by June 17, 2001 0 comments



Banking has come a long way since the days of manual ledger entries. Today, many banks worldwide have completely automated their processes, centralized their databases so that all information is available at all branches. What’s more, banks have started offering their services over the Internet. What makes it possible for banks to offer these services to you? We looked at two banking products from Infosys that facilitate online operations. 

BankAway 

This is the online banking solution from Infosys for both retail and corporate banking and has features catering to both. The kind of functionality it’s capable of providing also reveals the kind of banking facilities that a customer could get online. Of course, the bank that implements this solution decides the features available to customers.

BankAway is a ready-to-use product, and can be made up and running out of the box, if a typical installation is performed. It also takes into consideration the importance of time to market for a bank. Therefore, the typical implementation time frame for it is 90 days from the date of signing to the date of going online.

One of the most important factors for online banking is security, which BankAway takes care of by using 128-bit encryption, Public Key Infrastructure, and SSL. It runs on the Solaris platform with Oracle as the database. We saw BankAway’s features at the demo bank created by Infosys in its Bangalore office.

Retail banking 

Online banking with BankAway is very easy, as the information is divided into easily- manageable modules. Banks normally use complex numbers for various accounts, but the product allows customers to set nicknames for their various accounts, for example, you can assign nicknames to your savings account and current account. You can also set your account preferences, and decide which account can be used for what purpose. 

Customers can set alerts for various banking activities, for example, if your account balance reaches a particular level, delivery of a checkbook, or when your mortgage payment is due. These alerts can be delivered to the customer via e-mail, mobile phone, or direct login to the website. 

Another feature that you can set is autopay. Using this, you can debit your account automatically for various bills. For instance, if the amount for a particular bill, say cell phone usage, is less than Rs 1,000, the software should debit it from your account without asking you for confirmation. This is especially useful for recurring payments, where you have to pay the same amount every month, like house rent.

BankAway can also perform various actions for checkbooks. You can stop check payment in real time using the straight through-processing capabilities of the Infosys back-end software, Finacle. You can request for new checkbooks online, or open a
deposit account. 

Corporate banking 

BankAway can also provide online banking to corporate customers. For instance, it can be used for B2B bill settlement process, provide bank guarantees, Letter of Credit (LoC), etc. Corporates can also check their fund limits online. 

Other corporate banking activities from BankAway include trade finance, irrevocable documentary LoC, bank guarantees, and bill payments. Details available to the company for these various activities are also manifold. You can start from seeing just listings, and drill down to the any level of details for any activity. 

Credit, for example, starts from a list of all your beneficiaries, their status, the amount pending with them, and expiry date. You can drill down into any particular DC number, and see the history of events or the credit amount utilized by the client. You can also drill down based on location. Similarly, for guarantees, it has a query that lets you view details by date range, status, and beneficiary name. 

Bill details can also be viewed online. You can, for instance, see bills that are due for delinking. It shows everything by bill number, drawer status, or the amount due. Complete bill details such as the number of transactions that have taken place are also available. 

A corporate can also manage its accounts online with BankAway. For instance, it can see the status of its various accounts currency wise. Another very useful function for corporates is BankAway’s file upload feature. This allows them to upload the salaries for its employees online without the bank’s intervention. 

A feature available to both corporate and retail banking customers are templates. These are readymade documents that a customer can send to the bank. For instance, to request for a new checkbook, a customer doesn’t need to write a letter to the bank, but can just fill in the template for this. 

PayAway 

This is the online bill presentment and payment software from Infosys. The best way to explain how it works will be to see it in action. Currently,
www.billjunction.com (a service provided by ICICI) uses PayAway. The website aggregates bills from various billers, and uploads them on the website according to the various user accounts. When payees login to the website, they can see the pending bills under their names. All you need to avail of this service is a bank account which has an MICR code, which is a nine-digit code printed at the bottom of a checkbook from your bank. Customers who have accounts with any bank in Mumbai, Delhi, Calcutta, and Pune can avail of this service. 

Anil Chopra

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