Real-time payments and Open Banking are set to transform the way in which consumers interact with their finances in the next few years. This will bring the financial sector in line with the instant gratification expectations and data portability expectations set by other digital services in consumers' lives. The New Payments Platform (NPP) is key payments infrastructure in Australia that is supporting financial institutions and the broader ecosystem to make this transition. Its next platform service will enable customers to authorise third parties to make payments from their bank accounts, opening up new possibilities to manage payments digitally.
The opportunity the NPPA (New Payments Platform Australia) brought to ThoughtWorks was to co-create, with Australia’s leading financial institutions, a set of Customer Experience (CX) guidelines that would help provide a degree of consistency in the user experience across financial institutions. This would normally be challenging, but a pandemic brought a new perspective in terms of how best to collaborate in a remote working environment.
The next step in NPPA’s roadmap
NPPA is responsible for maintaining and developing the payments infrastructure that enables Australian consumers, businesses and government agencies to make real-time, data-rich payments between bank accounts at participating financial institutions. After previously delivering the infrastructure behind Osko, the digital overlay service used in most bank apps to send real time payments using a PayID, the NPPA is now developing a Mandated Payments Service (MPS) , to enable customers to authorise third parties to initiate payments from their bank accounts. The MPS will essentially become a digital alternative to managing direct debit payments, support merchant-initiated transactions and in-app bank payments, and ‘on behalf of’ payment services offered by third parties, such as cloud accounting software providers and various fintech applications.
ThoughtWorks was engaged to develop CX guidelines to support NPPA and their participating financial institutions; a cross section of Australia’s leading financial institutions who would be implementing the MPS capability within their mobile app and web channels. This was in response to feedback from those organisations that ensuring some consistency in the user experience would be an important element for the successful implementation of the MPS.