Direct Debit Payment Automation

Increase the efficiency and reduce the cost of managing your Direct Debit payments

How Long Do You Spend Managing Your Direct Debits?

If someone asked how long you spend managing your Direct Debits, could you answer honestly? Most businesses wouldn’t be able to say, or will probably underestimate the overall time and effort spent nurturing this crucial revenue channel.

Managing the sheer volume of Direct Debits within your organisation can take up more time and money than you may realise. For every customer, you have to set up the Direct Debit, chase for any failed payments and consolidate their accounts on a monthly basis. Amplify that process across your entire customer base, and it becomes a mammoth task, requiring the time and cost of a full time member of staff (or even a dedicated billing team) to maintain it.

manage direct debits

When Was the Last Time You Evaluated the Process?

Direct Debits are used by nine in ten UK consumers to pay some or all of their regular bills, with over 4.5 billion payments made using this method in 2019 alone. It’s one of the most popular payment methods there is (Source UK Finance), so is there a way of making the process as smooth and cost-effective as it can be?

It takes time to map out each step and see if there can be automated measures introduced at key stages, but one small process change here and there, could potentially save valuable time for your team and reduce costs for your organisation.

Managing Direct Debits aren’t fun or enriching work either. Not only will automating steps bring a potentially huge efficiency boost to logistics, but you can drastically improve morale by reducing the tedious admin work for your team.

Super-charge Your Direct Debit Process With an Automated Payments Platform

By combining your Direct Debit system with additional channels such as telephone IVR, an online webpage and SMS or email services, you can encourage customers to self-serve and manage the majority of Direct Debit payment steps.

Everything is done securely on a highly secure payment platform, saving your organisation valuable time and money that can be better served elsewhere. 

Direct Debit Self-Service Options

Self-Service Options
Instead of having a team of people reconciling Direct Debit accounts on behalf of your customers, let customers manage it for themselves with self-service options. You’d still have access to live reporting, but any account set up, reconciliation or amendments are all done by the customer, either by using a telephone IVR or branded web portal, without the need to dial a contact centre.

Direct Debit Integration with Your System

Integrate With Your Systems
Take it further by integrating with your back-office systems to seamlessly update Direct Debit records in the customer billing platform, combined with some clever workflows to handle all the customer communications on your behalf. The system will listen for certain “triggers” you can define, that will take the relevant action.

Direct Debit Automated Email Reminders

Automated Email Reminders
For example, if a customer has missed a Direct Debit payment due to Bank Account changes, the system notices this and can automatically send an email prompting the customer that they need to click a link and provide new details. It will update your back office systems instantly and attempt the Direct Debit again, prompting the customer that a successful payment has been taken.

Direct Debits 24/7

24/7 Telephone IVR

Are your staff taking Bank Account details over the phone to setup Direct Debits? Save time with an automated telephone IVR line that the Agent can transfer the customer onto. Alternatively, the number can be available on your customer comms, giving them the ability to setup, modify or reconcile their accounts themselves.

Manual Direct Debit vs an Automated Payment Platform

DD Manual

Manual Direct Debits


A member of staff calls the customer for payment


Post letters through a BPO or Mail provider – cost to print, process and mail per letter


Staff to manage the Direct Debit payment processes


Manual input or uploading, downloading data files


Reporting that can take time to collate and analyse

DD Auto

Direct Debits Managed by an Automated Payment Platform


Automated IVR calls customer with a pre-recorded voice message, no staff needed


Automatic email sent instantly when payment failed with no cost per email


Time saved by the automated platform with no human intervention needed


API integration with the platform updating your back-office systems in real-time


Live dashboard of ongoing Direct Debit processes and regular, auto-generated reports

Manual Direct Debit vs an Automated Payment Platform


Tap the above to zoom

A Trusted Partnership

We partner with one of the world’s leading Direct Debit platform providers, Bottomline Technologies, to improve Direct Debit capabilities for our clients. However, we are supplier agnostic and have a talented technical team who can discuss integration with your existing provider.

Bottomline Technologies

What Are the Cost Savings?

By combining Direct Debit with Key IVR’s automated secure payments platform, each process will be quicker, and equate to thousands of pounds saved per month for your organisation. By reducing the amount of tedious tasks for your team, you’re freeing up valuable resource, so they can focus on the more important aspects of the business.

Additionally, as operations scale up, your customer base expands and Direct Debit volumes increase. Relieve that pressure of hiring and expanding the team to meet with the demand and other future business challenges.

Talk to us about your Direct Debit setup with one of our Payment Specialists, and see if automation can help. Call us on +44 1302 513 000 or email

For example, staffing the administration of Direct Debits will cost at least £20,000 a year, in salaries and other overheads. That’s approximately £400 a week to log, amend or reconcile Direct Debits on behalf of customers. With Key IVR, an average platform configuration and deployment will return an ROI in the first year.

Request a Call Back Regarding Your Direct Debit Requirements

We'd be happy to show you the benefits of using our Direct Debit services.

Submit your details and a payment specialist will be in touch.


Sophie Chan

Head of Account Management

    Key IVR are a privately owned business offering global automated PCI-DSS compliant payment services. We are a customer-service focused organisation and take care to manage and meet our clients' expectations.


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