Businesses still rely predominantly on credit and debit cards, but the future is expected to lie in the realm of ePayables and real-time payments (RTPs). This is one of the key findings of the survey report titled Digital Payments: Expanding the Payments Palette, a PYMNTS and Corcentric collaboration.
The survey polled 250 CFOs from healthcare companies and finance and insurance firms to assess businesses spending on digital payment systems during the past three years and identify the factors that are influencing the technology budgeting priorities of finance chiefs.
According to the survey report, “Businesses need to support multiple payment methods to succeed in today’s economy, and healthcare companies and finance and insurance businesses now support an average of nearly six payment methods per company.”
Some of the key findings of the survey include the following:
Today’s payment mainstays - credit cards and debit cards
“Most healthcare companies and finance and insurance businesses support credit cards and debit cards — today’s mainstays. We found that 93% of finance and insurance businesses and 96% of healthcare companies support credit card payments. Eighty-eight percent of finance and insurance businesses and 84% of healthcare companies support debit card payments”, the PYMNTs report noted.
A significant majority of healthcare companies (65%) and finance and insurance businesses (61%) demonstrate a high acceptance rate for regular automated clearing house (ACH) payments. However, ACH payments, despite their popularity, come with a processing time of one to three business days.
Furthermore, the survey revealed that eChecks and wire transfers are widely accepted payment methods within the healthcare, finance and insurance sectors. Among healthcare companies, 67% support eChecks, while 52% of finance and insurance businesses also incorporate this payment method. Similarly, 57% of finance and insurance businesses and 42% of healthcare companies accept wire transfers as a payment option.
Despite the prevalent use of these established payment methods, many of these companies recognize that their future success hinges on integrating new payment methods or solutions that their customers and suppliers are beginning to adopt.
Businesses to embrace ePayables and real-time payments
Although tried-and-true payment options still hold sway, forward-thinking businesses are actively working towards embracing innovative digital payments technology, such as ePayables and real-time payments.
“ePayables, which function as virtual cards, are an electronic method of settling AP transactions that help companies track payment information and integrate payables activities with cash flow data”, the survey report explains.
At present, ePayables have found support from 37% of healthcare companies and finance and insurance businesses (see Figure 1). Notably, eight out of ten (81%) of healthcare companies and nine out of ten (93%) finance and insurance businesses are planning to invest in ePayables technologies.
Moreover, there is growing momentum surrounding ePayables adoption, as 39% of finance and insurance businesses and 59% of healthcare companies that have yet to embrace this payment option have plans to allocate resources towards acquiring the requisite digital technology to facilitate its implementation.
To remain competitive, healthcare companies and finance and insurance businesses are also making investments in real-time payments.
“Businesses have been investing in digital technology to improve the efficiency of their payments operations and get a better grip on their cash flows and working capital, and they are now doubling down on these systems. For example, 53% of healthcare companies and finance and insurance businesses already support real-time payments, and 81% of healthcare companies and 67% of finance and insurance businesses say they plan to continue investing in this technology”, the report further added.
These investment plans signify the increasing realization among businesses that supporting a broader range of payment options is crucial for retaining existing customers as well as attracting new consumers. The survey report further highlights that out of the companies (47%) that have yet to invest in real-time payments, 92% of healthcare companies and 86% of finance and insurance businesses are actively planning to spend on the necessary systems and software.
To conclude, finance leaders that embrace ePayables and RTPs will help their companies navigate the next wave of changes in the digital economy, improve corporate cash management, and harness real-time cash flow visibility. In doing so, they will also deepen ties with their suppliers and customers, further improve efficiency, and witness ePayables and RTPs reshape the payments ecosystem for greater digital success.
Like this item? Get our Weekly Update newsletter. Subscribe today