The initial target of the UK Faster Payments scheme seemed a simple concept to deliver - eliminating float (the three days gap between funds leaving the payee's account and arriving in the recipents) - but as with most financial sector initiatives the implementation
detail has been significantly more complex.
Back in February this year when I founded this community for discussion on Faster Payments (FP) I
reported on the
optimistic APACS outlook that FP would be ready on time, although there was also a strong hint that the agency banks and building societies would probably not be ready to participate at an early
stage. I also commented at the time that even the early adopters and member banks had yet to fully understand the significance of the changes the scheme demanded. Four months or so later, the impact of these issues is now being felt in these same banks as
the recent fastpayments.co.uk bulletin (available here) outlines in more detail.
So in, not quite, the words of that famous phrase - one significant step for UK payments is proving to be one major leap for the member banks - but as a supporter of the potential benefits of the scheme I believe it is a leap worth achieving.