The UK Workplace Charging Scheme Explained
There’s never been a better time to jump aboard the electric vehicle trend. But how can you make the installation of electric charging stations affordable for your business?
You have to apply to the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) to get an OZEV voucher. The scheme is funded by the government and offers grants to help reduce the costs of installation.
What is the workplace charging scheme?
The Workplace Charging Scheme is a grant, issued by the government, to give businesses a helping hand when installing electric vehicle charging stations for employee parking.
If you’re interested in getting EV stations for your business, charity, or public authority, the scheme can be just what you need to reduce the costs.
Businesses can get a grant in the form of a voucher from the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV), formerly the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). Before you jump into applying, there are a couple of things you need to know.
Who is eligible for the charging scheme?
To get a voucher on the workplace scheme, you’ll need to meet the eligibility criteria. Good news! The scheme is open to all businesses, no matter how big or small. Keep in mind that you can only claim up to 40 charging stations.
First, to get the OZEV voucher you’ll need to be a registered business, charity, or public sector organisation. After that, it comes down to a few details:
- The parking site must be for staff/fleet use only.
- Your business address must be in England, Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland.
- Businesses registered in the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man are not eligible.
- Your business has received less than €200,000 of public support money in the last 3 financial years.
- You’re registered with Companies House or are VAT registered.
If that sounds like you, then we highly recommend applying for the grant! Whether you’re a sole trader or big fleet, the grant is well worth applying for. Just keep in mind that there is one catch – you have to maintain the EV stations for at least 3 years once they’ve been installed.
Do you work from home? You can get an OZEV voucher too on the scheme as long as your home address is registered with HMRC and Companies House as your place of business.
What sites are eligible for the OLEV workplace charging scheme?
Here’s the catch. Even if your business is eligible, your parking site might not be. Most importantly, the parking space must only be for staff/fleet use. But there are a couple of other details for successful application to the scheme:
- You must have a minimum power supply of 3kW to each socket. This power supply shouldn’t go down if more than one socket is used at a time.
- You own the property or have permission from the landlord where you plan to install the EV charging station.
- The parking spaces must be off-street.
Why should you apply for the workplace charging scheme?
Businesses can reduce the costs of buying and installing EV stations using the OZEV voucher. But how much can you save? The scheme can reduce the purchase cost by 75% and EV installation by up to £350 for each single socket station.
In total, businesses can save up to a maximum of £14,000! Do you need to apply right away? For now, the OZEV hasn’t announced any end date to the scheme. The scheme is booming in popularity since it began in 2016.
What are the benefits of getting workplace charge points?
From recruiting eco-conscious employees to reducing your running costs, getting charging stations has plenty of benefits for businesses in the UK. Here’s a breakdown of all the top reasons why you should apply for the workplace charging scheme grant.
It widens your recruitment pool
Putting eco-friendly facilities in place for members of staff has a multitude of benefits. Younger generations such as millennials have a strong interest in the environment. One survey from 2016 found that 64% of millennials consider the social and environmental commitments of companies when deciding where to work.
As electric vehicles grow in popularity and government policy shifts, EV charging stations will become even more relevant when considering the convenience of getting to work for members of staff. The Global EV Outlook report of 2021 found that 1 in 3 EV users are under the age of 35 and have a high level of education.
The top talent all businesses want is becoming more likely to be EV users. We recommend increasing your chances of recruiting and retaining top talent by getting on the OZEV voucher scheme.
EVs are affordable to run
While costs vary depending on which vehicle you’re charging and the tariffs, electric vehicles can be cheaper to run than diesel and petrol cars. The Tesla Model 3 costs £4.40 per 100 miles compared to £10.20 for the Vauxhall Corsa. Whether you want to reduce fuel costs or give your staff the option of using EVs, the workplace charging scheme grant is worth considering.
Prepare for the vehicles of the future
By 2040, all new trucks sold in the UK must be electrically powered by law. Why not get ahead of the times? Cash in on the government-issued workplace scheme to prepare for the electric trucks of the future.
Climate advisors to the UK government have also advised that the majority of new cars and vans on the road should be electric by 2030. As the government pushes more and more for electric vehicles, we recommend businesses prepare in advance and apply.
Use your EV charge cards
How can employees check how much energy they’re using? Charge cards are a great way for your employees to see exactly how much of an impact they’re having. Many charge cards, just like regular fuel cards, can be used with an app so you can see what you’re using on your phone wherever you are.
How to apply for the workplace charging scheme grant
You can apply online for the Workplace Charging Scheme via the government’s application portal. Before applying to the scheme, use our comparison tool to find the best EV charging points for your business!
To prove eligibility for the scheme, you’ll need at least one of these:
- A Companies House Reference Number
- VAT registration Number
- HMRC Registration Letter
During this process, you’ll also have to declare that your business hasn’t received more than €200,000 of public support money in the last 3 financial years unless you’re a public authority.
The OZEV may ask for further evidence to prove that your business owns the parking site and is solely for staff/fleet use. Suitable evidence includes company parking policy papers and photographic evidence.
What happens next?
Once your application has been successful, you can get in touch with a Working Charging Scheme approved installer and get to work installing the EV stations. Installation must be completed within 6 months. When the installation has been completed, you can redeem the voucher online. You should receive the OZEV grant within 30 days of redeeming the voucher.
What if your application is unsuccessful?
If your application to the WCS is unsuccessful, you can appeal the decision online via email to the DVLA. But the appeal decision is final. We recommend checking your site eligibility and preparing your evidence in advance.
Electric charging stations have quite a few benefits and the Workplace Charging Scheme can save your business thousands of pounds. Before starting the application process, find out the best prices for your business’s EV stations using iCompario’s price comparison tool. Get a quote, then get that voucher!