Managing welfare payment services for central and local governments

Home Office, Close up of the hands of people in a meeting circle

Working with the Home Office

The successful management of the Home Office asylum seeker support scheme has established Sodexo as a leading supplier of welfare payment services to central and local governments.

We’ve been providing cash and payment services to the Home Office since 2000. Payments were initially in the form of a paper voucher service, this was replaced with a cash payment system in 2002. By March 2004, all asylum seekers were using the new system managed by Sodexo.

Home Office, Home People hugging, crowded street scene, workplace

Further developments

In early 2009, the Home Office approached us about the possibility of designing a new payment system for failed asylum seekers. In response, we developed the Azure Payment Card with our expert technology partners. Launched in October 2009, the Azure Card is an unbranded Visa Debit card that can be used at a network of national retailers. The card has seen millions of transactions since launch, and was nominated for a Home Office supplier award for innovation.

In 2014, Sodexo upgraded the service allowing recipients to use PIN pad technology. There are more innovations in the pipeline too, with the express aim of improving the user experience for asylum seekers while providing tangible efficiency savings to the Home Office.


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