Gone are the days of the buyer dictatingpayment method to suppliers. What was once the payers’prerogative-determining how they paid their suppliers-is nowbecoming a joint decision between suppliers and buyers.
Today, with a host of new electronic payment platforms available inthe marketplace, merchants are being asked to sign up for multipleelectronic payment methods, causing them to be more reluctant tojoin because of the operational effort it takes to manage multiplepayment portals, remittance types, and electronic payment forms. Asa result, merchants are loudly saying “no” when approached by theirbuyers to join a network and accept card or ACH for payment.Consequently, buyers are realizing that their automated paymentprograms are only as successful as their enablement of keymerchants.
To support their buyers, solution providers are placing moreemphasis on supplier enablement services. Enablement services havebeen successful, and buyers have begun to count on external supportof merchant enablement. To ensure the success of their paymentautomation programs, payers are now engaging more and more increating a supplier enablement strategy and enlisting the supportof industry experts to increase supplier conversion.
Business has responded to this need by creating a new servicessector completely focused on supplier enablement. The most recentreport in Mercator Advisory Group’s Commercial and EnterprisePayments Advisory Service, titled e-Payment Programs: Success Depends on SupplierEnablement Strategy, discusses strategies and techniquesthat companies use to get suppliers to agree to accept automatedpayments. Mercator Advisory Group expects to see an upward trendover the next year in the use of supplier analyses, and weanticipate more payers creating a supplier campaign strategy toincrease penetration of their automated payments and achieve atruly paperless payment process.
Follow Amy on Twitter @amy_hoke.