In the on-demand world that we live in, getting money in employees’ hands as quickly as possible is crucial to retaining top talent, and it’s also now possible through a new form of banking. RASI Director of Partnerships, Brad Bertram sits down with RASI Partner, Blake Mhyran and Charlie Kleiner of Branch, to discuss the various ways in which digital banking can aid restaurant operations in becoming more efficient, and how making payroll a digital affair also benefits employees in finding their own financial success.



The reality of the restaurant world is that its demographic of worker is exposed far more to the broader impacts of the pandemic than those within the corporate world. Because of this experience, it has changed the game when it comes to banking and payroll in creating a safe setting in which restaurants can pay their employees in a timely fashion that’s beneficial to both parties. The top 4 areas of change?


  • The need for more contactless experience
  • The need for methods of employee payments to get paid faster
  • The need for digital banking, available for everyone, without being riddled with fees and cost associations
  • The need for a free digital tip mechanism

When COVID first hit and people were ordering food-to-go on a daily basis but only paying with their card because no one wanted to touch each other anymore, stores were left cashless. Operations had to make a major shift into understanding how to pivot towards daily tips with no cash on hand.

“Say I’m a pizza shop; I’ve now got to sell some of my cheese over to my fellow franchise owner in order to get some cash moved over from his store to mine. Then run into the bank twice a day. It was a nightmare.”

Blake Myhran, Partner Channel Development, Branch

For both the operational side of businesses and for the livelihood of the worker who’s used to getting paid every day, the move to digital banking has been monumental so that operations have cash on hand, and workers don’t have to wait two weeks to get tips on their paycheck.

The most likely scenario is that when the pandemic over, the shifts and trends that have happened within the industry aren’t going to change. People aren’t going to go back to using cash because they like the ease and convenience that rides alongside digital banking. No one wants to wait in line at a bank branch to deposit a check; they want to snap a photo on their phone and have the money transferred almost immediately. The trend was headed in that direction in the last 5-10 years, and COVID simply forced the change to happen on a global basis. Restaurants and businesses alike are still going to need the solutions for those contactless, digital payments moving forward.

Click HERE to listen to the top trends that Branch has seen with innovative restaurants leading the way in the digital era, and why the attraction for hourly workers has increased.



The industry is beginning to see a lot of restaurant workers shift into these gig economy platforms that are more on-demand, and that’s because they have more scheduling flexibility. The biggest benefit here is that the worker can perform their job and get paid that day; they can get paid as soon as they finish delivering the food or picking up groceries for someone, and so there’s been a huge push from people working in traditional restaurants moving to those gig platforms.

Restaurants have started to realize that and use these tools within digital banking platforms to stay competitive and to provide their employees with better banking solutions so they’re not losing their employees to gig platforms.

Learn how your employees can get their tips digitally after every shift and can get paid up to two days early through Branch’s Digital Banking Platform!

“We actually had a member of our team a couple of weeks back, share a photo with all of us, of a billboard here in Minnesota with one of our customers advertising “Come work for us, you get paid digitally every day.” It’s so important for operators to utilize these tools that are heavily impacting the industry and initiating so much change! It’s incredible to be part of an organization that helps facilitate such positive benefits to our customer and their employee.”

– Charlie Kleiner, Field and Marketing, Branch

Broadening the financial benefit offering to the employee in general is something that’s been trending for the last, 3-5 years,  so the more buzzy, financial wellness conversation was already on the uptick, but once COVID hit, that conversation took center stage, and it became very much top of mind for leaders and HR organizations to understand just how much they could do to support their employees in an effort to shield them from the harsh impacts that the pandemic has caused. Because of this, the competition has gotten stiffer, and restaurants are all trying just to keep a level playing field.




As the restaurant industry is moving towards this concept of modernizing payroll, it’s really about having more flexible options for employees. So, not paying people on paper checks; that’s costly for a business owner, and that’s also not the way people want to be paid anymore. It’s allowing additional tools for people to be financially well and be financially successful. Some examples include:

  • Employers can push funds directly to Branch, or whatever banking tool they may be using. Employees can then use those funds via a debit card where they can get cash at an ATM. Employers can also use Apple Pay, or Google Pay; there’s a multitude of digital banking options that cater to the needs of both employer and employee.

Utilizing modernized payroll solutions comes down to digital direct deposits. That enables an employer to say, “here are your funds, right away.” Regardless of what that looks like dependent upon the tools used, employers can also shorten the pay cycle so that employees can get their paycheck a couple of days earlier than they traditionally did before digitized banking. The more that a restaurant can get their digital presence heightened, the better.

The restaurant world is historically an entry-point to the working world for a lot of individuals, so additionally, in terms of being nimble and efficient, what if an employer could actually help an employee enter the banking world for the first time?

It’s an opportunity that is now on the table that has really never been there before. Many times, the younger generations don’t understand or don’t pay attention to all the nuances within the banking world, like overdraft fees, or credit scores and how they’re affected.

Modernized banking solutions have changed that.

Being able to get an employee entered into the banking world, without having to worry about overdraft fees, or cost associations tacked on to the general banking will is just another tool a restaurant owner can utilize to hire and retain talent as mentioned earlier.

In terms of helping the business out, these digital payroll solutions will not only help to streamline payments, but it’ll also help payroll become so much easier as well.



  • Controlling Cash Flow: Operators are able to true-up payroll and not have to deal with floating checks; Digital banking brings the ability to have monies transition out of the bank account on a quicker basis enabling an operator to truly know where their operational account lies.
  • Eliminating Paper Checks: Getting the money in the hands of the employees so they can manage it themselves as opposed to the managers managing the checks.
  • Creating Cost Savings: Not having to re-run payroll when employees lose or misplace their paystubs.
  • Generating Time Savings: Digital banking enables the payroll process to be quick and streamlined since managers aren’t having to cut and deliver paper checks anymore.