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Case studies

TBT Marketing Use Virtual Prepaid Cards to Deliver Sustainable Incentives

B2B marketing agency, TBT Marketing have swapped the stress of sending out physical incentive rewards for a slick virtual card solution.

In the process, they’ve enhanced the service they’re able to offer their clients and moved closer to their goal of achieving a net zero carbon footprint.

The company

TBT Marketing is an independent B2B marketing agency based in the South West of the UK. They are offering a range of imaginative and collaborative marketing services to a staple of high-profile blue chip IT clients. TBT is passionate about driving carbon neutral behaviours in B2B marketing and the wider community, with their Future Focused approach and a goal of reaching a net zero carbon footprint by 2025.

The situation

TBT regularly runs sales enablement giveaways and channel incentives on behalf of their clients. While the incentives worked well, the team were keen to streamline their processes for sending out prizes, and to identify a sustainable alternative to shipping physical items via post.

We used to send out physical prizes vis online retailers. However, we were concerned that these prizes might not be a great fit for their recipients, and they might prefer to choose their own. We also wanted to get away from the admin of sorting physical prizes, particularly the shipping – we deal with clients worldwide, and it can be difficult to get gifts to people in certain countries. Looking at the bigger picture too, we’re always on the hunt for greener, more future focussed ideas for our clients to make sure that our work is good for us, good for them and good for the planet.

Freya Jewell, Account Manager at TBT Marketing

Last year, B4B delivered its first eco-friendly card solution, made from recycled PVC. The environmentally friendly card material made from 76% recycled post-industrial waste, has helped B4B Payments reduce the amount of plastic produced for its payment cards every year. Overall, creating a sustainable payment solution to corporate clients that will help reduce its contribution to climate change.

The solution

After researching a range of potential options, TBT Marketing chose B4B Payments’ prepaid cards as their preferred reward for client incentives.

We looked at online voucher options but struggled to find a card which would work across the world. We needed something versatile, and there wasn’t a voucher that fit the bill. Incentive winners can use prepaid cards to buy whatever gift they want, and virtual cards also mean there isn’t anything physical going out which is much more eco-friendly. We’ve also used B4B Payments’ sustainable physical cards for some clients.

Freya Jewell, Account Manager at TBT Marketing

Working as a reseller, TBT provide prepaid cards to their clients for incentives, managing the card issuing and loading process for them via their own embedded finance solution and making prepaid card incentives a valuable part of their service proposition. With a central management platform, they’re able to instantly issue virtual cards via email, or have sustainable physical cards, made from recycled plastic, posted to customers’ addresses.

We can easily brand the virtual cards with client logos or campaign graphics to match the incentive, and we have a single form to get information from the winners, and we can input that into the system and create an account for them.

Freya Jewell, Account Manager at TBT Marketing
The benefits

Since partnering with B4B Payments, prepaid cards have become one of TBT Marketing’s preferred option for incentives and giveaways.

It’s my go-to reward item rather than anything physical, the card fees are easily outweighed by the time savings compared to sending out physical prizes. It’s so simple, minimises admin, and customer get their reward instantly – no shipping, no waiting, no delays.

Freya Jewell, Account Manager at TBT Marketing

TBT have also seen the benefits of B4B Payments’ customer support, ensuring they’re able to deliver a seamless service to their clients.

The B4B team have been excellent. Whenever I’ve got questions, somebody will come back to me pretty much instantly, and the team have come up with a really quick solution when things haven’t been quite right. I’ve been super impressed.

Freya Jewell, Account Manager at TBT Marketing

It’s really important for us to drive sustainable growth, the TBT partnership is a great example of this.

Tim Robson, Account Director at B4B Payments

Whether you’re running your own staff incentives or looking for ways to add more value to your clients like TBT Marketing, B4B Payments’ prepaid cards are a simple, sustainable way to reward customers anywhere in the world. To find out more about using cards for incentives, or about partnering with us as a reseller, contact us today.

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Case studies Newsroom

Ad Agency partners with B4B to streamline media buying and standardise reconciliation

Imperious Media are an e-based marketing agency specialising in SEO, Web Design, and Advertising.

