Accessing digital services with Bez and Nancy

Issue 147a | 19 July 2021

Accessing digital services with Bez and Nancy

The Bank of Ireland has launched a video tutorial series to give customers the skills and confidence to use digital banking services.

In March, the bank outlined plans to shut a third of its branches as it reaches a digital "tipping point" between online and offline transactions - a long-term trend accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, the lender acknowledges that some customers are reluctant to use online and mobile banking because of security concerns or an unfamiliarity with the technology.

Its answer is a series of 15 video tutorials, called 'Your Next Step', which are introduced by Emmy Award-winning broadcaster Baz Ashmawy and his mum, Nancy.

We want digital banking to be accessible and safe for all our customers but we realise that, for some, it’s a leap they’re not comfortable making. 

"They might worry about pressing the wrong button or doing the wrong thing or they could be anxious about online security. That’s why we’ve designed this course to build their confidence and skills in these specific areas."

Gavin Kelly, chief executive of the Bank of Ireland retail Ireland division

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Smart Payments Modernisation with ISO 20022

Volante and Pay.UK have set out to address some of the concerns we most commonly encounter when speaking to participants in the UK banking payment ecosystem. Ultimately, payment services providers, be they banks, building societies, or fintech’s, are asking similar questions:

  • What UK payments systems and processes will be affected by ISO 20022, and how? 

  • What are the benefits for various ecosystem participants, particularly corporations and financial institutions? 

  • How should financial institutions approach ISO 20022 readiness.

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For Brits, BNPL means buy now, worry later

The average time UK shopper say it will take them to clear their BNPL debts is now nine months, well in excess of of the 30-90 day windows most schemes are based on.

UK consumers owe an average of £244.37 per person to Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) schemes such as Klarna, Clearpay and Laybuy, the ‘Shop Now, Stress Later’ report from money.co.uk reveals: 

Payl8r tops the 2021 list, with £347.86 worth of debt per shopper and more than a fifth have no confidence that they will be able to pay what they own back in time. 

James Andrews, senior personal finance editor at money.co.uk says: “The savings offered by BNPL borrowing are at best negligible compared to traditional credit cards, and at worst could end up costing you far more in the long run. If managed responsibility, credit cards offer far more flexibility. Using the right credit card lets you split payments over as long as 21 months currently, with almost no card charging you for the first 56 days or so."

One in five (19%) of the 2000 shoppers surveyed admit BNPL is a way to buy now, and worry later. Young shoppers were found to be particularly susceptible to the marketing tactics of BNPL brands. One in eight (13%) 18-24 year olds highlighted social media influencers in their decision to shop now and pay later. This figure is up by a quarter (+26%) when compared to the data from 2020.

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Is your bank the bee's knees, or the bull's backside? 

Every six months, Martin Lewis at Money Saving Expert (MSE) ask for help to track the quality of customer service provided by banks. By comparing answers with last time, the team at MSE can see which have got better or worse.

Checkout the latest voting of ‘great’, ‘good’ and ‘poor’ banks at: Bee’s knees or the bulls backside?


Ten Confirmation of Payee ‘take aways’

Earlier this week Confirmation of Payee solution provider SurePay held a public webinar to share their Confirmation of Payee experience - checkout our 10 take aways and 2 facts.

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The Pay Off: How changing the way we pay changes everything

Gottfried Leibbrandt (former CEO at SWIFT) has been writing about how we pay for things…..

One of the many side-effects of Covid has been to accelerate the pace of ongoing trends – remote working, virtual meetings, online shopping … and the shift away from cash to electronic payments. 

Many consumers in Scandinavia now confess not carrying any cash at all. Yet even in this Northern European vanguard there are still those that are entirely dependent on cash, either out of choice or necessity.

We all need to be able to pay and be paid, so the non-digital minority needs to be catered for – everywhere, not just in Scandinavia. That requires not only that consumers can get cash, but that they can find others that will accept it – banks, shops and other merchants. 

So yes, we can expect the ATM to go the way of the phone booth but squaring the cash circle on the way there won’t be easy.

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Not why but how and when

A thought provoking guest blog “Why Request to Pay, Europe’s answer to PayPal, Apple and Google, will change payment processes” by Stefan Walde of AirPlus has just been published in The Company Dime.

Stefan’s article starts with this introduction:

Stefan goes on to consider:

  • RtP being competition for the classic credit card.

  • RtP friend or foe?

  • RtP no more back and forth authorisation.

And he concludes by stating “Not “why” but “how” and “when”

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Mastercard eases access to Faster Payments with PayPort+

Mastercard has launched a cloud-native, real-time payment gateway designed to ease access for institutions connecting to the UK's Faster Payments network.

The PayPort+ gateway has been developed by Form3 and is now live with two UK financial institutions, including Nationwide Building Society.

PayPort was launched in 2016 to offer financial institutions, large and small, connectivity into the UK Faster Payments network. The new product will now offer flexible connectivity options, including MQ, Restful APIs and Microservices.

Gregor Dobbie, CEO of Mastercard subsidiary Vocalink, says the package combines the benefits of cloud native technology with the highest levels of security, availability, and operational services standards. 

Now more than ever, people and businesses need to be able to rely on the payments network for speed, convenience and security - not just in the UK but around the world. The launch of our next generation PayPort+ service, which we built in collaboration with Form3, is a part of our multi-rail strategy to enhance payment flows for our customers and modernise payments for everyone.

Gregor Dobbie, CEO of Mastercard subsidiary Vocalink.


An amazing sub-structure that makes modern life so much easier

Given that you can’t ‘touch and feel’ them it’s often difficult to bring digital payments to life but (in December 2019) Joss Wilbraham described the proposed New Payment Architecture by seeking help from Joseph Bazaalgate.

In his blog “Plumbing for the 21st century” Joss wrote….

Nestling between the River Thames and the cycle super highway is a memorial to a chap called Joseph Bazaalgate. Thousands of cyclists’ whizz past it every day without noticing it. Nevertheless, it stands on top of his creation and is one of the wonders of Victorian engineering – the London Sewers.

Completed in 1875, when London had a population of around two million, those same sewers are now being used by over eight million London residents. Only now, nearly 150 years later, is London having to invest £4.5bn in its plumbing – nearly one thousand times the amount spent on the original solution. Why so long after? Because Joseph Bazaalgate had the foresight to double the capacity originally sized for London in anticipation of the future needs. 

Brilliant!

Joss Wilbraham, Form 3

Although the current Bacs / Faster Payments systems and the proposed NPA might seem insignificant to some, it’s a little bit like Bazaalgate’s plumbing for London; an amazing sub-structure that makes modern life so much easier.

At Northey Point we’ve just launched a new newsletter that focusses on the single objective of unpacking the UK’s proposed New Payment Architecture

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In brief


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Payments:Unpacked Survey

Thanks to all those that have already completed our Payments:Unpacked survey - the survey closes on Friday 23 July so there is still a couple of days left to let us know what you think of this newsletter.

Please click the link below to complete the survey:

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And finally

A bank note mistake has been spotted at the Bank of England: