NACHA, The Electronic Payments Association, is launching a new initiative to make B2B ACH payments more efficient.
The Association announced this week it is launching the Request for Payment program, which uses the ISO 20022 messaging standard to facilitate eInvoicing and receive ACH payments that correspond to that bill. According to NACHA, the program is a voluntary one that aims to help businesses more efficiently manage B2B payment processes.
“Businesses today are looking for ways to effectively and efficiently manage the complex payment and cash application process in our changing global environment,” said NACHA’s managing director of network development and strategic initiatives, George Throckmorton, in a statement. “Globalization, the implementation of new technologies and siloed operations and processes have created layers of complexity and inefficiency that impact the way businesses serve and support their customers, and their bottom lines.”
The executive went on to say the program enables businesses to leverage the ISO 20022 messaging standard to streamline invoicing and payment collection. This, in turn, facilitates more efficient cash application, “as remittance can flow with the payment to support straight-through processing,” he said.
“And with the ACH network’s connection to all financial institutions and thus all accounts in the U.S., through the program businesses can expand their reach and better support existing and future customers,” Throckmorton added.
NACHA said the program also helps businesses link into the ACH network to support the transfer of both monetary transactions and “zero dollar” message transactions to enhance the movement of data with a payment. The network facilitates same- and next-day processing, and while “speed is typically not the most important component of a business payment,” Throckmorton said, “the ACH Network and the Request for Payment program provide the choice and flexibility to meet the needs of today's businesses.”
According to data released by NACHA in 2016, ACH transaction volume grew by more than 5.6 percent in 2015, with B2B payments increasing by 15.4 percent year-over-year.