Since Imperious Media were founded, they have created and managed over 1500 promotional campaigns on social media, on behalf of their clients. They use online advertising to get brands and products in front of buyers quickly and easily, whilst raising awareness and increasing visibility..

A reliable solution

When agencies such as Imperious Media use methods such as traditional cards, or bank transfers to pay for advertising, spend cannot be segregated per client or capped by maximum budget limits. Imperious Media were tired of receiving what they described as ‘really bad support’ and being stung with fees at the end of the month. 

In 2020, they chose B4B Payments to provide a quick and reliable prepaid payment method for advertising. Our all-in-one virtual prepaid card is powered by an intuitive, easy to use platform which offers real time spend control of card activity for better management of advertising campaigns.

The platform is so amazing and right on point, makes it very easy to use. It’s super practical and I am able to conduct my business way faster and not struggle with all sorts of problems, this makes me focus on running the actual business way more.

Imperious Media CEO, Stefan Radulescu

Imperious Media, like many other smart and savvy ad agencies, use B4B Payments to gain full financial visibility via the portal, with the ability to manage budgets all in one place, checking account balances which are updated immediately, and monitoring campaign spend at-a-glance.

This simplifies media buying activities and increases efficiencies by removing tedious reconciliation processes and providing clear and concise reporting.  The result is a robust solution which allows Imperious Media to save time and money on an ongoing basis when managing ad campaigns on behalf of their clients.

We’ve been working with affiliate marketeers like Imperious for many years, we’ve found that with simple pricing and easy systems, we can support their businesses so they can concentrate on client satisfaction.

B4B Payments Account Director, Tim Robson
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Case studies Non Profit Payroll & Payouts Uncategorised

B4B Payments partners with NGOs in modern slavery response

Supplying prepaid Fintech solutions for NGO organisations

A critical issue for all of the NGOs who support victims of modern slavery is how to pay aid in a way that doesn’t put them at risk of being targeted as known carriers of cash. For the victims themselves, being unbanked creates problems with payments in their daily lives as well as with accessing government support systems.

What is modern day slavery?

Modern-day slavery is a critical global issue that is still commonplace in the United Kingdom. Since 2011, local NGOs have had to supply aid to more than 10,000 victims. In 2019, nearly half (46%) of potential victims who were referred to the support scheme were from London.

On a global level, it is estimated that 1 in 200 people are currently slaves. These people are the victims of a variety of exploitative practices and are often forced into work on factories and farms or coerced into the sex industry. Many also end up pushed onto getting involved in illegal pursuits such as smuggling drugs.

B4B Payment’s solution

B4B is a fast-growing Fintech company and an established presence in the prepaid card sector, currently helping NGOs to supply prepaid cards to modern slavery victims.
The launch of their improved process is one of many initiatives that NGOs and their partners have developed in collaboration with the Home Office to improve the way that charity aid is supplied to modern-day slavery victims. Prepaid cards, in particular, help NGOs to reduce the level of in-person contact needed during the current pandemic. These payments are provided under Government contracts and allow NGOs to provide essential payments to help victims begin their process of recovery.

Better inclusivity and safety for victims

By pairing up with B4B Payments, NGOs can now supply the people they help with a prepaid Mastercard® rather than a cash payment. This cashless solution enables staff to send the victim a one-off payment in full, without any worries that they will be targeted for carrying money. Card users are also empowered to make payments online, just like they could with a normal bank card. This means that they can access Government services or purchase things from home much more easily should they have a disability or be adhering to COVID-related social distancing precautions.

An NGO spokesperson said: “Bringing forward the roll-out of prepaid cards has been one of the key adaptations we’ve successfully introduced in recent weeks to help survivors of slavery as they not only begin to live independently but also supporting them to do this within Government guidelines, to protect them from infection.”

CEO of B4B Payments, Paul Swinton, said: “It has been hugely rewarding to provide our services to NGOs because they’re tackling some of the biggest social problems in the world today. Financial inclusion is an issue that cuts across so many different areas including modern slavery, domestic abuse, people trafficking, and homelessness, and we as a financial technology company must do our bit to innovate and help the less fortunate.”

A success story

By partnering with NGOs to create a cashless solution for the previously unbanked victims of modern-day slavery, B4B issued over 7700 prepaid cards across 13 organisations. This included a partnership with one of the largest and most well-known charities globally. Since initiation, over 140,000 transactions have been made using the cards and over £7.7 million in charitable funds have been processed through the new system.

