Heartland Payment Systems

Heartland Payment Systems Review

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Published: 22 April 2019

Posted by: Anonymously

Heartland Payments Systems (HPS) is a publically traded financial services company (NYSE:HPY) with over 250,000 merchants and nearly 1000 sales reps nationwide according to their annual report. Heartland salespeople become “vested” when the individual’s portfolio generates a pre-determined amount of revenue each month. According to their annual report 1 in 3 sales reps survive to achieve vested status (although my personal experience dictates it unlikely to be more than 1 in 10- I worked in various management levels over the 8 years I was employed there). Heartland agressively recruits sales reps as they do not pay a salary for sales positions. Many of the reps who fall for the scheme sign friends and family, realize they cannot afford to make a living commission-only at Heartland, and leave without vesting- insuring HPS receives all of the profit on those accounts the rep does sign. These recruitment ads are all over the job boards with promises of “lifetime residuals” and “uncapped residuals that build wealth monthly, while collecting on vested equity — even if you don’t work at Heartland forever”. These claims are backed up by lies such as “75% of sales force over 133% to quota” and paid endorsements such as ” 1 Service Company to Sell For” according to a popular sales magazine. Well the reps who have achieved “success” at Heartland (the ones who did make it and stuck with the company- many through the biggest breach in history at the time in 2009) all got screwed in February 2015 when HPS conveniently decided that earned residuals on accounts former vested sales reps signed for American Express were no longer going to be paid. These payments equaled over $1000 a month for many sales reps, some of whom legitmately retired based on HPS’s lifetime residual claims some of whom moved on to greener pastures. The reason for the cease of payment was due to an updated American Express program, called Opt-Blue or Amex Full Acquiring. When Opt Blue went into effect for Heartland in June 2014, it allowed HPS reps (and former vested reps) to recieve residuals on Amex for accounts they brought to Heartland. They paid residuals to vested former sales reps on Opt-Blue through January. On the same day as their earnings call in February (when they announced revenues were light for the second quarter in a row), Heartland felt it was no longer necessary to abide by their promise of “lifetime residuals”. Heartland hid behind the change of the Amex program as reasoning for no longer paying those vested sales reps. Meanwhile, they did not sign any customers to new paperwork; it was simply a transfer from one program to another that allowed HPS to keep the profits brought in by the hard work and relationships formed by their former commission-only sales representatives. A technicality if you will. This allowed Heartland to reap millions of extra dollars per year so that their revenues can rise in line with their “earnings”. All off of people like you and me who were fooled by Heartland’s false promises and who invested significant time and expense in building their business through Heartland as a trusted community resource for payments processing. HPS can hide behind their technicality all they want but the purpose of this post is to warn people who may consider a job with Heartland, salespeople who are already working there, merchants who would consider doing business with a company like this, and investors who want to put their hard-earned money into truly “honest” and “transparent” companies. As opposed to their claims, HPS are not “entrepreneurs respectfully serving entrepreneurs”. If that was the case, they would not have screwed over all of these former reps who put their blood, sweat and tears into this company’s growth. They are worse than all of the competitors they badmouth.

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