RP Solutions Inc., an inspired remittance processing and electronic payments solutions provider, has added a new feature to its remittance processing solution to simplify the processing of paper checks generated by bank and third party online bill payment services such as CheckFree.com. Unlike traditional remittance payments, online bill pay checks are not accompanied by a remittance coupon, are printed in a variety of formats and often suffer from missing or incomplete account data. Consequently, it is difficult for billers to reconcile these checks to their billing and accounts receivable systems. By automating the processing of these payments, ExpertRPS’ new Online Bill Pay feature reduces operational costs, enhances cash flow and increases customer satisfaction for billers.
Paying bills online is attractive to consumers because it is convenient, secure and saves on postage. Online bill payments now account for 50% of all bill payments made by US households with internet access, according to Fiserv’s 2011 Consumer Trends Survey. Two popular methods include paying via an online banking website and paying through an online bill payment service, such as MyCheckFree.com. Few people realize that most online bill payments actually generate a paper check. For remittance processors, reconciling these nonstandard online bill pay checks is manual, tedious and very inefficient.
“The first task is recognizing the check formats, which can be different for each bill payment service,” said David Johnson, President, RP Solutions. “ExpertRPS learns the layout of each new check format so it will automatically be recognized the next time. The biggest challenge is correctly identifying the customer’s name and account information which can be located anywhere on the check, is frequently wrong, or may be formatted incorrectly. Once this is complete, ExpertRPS validates the account number by using a lookup table or by connecting directly to the biller’s host system in real time. Automating this process helps our customers settle these payments with minimal data entry and no special workflow steps. This is an enormous productivity gain for our customers.”