direct debit bureau, direct debit software, software upgrade
Bureau Service
09, NOV 2017

The software upgrade seems to be part of life – upgrading our phones, our laptops to make sure we’re running the most up to date version of the available software. Is the same true for the direct debit software your organisation uses to manage direct debit payments?

Investing in direct debit software

Going down the route of investing in direct debit software is a big decision for any business taking payment by direct debit. As a direct debit bureau, we often manage direct debits for clients for a number of months while direct debit becomes embedded in their processes and to see how customers respond. If you decide to invest in direct debit software, you need to make an informed decision about which software package to use There are a number of packages on the market – 17 companies currently offer software that has been approved by Bacs to access Bacstel-IP. With so much choice, you need to make sure you make the right decision. Weighing up the advantages and disadvantages will take time. It’s worth looking at the advantages and disadvantages of several direct debit software packages before making your decision. Working with an experienced team who can advise you on the available software packages means you will make the best investment for your business.

The costs of an upgrade – is it compulsory?

After the costs of investing in software at the outset, you may well feel unhappy being advised that you must upgrade your software – at a cost – to continue to achieve what you currently have in effect. In recent times we have been contacted by organisations who are being told that they need to upgrade their software. Sometimes there is a genuine change that may require a fairly simple patch. Most Bacs software companies perform these minor updates for free. Some Bacs software companies may choose to charge for these upgrades. Whilst they are entitled to do so it does make the total cost of ownership far higher than the initial outlay.

Even more worrying, in some communications recently sent out customers are being told that they must upgrade or move to a newer platform to comply with new laws or rules. This is potentially very misleading in how it is put across. A couple of examples we have seen from one organisation cite GDPR and PSD2 as new laws that will require you to move to a cloud based solution or require you to use these new products to make sure your data is kept in accordance with new standards of security. There is very little truth in these communications and the proposed solutions come with very hefty price tags. Whilst some of these products are perfectly good solutions, they are often unnecessary or inappropriate for the majority of organisations that collect Direct Debits.

If you have recently been told that you have to move to a new solution to remain compliant, the truth is you probably don’t. Even in the odd case where you need to move from your current system, it pays to shop around. There are some much better alternatives that come with a more palatable price tag.

Work with a direct debit bureau to avoid the need to upgrade

The alternative to investing in software which may or may not need to be upgraded is to work with a direct debit bureau. As a BACS approved direct debit bureau, we own the software needed to run direct debits smoothly, and we have the knowledge and expertise to manage your direct debits effortlessly. This leaves you free to continue your core business without worrying about how your direct debits are being managed. It also means you won’t have to worry about costly software upgrades because we absorb this for our clients.

If you’ve got any questions about direct debit software, software upgrades, or about out bureau services, get in touch!