Top-Up / Pre-Paid Cards

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This Discover section provides you with everything you need to know and covers stories and practices on how our customers use our solutions to get the most out of their printing, scanning and copying environments.

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Top-up cards are the most popular payment method and has been specifically designed for the school, college or university. The system is simple, fully contained and very cost effective. The process works as follows:

  1. The network administrator prints a set of customized cards. Each card lists a value, a "valid until" date, and a unique ID.
  2. When a user requires additional credit, they purchase a top-up/pre-paid card. In a school environment, cards can be sold at the library, cafeteria/canteen, or even in the candy vending machine.
  3. The user logs in to the systems web interface and enters the card's number.
  4. The user's account is automatically credited with the value listed on the card. The card then becomes inactive.

PaperCut Software has worked closely with a number of organizations to design the top-up/pre-paid card system. Over the years we have evaluated a number of payment technologies in conjunction with our education customers. These have included vending machines, smart cards, micro-payment systems, and manual processing. The top-up/pre-paid card system has been by far the most successful and cost effective, and is a great alternative or complement to the payment gateway. Top-up / pre-paid cards are also the de facto standard in other areas such as the mobile phone sector (used to handle pre-paid accounts) and iTunes Music Cards. Users, particularly students, will be familiar with the process.

PaperCut provides the software, a card creation wizard, and a security framework to implement a top-up/pre-paid card payment system. Now for a quick tour...

Creating Cards: The Card Wizard

  • Use to create your own top-up/pre-paid cards
  • The card wizard is a separate component installed with PaperCut
  • Wizard style interface guides you through the process of creating and using cards
  • Integrates with Microsoft Word
Card wizard in the Windows Start menu
Card wizard in the Windows Start menu

Creating Cards: Defining a Batch ID

  • Each batch of cards is given a unique batch ID
  • Batch ID's can be used to track card sale location
  • Use batch numbers to quickly track and cancel lost batches
Assigning a batch id in the card wizard
Assigning a batch id in the card wizard

Creating Cards: Card Details

  • Allocate a value, and set an expiry date
  • Expiry dates ensure cards have a time limited life
  • Create batches of different sizes ranging from 5 cards to 10,000
Entering card details in the card wizard
Entering card details in the card wizard

Creating Cards: Design Your Own Cards

  • Use Microsoft Word to design a custom look
  • Integrates in with Microsoft Word's mail-merge feature
  • Include your own logo, usage instructions, and other details
Choosing a template in the card wizard
Choosing a template in the card wizard

Creating Cards: Generate & Print

  • The card wizard automatically creates a Word document ready for printing
  • Cards default to a common "Business Card" size
  • Need a professional look? Print to PDF and email to your local printing shop for professional printing onto cards.
Cards laid out in MS Word
Cards laid out in MS Word

Using Cards: Entering a Number

  • Users log in to PaperCut's web interface and enter the card number under the card section
  • All activity is logged
  • Integrate the PaperCut web tools interface into your organization's intranet site
Redeeming a card from the user web interface
Redeeming a card from the user web interface

Using Cards: Track

  • Import new batch of card numbers
  • View the status of all cards
  • See which cards are allocated and to whom they are assigned
  • Review the time and date of card use
  • Delete or expire cards by number, date or batch ID
Managing cards from the administration interface
Managing cards from the administration interface

What You Can't See

  • Fraudulent card use attempts are detected, trapped and logged
  • Highly Secure - guessing numbers is practically impossible*

* With 1,000 cards in circulation, the chance of guessing a number is 1-in-10,000,000,000,000, or in non-mathematical terms, it would take over 300,000 years to guess a number if a person enters one number every second!

For other options to recharge user balances in PaperCut see the Recharging Balance tour section.