Developing a strategic vision for the future of Direct Debit



Having launched in 1970, Direct Debit has transformed the way in which the UK manages its finances. In 2017 alone, Bacs processed 4.4 billion transactions. As the anniversary of the Direct Debit approached, Bacs were both looking to enhance the product, through value add opportunities for banks, building societies, Service Users and stakeholders, through partnerships and commercial possibilities.


Bacs wanted to understand the possible opportunities for Direct Debit over the coming years. This needed to take into account the changing landscape, from rapidly increasing innovation in the current account market to regulatory requirements and market changes. We needed to prioritise the best commercial options for Bacs and engage key stakeholders including regulators and the Board.

The Manifesto team’s approach to problem solving delivers both rigour and creativity. In our work on Direct Debit, they helped us to draw critical insights from our data and identify commercial opportunities for the product. Working collaboratively with their team, we were able to identify and prioritise key actions to build a clear, decisive roadmap for the future of the product.

Anne Pieckielon
Director of Strategy and Products,
New Payments Systems Operator


We developed four scenarios for evaluation: product enhancements, new propositions, innovation and ‘keep doing the same’. The options were based on proposition packages building off the existing core, commercial analysis, customer benefits and cost to build.

We developed a product working group to engage and align Board members to ensure collaboration and buy-in, particularly for the commercial and customer approaches.


We helped provide Bacs with a longer term strategic vision, aligning stakeholders and around which they can prioritise developments, build out ecosystem relationships and drive regulatory agendas.