Datatel, an Authorize.Net solution provider, spent months compiling and analyzing data with the intent of quantifying how much it costs small and medium-sized businesses to process bill payments over the phone using live staff members.
The focus of the study was small and medium-sized businesses using three different levels of payment activity—businesses who handle on average three, eight and 23 calls per day from customers making a payment.
The study revealed that many merchants simply don’t know with any degree of accuracy how much it’s really costing them each time one of their staff picks up a customer phone call and processes a bill payment.
Summarized below are the costs based on a salary of $30,000/year; however, Datatel has also compiled more detailed results for a number of different salary ranges:
- A merchant processing as few as three payments over the phone per day (75 per month) spends $1,542.86 a year in staffing costs.
- A merchant processing as few as eight payments over the phone per day (175 per month) spends $3,600.00 a year in staffing costs.
- A merchant processing 23 payments per day (500 per month) over the phone spends $10,285.71 a year in staffing costs.
Simply implementing automated processes combining IVR Payment technology with an Authorize.Net gateway account to handle the same level of payments by phone can result in the following cost efficiencies:
- Merchants processing as few as three payments calls a day can experience a 46% cost reduction—the equivalent of $714.86 / year in cost savings.
- Merchants processing 8 payment calls a day can experience a 67% cost reduction—the equivalent of $2,412.00 / year in cost savings.
- Merchants processing 23 payment calls a day can experience 71% cost reduction—the equivalent of $7,285.71 / year in cost savings.
Actual cost reductions may differ from merchant to merchant depending on the salaries that they pay and how they implement their pay-by-phone automation strategy. The main point to take away from this is that automation = cost reductions. An automated Pay-By-Phone system with your Authorize.Net account can accept payments 24/7, as opposed to just during normal working hours, and never needs to take a break.
The intelligence that we have compiled and are sharing here should go a long way towards helping you make better informed staffing decisions so you can run your business in a more cost-effective manner. By this we don’t just mean reducing labor costs but also speeding up invoice to cash time by giving your customers the convenience of paying bills over the phone 24/7 instead of them having to call during your standard hours of operation.