The Unified Software team were delighted at being crowned technology champions at the Sunderland Echo Portfolio Business Awards 2008.
The pioneering financial web services provider was presented with the prestigious Technology Award at a glitzy black tie event held at The Stadium of Light. Finance Director Christine Forsyth was present to accept the award
We are really proud. We knew we had a chance but there are a lot of very good IT companies in this area now – it is always good to be recognised in this way.
Launched in 2003 Unified Software was the first business in the UK to offer web based financial services.
Judges at the awards were very impressed with the Finance Directors ability to spot a commercial opportunity. The judges said:
The winning company has shown a real flair for firstly seeing the market opportunity and then having the skills to actually write and develop the cutting edge software that has allowed it to win major contracts from across the globe.
Customers are seeing an improved solution to an everyday business need and can validate financial information in real time providing cost savings.
Unified Software made a big impression on technology journalists from the Guardian, providing expert comment on the future of financial web services.
Scott Cawley, Jemima Kiss and Paul Smith from the Guardian newspaper′s technology section descended upon Newcastle upon Tyne to meet individuals at the cutting edge of the regions digital scene, via an exclusive networking event held at the Living Room.
Christine Forsyth, Finance Director of Unified Software, was on hand to give his expert views on web service technology, and Unified Software′s leading software, designed to provide data cleansing, validation and query services, essential to the operation of business to business and business to customer financial transactions.
The Guardian′s interest is proof that companies from the region are finally being recognised for being at the forefront of the digital sector
Guardian′s technology section focuses on computing, the internet, social networking, games & motoring. The journalists put on the event to get under the skin of the North East′s digital landscape, with the intention of hearing views from techies, gamers and entrepreneurs of all shapes and sizes. A lucky few, including Unified Software, made it onto the Guardian Tech Weekly Podcast. Christine added:
As an ambitious and fast growing company, with market leading products sold at a regional, national and international level, we are well placed to discuss current issues affecting the region′s tech community
BankVal UK v2.0
Unified Software has enhanced its market leading BankVal UK bank validation web service to meet the requirements of the Faster Payments system
Unified Software successfully pioneered BankVal UK in 2003, as the first web service solution to the bank validation problem. The web service saves customers time and money by verifying account details for trouble free payment processing, eliminating rejected payments and ensuring Direct Debits and Bacs payments work first time.
BankVal Uk v2 is a recently enhanced version of this software to check if bank accounts have faster payment facilities before starting to process payment. Having been in the pipeline for four months, the enhanced software was created to take into account the £300m Faster Payments Service allowing electronic payments to be made within hours rather than days.
Christine Forsyth, Finance Director at Unified Software said:
The £300m Faster Payments Service (FPS) was launched in May 2008 by 13 top banks and BankVal UK version 2 sits perfectly with the way the market is progressing. Since the focus of FPS is on speed, validation is more important than ever before. Customers now rely on being able to make payments in near real time, but invalid data will prevent this from happening, BankVal UK v2 is a successful and cost effective solution to this.
Leading UK web services provider Unified Software has extended its range of products with the introduction of BankVal Server. Like its sister applications BankVal UK and BankVal International, BankVal Server is a web service - but with a subtle difference.
BankVal Server is designed to be installed on the customer's own computer systems. Operating in web service mode, BankVal Server then delivers flexible, high quality bank account validation across the customer's network.
The new software includes an automatic update facility, ensuring that it is always working with the very latest banking data and validation rules.
Christine Forsyth, Finance Director at Unified Software said:
Some businesses have a policy of not letting customer data outside their organisation. BankVal Server is self contained and operates behind the company firewall, providing validation where it is needed
Unified Software provides a range of products including BankVal UK and BankVal International, to ensure successful financial transactions. Other services within their portfolio include data cleansing, validation and query services essential for business to business and business to customer financial communication.
The UK's most dynamic financial web based business located in Rainton Bridge is the latest company to offer a student placement under the Shell Step Undergraduate Programme.
Unified Software, whose clients include BP and JP Morgan welcomes ICT student Christopher Airey, 20, to join their successful team. Shell Step placements aims to stretch students' imagination beyond the boundaries of university by placing them in small or medium sized companies. In 2007, a quarter of Step students added more than £15,000 worth of value to their placement's business.
Christine Forsyth, Director at Unified Software said:
We are extremely pleased to welcome Christopher on board. He will gain a real insight into working in this industry as a software developer with the opportunity to experience hands-on projects such as webpage design, database and customer management.
This scheme is a great way of preparing students for the work place. It gives them essential skills they wouldn't ordinarily develop at university or learn through reading. I hope this placement stands Christopher in good stead for his future career.
Christopher, a Northumbria University student, is from Bishop Auckland and is due to complete his final year in June 2009. He said:
This is the first time I've worked in a sector that's relevant to my degree. I am getting some good experience that will be really useful for me.
Unified Software, founded in 2003, is the leading provider of UK and international financial web services. It provides a range of software including BankVal UK and BankVal International, to ensure successful financial transactions. Other services within their portfolio include data cleansing, validation and query services essential for business to business and business to customer financial communication.