Since it was first introduced a few years ago, Bacs Payment Schemes Limited or Bacs – previously known as Bankers' Automated Clearing Services – has been changing the way businesses and customers interact with each other in terms of making and receiving payments. The services offered by Bacs are making payments an easy thing to handle.
We have Bacs Direct Debit, which allows businesses to bill customers directly and in an instant. We also have Bacs Direct Credit that businesses can use to pay salary or clear vendors’ invoices. To make it even better, these services can be fully automated and integrated with existing business solutions. Before you can enjoy these features, however, there are a few things you need to do first.
Get a SUN Number
In order to be able to collect payments using Bacs Direct Debit and utilise the company’s other services, you need something called a Bacs SUN. SUN (Service User Number) is a 6-digit number assigned to every business in the network. Bacs SUN can be acquired from partner banks, so you have to contact your bank to get one.
Every bank has its own application process, but you basically have to go through a series of verification steps. This is an essential part of the system. Bacs is designed to be as secure as possible, which is why every member of its network needs to be verified and rechecked. It is a measure put in place for the safety of both the customers and your business.
You will have to verify the integrity of your business, the current financial state, and other details. The reason being that banks sponsor businesses, therefore businesses are required to undergo these checks for the banks to minimise their exposure.
Connect with a Bureau
There is a manual console that you can use to issue direct debit requests or make payments. You can also set up direct debit using the older method: a paper request. Both methods can be accessed as soon as you have a Bacs SUN issued to your business and you will be able to set up direct debits right away.
The best course of action, however, is to get automated Bacs-approved software. There are several solutions to choose from and one of them is offered by Bacs bureau. A Bacs bureau can create and submit payment files on behalf of its users. The process is usually done using automated software that can be integrated with existing business solutions.
Integrate Bacs Payment Service
Now that you have a Bacs bureau assisting you with payment requests, the next step is integrating the bureau’s system with your internal business information system. Bacs payment service can be accessed directly from existing ERP and CRM systems, as long as the bridge software is integrated properly.
This type of integration lets you enjoy an additional advantage: automation. Since the systems are fully integrated, you can have client invoices routed to the Bacs payment system directly. You can also approve Bacs payment requests from vendors automatically, eliminating the need for manual input and saving the business a lot of time and money in the process.
Control and Evaluate
Similar to other critical processes in a business, it is also necessary to establish a solid monitoring and evaluation measure for the Bacs payment service. The last thing you want is dealing with errors because the system is left unchecked.
Fortunately, there are a lot of things you can do. Most ERP supports resource allocation based on departments, so you can assign a budget for each department and have payment requests filtered accordingly. You can also choose to approve payments from a centralized console.
The same can be said for customer payments. Invoices can be filtered and organized freely for maximum accuracy. Setting up a way for the sales department to keep track of customers’ invoices is just as easy. The rest of the payment processing cycle will still be fully automated, but you have more control over the system in general.
These are the steps you need to complete to set up Bacs payment in your business. it all starts with getting a Bacs SUN. if your business doesn’t have one already, now is the perfect time to apply for a Bacs SUN and take advantage of Bacs payment services.