Request-for-Payment has been highlighted in the trade press recently as a way of smoothing the payments journey between individuals, which it undoubtedly does - but what does Request-for-Payment mean for businesses? Let’s take a moment to consider an everyday example. Imagine I am running a business, “Phil’s Garage”. I have my customers who are mainly individuals and small businesses. I typically charge between £100 and £2,000 per job depending on size and complexity. I enjoy working with my customers many of whom I have known for years. But there is a problem; the paper work and getting the money in for the work I do is a headache. For smaller jobs I sometimes take cash but I know that my customers find this inconvenient, and to be honest I am not that comfortable with holding lots of cash on my premises. For larger jobs I usually take payment by card which is expensive with card processing companies charging a large fee for each transaction - which adds up when you are a small business. I could ask people to pay by bank transfer but that can be an inconvenience to my customers and involves sharing bank details - and then I have to work out which payment applies to which job - nightmare. In the 21st century can we really not do better than this?

We can. Recent UK and EU regulation and some tech innovation in the UK can help me. Using Request-for-Payment (from Ordo) every time I complete a job I send my bill to my customer’s email address or mobile number as a Smart Request. I can attach the invoice or even a picture of the completed work and I don’t need my customer’s bank account or card details as Ordo takes care of this. I get my payment in my bank account in real time - if my customer wishes they can pay me while they are at the garage and Ordo confirms that the payment is made on the app on my phone. Using my Ordo dashboard I can see all the invoices I have sent and which ones have been paid. My customers pay me, simply, swiftly and securely direct from their bank account (they don’t even need to download the App or sign up) and the payment that comes to me (in near real time) has the invoice reference number I added in the description so the reconciliation headache has gone. Ordo shows me who I have asked for payment from and who has paid. No card fees, no cash - no problem. And the icing on the cake for businesses of any size? It makes it really easy for your customers, so not only will they thank you for it, they’ll be paying you quicker too.

CGI is partnering with Ordo to make this simple, swift and secure service a reality and it is now live - take a look in the Apple App Store for the Ordo App to download (it’s free) or the Ordo website for some further information about Ordo. For larger businesses the web version of Ordo can be integrated into billing systems, but the principle remains the same, no bank account details shared, no cards (so no card numbers, fees or waiting for the card payment to clear) just fully trackable and reconcilable instant payments sent simply, swiftly and securely.

I am sure in the future we will all be so used to using Request-for-Payment services that we won’t notice it - but today it’s an exciting improvement to the business and customer payment journey. I think this would work really well for Phil’s Garage. How do you think it could work for your business?

About this author

Picture of Philip Skinner

Philip Skinner

Director, UK Payments and Revenue Management

Philip has more than 15 years of experience at the senior level in the areas of payments, cards and collections—from a bank, software provider and payment scheme perspective. He is an innovative consulting director with a proven track record of leading payment and revenue ...

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