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4502 posts

Uber Geek


#259830 24-Oct-2019 10:57
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So really just coming for a whinge... sorry in advance.


Wanting to get a direct debit facility for taking payments from customers. Speak to our accounts manager, they put us on to a team who deal with 'transnational banking', cool, have a 45 minute conversation about really nothing, and keep saying we just want the pricing.


Get the pricing, and the normal direct debit pricing is totally reasonable - Cool!


But then if, god forbid, we wanted to actually automate the loading of DD's and tracking of payments, the only option is to connect with SFTP - that's fine, still common and easily managed. But they want $5k to set up this magic FTP connection, and then $400/month to maintain it. WHAT?! In 2019 you want to charge $400/month to run 50 year old (i think?) technology?! Get off the grass...


One thing that I found quite funny during the initial sales call was when I mentioned we would want to automate the process through some sort of API, was the response of "yes we hear API's are going to be great in the future, but for we have what we call 'file transfer'".... like really? Spoiler alert, API's are already essential to most tech based businesses these days... and this isn't "the future" last time i checked.

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860 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #2342941 24-Oct-2019 11:51
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Playing Devil's advocate a bit...


You're not so just paying for them to simply run an sFTP server.  You're also paying for (and I am making some big assumptions):


  • Ensuring service is secure and keeping it that way
  • The development of processes to read, parse and process the transactions you are sending them
  • Diagnosing of bad source files (maybe they try and manually fix the transactions it rather than just rejecting the whole file)

That said... I agree the price is crazy high. Banks generally have an archaic view of things. They're often laggards when it comes to adoption of technology.  Partly because they have to be seen to be secure and so may not trust new technologies right away.  They'd rather wait and see what gets adopted and make sure its secure. They are also held to account under some pretty strict laws and processes. Sometimes (often?) these laws dont/cant keep up with advances in technologies.


They're also a business so they wont necessarily go and provide a service unless there's demand for it.


Banking in New Zealand is ripe for disruption.  It is the world over to be fair.  The barrier to that is that the cost of entry is very high.  So, in some ways, they survive because they're there already.  And people and companies see it as hard to move dont.  And I'm off topic so I'll stop now.

15941 posts

Uber Geek


  #2342958 24-Oct-2019 12:04
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Banks are highly regulated, which increases their costs. The regulations don't keep pace with modern technologies, banks and regulators are very risk adverse. There are often also policies that come from parent companies overseas that make things more difficult.


Banks are very profitable - though when you look at profit on their assets it's not crazy.


316 posts

Ultimate Geek

  #2343005 24-Oct-2019 13:36
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There's likely some method to the madness due to be very risk adverse.  From what I gather it's not just a case of changing something.  It has to interact with other technologies, presumably be backwards compatible to a point and be internally (and externally if customer facing) documented.


The reason ANZ bought out the National Bank wasn't for the market share, it was for their IT because it was way cheaper to buy an existing bank that already used it rather than develop and deploy their own.

1746 posts

Uber Geek


  #2343018 24-Oct-2019 13:57
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3rd party service?  I have integrated Ezidebit for a client.  While its not the nicest API, with a couple of Gotchas, it does work.

4502 posts

Uber Geek


  #2343161 24-Oct-2019 16:54
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3rd party service?  I have integrated Ezidebit for a client.  While its not the nicest API, with a couple of Gotchas, it does work.



Yea I've used Flo2Cash with a previous company who had a decent API. But the downside of all that is the DD form the customer signs isn't "yours" it has Flo2Cash all over it, and the payment particulars are all 'Flo2Cash', just doesn't look very professional.

Linux Systems Admin
1173 posts

Uber Geek

Integrity Tech Solutions

  #2344087 27-Oct-2019 12:12
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I know what you are after and yes, the banks are antiquated.


This is what I recommend:


1. Wait because there is stuff coming


2. Be prepared and willing to switch banks

Integrity Tech Solutions @ Norsewood, New Zealand

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