The University of Wisconsin-Stout, the first university to fully implement Higher One’s OneDisburseSM ID refund management service, has decided to renew the financial service provider’s contract to September, 2007, the maximum allowable under the RFP.
Higher One Client Extends its Disbursement, Banking and Debit Card Services Program through September 2007
NEW HAVEN, CT – Higher One, a leading provider of customized financial services dedicated exclusively to the higher education market, announced the University of Wisconsin-Stout has renewed its contract through September 2007. UW-Stout was the first University to ever win the prestigious Malcolm Baldridge Quality Award and the first to fully implement Higher One’s OneDisburseSM ID refund management service. The University signed with Higher One in September 2002 to begin providing the OneDisburse ID program through the Stout OneCard. The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and University of Wisconsin-Parkside have also implemented Higher One financial service programs within the last two years.
“We are very proud that UW-Stout has signed on to continue our successful partnership,” said Dean Hatton, President and CEO of Higher One. “This extension – the maximum allowed by the RFP- clearly demonstrates the successful results in cost savings and incremental services to students we have helped the University achieve over the past two years.”
Originally, UW-Stout was looking to reduce cost and improve service in their financial aid disbursement process, provide new services to students, and update the functionality and services they could offer through their campus ID cards. The Stout OneCard enables students and employees to choose any of three options to receive financial aid and other refunds, and easily sign up for payroll direct deposit online. With money in a OneAccount, the Stout OneCard also serves as a debit MasterCardr Card accepted at millions of merchants worldwide, including those on campus.
“The Higher One program has been, and will continue to be a great benefit for the University and our students,” said Joe Krier, Director of Student Services, UW-Stout. “From the University’s perspective, the decision was simple; Higher One has delivered a program that leverages our existing card system infrastructure, shortens lines, created many new efficiencies, saved us time and money, and ultimately has resulted in satisfied students and parents.”
Over the course of the first two years of its relationship with UW-Stout, Higher One has eliminated the costs involved with 22,000 disbursements by the University by handling all payments, customer service, preference tracking and reconciliation associated with the disbursement of refunds. Studies have shown that for many schools who manage financial aid disbursement themselves, these costs can run as high as $35 per disbursement. Prior to Higher One, Stout estimates their costs were $20 per disbursement.
Higher One’s OneDisburse is the only comprehensive refund management solution available to colleges and universities. Unlike EFT programs or stored value refund card programs, OneDisburse is a patent-pending service that offers students three choices to receive their refunds, while eliminating many of the costs associated with refund delivery for the college. Regardless of the student preference, Higher One handles the delivery of the refund – – the university only needs to send Higher One a file that includes the identifier for the student and the amount of the payment, and a wire transfer for the total amount of the disbursements.
Because Higher One handles everything related to the disbursement, including any refund payment errors, the university only needs to support one payment process and reconcile each wire transfer (instead of each individual payment). OneDisburse enables institutions to offer more student choice, free-up staff time, reduce costs, remain compliant with the 14 day rule, avoid storing bank account information or handling paper checks (vastly reducing fraud risk) and, because the college does not create a commercial banking relationship with Higher One (Higher One never holds state funds), implementation is simplified dramatically.
Higher One’s OneDisburse Refund Management service enables institutions to create significant cost avoidance and increases service in the financial disbursements process compared to disbursing via paper check or ACH direct deposit. OneFinanceSM is a suite of financial services including the OneAccount free checking account, the OneCard, and the OneRewards program that earns points for purchases at participating local merchants. Higher One currently serves 21 public and private university and college clients and has helped them disburse over half a billion dollars through more than
340,000 individual payments since September 2002.
About Higher One
Focused exclusively on higher education, Higher One provides refund management services to higher education institutions and banking services to members of their community through a card based solution. Higher One’s integrated solution helps universities reduce administrative costs, streamline business processes, create new revenue streams, increase student customer service and strengthen the campus community. Higher One’s refund service, OneDisburseSM, provides students with more choice and better service for receiving financial refunds. Higher One also offers a suite of banking services called OneFinanceSM, which includes the OneAccount, a no minimum balance, no monthly fee checking account, the OneCard, a debit MasterCardr Card for ATM withdrawals purchases, and exclusive features such as “Send Money”, Easy Refund, and Campus AutoLoad for stored value programs. The OneFinance and OneDisburse solutions can be integrated with the institution’s ID card or provided through a separate “refund only” card. To date, Higher One has disbursedhalf abillion dollars in refunds for its university and college clients.More than 250,000 students, faculty, and staff at distinguished public and private universities use Higher One’s services through their ID or refund card. www.higherone.com.
For more information visit www.higherone.com. Banking services are provided through an agreement with Horizon Capital Bank, member FDIC.