Is eliminating paper checks enough to crush B2B payments fraud? No, it's only the first step. It's important to finish the move and follow-through by investing into more modern and secure payment methods — ones that use electronic payment platforms and benefit from the increased protection and security that entails.
B2B payment fraud is on the rise, and bad actors can take advantage of paper checks far too easily. This is especially true while some, or all, of your finance team is in a work-from-home setting.
Eliminating Paper Checks Is Just the Beginning
It's essential to start with forgetting paper checks because it is not only an easy step to take, it's one that has immediate returns. It removes an avenue of fraud and a large contributor to the burdening of your payment processes.
Even if paper remains in other areas, such as invoices, the lack of paper checks is a good initial step towards unburdening your finance team and making their day-to-day tasks easier. But most importantly, it removes the payment method that — according to the Association for Financial Professionals (AFP) — had the highest amount of attempted and actual fraud in 2019.
When you consider how prevalent the use of paper checks still is among U.S. businesses this rate of fraud is put into a new, and worrying, light.
According to a study by PYMNTS, more than 80% of firms use checks to pay their suppliers.
Leaving behind paper checks in favor of automated AP has other benefits as well:
- Reduce costs and potentialy gain a new revenue stream with virtual cards
- Lower the risk of fraud and build trust with your vendors
- Gain 100% visibility into your payment records and cash flow
Compensate for the Prevalence of Remote Work
Once paper checks are out of the picture, the next step is to look at how to balance out the increased risk that comes with remote work. While many professionals are thriving in their work-from-home environments, it's become clear it comes with a heightened risk for fraud.
"Now, all of a sudden, you have thousands and thousands of employees having access to your network in a remote environment. The risk just multiplies. From our perspective, we've not only seen the concern for fraud multiply, but also the opportunities for fraud."
— Neal Anderson, Interview with PYMNTS
With studies predicting that by 2025, 75% of working professionals will work from home at lease one full work week per month, it's imperative to have a long-term plan for dealing with b2b payments fraud. Paper is too risky, and many firms have taken half-measure solutions that aren't much better. Back-up check printing or having team members take check printers home will work in a pinch, but isn't sustainable.
Our accounts payable (AP) automation solution brings more security and control and makes transitioning to paperless AP easy. It empowers you to mitigate the possibility of data breach and payment fraud at no capital expense and without affecting your IT team.
The perfect AP soultion for preventing fraud:
- Bank-level data security with 256-bit encryption
- Practices monitored, verified, & supported by RSA Security
- Data maintained in redundant tier-5 data centers
- Information access locked by user permissions
Not sure where to start? We have a free guide that walks you through how to easily automate AP.
More Than Preventing B2B Payments Fraud
Electronic payment methods are not only more secure, they also lower costs and shorten turnaround times on processing payments.
According to Business Insider, companies leveraging digital payable solutions see 73% faster processing cycles and 81% lower processing costs. Considering that, is it any surprise that 44% of businesses are looking to add automation to their payables processes? It allows you to capitalize on the efficiency and cost-cutting benefits that comes with automated payments.
It also improves relations with vendors, as a more secure portal benefits you both. Our portal also ensures you won't ever miss a deadline and gives vendors and partners insight into payment status updates relevant to them. The positive partnership with vendors that results from the increased credibility and trust will pay dividends.
You can do all this while maintaining control of your processes and keeping your ERP and bank relationships. Here at OnPay Solutions we go out of our way to ensure you will maintain 100% control of your funds and workflow. We do this through custom integration that can be adjusted to suit your needs and preferences.
Moving away from paper checks and preventing payment fraud has never been a more timely move. Advance into the future of B2B payments with an electronic portal that makes you and your entire accounts payables lives easier and more efficient.
If you’re ready to start a conversation about advancing your AP department forward with our help, reach out today.
Interested in learning more? Check out our series of AP automation podcasts:
- Why Eliminating Checks Isn't Enough to Crush B2B Payments Fraud
- Virtual Card Adoption Strategies for AP
- Why CFOs Must Invest In A Paradigm Shift
- Buyers and Suppliers Tackle the Invoice-to-Pay Digitization Journey
- The Path of Least Resistance to AP Automation
- What it Will Take to Kill the Paper Check