Following the launch of the E-invoice Exchange Market Pilot and the Remittance Delivery Assessment Work Group, industry participants have made notable progress towards advancing the modernization of business-to-business (B2B) payments.
In October 2021, the Federal Reserve and Business Payments Coalition announced two industry work efforts aimed at catalyzing the modernization of B2B payments in the United States by establishing greater B2B connectivity through electronic exchange frameworks. An electronic exchange framework is a set of standards, policies and guidelines enabling businesses to connect once, and exchange with any participant on the exchange framework, independent of their platform, system, or application.
The E-invoice Exchange Market Pilot is working to advance the development, testing, implementation and interim oversight of the U.S. electronic invoice (e-invoice) exchange framework. The Remittance Delivery Assessment Work Group is assessing the feasibility of applying the e-invoice exchange framework electronic delivery standards and architectural approach to electronic remittance delivery across all payment types.
These two efforts are crucial to moving the payments industry forward by addressing one of the greatest challenges of manual processing of B2B payments: the lack of connectivity between businesses to exchange electronic invoice and payment information for automated processing. This cutting-edge work has the potential to transform B2B payments by advancing the capability for straight-through processing.
E-invoice Exchange Market Pilot
Market pilot participants kicked off their work by establishing the structure, committees, and operational guidance to inform the planning, delivery and trajectory of its core activities. In addition, participants have made notable progress finalizing the discovery, delivery and data specifications for the pilot. These specifications provide the valuable technical guidance for participation in the market pilot. The specifications are the roadmap for businesses to connect with one another using a virtual network as they answer critical questions on how businesses can connect and, in turn, package and deliver invoice information for electronic transmission.
With this technical and administrative foundation, the market pilot will soon enter the first of three waves of its key activities for 2022. These activities will center on the development, testing, implementation, and interim oversight of the U.S. e-invoice exchange framework with the aim of establishing an operational B2B virtual exchange network for the U.S. market in 2023.
Remittance Delivery Assessment Work Group
The Remittance Delivery Assessment Work Group began its work by engaging e-invoicing subject matter experts to create a strong understanding of the functions of an exchange framework and the ways it addresses various operational aspects (i.e., discovery, data, and delivery) of e-invoice exchange. In turn, the work group leveraged this knowledge to assess the feasibility of an exchange framework for remittance delivery.
Ultimately, the work group will document its conclusions and recommendations in a report that is targeted for publication in spring of 2022.
Together, these two initiatives are driving the industry toward innovations that can help solve a primary challenge of manual B2B payments processing, and lead to more streamlined, modern processes.
Additional progress updates on both initiatives will be released throughout the year. To stay informed, join the FedPayments Improvement Community (select “E-invoicing” and “Electronic Payments and Remittance” under the interest preferences), and follow FedPayments Improvement on LinkedIn (Off-site) and Twitter (Off-site).