In order to get started there are three easy steps:
Step 1 - Contact your bank
When you decide to start using Bacs Direct Credit, the first thing to do is to consult your bank who will advise on whether you should submit direct or use a bureau service and what you need to make the payments.
Step 2 - Accessing the service
There are two different methods for submitting your payment data to the Bacs service. The most suitable one for you will depend on your organisations needs and resources.
Direct access - this may be faster and cheaper than using a bureau where you will be processing a high volume of payments.
Indirect access - this is via a bank or bureau and is often the most suitable method for smaller organisations or those with a limited number of payments.
Step 3 – How it works
To make a Bacs Direct Credit payment, the minimum information you require is the sort code and account number of the payee's bank or building society account. You should also consider the additional services available that can help save on administration time and reduce costs.
When making electronic payments it is important to include the correct and full payment reference information so the recipient can identify what the payment represents or who has issued it to them, and in the case of supplier payments, to enable the organisation receiving the payment to connect it to the correct customers account.
You submit your payment data, which include the above information plus the amount of each payment, via a bureau or direct access depending on which method you choose.
The data is sorted into payments to each of the banks and then transmitted to each institution. This data is downloaded into their computer systems and applied to the relevant customers' accounts and debited to yours.
The entire process is simple and efficient - and it takes less than three days from start to finish.
Bacs processing cycle
Input - day 1
Input day is the latest day a business user/bureau may submit a payment file to Bacs for a processing cycle. Payment files must be transmitted to Bacs between 07.00 and 22.30.
Processing - day 2
Files are delivered to the recipient banks which then process each payment.
Entry - day 3
Payments are simultaneously credited to the recipients’ accounts and debited from your account.
As the payer, you remain in control of the process at all times. You decide when each payment will be made. You can submit Bacs Direct Credit payment instructions up to 30 days in advance of the payment date. You can also recall payments after the payment information has been submitted, provided your bank is notified prior to a specific cut off time.