“That sounds good and is acceptable on our end. Let’s shake on it.” Eeeww… no can do!
How things have changed. In the age of COVID-19, all the old norms seem to have gone out the door – even the trusty handshake.
Like it or not, today everyone is focused on COVID-19 and touchless everything. We’re all obsessed with whether we brought a mask with us or if the person in line behind us is distanced less than the obligatory six feet.
Touchless technology and social practices are most definitely in!
Consumer demand has evolved toward touchless technology
Even though the move to “touchless” seems to be a new phenomenon, triggered by COVID-19, the fact is that in some areas of business the movement toward contactless experiences has been going on for some time. Nowhere is that more evident than when it comes to payments.
Even before the advent of COVID-19, consumer desire for instant gratification began to push companies to act. Utilizing technology, businesses responded, and digital payments started to become a reality.
“Truth be told, it wasn’t just consumer demand that led many companies to switch to touchless transactions and digital payments. Many had long been aware of the fact that dealing in cash and paper checks was less than efficient, bringing with it all kinds of issues and extra work.”
Paper is out
In the blink of an eye, cash and paper checks became “just so yesterday.” Digital payments and disbursements began to proliferate. Consumers began to receive digital payments direct to their banking accounts or loaded onto pre-paid debit cards. Just like that, in many areas of business paper was out. Touchless transactions and digital payments became the gold standard.
Ulterior motives from businesses
Truth be told, it wasn’t just consumer demand that led many companies to switch to touchless transactions and digital payments. Many had long been aware of the fact that dealing in cash and paper checks was less than efficient, bringing with it all kinds of issues and extra work, including:
- Convoluted processes
- Extended processing times
- Extra work for employees
- Delayed payments
- Lost payments
- Payment reissuance
- Check fraud
- Cumbersome and time-consuming reconciliation
- Dissatisfied customers
- Labor-intensive customer service support
- And more
Employers in many industries came to recognize that beyond inefficiency, utilizing dated payment systems relying on paper checks was very unfriendly to their bottom line. According to Aberdeen Group, cutting a paper check costs an organization an average of $7.78, when accounting for postage, labor, paper, toner, reconciliation, and more. And then there were environmental costs.
On the flipside, digital payments and disbursements were cheap. Aberdeen has pegged the average cost of an electronic payment at $0.49. No matter how you slice it, that’s a huge difference. Switching to digital payments and disbursements, and protecting the bottom line, made sense. It still makes sense today for those who haven’t already made the switch.
The COVID era creates urgency for change
Fast forward to the present and COVID-19 has caused complete disruption in the workplace. Maintaining proactive hygiene measures and protocols is now the norm, such as frequent handwashing, social distancing, stringently sanitizing work areas, and more. It’s unlikely such measures will ever be turned back in the typical workplace, as companies seek to ensure the safety and health of their employees and customers.
Beyond such measures, employers are looking at all processes to determine if there are other vulnerabilities, and if so, how best to address them. From the way they ship their goods or receive materials necessary for their operations, to their scheduling, and even adjusting their business models to be more heavily weighted to e-commerce, companies are proactively embracing change to enable themselves to be prepared for whatever might happen – both now and tomorrow.
“Making the move to touchless, digital disbursements just makes sense in today’s, and tomorrow’s, workplace. Importantly, it can be done cost effectively, providing long-term savings for your organization.”
For organizations that hadn’t done so already, a continued reliance on cash and paper checks represents a serious vulnerability to both employees and customers. Let’s face it, cash and paper checks are dirty, period. When you consider the number of bacteria and other substances, like fecal matter, cocaine, live flu virus, and more, that are typically found on paper money and checks, digital payments make all that much more sense.
A better alternative to paper
The good news is there are cost-effective solutions that can transform the payment disbursement process from outdated paper to contactless and digital. The benefits of doing so include:
- Costs and work associated with the use of paper checks are significantly reduced
- No lost or stolen checks
- Check fraud is eliminated
- Reduced need for customer service supporting paper checks
- Beneficiaries get paid faster
- And more
Making the move to touchless, digital disbursements just makes sense in today’s, and tomorrow’s, workplace. Importantly, it can be done cost effectively, providing long-term savings for your organization.
Equally important, utilizing the right system and provider, it can be done quickly and seamlessly, without the need to change your current disbursement processes, other than the way payments are issued.
Ready to make the switch to touchless payments?
If your organization is still utilizing a paper check-based payment disbursement system, now is the time to switch. Our cloud-based payment solutions enable businesses, governments, associations, and non-profits to manage and track disbursements with ease.
Learn more about making the move to contactless payments. Click the big red button below to learn more.