Maximizing bill payments with EBPP

There are quite a few benefits of offering EBPP for a biller versus just having members mail checks or using online banking bill pay. Stuart Bain, Senior Vice President at Alacriti, was recently interviewed for Alacriti’s podcast where he discussed the benefits of EBPP, its creation, how it supports payments across channels, and the most used features. Here are some key takeaways from the interview.

Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) offers increased convenience and efficiency for members and billers

EBPP, also referred to as biller direct, is a service that enables members to make bill payments directly to the biller through their website or phone. Bain explained that the key benefits of EBPP include providing members with access to their current billing data, offering more payment options, the ability to create recurring payments, and same-day or real-time payment posting.

Bain stated, “Consumers have access to their current billing data because typically they can pull it straight from the biller site, and they can see exactly what they owe at a given point in time.” He also emphasized the importance of offering multiple channels for consumers to make payments, saying, “Consumers can also use their debit or credit card (if the biller chooses to support them) to make payments rather than having to debit a bank account either via a check or an ACH.”

EBPP solutions have evolved over time to meet changing member demands and demographics

Initially, EBPP solutions were more rudimentary compared to today’s offerings. Bain noted that they started with a single web channel for enrolled web one-time and recurring payments, basic call center functionality, and basic reporting. However, as consumer demands and expectations increased, more channels and features were added to EBPP solutions, such as guest web, AutoPay, chatbots, and IVR.

Bain explained, “We do see a lot of variation, but it also depends on how you actually define most used. As an example, our reporting from our Orbipay EBPP solution shows that the channel that gets used the most by the consumers is our guest Web channel.” He emphasized that it’s essential for billers to offer a range of channels to meet their members’ needs and preferences.

Credit unions should look for an EBPP solution that offers an omni-channel experience, real-time payments, and flexibility

An ideal EBPP solution should provide a true omni-channel experience, offering a range of direct channels such as member websites, mobile options, and phone payment options. Additionally, supporting real-time or same-day payment posting is crucial for meeting member needs. “Around two-thirds of consumers think that it’s very important to them that they can do instant payments. It can’t be something that’s going to take two or three days to apply the payment because it just doesn’t meet the consumer’s need for immediacy,” Bain explained.

Bain highlighted the importance of a flexible EBPP solution, saying, “The important thing to understand is that it’s not one size fits all. And we play well in that area because rather than a one size fits solution, Alacriti has the ability to drive things through configuration and parameters. While we have a standard build, it can all be tweaked and configured to suit a specific biller. We can typically change things overnight. In addition, the entire system was designed around the concept of real-time (which is a key difference), with support planned for the RTP® network and the FedNowSM Service, while simultaneously being able to support batch-based processes. An example of this is the generation of ACH files to go to clearing.”

Listen to the full podcast: Episode 11: EBPP.

To view data on consumer bill payments, download our Consumer Bill Payments in 2022: Trends Report.

Contact the author: Alacriti

Contact the author: Alacriti

Kristen Jason

Kristen Jason

Kristen is responsible for marketing strategy and content for Alacriti while staying abreast of industry trends. She offers over 17 years of marketing experience, including 8 years of experience in ... Details