Maria Mallaband preserve efficiency & increase security

"We have about 35 bank accounts integrated with AccessPay. We use it for BACS, Payroll if there’s a same-day payment to make, and our Accounts Receivable team will use it to call in any Direct Debits payments that they’re taking. So it’s well-used, by at least three different departments within the business."

David Baggley, Treasury Accounts Manager, Maria Mallaband Care Group

After switching banks and needing to find a third-party system that could offer a smooth transition, maintain efficiency levels, and please the auditors – Maria Mallaband Care Group chose AccessPay to be their all-in-one payments solution.

The Company

Maria Mallaband Care Group (MMCG) is one of the largest independent care home providers in the country, with thousands of staff and residents in almost 80 locations across the UK.

Differentiating themselves in a competitive marketplace via investment in cutting edge technology and pioneering services, alongside a passionate commitment to staff training and career progression, their sterling reputation is well-earned.

And in keeping with staying on the front foot, the business adopted the AccessPay platform to keep it one step ahead of its competition, a growing number of fraudsters, and in the good books of the auditors.

The challenge for Maria Mallaband

Switching its 35 bank accounts from NatWest in 2019, Maria Mallaband found itself needing to look for a third party alternative to NatWest Paymaster. Having happily used this for many years, and with a large finance department used to the way it worked, it was an important part of the search for a partner to find software that could be customised to fit the existing processes and efficiencies.

As a fast-growing and successful business, MMCG was also increasingly becoming a target of fraud, so finding a provider who could add an additional level of security and scrutiny was crucial. When you make hundreds of payments each day, manual checks can quickly become time-consuming and, the more payments you make, the more human error can become a factor.

Mirroring a successful setup for Maria Mallaband

“We use AccessPay for BACS payments, payroll if there’s a same-day payment to make, and our Accounts Receivable team will use it to call in any Direct Debit payments that they’re taking. So it’s used by at least three different departments within MMCG, but it’s basically the same file we’ve always uploaded, without any real changes.”
One of the benefits of being an agile fintech supplier is that we are able to customise the way our software works on a user-by-user basis, meaning we can mirror the setups that any one business is used to. For all the improvements our all-in-one solution brings, sometimes the best outcome is simply to create an environment that slots seamlessly into an existing robust payments process.

“The process we do now is actually exactly the same as how we were using NatWest Paymaster. When we switched to AccessPay, the team looked at our process and built the system around us so that nothing changed in our day to day. It didn’t feel like a change, it was as smooth as it ever can be when changing providers.”

With 35 bank accounts, several different types of payments coming and going, and robust checking required – the benefit of being able to see everything in one place, via one login, makes finance teams’ lives much easier.

Bringing something extra to the table

But where we can add value, we always will. Initially utilising just the BACS, Payroll, and Direct Debits features of AccessPay, Maria Mallaband is now adopting new features to help cope with new challenges:

“We’ve now signed up to the Account Name Verification and the Payments Screening features in AccessPay too. The reason is to make sure we’re paying the right people, because bank details are manually entered into our account software, so we wanted to incorporate something that properly checks that we’re paying the correct people – from Payroll all the way down to Accounts Payable. We’ve always wanted a double check feature from third party software, to help us with our regulation and compliance, so when I saw the feature demo’ed on a webinar I thought ‘right, I need to get on this trial as soon as possible.”

And beyond the everyday checks that are a part of any finance department to-do list, is the growing threat of attack from malicious actors that seems to be on the rise in every sector:

“Fraud has gone up, I’ve personally taken four or five calls from people pretending to be from banks. They used to be quite easy to detect, but now they’re getting more sophisticated. We’re still catching them, but we knew we needed to increase our security. On top of that, you’ve got the ongoing phishing attacks which aren’t going to change any time soon. AccessPay gives us an extra safety net of checks”

Describing the most recent APP Fraud attempt, David described being directed to a website that looked identical to his real bank’s version. Although he detected the attempt with his experience, and no payment was made, it served as a stark reminder of the growing sophistication of fraudsters and just how easily a more junior member of his team could be tricked.

By investing in AccessPay’s cutting-edge Fraud & Error Prevention Suite, even if payments are scheduled via fraudulent methods, they can be caught by the extra layer of financial security.

Read more about AccessPay’s BACS and Fraud & Error Prevention.