and onboarding, payroll, and time tracking through Push. 

That just about sums up the 5 reasons why every restaurant should be offering Instant Pay. Now, the only question for you is—what are you waiting for?

restaurant instant pay

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