Efficiency Analysis: Payment Operations

Client Type

Payment processing company (merchant acquirer).

Client Size

$30 billion/year annual transaction volume.


The client became one of the top 15 payment processors in the United States by building a complex business with many different product lines and verticals over time. It also acquired several other companies and integrated their operations into its organization. Across each product line, it had responsibility for executing standard merchant acquiring functions for hundreds of thousands of merchant accounts. These functions included underwriting, fraud risk management, credit risk management, interchange cost management, platform operations management, and compliance. The complexity and scale of the organization meant that improving efficiency could yield significant cost savings, so the client hired Curaxian to determine the most significant opportunities to reduce operating costs by improving the efficiency of manual processes.  


We interviewed executives, managers, and staff in each functional area then documented and evaluated current processes. We then developed a model to describe the factors that drive labor cost and the metrics that should be used to manage operations and obtained then analyzed data necessary to quantify and explain the factors driving labor cost for each function. We developed recommendations for reduction in labor cost through process redesign, policy changes, organizational restructuring, and technology/automation investments. We developed a prioritized strategic roadmap to target highest value opportunities and low hanging fruit opportunities.


Our analysis allowed the client to identify and rank new ideas for efficiency improvement. The client learned how to measure the cost of each process or opportunity in terms of manual labor cost, external cost, and customer impact. Using this analysis, the client was able to develop a strategic plan asking for specific technology investments and organizational changes, and back up that request with ROI calculations that accounted for both internal costs and the economic value of improving customer experience. Overall, millions of dollars in potential benefits were found and described.