In today's digital world, receiving a paper check seems like something of the Stone Ages. Not only is there a significant lag time before the check is transferred from Payer to Payee - but there's also the daunting task on the receiving side of getting deposited either via electronic means or good old-fashioned driving it to the bank.
What if you could eliminate these seemingly prehistoric steps to receive and send payments instantaneously?
A virtual card is a 16 digit unique card number is one that's created solely for single-use. One of the benefits of a virtual credit card is the obvious - it's virtual - and therefore its high security which greatly protects all businesses: As the Payer, you predetermine the amount paid. And, as an added benefit, virtual cards are widely accepted by almost any vendor or supplier that accepts credit card payments.
We're not alone in referring to the seemingly "Stone Age-nature" of check issuance and touting the benefits and growth of virtual cards. As noted in a recent article in Forbes, a survey by RPMG indicates that 25% of the Fortune 100 companies used cardless accounts in 2014, with monthly spend averaging $330,698. It goes on to say that the use of virtual cards has been around for some time now and continues to have exponential growth in the years to come as more businesses (large and small) discover the benefits.
If you're someone who is seeking ways to optimize company time and resources, you should be itching to hear more about how virtual credit cards will impress your superiors...especially your Controller or CFO. But before you break this exciting news to the higher-ups, take the time to ensure you know the difference between purchasing cards vs. virtual cards. If your new to the virtual card territory, there may be some misconception that the two are the same. They are not.
Once you've schooled yourself on purchasing cards vs. virtual cards, familiarize yourself with these 5 amazing reasons your company should make the switch to virtual credit cards:
- Streamline accounts payable process
- Earn cash rebates
- Internal control
- Manage cash flow
Streamline Accounts Payable Process
The use of virtual credit cards replaces cumbersome paper checks and associated process inefficiencies. With single-issue cards, accounts payable departments can focus less on processing payments and more on financial responsibilities. No more writing checks, stuffing checks in envelopes, metering envelopes. In addition to saving time, you reduce or eliminate the risks of human error with a streamlined accounts payable process through single-issued virtual cards. A/P departments can combat the challenges in the accounts payable process with virtual cards.
Earn Cash Rebates
Wouldn't you be the company hero if you created a way for the company to earn extra revenue (cash) while you do your job? With virtual credit cards your company can earn cash rebates while paying your vendors or suppliers. For every vendor you make a payment to, you have the potential to earn a cash rebate. The more you use virtual credit cards, the more you earn back. Your CFO will be happy to be creating the organization's newest revenue stream.
Virtual credit cards provide more much security than physical cards. By allowing you to set the actual payment dollar amount and tying that payment to certain invoices, the 16 digit card number is unique for each payment and is for single use only. Since the card is not physical, it cannot be stolen nor ever re-used. The card expires once the maximum dollar amount has been spent. The CFO will also appreciate the benefit of not having to provide vendors/suppliers with an open line of credit knowing now that the risks of theft and fraud are significantly reduced with this innovative option.
Companies experience more control with single-issue cards. Each virtual card is issued to a specific vendor or supplier for a specific dollar amount. The cards are processed by the vendor in much the same way as the traditional credit or pay card payments without a physical card or open line of credit being provided. With this easy to use payment alternative, purchases get automatically entered into the the supplier Accounts Receivable management system without additional paperwork. Along with more internal control, the CFO will appreciate that the A/P department has visibilty to cash management.
Manage Cash Flow
It's often challenging to mange cash flow and the monetary requirements of a business. Companies have to pay vendors and suppliers a required payment during an agreed upon time frame. During this time, things can get a little fuzzy when trying to determine what funds are available from A/P. Virtual cards allow organizations of any size to manage cash flow through improved data reporting with enhanced data capture. Easy, instant reconciliation facilitates improved reporting on cashed virtual cards for internal transparency, which makes the whole department much more efficient, now that you don't require a separate A/P analyst to account for the different payment types.
Ready to Make the Switch?
Now you understand that the benefits of using virtual credit cards for B2B ePayments are too advantageous to pass up. In today's economic climate its important for businesses to evolve by using technological enhancements that can contribute to your success. And, simply choosing the right vendor or supplier payment method is an enabler of that success.
It seems that it is only a matter of time before awareness spreads from those early adopting companies who are already reaping the benefits of virtual cards, - to small and large companies alike. They save paper, money, and provide added security for your credit payments...not to mention that they earn cash rebates for each transaction and contribute to the payer company's bottom line.
We're excited to learn your thoughts in the comment section below!
Find Out More About Automated Accounts Payable:
- Futuristic B2B Payments: Virtual Cards, ACH and Accounts Receivable Challenges
- The Benefits of Virtual Cards
- 5 Reasons Your Company Should Issue A/P Payments with Virtual Credit Cards
- Maximizing Your Virtual Card Program