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A Guide to the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) for Van Drivers

A Guide to the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) for Van Drivers

Learn all about the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) and how it could benefit you as an electric van driver.

  • The WCS is a voucher-based scheme providing applicants with support for purchasing and installing a charge point.
  • It’s available to those living in England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, excluding the Channel Islands and Isle of Man.
  • Run by the Office for Zero Emissions Vehicles (OZEV), the grant covers up to 75% of purchasing and installation costs. This is capped at a maximum of £350 per socket, with 40 sockets across all sites for each applicant.
  • You must meet all the relevant eligibility criteria in order to apply and be prepared to provide evidence.

 

If you operate an electric van fleet or are working towards this, you may be wondering about charging facilities. You want both you and your colleagues to have easy access to charging when needed, to keep things running smoothly.

These can be costly to purchase, however, with the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS), you can get the support needed to grow your electric fleet.

Read on to learn about how the scheme works, eligibility, and how to apply.

What is the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS)?

The Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) is an initiative run by the Office for Zero Emissions Vehicles (OZEV). The scheme aims to provide applicants with the support needed to install on-site charging facilities.

It’s open to those living in the United Kingdom (excluding the Channel Islands and Isle of Man), who express a need for on-site charging facilities.

How does the Workplace Charging Scheme work?

A voucher-based scheme, the WCS offers to cover up to 75% of the costs for purchasing and installing charging points. This is capped at a maximum of £350 per socket, and 40 sockets across all sites per applicant.

After applying for the scheme using the online application form, you’ll be issued a unique identification voucher code via email. You can give this to any OZEV-approved charge point installer, who will complete the work and claim the grant on your behalf.

This must be completed within six months of the issue date on the voucher. Installers are not permitted to charge applicants before the payment has been made. Any claims against expired vouchers will also not be paid.

You don’t have to apply for all 40 sockets at once, as you can submit additional applications as and when these are needed.

How do I qualify for the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS)?

To apply for the WCS, you’ll need to meet all the eligibility criteria. This states you must:

  • Be a registered business, charity, or public sector organisation
  • Fulfil one of three specific criteria:

    - Be a public authority. Including government departments, the armed forces, local governments, the NHS, and emergency services

    - Have received less than 200,000 euros in public support in the last three financial years (including the current financial year)

    - Have received less than the £315,000 limit minimal financial assistance (MFA) in the last three financial years (including the current year)

  • Raise a need for EV charging equipment, or plans to encourage EV usage within your staff or fleet (you do not need to own an EV yourself)
  • Live in England, Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland (those in the Channel Islands or Isle of Man are not eligible)
  • Have dedicated off-street parking available for staff useHave parking facilities on the premises that are on-site or within a reasonable distance from your workplace
  • Be the registered owner of the property or have consent from your landlord to install charging points

 

You can find the full eligibility criteria on the Government’s website.

How to implement a workplace charging scheme

When implementing a workplace charging scheme, there are a few main things you’ll need to consider:

The quantity of chargers needed

This will depend on the number of electric vans in your fleet, the types of chargers needed, and the parking bays available to facilitate these.

The speed of chargers installed

In order to devise an efficient workplace charging scheme, you’ll want to consider which type of charger will be best for your fleet. Different speed chargers provide different charging times, and the costs of installing these may also vary.

Charging users

HMRC doesn’t class electricity as vehicle fuel, so there is no Benefit-In-Kind (BIK) tax required if you decide to give your employees free access. If running costs will be significantly high, then you may have to consider costs for employees charging their vehicles on-site.

Maintenance

To remain efficient and avoid added costs, charging points will need to be correctly maintained. You may want to plan whose responsibility this will be, and regular checks that may need carrying out.

You can do this yourself or use a charge point provider, where all your charging and maintenance costs can be covered in one monthly bill.

Location

The precise points you decide to locate your charging stations will be important. The closer they are to the power supply, the less work will need to be done when installing them. This may also help to lower your installation costs and save money.

Benefits of the Workplace Charging Scheme for businesses

If you operate an electric fleet, the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) brings several benefits to your business. For instance:

  • Reducing your CO2 emissions and overall carbon footprint
  • Creating a more sustainable business image
  • Futureproofing your business before the ban on new petrol and diesel vehicle sales
  • Increasing retention by providing employees with the resources and facilities they need
  • Saving you and your employees money without having to pay for public charging use

 

Overall, having workplace charging on-site will provide a number of benefits making it worthwhile. From helping your business run smoother, to boosting employee satisfaction, and much more.

How do I claim the Workplace Charging Scheme with Pod Point?

As an OZEV-approved installer, you can claim your digital voucher for the WCS with Pod Point.

The process will be the same as outlined above. You’ll apply for the voucher and present this to Pod Point once approved.

If you’d like some assistance, you can fill in this online form on Pod Point’s website and a member of their team will guide you through the process.

What is the EV infrastructure grant for staff and fleets?

Fleet of white vans lined up

Similar to the WCS, the EV infrastructure grant for staff and fleets supports installing charge points in the workplace. It’s designed specifically for small and medium-sized businesses.

This covers up to 75% of the costs of installation, capped at £15,000. You can claim up to £350 per charge point socket installed, and up to £500 per parking space with the supporting facilities.

You can get up to five grants across five different sites, though as with the WCS, you don’t need to apply for all of these at once. You can apply for sockets you want to install now and later on in the future.

The eligibility criteria are also similar to the WCS. You must be located in the UK and the charging points can only be used by the building’s staff and vehicles. You’ll need to carry out work on at least five parking spaces so they are ready for installation.

Each space must be off-street, private, and owned by you, or one that you have the legal right to. The installer must be OZEV-approved, and they will claim the grant on your behalf after completing the work.

For more information on the EV infrastructure grant for staff and fleets, head to the Government’s website.

Get more for your business at Vansdirect

We hope you’ve found this guide useful and feel ready to expand your electric fleet. With many benefits to be had, you’re sure to be doing the right thing for your business. Feeling inspired to go electric? View our latest van fleet leasing deals below.

At Vansdirect, we’re here for more than just helping you to find the perfect new van. We’re here for your business too. That’s why we share all the information you need to know on van leasing, improving cargo management, road safety tips, and much more.

Plus, with our maintenance, fuel cards, van racking, and insurance services, we help you get your van ready for the job. Not to mention our flexible finance options, which make getting your new van more affordable!

Get in touch with our expert team today to see how we can help with your needs.

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