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Payment Imports

Importing payments - an overview

The payment import facility allows you to upload a file of payment instructions in to the Santander Connect service direct from your own systems which has a number of benefits associated e.g. reduces manual payment input with possible errors and saves valuable time making payments.

Typically your accounting or enterprise software would be configured to generate the payment file to our payment import specification. Please speak with your accounting or enterprise software provider to determine availability. Alternatively, you are free to use your own applications to create the payment file to our payment import specification.

All available payment types can be imported using a single file format (with the exception of Bacs), this includes - single & bulk Faster Payments, Account Transfers, CHAPS and International payments. Single and bulk Bacs payments are also supported but using a separate unique file format.

Our file format specifications are available using the links below.

  • Santander Standard Payment Import Specification (available below) – for single & bulk faster payments, Account Transfers, CHAPS & International payments.
  • Santander Bacs Payment Import Specification (available below) – for single & bulk Bacs payments and single & bulk Faster Payments also.
How do I import a payment file?

Regardless of which payment import specification is used or which payment types are imported the import process is the same. The four steps are as follows;

  • Step 1) Import Payment File. Go to Payments Tab and select “Import Payment File” or “Import Payments” from the left-hand menu Click Browse, and select the payment file to import and import.
  • Step 2) Validation - system validates the structure and contents of payment file.
  • Step 3) Review Import - following validation, the results of the imported file can be reviewed to ensure all payments were successfully imported.
  • Step 4) Authorisation - all payments successfully imported are then ready for authorisation before they can be finally processed.
1 Import Payment File

Go to Payments > Import Payments

  • Select the Import Payments service option under the main Payments menu (you may need to consult your Administrator to ensure you first have authority to do so)
    The Import Payments index page will be presented and has two sections; 1) import a payment file, 2) imported payments - a view of all payment files imported to date with status and file attributes. We will cover the second section in more detail later.
  • Select the payment file for importing, then click the Browser link and select the payment file.
  • Select the payment type depending on the type of file you have imported. (Faster payment or Bacs)
  • Before starting the import process, you may wish to choose the Duplicate File Check option.  This tool checks that you have not imported the same file earlier in the same day to avoid duplicate payments.
  • Select go to start the import process.
  • The system will make an initial validation of the file structure and content then present the File Import Details for your review before requesting import authentication using your Security Device. The File Import details presented are described further below.
  • Once you have completed the authentication then click Continue to confirm the import, then click Exit to return to the Import Payments index page.

The imported file will now undergo a full validation by the service to check that each payment record is correctly specified. The status of the file as shown under the Import Payments section will change to ‘Validating’ to signal this process is underway.

2 Validation
  • The time taken to complete the validation can vary pending a number of different factors such as the volume and type of payments specified in the file.  Please remain patient while this is processed. We recommend you select the Refresh Status option every 10-15 minutes to refresh the status of the current file validation.
  • Once the validation has been completed, the status of the file will be updated and will change to a different status pending the outcome of the validation.  What status?  Rejected or awaiting authorisation
3 Review Imported File

The Import Reference field for the imported file will become an active link that can now click to review the Import File Details Report. the full outcome of the validation, this will load The Import File Details Report shows the status of your import, for example “Imported”, “Rejected” or “Import Error”.  Under the section Payments within the report, every payment record validated in from your imported file will be listed with the unique attributes of that payment details and more importantly the resulting payment status.

Where the status is “Imported” then the payment has been imported and now available for authorisation.

Where the status is “Rejected” or “Import Error”, then the payment was rejected from the imported file. The Transaction Reference field for the payment will become an active link that can be selected to review the import error reasons.

Where your payments encountered errors during the import, you have the option to create and re-import a new payment file correcting the errors or manually input the payment instructions through the service.

4 Authorisation

Successfully imported payments will be sent to the authorisation queue and the normal payment authorisation process for your account will apply.

Please take care when authorising imported payments, reviewing the payment details where appropriate to ensure the payment instructions have been correctly specified.  Multiple imported payments can be authorised at the same time using the regular multiple payment authorisation process.

How many payments can be imported in a single file?

Up to 3500 records can be imported in a single file

  • For files containing a bulk payment instruction (1 debit to 1 or many credits) this means 3499 payment credit records and 1 contra debit record
  • For files containing single payment instructions (1 debit to 1 credit) this means 3500 individual payment records
What are the file import details shown within the file import screens?
  • Import Reference – this is a unique reference generated by the service and assigned to your payment file, this reference should be used when contacting us for further support.
  • File Name – this is the name of the file chosen for import.
  • File Location – this is the file directory on your computer from which the file was chosen.
  • File Size – this is the size of the file, usually in kilobytes.  This is dependent on the number of payment records in the file. 
  • File Type – this indicates the type of payment format specification – Standard or Bacs. This shows Ad Hoc Bulk Payment
  • Date and Time of Completion – this is the timestamp of the file import process.
  • Total amount of the Payments – this is the total value of the payments contained in the file.
  • Number of Payments Imported – this is the total volume of the payments contained in the file.
What do the file import statuses mean?
  • Validating this means the validation of the file is still in progress.
  • Imported – this means all payment records in the file were successfully validated and are now awaiting authorisation.
  • Partially Imported this means some payment records in the file were successfully validated and are now awaiting authorisation, however some payment records have encountered errors and have been rejected.
  • Rejected this means all payment records in the file have encountered errors and been rejected.

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