8 Apr 2024
4 minutes

Four tips for tackling business cross-border payments

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Quick summary

In this article, Pedro Batista, VP Payments and Operations (UK CEO) at Payhawk, shares four essential tips for addressing the challenges of cross-border payments. Explore how technology, real-time data, currency management, and vertical integration can help your business operate more efficiently and cost-effectively on a global scale.

Table of Contents

    Though vital to the worldwide economy, cross-border payments remain slow and costly. As Pedro Batista, UK and Operations VP (and UK CEO) at Payhawk, explains, "Cross border payments are one of the pillars of the global economy yet they’re notoriously slow, expensive, and inefficient."

    Recently, Pedro sat down with payments podcast PayTech Talk to chat about your business should not only use technology, real-time data, and integrations to make cross-border payments more efficient but also switch operational approaches to make cross-border headaches a thing of the past, saying:

    Companies must have a global proposition but cater to local nuances.

    Here are Pedro’s four top tips to tackle business expense management — including cross-border payments.


    Dive into the world of cross-border payments with Pedro Batista and Laura Rofe

    1.“Use great Technology.”

    Speed is a major cross-border payments hiccup, and a great way for businesses to get things moving is with up-to-date, multi-entity focused technology.

    The right technology mitigates some of the inefficiencies caused by the older payments infrastructures that act as a base for cross-border payments, explains Pedro.

    You can tackle technology gaps by looking at their infrastructure providers, which typically mediate between payment service providers (PSPs) and merchants to create access to hundreds of local payment methods and services worldwide, like orchestration, data, and analytics, across borders.

    You should also prioritise cost-efficiency and let technology support you where possible here. At Payhawk, our international payments feature offers low-cost transfers, potentially saving you up to 11 times more (EUR>USD) compared to other banks and financial institutions.

    2. Real-time data

    Real-time data is key for better cross-border payments, says Pedro.

    He continues:

    Having real-time data reduces processing times, meaning fewer resources are needed to make payments. For example, with our intelligent invoice reconciliation, businesses can reduce manual errors, pay suppliers on time, and automate bookkeeping to ensure all spend is allocated to the right places.

    Read more about how we automate the purchasing process.

    Real-time data can also boost transparency by offering increased visibility throughout the payment process. For example, if businesses can view their global spend in real-time, they can improve cash-flow control, streamline workflows, and make closing the month across locations much, much easier.

    3. Get your currencies under control

    Whether it’s tariffs and exports or paying suppliers, businesses experience friction when paying across currencies, according to Pedro.

    Add currency volatility, fluctuating exchange rates, cost variations, and fees to this, and businesses will struggle to grasp their payment expenses, especially across currencies.

    That’s where the benefits of an extensive international payments solution on a single platform come in. Here, businesses can make payments in multiple countries and in their currencies, meaning you don’t have to change between different providers to make payments. All while maintaining control over all spending, in all your currencies, worldwide.

    Pedro says:

    A single solution with custom settings allows you to cater to local nuances when handling currency issues while also having a global proposition, which is vital for handling cross-border transactions.

    4. Vertical integration: bringing it all together

    According to Pedro, one of the most important things great cross-border solutions do is unburden businesses. They do this by offering solutions that effectively remove a lot of the clunky cross-border elements from the equation, making payments seamless, transparent, and straightforward.

    In a nutshell, vertical integrations means ‘integrating multiple functionalities under one roof’, like reporting, taxes, subscriptions, and transaction monitoring, with the flexibility to cater to local nuances and payment methods, letting you effectively eliminate time-consuming payments processes.

    And finally, saving time and money with cross-border payments from Payhawk

    At Payhawk our cross-border payment features (and overall vertical payments) let you uncover the following huge benefits:

    • Enhance control and visibility: Consolidate all payments in one platform for real-time reconciliation with your ERP or accounting system, ensuring clear spending visibility, streamlined tracking of expenses, reimbursements, and invoice payments, and regulatory compliance.
    • Simplify global payments: Centralise domestic and international payments management in a single platform, saving time and ensuring uniform data accessibility for efficient oversight.
    • Streamline global reimbursements: Process and reimburse expenses across multiple currencies and countries effortlessly, minimising complexities and unnecessary costs associated with international transactions.
    • Automate manual processes: Boost efficiency by eliminating manual tasks, facilitating faster and more accurate month-end processes, and enabling automated approval workflows and instant payment execution directly from the platform.
    • Accelerate transactions: Experience rapid international payments within the Payhawk platform, surpassing traditional wire transfers, with 55% delivered instantly and 93% within 24 hours, enabling swift financial operations.

    International business with cross-border payment challenges? Listen to the podcast to hear what else Pedro has to say about cross-border payments.

    Trish Toovey - Content Director at Payhawk - The financial system of tomorrow
    Trish Toovey
    Senior Content Manager

    Trish Toovey works across the UK and US markets to craft content at Payhawk. Covering anything from ad copy to video scripting, Trish leans on a super varied background in copy and content creation for the finance, fashion, and travel industries.

    See all articles by Trish →
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