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How to import an ABA payment file into your Online Banking

Download an ABA file of Direct Entry payments from accounting software such as MYOB and Xero – to make payroll and other batch payments.

How do I import an ABA file into my Online Banking?

  1. Set up the file in your accounting software, then follow their instructions to download it to your PC. When asked for the Direct Entry service number, simply use 000000.
  2. Sign in to Online Banking from the same PC, then select Payments and File imports
  3. Select Import new file located on the right of the screen and under File type, select Direct Entry/Pay Anyone (ABA)
  4. Use the Choose file button to find the ABA file to import from your PC, then select Upload.

 

  • If the file has been uploaded successfully it will display the status Imported. If an Import failed status is displayed, select View details to find out why – so you can fix any problems back in your accounting software before attempting another import. Common errors are explained later in this guide.
  • To make a payment using the ABA file, go to the Imported files list, select View details to check you have the right file, then select Confirm.

 

If you want to import a CSV (excel) file, please see our other help guide.

 

Can I rename my ABA file?

  • Your ABA file is labelled with a ‘File description’ and this is what appears on a payee’s statement when a payment is made (e.g. ‘Company Salary’).
  • Some accounting software packages won’t let you change the file description before downloading it to your PC, and file descriptions cannot be changed once a file is imported into Online Banking.

What if I have more than one Approver for payment tasks?

If your Online Banking is set up to have more than one Approver, each ABA file import will need to be approved by the required number of Approvers before payments can be made.

These other Approvers will need to:

  1. Sign in to Online Banking on a PC
  2. Select the Approval button near the Sign Out button
  3. Select the Payments tab, where they will see the import file pending approval.

 

Why has my ABA file import failed?

First, get to know the file structure:

  • Each ABA file features a header row, with information about the payment such as WBC (which indicates Westpac), who the payment is coming from (i.e. you), the file description and the payment date.
  • Under the header, you’ll see the details of each payment you’re making including who you are paying, their account, the amount, and the ‘trace account’ (the account the money is to be paid from). You can only nominate one trace account per ABA file.
  • The last row is a summary featuring the number of payments you are processing and the sum of the payments. 

 

Then, look out for these common errors:

  

  • BSBs must be 3 plus 3 numerals with a hyphen: 000-000
  • Account numbers should be 9 numerals
  • Payment dates need to be in the format DDMMYY
  • Payment dates cannot be more than 7 days in the past
  • Summary lines must tally with the payments listed.

How many payments can be made from an ABA file?

  • Standard payment transaction ABA files are limited to 500 payments. If you wish to make more payments (or import an ABA file for credit transactions), please speak to your Relationship Manager or visit a Westpac branch – and ask for a ‘Direct Entry facility’.
  • ABA file payments can be future dated by up to 24 months.

What do the steps look like?

Sign in from the same PC using your 8-digit customer number and password.

Select Payments and File imports.

If you do not have permission to import files, your Administrator will need to set you up via User administration in Online Banking. The Administrator will need to sign in from a PC then select User Administration under Administration. Select your name as a User, then under Other Permissions tick Import files.

Select Import new file located on the right of the screen.

Under File type, select Direct Entry/Pay Anyone (ABA). Now use the Choose file button to find the ABA file to import from your PC, then select Upload.

The Description you enter will appear on the confirmation and receipt pages of your import. This is different to the ‘file description’ that names each file, and that will appear on each payee’s statement to tell them where the payment has come from.

If the file has been uploaded successfully it will display the status Imported.

If an Import failed status is displayed, select View details to find out why – so that you can fix any problems back in your accounting software before attempting another import.

Please be aware that we are unable to identify any more errors after the 20th error has been made.