There's an entire industry that allows you to swipe a credit card and buy an item — a quickly evolving industry full of new technologies, mergers and acquisitions and a wealth of professionals making their mark on the booming field. But what exactly is payments and how can we expect it to change in 2020?
Genevieve Dozier, a Client Business Executive at Fiserv with over 13 years of experience in the industry, spoke to Fairygodboss about the basics of payments, trends in the industry, and how to get a job at a payments company. In 2019, Dozier was recognized on the ETA 40 under 40 list, based on her impact and her professional character. She was also elected to participate in the Money 2020 program. Here's what we learned from her extensive experience in the field.
The payments industry is massive and comprised of multiple payment products that allow electronic payments to be made.
According to Dozier, "payments start at the point of sale... the way you (the consumer) pay." Once a consumer inserts their card or taps their phone, the payment services provider — which has an account with the merchant — sends the transaction information to the payment processor. The processor transmits the transaction information to the card association that is associated with the card the consumer used. The card association then contacts the issuing bank to ensure there are proper funds on the card. Then, your transaction is approved or declined. Yes, all that happens in those split seconds you wait at the store!
Different companies "own" the separate steps of the payments process and operate as businesses accordingly, usually depending on a certain channel of revenue.
So, what are the channels in the payment industry? According to Dozier, there are three primary channels:
Careers in the payments industry may look different depending on which channel your team or organization operates in. You may be a B2C marketer at PayPal, a B2B account executive at Fistserv or a IT Manager at a merchant and still work in the payments industry.
Payment products are specific services or utilities that a merchant services provider or bank provides to its customers.
Interested in a job in payments, especially in this exciting time of new talent practices? Dozier says the industry is made up of people of different backgrounds and there are many transferable skills that would make you primed for the switch. She emphasized that a certain degree is not required to work in payments (her degree is in Fashion Design and Business). However, there are some courses that may be useful to educate yourself further on the industry. The Electronic Transactions Association (ETA) offers courses to earn an ETA CCP or Certified Payment Professional credentials. Dozier also suggests attending webinars on the Women’s Network in Electronic Transactions website.
More urgently, Dozier suggests demonstrating certain skills and attitudes, including problem solving ability, a sense of urgency, good communication, empathy, organizational skills, time management, analytic ability and research skills.
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