Restaurant chain plugs revenue leakage, thwarting bad actors abusing merchant processor chargeback policies

Industry : Hospitality Function : Sales

Company Profile

Restaurant company featuring a portfolio of differentiated brands, employing 185,000 team members in more than 1,700 restaurants and serving 380 million guests each year in communities across North America.

Scope Highlights

  • Credit card chargeback disputes
  • Merchant processing systems (BAMS, Amex, Discover)
  • Chargeback repository and content management systems
  • MS Sharepoint and Excel
  • Gift card admin platform
  • Robotic process automation

Challenge

Sometimes, bad actors fund gift cards, ask the merchant processor to void the debit and then sell the gift cards to uninvolved parties. Sometimes, restaurant customers denied valid charges to avoid paying for services received to get the elusive ‘free lunch’. When a chargeback is applied, company has a short time window to dispute it. HQ and brand teams worked hard to minimize these revenue losses within the allotted time, but lacked resources to handle all of them. Leadership wanted to stop the revenue leakage.

Solution

The automation downloads chargeback reports from each merchant processor and applies business-managed rules to identify which ones to dispute; high-value chargebacks are sent for manual handling. Based upon the chargeback reason code, it gathers supporting evidence (e.g., image of signed slip) and logs into to the merchant processor system to dispute the chargeback using language aligned to the chargeback code. If disputed charge was for a gift cards, the gift card is voided. Later, automation retrieves and reports on final resolution.

Results

$1+ million revenue recovered

Fully automated low value disputes

Flagged high-value disputes for expedited handling