An Easy Way to be a Hero: Put Away Your Paper Checks for Good

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May 4, 2020

An Easy Way to be a Hero: Put Away Your Paper Checks for Good

Did you know you can be a hero by not mailing any more paper checks? I know that sounds a little goofy so I’ll explain.
 
The people to whom we mail paper checks have to do a few things to get that money into their bank account, where it is probably very much needed right now. Sometimes we don’t think of all of those steps, especially when the people work at a small business, so I’ll just walk through them briefly:
 
1) Picking up the check: Although I’m working from home and trying to leave home as little as possible, I have a business address. I have to go there and enter an office building (touching the door), say hello to the few people who are still there (exposure to new people) and touch the mail to pick it up. Some small business owners have a post office box, which means they have to go into a public building to get their mail. Some people are entirely shut out of the buildings where their checks are landing, and can’t access the money at all. Even big businesses need to keep people working in mailrooms instead of home with their families when they have paper checks rolling in. Nonprofit organizations often need multiple people to touch the same check when they deal with paper checks.
 
2) Marking the payment received: When someone pays online, the deposit automatically marks the bill paid in the computer system. But when a paper check comes in, I have to open the envelope and look at the check amount, and then go from the envelope (which was likely sealed with saliva) to my computer keyboard that I touch all day long. Washing my hands between opening the checks and marking them paid seems impractical, but is possible. I’d just have to leave my office and touch the door and the door to the restroom and the public sink and my door again to accomplish that. Or use a wipe or sanitizer.
 
3) Depositing the check: I have to stamp or write on the check to endorse it, and either deposit it by taking a photo with my phone or going to the bank. If my bank balance is low and I need the money right away, I’m going to the bank. Only the drive-thru is open, so I’m grabbing the pneumatic tube that has been inside some stranger’s car in the past 10 minutes and bringing it into my car, which very likely could be infected, too. Then I’m sending my car germs into the bank branch to the teller.
 
That’s a lot of touching stuff and going to public places.
 
Can you make a difference by clicking a button? Yes you can!
 
Everything is new and different and maybe seems harder. But here’s an area where people can make a real difference by overcoming whatever hurdles they have to typing in their payment information on a secure screen.
 
Be a hero. Stop mailing paper checks.
 
Thank you, from a nice someone who is leaving my house to go pick up checks so I can pay my bills.
If you would like assistance in learning how to pay your bills online or how to allow people to pay YOU online, please send me an email or call at (614) 887-7483.