John Lewis Partnership launches housing rental benefit for 85,500 staff

John Lewis Partnership

Retail organisation John Lewis Partnership has launched a property rental benefit for its 85,500 John Lewis and Waitrose employees, in order to support staff financial wellbeing.

The new benefit, provided by Canopy, was introduced on 18 May 2018 and enables employees to rent accommodation without a cash deposit, as well as helping staff to build a positive credit score.

Employees who are currently renting a property, or who are planning to do so in the future, are able to use Canopy’s rent tracking service. This allows staff to automatically reconcile their rent payments and improve their credit history, using open banking technology. Employees are also able to add rental payments to their credit history using the Canopy app, to further improve their credit rating.

The benefit also enables employees to access an insurance-based, deposit free alternative to typical cash deposits, which can help to make the moving process more affordable. This service is underwritten by Hiscox.

Employees can additionally use the Canopy app to create a rent passport, which helps staff build a trust score by instantly verifying income, creditworthiness, employment, regular rent payments and past references.

Stacey MacDougall, leisure benefits development manager at John Lewis Partnership, said: “Our aim is to provide a relevant and valued range of benefits for our [employees]. For a number of years, we have seen shelter, accommodation or housing as one of the most important gaps in our offer. The importance of good shelter has a critical impact on individuals, their wellbeing, their effectiveness and happiness at work. Having listened to feedback from our [employees] we made the decision to work with Canopy to help us bridge the gap in the shelter space.”