U.S. Faster Payments Council Releases Consumer Bill Pay Research White Paper

Collaboration with Glenbrook Partners Explores How Faster Payments Can Transform the Bill Pay Experience

July 22, 2020 – The U.S. Faster Payments Council (FPC), in partnership with Glenbrook, today released the research white paper, “Faster Payments and the Potential to Transform Consumer Bill Pay.” This latest paper is part of a three-year, multifaceted industry study consisting of quantitative and qualitative research, launched by the FPC and Glenbrook last year.

The inaugural “Faster Payments Barometer,” an online survey of industry professionals, published in Fall 2019, offered insights across businesses, financial institutions (FIs), and payment providers. Results from the survey indicated that bill pay ranked as one of the top three use cases for both FIs and businesses with nearly 60% of respondents indicating it as a top priority. Given these findings, the FPC and Glenbrook positioned bill pay as the subject for a second round of qualitative research.

“Faster payments systems allow consumers, businesses, and financial institutions to resolve some long-standing pain points, as seen in the bill payment use case examined in this white paper,” said FPC Executive Director Reed Luhtanen. “Our latest research uncovered evolving issues and challenges in the bill pay space, which will help guide the FPC’s current and future workstream topics and set the stage for the ubiquitous adoption of faster payments.”

Available in the FPC’s Faster Payments Knowledge Center, the new research paper takes a close look at the two main models that serve the consumer bill pay industry today: 

  • The biller direct model where the consumer interacts directly with the biller via the biller’s website or designated physical location.
  • The bank bill pay model where the consumer interacts with its online/mobile banking platform to request a payment be sent to the biller’s bank. 

In addition to presenting the benefits and drawbacks of the two models, the paper explores how Request for Payment (RfP) messaging could bring the best of both models together to help drive broader industry adoption, and ultimately transform the bill pay experience. The paper also discusses the various barriers to adoption of faster payments in consumer bill pay including a faster payments ecosystem that is highly fragmented, the business case for billers not being as strong as for FIs, and the need for a fundamental shift in consumer behavior. 

"We are pleased to continue this important research in collaboration with the FPC. Our research highlights the opportunity for additional industry collaboration on the development of guidelines, best practices, and supporting tools that will help all stakeholders engage and participate in faster payments for consumer bill pay,” said Beth Horowitz Steel, partner at Glenbrook Partners. 

The FPC prioritizes industry collaboration in tackling complex topics such as interoperability among faster payments solutions, identifying real-world solutions that can ease adoption of faster payments, managing security risks and fraud threats, addressing barriers to cross border payments, and more, as the organization paves the way toward a future of faster payments for all. 

For more information on the FPC, its current work efforts or to join, visit FasterPaymentsCouncil.org.

Elizabeth Grice 
U.S. Faster Payments Council  

About the U.S. Faster Payments Council (FPC)

The FPC is an industry-led membership organization whose mission is to facilitate a world class payment system where Americans can safely and securely pay anyone, anywhere, at any time and with near-immediate funds availability. By design, the FPC encourages a diverse range of perspectives and is open to all stakeholders in the U.S. payment system. Guided by principles of fairness, inclusiveness, flexibility and transparency, the FPC will use collaborative, problem-solving approaches to resolve the issues that are inhibiting broad faster payments adoption in this country. For more information, please visit FasterPaymentsCouncil.org

About Glenbrook Partners

Glenbrook is a payments consulting, education, and research firm that brings to our financial services and financial technology clients the unique combination of specialized skills in payments, many years of hands-on experience in the field, and a wide network of professional relationships. The firm helps clients with strategy definition, product development, and the application of technology to solve leading edge problems in the financial services industry. For more information, please visit Glenbrook.com.  

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