How do we protect our customers and other SMEs during COVID-19?

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In light of the current situation worldwide, our highest priority is working with our customers and a wider SME community in the UK to ensure that we help as much as we can. We have already managed to support 1000s of our customers but we don’t want to stop there. Over the last few weeks, our team has been working hard on several initiatives to help small businesses during these difficult times. 

Repayment support for Capital on Tap customers

A lot of businesses have been affected by a loss of income and are struggling to make repayments on time. Therefore, we have temporarily reduced our minimum monthly repayments from 10% to as little as 5% for one month. All customers whose account is on time and have an active direct debit mandate can update their repayment amount straight from their Online Portal.  

Those customers who are already in arrears can now set up a different repayment arrangement directly from the Online Portal, so they can get their account back up to speed easily, and at a pace that they can afford.

Expanding our Operations

Since the beginning of the shutdown, the call volume to our Customer Service team has increased by over 80%. We understand that now more than ever, it is extremely important for our customers to be able to reach our agents as soon as possible. In the last couple of weeks, we have expanded our Customer Operations teams across the globe to support our customers as best and as fast as we can. With the extra hires, our average wait time is only 60 secs! We’re going to keep the lines open for those who need us most, so we’re still encouraging all customers with non-urgent queries to refer to our dedicated websites before contacting us.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Capital on Tap has applied to become an accredited lender of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), a scheme set up by the Government and British Business Bank to assist lenders in providing funding to UK SMEs. If we receive the accreditation, we will be able to provide even more SMEs with much-needed funds to keep their businesses running. 

To find out more about the CBILS scheme, click here

“Covid Credit” tool

It’s become apparent that self-employed and sole traders are particularly affected by the current situation due to difficulties around calculating their actual income. 

Therefore, we have teamed up with a group of UK Fintech firms including Credit Kudos, Fronted, 11:FS, Coconut, Mazuma, Seedlegals and True Layer to create a software solution called ”Covid Credit”. The tool will allow business owners to track and claim back the money they have lost as a result of COVID-19 – you just need to provide your bank details and prepare a simple PDF report that can be sent to the HMRC as a summary of your financial situation. This is currently a proof of concept and is still being reviewed to see if it could be part of the self-employed funding support application process. We truly believe that Covid Credit will make a difference to small businesses and those who are self-employed and it’s been great to see the fintech community coming together to create a tool in such a short period! 

For latest updates on Covid Credit, click here. 

“Save My Local” platform 

Save My Local is another brilliant initiative we are proud to be part of. It’s a free website created by a group of tech volunteers within the Fintech industry. SaveMyLocal aims to enable small businesses to sell vouchers to their loyal customer base quickly and easily. This way SMEs can generate much-needed cash that will allow them to survive during this difficult time. The vouchers will be redeemable when the lockdown is over and we hope that this approach will provide struggling businesses with vital cash flow. 

If you are a small business, you simply need to register on the Save My Local site so we can help you create your custom page. As soon as your page is ready, you can start selling your vouchers! 

To register, click here

Open Banking technology

Open banking is a technology that allows businesses to connect their bank account and submit financial data to a third party. It has been available for several years but has gathered more and more traction over the last 12 months. Banks in the UK have been mandated to provide APIs (a data connection that anyone can connect to) so it’s accessible to more users.  

Capital on Tap has been using it on a small scale but with such drastic changes to SME finances, we are going to be using it more and more to fully understand the financial situation of our customers. It will enable us to give faster and more accurate credit reviews and will increase the number of customers we can support through this difficult time. 

We connected with TrueLayer, Open Banking API provider 7 days ago and on the 9th April, we made the technology available in our portal for the first group of customers. This will be rolled out further over the coming days.

As we are continuing to work on these and other initiatives, make sure to check our blog regularly for the latest updates. And despite the lockdown, we wish everyone a lovely and sunny Easter! Stay safe & healthy. 

If you are a Capital on Tap business credit card customer and require further support, please contact our Customer Support team on 02089627401. 

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