CareCredit - Women's Health April 2024

Making Sense of No- and Low-Code B2B Payments Technology

B2B payments are famously, even infamously, complex. They entail multiple parties and high transaction volumes, all frequently moved across legacy systems that often necessitate the manual reconciliation of invoice details, payment terms, vendor information and more. 

Unlike consumer payments, commercial transactions are more about the workflows, data and tooling that enables and supports the money movement than they are about the money itself. 

That’s why digitizing B2B payments represents such a fresh area for opportunity — and such a large modernization hurdle for many firms staring down the sunk costs of their monolithic and manual legacy systems. 

And in an environment where engineering resources are scarce, treasury teams and accounts payable (AP)/ accounts receivable (AR) programs are often lowest on the totem pole for investment dollars and staffing time.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. 

Increasingly, low-code and no-code technology are stepping in and revolutionizing the payments ecosystem, particularly in B2B payments, by democratizing the development process and empowering businesses to create customized solutions that interface with their business needs without extensive coding expertise — leveling the playing field while simultaneously raising the bar on back office digital transformations. 

Read moreFour Questions for CFOs About AP and AR Automation

B2B Payment’s Migration Toward Modern Solutions

A quick scan of today’s B2B payments landscape reveals that decades-old legacy platforms and historically siloed finance office operations are creating a mounting technical debt that negatively impacts business planning and development cycles, hinders speed to market, as well as strains B2B ecosystem relationships with accounting and bill pay solutions that talk past each other.

Low-code and no-code platforms significantly reduce the time required to develop payment solutions. With pre-built templates, drag-and-drop interfaces, and ready-to-use components, developers can rapidly create and deploy payment applications. This speed-to-market advantage enables businesses to respond quickly to changing market demands and customer needs.

B2B payment processes can be complex and vary significantly across industries and organizations. Low-code and no-code platforms allow businesses to tailor payment solutions to their specific requirements without extensive coding. This customization ensures that payment systems align closely with business workflows, increasing efficiency and reducing manual errors. 

Importantly, many businesses rely on a diverse array of software applications for various functions such as accounting, invoicing and inventory management. Low-code and no-code platforms facilitate integration with existing systems through APIs and connectors. This interoperability streamlines payment processes and enhances data visibility across different departments and systems.

As Kat Battle, product manager for Complete AP at Bank of America, told PYMNTS, “More and more organizations are recognizing the need to update and modernize what has historically been a manual, paper-based process — but one that’s also very mission critical to the business function.”

Read moreGrowing Digital B2B Payments With Open Banking and APIs

Driving Innovation in the B2B Payments Ecosystem

Underscoring the appeal of the flexibility low- and no-code solutions offer is the simple fact that as businesses grow, their payment processing needs evolve.

Low-code and no-code platforms offer scalability, allowing businesses to easily scale up or down their payment solutions to accommodate changing transaction volumes and business requirements. This scalability ensures that payment systems remain efficient and reliable even as businesses expand into new markets or launch new products. 

Achieving this type of agility when relying on traditional software development can be expensive, requiring skilled developers and extensive testing. Low-code and no-code platforms lower the barrier to entry by reducing development costs and the need for specialized technical expertise. Businesses can allocate resources more efficiently, investing in innovation rather than infrastructure.

By abstracting away technical complexities, low-code and no-code platforms empower business users to participate directly in the development process. Non-technical stakeholders can collaborate with IT teams to design and implement payment solutions that meet their specific needs. This democratization of development fosters innovation and encourages cross-functional collaboration.

As businesses continue to embrace digital transformation, the embrace of these platforms could play a vital role in shaping the future of B2B payments.

Ultimately, as i2c CEO and Chairman Amir Wain told PYMNTS, the next decade in the payments industry is shaping up to be “super exciting.”