We have come a long way since October 2015

Before and after the liability shift in October 2015, a lot of Merchants and Gateways have come a long way to migrate to EMV. The migration has been painful for many of them, with issues like PIN-Debit routing, an influx of chargebacks, the queue of certifications with some of the Processors or the slow checkouts. Among all of them, handling the EMV Certifications within allocated budget and in a timely manner is likely one of the chief issues I have heard about throughout the various Payment Industry forums and shows across the country.

Improvements but still some issues

Back in 2016, Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover announced their new policies to streamline the certification process and they keep making their best efforts to continue in that direction today. Those improvements are indisputable and make it easier for Merchants and Gateways to migrate to EMV. However, some of the main issues those are still facing internally remain the same.

Certification applicant feels totally lost in the complexity of the Card Brands’ and Processors’ EMV requirements.

Are you positive that you are implementing EMV using the most current specifications and requirements? With the various implementation guides from the Card Brands & Processors & Terminal Vendors, the number and frequency of updates and modifications can be overwhelming. Maintaining up-to-date documentation and the associated expertise within your team might present itself as a recurring challenge.

The developers are also the primary Q&A testers.

Most of the Merchants and Gateways that are stuck in the EMV Certification process often have one characteristic in common. Their IT team consists of a few developers who also happen to be the Q&A testers of their products. The EMV certification processes are time-consuming with activities like filling out the intake questionnaires, assessing the different on-going waivers granted by the Card Brands and Processors or understanding the meaning of a specific test script. At the end of the day, developers spend far too much time on testing rather than developing.

One-shot project?!

Supporting an EMV kernel renewal, adding the contactless interface or a new payment functionality to your solution, fixing a waiver that has been on hold for a long time; all of those scheduled or unscheduled improvements might increase the number of EMV Certifications. This is where you can start feeling that EMV Certifications are not a one-shot project but an endlessly repetitive cycle.

Our customers often tell us that they feel like they spend too much time and money on certification activities that do not generate any direct revenues. Merchants and Gateways of all sizes should take the opportunity to think about the pros and the cons of outsourcing their certifications. Relying on a trustworthy Vendor for EMV Certifications can allow you to focus on activities which bring a value to your business and dedicate your team of developers to it.

Let Deltec Consulting be your certification resource!

--Loic Berton, COO at Deltec Consulting