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Implementation Guide

Welcome to Pinwheel! Pinwheel makes it easy for your customers to connect their payroll account to your application, unlocking a wealth of data and functionality.

Getting Started with Pinwheel

At this point, you should be set up with access to our Developer Dashboard. If you don’t have access yet, please contact us at [email protected].

In the Developer Dashboard you will find your API Keys, Team Management, Test Console, and Employer List.

API Keys & Modes

Under the API Keys tab, you will see your API Key and API Secret. You will initially have access to our Sandbox mode and can request access to Development and Production from the Pinwheel team via [email protected]. Each mode will have its own API Secret.

  • See descriptions of our different modes here.
  • See the description of your API Keys here.

Team Management

Once a member of your team has access to the Pinwheel Developer Dashboard, they will be responsible for adding other team members. For security purposes, Pinwheel admins do not have the ability to add team members on your behalf. To add team members:

  1. Sign in to the Developer Dashboard. Navigate to Team → +Add new user.
  2. Enter the user’s email address and set their permissions. Administrator is best for business owners, and it enables the user to add new team members. Developer is best for people building on the API and allows for access to Production API keys.

Test Console

Prior to diving in with development work, we recommend familiarizing yourself with Link in our Test Console. The Test Console will allow you to create Link tokens and launch Pinwheel Link. You can see how different Link token configurations affect the front end UI, and test different front-end workflows. In Sandbox, you have to use our test credentials which can be found here. Live credentials will not work in Sandbox. In order to test with real payroll credentials you will need to use the Development mode.

Employer List

The Employers list in our dashboard will make it easy for you to navigate our coverage and confirm that the employers you care about most are supported by Pinwheel.

Pinwheel Link

Pinwheel Link allows users to seamlessly authenticate with their payroll platform login credentials, and authenticate access to their payroll account. We highly recommend leveraging our SDKs (React, React Native, Android, iOS, Flutter) for development.


Link tokens

To initialize Link you will need to generate a short-lived Link Token. Your server side code will generate the Link token by sending a request to our Create Link Token endpoint. Link tokens are single-use and expire after 15 minutes. Link tokens define your user experience and tell Pinwheel what jobs you need us to complete. For product specific Link token recommendations please read our product guides: Direct Deposit, Income and Employment.


We understand how important it is to have a cohesive user experience, so we’ve made Pinwheel Link highly customizable. All customizations are done via Link token creation.


Intro Screen: It is up to you to determine whether you want to leverage Pinwheel’s intro screen. If you decide to manage your own intro screen, some things to consider are security, privacy, and context. It is very important for the user to understand why you are asking them to connect their Payroll account. In order to skip the Pinwheel intro screen, pass through skip_intro_screen: true when creating your Link Token.

Search Screens: You have the option of using our search, or building your own.

  1. Leverage the Pinwheel Search screen. Pinwheel’s user flow is optimized for conversion, and we see the highest conversion where customers know their payroll platform. As such, we will pre-populate Link with the most popular Platforms and then allow the user to search for either their employer or platform by keyword. Using our search screen will be the fastest path to integration, and the easiest to maintain (we do it all for you!).
  2. Building your own search screen. If you want to have full control over the search experience, we have several APIs that will allow you to build your own search screen. There are two paths for building your own search:

Platform & Employer APIs


Build your search functionality on top of your own Database.

  1. Retrieve our list of supported Platforms and Employers, and store the name in addition to the employer_id or platform_id in your database. You will want to update this information daily as our coverage is always expanding.
  2. Filter out institutions that do not support your required jobs using the supported_jobs field.
  3. Build customized search screens on top of the Pinwheel Platform and Employer data stored in your database.
  4. Log the selected employer_id or platform_id when the user selects a Pinwheel provider and pass it through when creating your Link token. This will notify us to skip our search screen. If you do not pass through an employer_id or platform_id our search screens will be enabled.

Search API


Build a customized search experience on top of the Pinwheel API.

  1. Build your customized search screen(s) on top of our Search Employers and Platforms endpoint. In order to build two separate screens (platform and employer) via the Search Employers and Platforms endpoint you will need to filter by response_type. If you want to build a unified search, you can use the endpoint as is.
  2. Log the selected employer_id or platform_id when the user selects a Pinwheel provider and pass it through when creating your Link token. This will notify us to skip our search screen. If you do not pass through an employer_id or platform_id our search screens will be enabled.


Link is localized for English and Spanish so that you can select the language preference of your users. To set the language, set the language parameter when creating a Link Token. Supported values are en for English and es for Spanish - English is the default if you do not explicitly set the parameter.


Link Events

Link events will give you visibility into what is happening as the user moves through Pinwheel Link. It is up to you to determine how you would like to use these events for tracking. Some ways we recommend using Link events include:

  • Listen for the onError callbacks to troubleshoot Link issues. This information will not be visible via the API once the user closes Link. Highly recommended.
  • Listen for onEvent:input_amount to understand the dollar value or percentage of the direct deposit switch. This is also returned via the direct deposit webhooks.
  • Listen for the onLogin callback to know if a user successfully connected their payroll account and retrieve the account_id. This is also returned via the account.added webhook.
  • Listen for the onEvent:select_platform and onEvent:select_employer callbacks to understand what Platform or Employer the user connected to. The platform_id is also available via the Get Account endpoint.
  • Listen to the onSuccess callback to know that the job has successfully completed. This can also be consumed via our product webhooks.

Webhooks and Jobs

Webhooks are a crucial component of any optimized Pinwheel integration. In order to confirm that a direct_deposit job has completed, you will need to listen for the direct_deposit_switch.added webhook. Instructions for subscribing to webhooks (and some other nuances) can be found here.

For direct deposit jobs, everything you need to know will be included in the webhook. Most importantly, it will return the outcome field (failure or success). If for some reason you miss the webhook, you can query our Jobs endpoint. To filter for jobs relevant to a specific user, you can query by link_token_id or account_id.

Data storage

Storing the correct Identifiers is a crucial part of optimizing your Pinwheel integration. There are three key Pinwheel Identifiers that you should store on your end:,, and You can see full descriptions for those Identifiers here.

Please contact [email protected] for access to our Developer Dashboard.