In addition, the program took only two weeks to issue a victim with a prepaid card from the initial sign-up date. The positive impact on the lives of the victims can be seen in the increased safety of their payment methods and the improved convenience of online shopping and access to governmental systems. As previously unbanked people, they can now have the benefits of a card and the financial inclusivity it allows.

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Case studies Education Insights Payroll & Payouts Uncategorised

NSSW provides support with prepaid Higher Education Travel Cards

Next Steps South West (NSSW) is an organisation, part of the Uni Connect programme, funded by the Office for Students. Their aim is to increase progression into higher education by inspiring young people, working with teachers and parents to overcome barriers.

NSSW use personalised, prepaid cards for their Higher Education Travel Card scheme to enable students to attend university and college open days.

B4B Payments provides forward-thinking payment processing solutions, enabling any size organisation to manage its expenses, simplify its payroll and offer rewards and incentives using prepaid cards. With over 1,000 customers and growing all of the time, B4B Payments was voted the Best Prepaid Product of the Year in 2019.

Taylor, a student at Eggbuckland Community College in Plymouth, was the subject of multiple interventions from NSSW, who offered one-to-one support, motivational talks and workshops to help him become the first member of his family to attend university.

With the help of B4B Payment’s prepaid cards, NSSW was able to cover the cost to help Taylor travel to attend a UCAS exhibition and open days at the University of Exeter and the University of Plymouth. Following the support of NSSW, Taylor was able to earn multiple university offers to become an undergraduate student in September 2020.

With B4B Payment’s online portal, customers can easily load their cards with funds in a matter of minutes, track their expenditure and monitor access to their funds, giving organisations like NSSW complete control over their finances.

The whole process has been simple and straightforward. Nothing is too much trouble for B4B staff and their swift response to any matter that may arise and the ability to tailor cards to suit our needs is a definite win for us.

Annie Winsland, Central Team Leader at NSSW
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Case studies Expense Management Insights Non Profit Uncategorised

Church Service: Finding solutions with B4B Payments

Connect Church took control of spending and increased the effectiveness of their multiple programmes by using prepaid business cards from B4B Payments.

Connect Church was founded 80 years ago in Birmingham and has grown to become a vibrant church for the modern age. It is multigenerational and multinational drawing people from across the city, and around the world, through its online services on Facebook and YouTube. It is run by a small staff who work hard to coordinate the work of more than 100 volunteers.

Until recently, the work of the church was facilitated using petty cash, or by people paying from their own pockets and claiming reimbursement. These methods were difficult to administer across so many activities and volunteers. Paperwork was not always submitted correctly, and the system was continually at risk. When staff made online purchases from their own pockets, there was often unavoidable delays before the money was reimbursed, which affected their family budget. Vital activities and services were delayed or adversely affected as a result. Connect Church needed a corporate expense management system that would work for them.

Finding payments solution that worked

As a way of facilitating the online payments, Connect Church first considered debit and credit cards, linked to the church’s main account. However, they quickly recognised that this would still be difficult to administer as well as being a security risk.

Using corporate expense cards through B4B payments turned out to be the ideal solution.

Now, funds are loaded onto the cards by the administrator, according to an approved budget. The process is simple, and fast so that even emergency payments can be quickly handled 24/7 and the cards can be topped up as needed.

Users can then make purchases anywhere that accepts MasterCard® payments, in-store, or online. Receipts are uploaded online, so keeping track is secure and straightforward. Because the administrator can view all transactions in real-time on the secure B4B interface, users are not able to make large purchases or be tempted by a large credit balance.

Set up was simple, and support was available at every stage. The church staff found that working with the B4B team was a pleasure throughout the process.

“From day one, our interactions with the B4B team have been warm and helpful. They have always been quick to respond to our enquiries for support, and even though we are a relatively small concern, we have always been treated well as their clients.”

