Here are some of the common questions that come up for our clients. Please reach out to your Client Success Manager or Client Support if something isn't covered here.
Hire Agreement amount or Letter of Collection needs to be changed
Once a Cycle to Work application has been approved the Hire Agreement and Letter of Collection cannot be amended. If the member would like to amend the amount, they can do so by cancelling their order (within 14 days) and provided the Letter of Collection has not been spent.
How long does it take until the Letter of Collection is sent to the employee after their application is approved?
As soon as the application is approved, Halfords send the LoC to the employee via email.
Please note that all emails are sent to the email address the employee has used to make their application and some employees forget they may have used their personal email instead of the work email.
The process is instant because it's automatic - RG sends information to Halfords as soon as an application is approved via API /please note that the approval period is longer for clients on post-approval, because an administrator needs to go and manually approve the application in the Reward Manager/ and the API triggers a command which automatically sends the LoC.
When is the Letter of Collection dispatched?
For clients on pre-approval it's dispatched right away, and for clients on manual approval the LoC is dispatched after an administrator approves the application.
What email address are the Letter of Collection's coming from?
What is the subject of the LoC email?
The subject tends to start with “Here is your Cycle2Work………”
Are there any domains or IP addresses the client needs to whitelist to make sure their employees are receiving their Letter of Collections as expected?
Only the email firstname.lastname@example.org if needed
Employee wants to cancel prior to the close date of an application window
The window dates are not linked to application cancellations. For example, the applications can still be pending although the window has closed a week ago, or instantly approved although the window is still open. An employee can cancel their Cycle to Work order within 14 days of receiving their Letter of Collection (providing it hasn't been spent). For more information on refunds, please see the Cycle to Work refund process.
Employee wants to cancel the application after the window closes and the Letter of Collection has been issued
Please be aware that the cancellation period is 14 days! If the employee has received their Letter of Collection and would like to cancel within the initial 14-day cancellation period, they can do so on the Order History page on their profile. In case the employee needs to cancel their Letter of Collection after the initial 14-day period, they can request this from their employer and provide a reason for the request on the Order History page. Refunds can only be processed if the Letter of Collection has not been spent. No cancellations can be made outside the 14-day period without prior agreement between the client and Reward Gateway. Full details around the refund process in this article - Cycle to Work refund process.
How long is the Letter of Collection valid for?
Halfords have a 4 month expiry on every Letter of Collection. If an employee doesn't spend their Letter of Collection during this time, they cannot get a refund. The employee can request an extension on their Letter of Collection directly from Halfords by calling their Cycle2Work team on 08450 778850 or via email email@example.com
What are 'hire periods', 'hire agreements', and 'salary sacrifice period'?
Hire period: the period for which this agreement is valid; always 12 months
Hire agreement: the ‘terms and conditions’ of Cycle2Work that are signed during the application process
Salary Sacrifice term: the period of repayment; can be 12,18 or 24 months
What happens if the employee leaves or gets made redundant before the end of the hire period?
If the employee leaves before the end of the hire period, they must pay their employer the balance of the amount outstanding. This should be deducted from their final net pay. The employee will no longer be able to benefit from the tax exemption.
Employees have access to this information and give their agreement on the second step of their user journey via the Pre-Contract Information which states:
"What if I leave employment early or I’m made redundant?
If you leave your employment before the end of the hire term, the outstanding balance of your Hire Agreement will be taken from your remaining salary payments, and you can continue to use the Goods until the hire period ends. You’ll then be given the opportunity to buy the Goods for their fair market value. However, this transfer of ownership is the subject of a separate agreement and isn’t governed by the Hire Agreement."
The information is also available on the website in the FAQ section for employees benefit:
"What if I leave my company within my Hire Agreement?
We completely understand that life can be unpredictable. If you were to leave your company or be made redundant in your hire period, the remaining gross balance would simply be deducted from your last payslip."
Please note, Reward Gateway does not provide tax advice and the above
information is publicly available through the relevant HMRC channels.
What happens to salary deduction for Cycle to Work during Maternity or Sick Leave?
If an employee is absent from work during the period covered by their Cycle to Work Hire Agreement, their salary reduction will remain in place and will apply to any pay received (including sick pay or maternity pay). For more information, please see What happens to salary deductions during maternity or sick leave.
What happens to our employees in Jersey or Guernsey?
Employees who are based in Jersey or Guernsey are still eligible to apply for Cycle to Work, however they are required to pay a Goods Service Tax at 5% on all goods over the value of £240.
The Net deduction option - are the net deductions reflected as such in the payroll report?
Yes, there is a seperate column in the report which shows the application type (e.g. net or gross) against every application.
How long would it take to switch the Net deduction option?
Upon request a Client Support specialist can turn on the option on your scheme almost instantly.
Are we safe as an employer to use the Net deduction option?
The employer is providing the employee with an interest free loan to obtain a cycle and/or cycle safety accessory for the purposes of commuting to and from work. The loan will be provided to the employee as a letter of collection which can then be redeemed within any Halfords store in the UK or via Halfords.com. The amount is then deducted from the employee’s net pay over a period stipulated by the employer e.g 12 months.
As you will see from the following link on the government website an employee on NMW or NLW is able to avail of a loan and then pay this back to their employer through a net deduction arrangement.
As you can appreciate, we are not tax and legal advisor's and recommend that you seek your own advice if further guidance is required.
What happens to salary deductions for Cycle to Work during Maternity or Sick Leave?
If an employee is absent from work during the period covered by their Cycle to Work Hire Agreement, their salary reduction will remain in place and will apply to any pay received (including sick pay or maternity pay).
By entering into the Hire Agreement, they agree that the amount of the monthly salary reduction may be deducted from any such payments.
For the avoidance of doubt, this will not include statutory maternity or sick pay.
Statutory maternity pay is paid for the first 39 weeks of maternity leave. If the employee is absent due to sickness, their normal pay ceases and is replaced by a sickness allowance. This allowance is made up of money from their employer, called Occupational Sick Pay (OSP) and money paid on behalf of the Inland Revenue/Government called Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). Deductions for Cycle to Work would still be made from the OSP but not from SSP.
If the employee is temporarily not in receipt of salary payments for any reason but remains employed by the organization, their Hire Agreement will continue and monthly reductions suspended until the earliest of the following events: 1) reverting to receiving salary payments, or 2) terminated employment from the organization.
If monthly reductions are suspended, the hire period will be extended by a period equivalent to the period during which monthly reductions were suspended.
More information can be found on the HMRC website and in this HMRC Cycle to Work guidance document.
If any issues arise that are not mentioned above, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org who will be able to help.