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Are You Ready for Real-Time Banking?

Posted by Jennifer Geis

Sep 13, 2017 11:45:00 AM

For an overview and definition of real-time payments, read the previously published blog titled ‘The Biggest Misconception of Real-Time Payments’.

There is no doubt that we live in a society which values time. Innovative companies are cropping up every day to help us do things faster.

Financial services consumers are demanding not only speed, but convenience, automation, reliability, and transparency among transactions in addition to real-time funds availability. In addition to consumer expectations, drivers of this faster payment movement include technology innovation, new players and business models, business expectations, enhanced safety and soundness, and globalization and regulatory pressure. As we evaluate those drivers, many industry experts believe that financial service providers will begin to see benefits from functionality that leverages faster payments. 

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Topics: Payments, Tomorrow's Technology

The Biggest Misconception of Real-Time Payments

Posted by Jennifer Geis

Aug 16, 2017 12:57:13 PM

A recent metamorphosis of the payments industry began with same day ACH (automated clearing house). ACH is basically the rails that connect banks and credit unions in the United States and allow payments to move between various accounts. Beginning last September, 2016, NACHA (National Automated Clearing House Association) adopted a rule to provide a new, “ubiquitous” capability for moving ACH payments faster. The rule was planned to occur in a three phased approach. Phase one, required a mandate for the ability to receive and process same day credits, and introduced additional processing windows for settlement times. Phase two, which is scheduled to go into effect September 15, 2017, required a mandate for the ability to receive and process same day debits – in addition to credits. And lastly, phase three, planned for March 2018, will make same day ACH funds sent before a specific cut-off window available to the payee by end of business on the same day.

Just as same-day ACH seems to be picking up steam and appears to solve the answer to all payment problems, we discover it’s not fast enough. We need faster – we need instant – we need real-time! The mobile-first, digital minded, technology hungry end consumer is doing everything else faster, therefore the way they pay is no exception.

Enter real-time payments.

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Topics: Payments

Frictionless Payments: The Never-Ending Pursuit

Posted by Penny Webb

Apr 26, 2017 11:30:00 AM

“Frictionless payments” is an industry concept that has been around for many years. The phrase is used to describe a desire to limit the amount of customer interaction during a transaction, making the purchase process as smooth as possible from start to finish.

While the payment portion of a purchase can be the more laborious aspect of retail transactions, merchants and financial institutions must also focus on the end-to-end user experience when looking for ways to simplify the act of making a purchase. Streamlining the purchasing process should be a top priority for retail establishments and nonprofit organizations that want to attract new customers or contributors, or drive existing users to return more often.

No matter the industry or organization, there are essential gains to be made by applying the frictionless payments approach to customers’ purchase or donation experiences.  

The following techniques are often used to reduce friction in the payments process...

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Topics: Payments

The Next Generation of Frictionless Payments

Posted by Deborah Matthews Phillips

Mar 29, 2017 11:15:00 AM

I confess…I am that picky person that pinches the produce and squeezes the Charmin at the grocery store. Honestly, I don’t enjoy grocery shopping – I dread standing in line, knowing there are better ways to invest my precious free time. Amazon launched a new concept store in Seattle, Amazon Go, for the 67% of consumers like me that never shop for groceries online yet yearn for greater convenience.

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Topics: Information Technology, Payments, Tomorrow's Technology

Higher Rates = Happy Days?

Posted by Bill Kirsten

Feb 8, 2017 11:30:00 AM

"Happy days are here again
The skies above are clear again
So let’s sing a song of cheer again
Happy days are here again"

(From FDR’s theme song for the 1932 presidential campaign)

The Federal Reserve increased interest rates … finally! Market rates are rising too. And more are to come, so they say. Let the good times roll!

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Topics: Payments, Risk Mitigation

Blockchain and Innovation: Now and When?

Posted by Ron Mazursky

Jun 29, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Blockchain is all about innovation…but does the technology offer solutions to specific problems, or does it provide solutions not linked to real problems? Why are we so focused on blockchain today anyway?

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Topics: Payments

The Payment Interfaces of the Future

Posted by Eric Wilson

Jun 22, 2016 10:00:00 AM

How users will interact with systems in tomorrow’s digital society will be very different from what we are all familiar with today. Although touch screens, monitors and keyboards will remain relevant, new types of interfaces will emerge that will alter how we interact with devices and may radically impact how payments are made. 

Here are a few emerging interfaces that I think could become important in the payments arena. Some may seem far-fetched, but the technology is already in place to make all of them a possibility. In my opinion, these revolutionary interfaces could enter our everyday lives sooner rather than later, and they may play a more important role than you might think. 

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Topics: Payments, Online Bill Pay

Who’s Afraid of Apple Pay?

Posted by Kevin Moland

May 4, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Last weekend, it happened again. I used Apple Pay to buy dinner for my son and a couple of his friends in my favorite nationwide sandwich shop, and the sandwich artist behind the counter gazed up at me in amazement and said, “Wow.”

Wow, indeed. I regularly watch store clerks go all googly-eyed when they see their first Apple Pay transaction. Even I still feel a little bit of a thrill every time I nonchalantly stick my phone next to the card terminal and hear the familiar “ding” that means my transaction has been approved. It’s been out for more than a year, but Apple Pay still spawns a sense of wonder in those who see it and those who use it.

Unfortunately, this sense of wonder in payers seems to generate a corresponding feeling of foreboding in many bankers. And why not? For years, we industry experts have been warning financial institutions that third parties like Apple were going to “disintermediate” them and take away their payments franchise. But the last two years have shed some light on mobile proximity payments, and the Apple Pay monster hiding in the corner now looks more like a friend than a fiend.

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Topics: Payments, Mobile Banking

Let's Check on Checks (A Traditional Item Processing Refresher)

Posted by Robert Hudecek

Mar 16, 2016 10:00:00 AM

“Checks are going away” – this prediction has been in process since before the Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act (or Check 21 Act) was enacted in 2003. Though many industry seers at the time assumed that the truncation of checks would also signal their quick demise, as of 2012 over 18 billion checks were processed (Source: The 2013 Federal Reserve Payments Study). With financial institutions and merchants still handling paper checks for the foreseeable future, sometimes a review is in order.

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Topics: Financial Services Industry, Payments

What is the Internet of Things?

Posted by Penny Webb

Mar 9, 2016 10:00:00 AM

You may not be familiar with the phrase “The Internet of Things” (or IoT), but the phenomenon it describes has been permeating the world around you for a while now. It increasingly impacts everything in our lives, from basic everyday tasks like shopping and driving to more critical functions, like making and receiving payments. You may not see it, but it’s there, and it’s going to play a big role in your future.

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Topics: Payments, Customer Experience

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