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Bank of America Merrill Lynch introduces digital processing for Wholesale Lockbox

Today, Bank of America Merrill Lynch announced that its U.S. Wholesale Lockbox service, which collects and processes cheque payments, has been fundamentally transformed, enabling greater accuracy and speed. 

Old workflow replaced

Each month, 17 million checks and 60 million remittance documents were sent to the BofA Merrill’s lockboxes around the country for processing on behalf of their clients. Traditionally, after arriving at a lockbox, the paper payments and documents went through manual steps before funds were credited and remittance data reported back to clients. 

Bank of America Merrill Lynch has used their patented technology and a comprehensive re-engineering of the entire workflow to transform the process. Central to this transformation is accelerated image capture, which eliminates traditional paper based processing and mitigates associated risk.  

Highlights of the new patented wholesale lockbox process include:

  • cheques and remittances are now moved through the process as images, not as paper.
  • tasks such as sorting to the individual lockbox, validating the payee and authenticating the check are now done electronically.
  • enhanced digital images of the payments and remittance data are now available to clients via the bank’s online banking channel, CashPro Receivables®, or through scheduled transmission services.

Continuing commitment to lockboxes

BofA Merrill believe that the investment in the new business model confirms their long-term commitment to providing wholesale lockbox services to their clients. “We have invested in innovative, industry-leading technology and have recreated the lockbox process - in short, we’ve reinvented the business,” added Bill Pappas, chief information officer of Global Wholesale Banking Technology and Operations and Global Markets Operations and Middle Office at Bank of America.

CTMfile take:  Consumers and business habits change very slowly, so it is no surprise that BofA Merrill have invested in a new lockbox processing model. The next stage in the decline of cheque usage in the USA could be other banks white labelling BofA Merrill’s new lockbox service just to remain competitive.

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