Tracee McAtear, Executive Pastor

The proof is in the pudding

The church immediately saw an increase in the number of services and programmes they were able to offer. The staff and volunteers no longer held back by slow, cumbersome claim processes could focus on running the activities of the church. Staff and key volunteers felt empowered to make their activities happen without delay and without the risk of being personally out of pocket. The church, which is also a registered charity, is run by trustees who can now rest assured that funds are responsibly utilised and accounted for according to fiduciary regulations.

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Case studies Insights Payroll & Payouts Uncategorised

Alpha Contract Solutions simplify and streamline payouts to their temporary and unbanked workers

Alpha Contract Solutions is a dynamic HR company, supplying civil engineering consultants and contractors to prestigious projects across Europe. They needed a smart, flexible and secure payment system to manage their payroll of UK contractors, many of whom are working on temporary projects in other countries, without local bank accounts. The innovative and award-winning prepaid Mastercard solution from B4B Payments turned out to be a great fit for their business.

The next level in employee satisfaction

Prior to turning to B4B Payments, ACS used the legacy banking system of international transfers across borders, but found that the process was difficult and time-consuming for both management and the contractors out in the field.

Managing director Sefton Hanley said: “The service we received from banks was slow and expensive with payments sometimes taking days. We need to look after our people, and delays like that are unacceptable.”

With prepaid cards, the process is fast and easy. ACS contractors are issued with an ACS branded card, which can be loaded with funds quickly and securely. There is no requirement from the employee to fill in any paperwork and recipients receive an SMS notification once the payment has been made. They can then use the card to pay for goods and services anywhere a Mastercard® payment is accepted, online or in-store. The funds are immediately available, and the card can be used worldwide 24/7.

Secure, efficient and fraud-proof

The B4B Payment system eliminates the complicated accounting processes involved when handling cash and expense forms. ACS management found the process, with its clear audit trail, an ideal way to streamline their payroll system. If a card is lost, it can be easily replaced, with no risk to the business. The card is sent directly to the employee and usually arrives within 24 hours. If there is an emergency, top-up funds can be loaded onto the card quickly and securely and the system is fully controllable. Incentives, expense costs and rewards are also all easily incorporated and managed.

Outstanding service and support

The management of ACS is dedicated to being hands-on and detail-oriented, with a commitment to supporting complex projects that operate around the clock, in multiple time-zones. This means that they require very high standards of support from all of their suppliers. They found the team at B4B Payments more than equal to the task. From initial meetings to the system going live, the process was smooth and effective.

“The service we’ve received from the team is great – the whole thing has worked well right from day one,” added Sefton Hanley.

For ACS, partnering with B4B Payments has clearly proved to be a winning strategy in managing their payroll efficiently and cost-effectively, with maximum benefit and satisfaction to their employees.

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Case studies Expense Management Incentives & Perks Insights Uncategorised

B4B Payments partners with UK full-service channel agency, Outbound for prepaid solution.

Recognising the need for efficient, secure, and cost-effective incentives and rewards programmes to deliver to their clients – as well as better way to manage company expenditure, Outbound turned to B4B Payments for a solution which ticked all the boxes.

Outbound is a full-service channel agency, specialising in Sales, Marketing and Management. They help vendors deliver maximum influence, using their long-standing expertise in the IT sector. Their clients include major brands such as HP and Lexmark, with dedicated teams to deliver channel engagement strategies, channel marketing, partner management, demand generation and programme administration with proven results.

B4B Payments partners with many of the UK’s foremost marketing agencies to provide prepaid payment solutions to their clients; encompassing corporate expense management and employee rewards. In a fast-paced world where rewards are needed quickly but must comply with all applicable financial services legislations, we work with agencies to understand their brief and select the best solution.

A complete solution

Outbound, like many organisations, previously used gift vouchers for company reward schemes resulting in an unwanted variation of gift based on country. Needing a solution which allowed them to standardise perks, so that individuals within countries didn’t feel they were getting a better or worse deal and wary of sending out gift vouchers in the post, as there was the chance that they could get lost was a major priority. At the same time, Outbound were using personal and company credit cards for trips and expenditure, so being able to combine a cashless solution which fits both needs meant that the B4B solution was the best option.

Claire King, Programme Manager at Outbound, explained that the solution had added value on a number of fronts. She said: “We have used B4B Payments across many projects with different clients – for example HP or Lexmark. The ability to create personalised cards is a useful way of creating brand awareness for the client. The B4B system is easy to use and send rewards and expenses to clients.”

