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2015 and time to change the way you think about Direct Debit

Records were broken in 2014 for Bacs Payment Schemes Limited, the company behind Direct Debit in the UK; demonstrating automated payments such as Direct Debit remain in favour with businesses in the UK.

Figures published by Bacs Payment Schemes in December 2014, showed that it had processed as many as 98.6 million transactions in one day in November 2014 - the equivalent of 6.3 million payments an hour. This was a new record and these astonishing figures only serve to underline the point that rapid Direct Debit and Direct Credit transactions are being made more frequently.

The aforementioned Bacs statistics certainly suggest that cutting-edge payment solutions are now being used more frequently and we predict this trend to carry over into next year too.

Just only a decade ago, Business to Business payment options were fairly limited. Cheques dominated, with 668 million cheques issued in 2002 compared with just 308 million Bacs payments, according to the Payments Council UK Payments Markets 2013. In 2014, the use of cheques for Business to Business has fallen dramatically. Just 247 million cheques were issued (compared to 3.4 billion Direct Debits and 2.2 billion Bacs Payments).

So as the UK begins to gear up for growth in 2015, Bacs called on UK business to take another look at their Direct Debit payment strategy, when this month it introduced an updated version of the Direct Debit Scheme Rules.

Changes in the updated version of the Direct Debit Rules included:

  • separation of the ‘rules’ from the ‘guidance’
  • a new section highlighting the essential key rules for service users to ensure compliance
  • timescales for acting on Bacs reports such as ADDACS and for payer notifications
  • updates on the rules surrounding indemnity claims and counter claims.

As the UK economy continues to improve, the introduction of such changes suggest that payment infrastructures are becoming more flexible, efficient and secure, providing the end to end cash visibility that will be key in minimising risk, driving down costs and managing business scalability.

Payments Council UK Payments Markets 2013


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