Having Three AAPs Helps This Third-Party Sender Succeed

annette higgins

Having Three AAPs Helps This Third-Party Sender Succeed

Annette Higgins, AAP
Compliance Officer
Cash Flow Solutions

You can read the Nacha Operating Rules day and night, but for Cash Flow Solutions that wasn’t enough.

“As we were looking to create products that use the ACH Network, our company made a decision that if we’re going to be that gateway and provide that technology, we’d better understand the rules, the responsibilities, inside and out,” said Annette Higgins, compliance officer.

That’s why Higgins—along with two colleagues—are AAPs.

Oxford, Ohio-based Cash Flow Solutions is a Third-Party Sender that creates products for merchants, including back office conversion deposit solutions. So its interactions with the ACH Network aren’t the same as a financial institution’s.

“For us it’s a very different experience because we’re not at a financial institution. We only see a portion of the process,” said Higgins, who comes from a technology background. All of that made studying for the AAP exam even more challenging.

“This was probably one of the hardest tests I think I’ve ever taken, because of the fact that I had to put myself in different hats and different shoes. I had to learn about processes that we don’t deal with on a daily basis,” said Higgins.

Attending Nacha’s Payments Institute was part of her preparation for the AAP test and Higgins called it “an amazing experience.”

“You come with a foundation of knowledge, but it’s spotty. You know that there are certain rules that apply, but you don’t know the whys. Through the Institute you learn the whys, and you get to talk with colleagues.”

Higgins has been an AAP for nine years, and she finds it invaluable in doing her job.

“It’s a tough test,” she said, “but at the end of the day it prepares you to be able to answer the questions or know exactly where to find the answers.”

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