Outbound chose B4B Payments to provide a solution that offered more choice. By providing personalised, prepaid cards which covered both incentives and expenses in one, made it much easier to provide a standardised reward, more control over company expenses, and saved time in accounting.

A great advantage for Outbound was the ability to send B4B cards with zero value, and then top them up with funds when the recipient confirms safe receipt, giving them peace of mind about funds going astray.

The result was a robust solution which allowed Outbound to deliver more value for their clients, offering them the ability to add personalised branding to the cards, enhanced security features, and full use of the B4B Payments platform, making their switch from gift vouchers, and personal payments to B4B prepaid cards all the more rewarding.

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Case studies Education Insights Payroll & Payouts Travel

Education First chooses B4B for simplified travel payment process.

Education First, (EF) is a world leader in educational travel and has been opening up the world through education for over 50 years. Founded in 1965, the team continues to inspire young people through immersive cultural experiences, helping teachers and students to study abroad, explore historical sites and access academic degree programs. With 612 offices and 52,000 employees, EF offers experiences in 114 countries across Europe, Asia and North and South America.

As a group tour operator offering immersive learning experiences, EF needs to be able to quickly and easily send funds from its headquarters in Zurich to tour directors out in the field. These tour directors are at the heart of the cultural experience, expertly guiding groups around exciting destinations and local landmarks. Easy access to a payment solution is vital.

EF and B4B Payments have worked together since 2017 to provide an efficient but flexible solution to ensure funds are easily sent around the globe to the right tour director at the right time.

Prepaid expense cards mean less admin and more time; Time to do the things that matter most.

As a result of our partnership, EF is making use of our round-the-clock corporate expense management system across the world, from London and Lima to Tokyo and Krakow, ensuring greater efficiency throughout the entire company.

“We worked with B4B Payments to install a payments solution that is efficient for the central back-office as well as our global tour needs. We’re very happy with the B4B product and the service we’ve received from the team in London. Not only the initial product we procured in 2017 but also the incremental services they have brought to us based on our changing needs and feedback. B4B understands that we’re not a static business and is happy to grow with us as we move forward.”

Steve Clark, Education First Finance Director

EF uses B4B corporate expense cards to distribute funds to its tour directors all over the world. Our prepaid expense cards are simple to use, which allows tour directors to easily cover on-the-road expenses freeing them up to focus on their number one priority, the travellers.

Mitigating risk and a clear audit trail of funds was a primary goal of EF’s brief to B4B when the programme was set up. It was just as important that the back-office users could find the system easy to use and reduce admin tasks along with the associated stress and pressure these bring. EF uses the B4B’s system ability to bring ‘four-eyes’ onto financial transactions, set differing authorisation and budget levels depending on the tour. Overall, these benefits lead to greater efficiency and optimal performance as our premier expense management platform cuts business costs and excels at a global level.

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Case studies Expense Management Insights Non Profit Uncategorised

B4B corporate expense cards are the answer for leading charity, London Youth

This top charity finds that B4B’s prepaid business card platform is the perfect support for the running of its many programmes.

Paying expenses through petty cash was a time-consuming headache for UK charity London Youth. Switching to corporate expense management through B4B Payments was a fantastic solution for this busy organisation.

Important work

London Youth is a charity whose purpose is to improve the lives of young people in our nation’s capital. Last year, working through a multitude of different youth organisations, they supported more than 27 000 young people, giving new hope and opening up opportunities to grow and thrive. The project management challenges and the administrative load of this vital work can be overwhelming. So when the organisation found there was a better way to handle expense payments, they were immediately interested. B4B Payments’ corporate expense cards helped London Youth in three main ways:

Quick and convenient

Because the cards are preloaded with funds, the administrators can easily control and account for the amounts allocated, and the users do not have to use their own cash or juggle receipts and expense claims. Users can pay for goods and services, online or store-based, that accept Mastercard® payments. Shazia Mert, Programmes Support Officer for London Youth said,

“Paying funds by petty cash meant there were more likely errors in calculation, and we were unable to provide funds in advance when needed.”

With the new system, there is positive buy-in from users, and participation in events and programmes by members of the charity’s Youth Board is now fully supported.

