If you haven’t updated your ATMs to accept the newer EMV-chip technology, it’s time to review your existing service specifications to determine what changes are required to ensure that your equipment is capable of meeting users’ demands. For example:
- Do you have the appropriate hardware and software to support the new industry expectations?
- Does your current operating system provide adequate processing and/or memory capacity to support current and emerging technology?
- In addition to ensuring EMV compatibility, are your ATMs in line with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements that specify special-use features to accommodate hearing and/or visually impaired users?
Managing the impact of equipment upgrades
Maintaining updated ATMs that function safely and efficiently while authorizing and processing transactions can be costly, especially if you are limited by contract terms that have been in place for years. And there is a big difference between ATM upgrade and replacement costs.
If your financial institution doesn’t have the internal knowledge of what to look for when reviewing existing ATM or card contract terms and conditions, a professional review can most likely uncover areas for potential savings and improved service, or lead to recommendations for alternate providers that might offer better service and pricing options.
With this information in hand, you can make a more informed decision regarding whether your existing agreement or vendor is meeting your needs, or if it is time to consider other options that offer better value, service, security and peace of mind. This type of review can also help you evaluate the terms of your maintenance agreement, and analyze the traffic and usage patterns of your existing ATMs to see if adding new features will help to address account holder preferences for increased convenience and security.
A card brand vendor contract agreement review can offset ATM upgrade costs
If your financial institution hasn’t yet converted to EMV chip-enabled debit cards, consider this: A review of your existing card brand vendor agreement can lead to better overall contract terms and increased revenue opportunities that may help cover the cost of necessary ATM product upgrades. For example, for one of our clients meeting new EMV compliance standards meant facing the financial challenge of upgrading 14 ATMs and a mass conversion of all cards for their account holders.
During a conversation about the benefits of vendor contract renegotiations, the institution’s CEO learned that by reviewing the current debit/credit brand agreement – and comparing the terms with other card brand vendors – achieving better terms and incentives could be realized to help offset the costly EMV-related equipment upgrades.
For them, while using a third party to help negotiate on their behalf was not something they had considered in the past, it truly was worth the effort. In the end, they achieved great success. They not only received a signing bonus, they also received better interchange rates which in turn afforded them to:
- complete a mass card conversion;
- upgrade all of their ATMs to the new EMV specifications; and
- add two new interactive ATM machines to their fleet.
The extra benefit of the interactive technology was crucial since one of the new machines enabled services to continue in a community where a branch had closed.
Other realized benefits included greater operational efficiencies and the added bonus of offering account holders the option of signing up for free identity theft protection. What’s more, with the help of a team of professional contract experts, the internal staff was able to stay focused on important account holder service initiatives throughout the contract review and negotiations process.
Act now to increase ATM security and improve vendor contract terms
Whether your financial institution has one ATM or a fleet, providing safeguards against the threat of potential fraud is essential for maintaining trusted account holder relationships and reducing your liability risk. An expert in contract review and negotiations can help to ensure that your ATM products are EMV-ready, while also providing valuable recommendations for better service and potential revenue opportunities that can have a major impact on your bottom line.