Royal Bank pulls ahead in Electronic Banking Options for Business

Full disclosure, I use Royal Bank and own Royal Bank stock.

Recently Royal Bank did something that changed the game for small to medium-sized businesses alike. Very quietly they installed two brand new features that automates the electronic collections process previously only available through standalone software.

The first feature is Interact Collections, yes collections, not just payments. You can now issue requests for payment to registered “payee’s” and have them pay you using the familiar Interact System. It allows room for Invoice numbers and comments to provide detail to the recipient.

The second feature is the introduction of Wave to produce invoices and send them with the built-in option to pay via various means. This is a great tool for mom and pop businesses, allowing them to send professional looking electronic invoices to their customers and get paid.  I still would not recommend using Wave to handle your bookkeeping for a few reasons. The main one being that you still need an Accountant to work with you and your business to handle the various remittances, payroll and tax issues that go along with it.

That being said, I have tried both and liked them. There is a free trial period for both options, and available upgrades for various Wave features, but the free version does the job.

Good work Royal.

 

 

 

 

How not to handle an IT issue-Royal Bank Cheque-Pro

cheque pro

I have been a Royal Bank customer for decades, and I refer quite a bit of business their way from many of my clients. Usually they are on top of both technical and financial matters when it comes to serving their most profitable business segment (retail banking) until now. Take the recent facelift of their on-line banking makeover. It wastes a lot of space and makes me do twice the work to find out what I need to know. The old format was compact, easy to navigate and work with. The new interface in my opinion just plain sucks. Interestingly enough, Direct Investment and Business Banking has not changed, thank God for small miracles.  When I called in to complain the person at the call center said that Royal had used focus groups and surveys to mold their new design. I responded in kind “were the focus groups made up of hand-picked individuals or actual high volume users?” The rep responded that they would pass my thoughts along and also said that they were fielding a lot of similar calls.

This brings me to their latest blunder. Like many I liked the idea of depositing cheques remotely and avoiding driving to the branch. It would fund the account immediately and save time and money. The math was simple enough. I introduced it to many of my clients, some of which had to invest in scanners. About one month into their roll out the system was shut down. The only explanation I got was that they were having problems with an update.  It’s going on 3 weeks of down time and no update from Royal, despite still promoting Cheque-Pro on their site. All users get is this message:

cheque pro 2

As Canada’s Biggest Bank I would have expected more. Heads should roll and compensation needs to be addressed as well as doing the obvious and quit promoting a product that doesn’t work.

This is why competition from the Fintech industry is so important. Leaner, meaner and hungrier startups need to come in to save the day.

Royal, get your act together and get this fixed, or some Fintech company will fix it for you.

Till next time,

Rick