Far from a platitude or buzzword, modernization is now an increasingly key component in the billing experience (BX). The ability to move beyond limited legacy systems offers a world of benefits for billers — more payment methods and channels, reduced costs to service, a better customer experience (CX) — but the path to modernization can seem daunting when thinking through multiple vendors, current software investments and of course, staff constraints.
That’s why it’s essential that billers enter modernization mode with a clear focus on their goals and the must-haves in achieving them. Here are the top three factors to consider when embarking on a modernization strategy.
Entering Modernization Mode
Before we begin, let’s take a second to define what we mean by modernization mode. Breaking free of the status quo means looking beyond legacy bill presentment and payment platforms whose main benefit is familiarity and not innovation and ease to the end user. Modernization mode is about transforming the billing and payment process, not just covering the shortcomings of legacy systems by adding a new payment method or channel. The end benefits are a more satisfying, convenient and flexible payment experience for the customer, and greater efficiencies at a reduced cost to serve for billers.
1. Deploying a vetted, trusted payment platform – A lot of diligence but easier than you think
The first and arguably most important element of any modernization effort is the deployment of an electronic bill presentment and payment (EBPP) platform that can enable innovation and reduce costs. Though this seems like table stakes, the fact is that no two platforms are the same and there are wide gaps between the capabilities offered by EBPP providers.
With one chance to get it right (and no chance to “test drive” a system), billers must prioritize proven performance and expertise within the market when considering a new platform. For instance, a leading financial services research firm rated Paymentus as the #1, best-in-class EBPP provider amongst nine of the top EBPP providers. This evaluation was based on key criteria that included vendor stability, client strength, client service satisfaction and range of product features. Evaluations such as this provide the proof points needed to jumpstart any modernization.
2. Going beyond when offering more ways to pay and more payment channels
Let’s address a few common misconceptions when we talk about expanding payment capabilities: modernization does not strictly mean more digital payments and multi-channel does not mean omnichannel. A truly modern payment platform is one that meets the needs of all customers, not just those who want what’s new or next.
Unless you’re an organization whose bottom line can withstand not serving the needs of a certain percentage of its paying customer base, cash and kiosks are just as essential as digital wallets and online payments. Underbanked customers deserve a seamless, convenient experience the same as digital-preferred customers.
The challenge for billers is finding a payment platform that can accommodate these needs without adding complexity or cost. That’s why Paymentus partners with industry leaders including PayPal, Venmo, Walmart and top retailers nationwide to drive adoption for your entire demographic, not just the web users. This expansive network allows us to offer more ways and channels to pay than any other EBPP provider.
3. Working with a single vendor
Did you know that most billers work with multiple billing and payment vendors, with some, such as utilities, partnering with an average of 4-13 vendors? Maybe you don’t have to imagine and instead face the reality of managing 4-13 different relationships, integrations, contracts and price points.
This unwieldy setup is a cost-prohibitive, innovation inhibitor to the highest degree, one that invites inefficiency at every turn. The ideal state is one vendor and one platform that can meet your every payment need.
The Paymentus Instant Payment Network® (IPN) is designed specifically for this purpose. In lieu of working with multiple vendors, billers gain the ability to work solely with Paymentus while tapping into a larger partner network that includes some of the biggest names in payments. IPN also accelerates innovation and seamlessly connects billers to bill delivery and payment options not available anywhere else. This is how IPN enables Paymentus clients go from multi-channel to omnichannel without a massive technology investment.
Ready to enter modernization mode? Check out the top three reasons more billers made the jump to Paymentus than any other EBPP provider.