Security is key

The cards can be loaded with any amounts from 300 to 4,000 euros a month. Cardholders can check balances online using a PIN and topping up funds in an emergency is fast and straightforward. Lost cards are not a problem, with replacement cards issued within 24 hours. For London Youth, a further benefit was reducing the risk of losing money through uncontrolled spending, errors, or potential fraud. Furthermore, the system ensured policy and regulatory compliance – a critical factor in the management and accounting practices of any charity.

Great customer support

“Right from the start, the B4B team has been clear and helpful and friendly. Having one account manager who I can go to is so helpful. Having had the opportunity to build a rapport with my account manager, I know I can always trust her to deal with any problems or questions I may have. She already knows how my organisation uses the account, and so she can advise me accordingly.”

Shazia Mert, Programmes Support Officer for London Youth
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Case studies Insights Non Profit Payroll & Payouts

Migrant Help chooses prepaid B4B payout solution

Using specially designed prepaid cards, Migrant Help has been able to support and protect hundreds of people.

For Migrant Help, finding a cash solution that suited their organisational mission and practical limitations was a must. In their work, assisting victims of modern slavery and human trafficking, being able to provide ways to aid recovery is paramount. Money was one of the biggest hurdles in the process since displaced or exploited individuals often don’t have the facilities to open a typical bank account.

With that problem in mind, B4B Payments was the ideal partner. Though in the past the charity was required to make hand-to-hand payments of cash, this was high-risk and not appropriate in all circumstances. As such, a prepaid MasterCard was the perfect alternative – offering all the benefits of a cash-free system without requiring the paperwork and process of an individual bank account.

Using specially designed prepaid cards, Migrant Help has been able to support and protect hundreds of people looking to better their lives through the charity. Helping those that need it the most means providing that additional degree of independence over their own lives. B4B Payments offers that perfect middle ground between formal financial support and cash-in-hand, helping at-risk individuals to get on with their lives and reach more positive outcomes.

What made B4B Payments the ideal option for Migrant Help?

“We have found this payment solution very simple and easy to use, the system is user friendly and we’ve found the B4B staff to be very supportive and responsive whenever we’ve had to escalate an issue. This has made a real resource and efficiency saving for our organisation. The Solution has been empowering for our clients who are able to manage their own money for the first time, made the process significantly quicker and less time consuming for staff.” Rabiya Ravat, Deputy Director of National Operations

Now, Migrant Help uses B4B prepaid cards as their primary payment method across the broad spectrum of individuals they support. As a far more suitable alternative to cash, prepaid cards have reduced administrative strain and cost overall – which is a must for running a charity long-term as efficiently as possible. An unexpected, but welcome positive has been the reduction in travel time and transport cost involved in face-to-face payments.

Once an individual working with the charity is set up with their own B4B card, supplied by the charity, there’s no need for any additional meetings for top-ups or allotted money. Instead, the whole process can be fulfilled digitally – benefitting both workers within the Migrant Help offices and the people they serve. By reducing risk, streamlining processes and modernising the support they offer, the charity is better placed than ever to increase the number of people they can help each year.

What has become recently apparent is how effective the use of B4B Payment’s prepaid cards are in the current world climate. At the height of COVID-19, the use of cards of cash handling meant the additional protection needed to keep staff and clients safe was already in place. No need to search for a quick and easy solution, thanks to B4B’s prepaid cards already being firmly established into Migrant Help’s ongoing processes.

Ease of use, Practicality, and Functionality

Migrant Help have now achieved the best possible system for supporting victims of exploitation and modern slavery. By choosing to work with the B4B Payments team, they’ve created a solution that not only works – but benefits both recipients and staff at the same time. Modernisation is vital for any charity to continue to succeed, and Migrant Help has undoubtedly got that box ticked by making a move from a cash-only process to one that can be done with far less face-to-face time.

At B4B Payments, we’ve designed our payment solution to be as straightforward as it is innovative. That means reduced risk, enhanced payment processes and visible results every time. For charities like Migrant Help, our prepaid cards offer a particular solution – but the benefit of choosing such a versatile platform is the fact it can be expanded to many other areas, from payroll to rewards, general payments to charitable exercises.