Image: Flickr Image: Flickr

Small business owners, beware. There has been a surge in requests for emergency payment support from businesses as millions of people head on annual leave over the summer holidays, finds Payments Bureau First Capital Cashflow.

The Cheshire-based firm has seen requests for emergency payment processing more than double as finance staff go on annual leave, with 46 per cent of total annual requests coming in June, July and August.

Failure to make or collect automated payments leaves businesses facing major legal and financial consequences.

Emergency transactions First Capital Cashflow have facilitated include a one-off transaction of £1 billion, processed in an emergency situation on behalf of a public-sector body and the emergency payment of wages for national pet retailer Pets Corner.

Helen Priestman, Commercial Director at First Capital Cashflow, said:

“Employees who look after payment processing internally often forget to complete a handover so the business is locked out of key payment processing systems, so businesses are unable to fulfil commitments such as paying wages, settling invoices or collecting payments from customers, which can have a significant impact on cash flow and the bottom line.

“As a Payment Bureau, we can instantly link our Bureau number to a business’s Service User Number and securely make or take payments on their behalf within a matter of hours, ensuring that cash keeps flowing.

“It pays to be prepared though, finance staff should plan ahead before they leave and ensure they have a comprehensive plan for meeting all important payment and collection deadlines while they’re away. This could include engaging a Payment Bureau to take over and process for the duration of their annual leave.”