What is Earned Wage Access (EWA)?

Companies today have no shortage of options when it comes to employee benefits. However, few can compete with the amount of upside that Earned Wage Access (EWA) offers both employees and employers.

This on-demand pay solution can provide immense value to employees, especially the estimated 78% of Americans who live paycheck to paycheck. [1] In return, it can also help employers to attract and retain talent while boosting employee attendance and productivity. Oh, and did we mention it’s a cost-effective solution that, in most cases, comes at no cost to the employer?

But what exactly is earned wage access? Here, we’ll break down what it is, how it works, and what it’s not (hint: not a loan or an interest-based debt product).

What is Earned Wage Access?

Earned wage access is a financial employee benefit that gives employees access to their earnings before payday. Instead of waiting for an employer to process payments at scheduled intervals, employees can request their pay early for a small, flat fee.

How Does Earned Wage Access Work?

An employer signs up with an employee benefit provider like Pronto Pay and connects their payroll software to get earned wage access. While we typically do the heavy lifting, this will require some assistance from the employer’s IT or HR team for planning and implementation.

Once integrated, employees can signup and log into the earned wage access app. Inside, they can view their available earnings and request an advance for a small, flat fee. On the next payday, any advances will be automatically deducted from the employee’s paycheck. The remaining amount will be sent to them as usual so there’s no impact to the payroll process.

That’s it! Earned wage access gives employees more flexibility to improve their financial health. [2] They won’t have to wait for payday (or turn to expensive alternatives, such as payday loans) to pay bills or cover emergency expenses.

What Isn’t Earned Wage Access?

There is some confusion about earned wage access, so let’s clear it up real quick. Earned wage access is NOT a loan. When you get a loan, you borrow another party’s money and typically must pay it back over a set term with interest and fees. When employees request an advance of their paycheck, they receive their own earned wages before payday for a small fee. Also, it’s not an interest-based debt product. Employees don’t pay any interest, and the fee isn’t based on when they make a request or how much they receive.      

How to Get Earned Wage Access in Texas

If you live in Texas and are interested in offering earned wage access to your employees, request a demo to see if this is the right fit for your company. And if you are a Texas employee who wants this benefit, simply let our team at Pronto Pay know (Email us at contact@prontoservices.io).  We’ll get back to you shortly with the next steps. With no cost to employers, seamless implementation, and financial flexibility for employees, Pronto Pay’s earned wage access is a win-win!


[1] Z. Friedman,  "78% Of Workers Live Paycheck To Paycheck," Forbes, 11 Jan 2019.  [Online]. Available:  https://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2019/01/11/live-paycheck-to-paycheck-government-shutdown/?sh=7bf141a4f10b.  [Accessed Feb 2022].

[2] Visa,  "Almost half of employees have less than $500 saved for unexpected  expenses," Visa, 2019.