At Nacha’s Smarter Faster Payments: Remote Connect 2021, FISPAN took part in two panels on how to harness and leverage APIs and ERP connectivity to provide an enhanced treasury banking experience for end-users. At one of the panel discussions, Suyash Raj Bhandari, Senior Account Manager at FISPAN, shared the (virtual) stage with Nathan Hodgen, VP Senior Product Manager at KeyBank, and Chris Taylor, Controller and CIO of National Enterprise Systems, to discuss Taylor’s experience before and after installing the KeyBank NetSuite Plugin powered by FISPAN.
The discussion centered around commercial banking and how customers are increasingly demanding improved experiences due to the manual and tedious processes required to reconcile between their banks and ERP systems. KeyBank’s Hodgen mentioned that as technology continues to advance, so does the expectation to have an integrated banking experience. However, what the market is asking for is not unheard of, and FISPAN’s solutions have already answered many of these challenges. ERPs can’t share data seamlessly, so the people best positioned to have that branded experience within the ERP are the banks themselves. Hodgen elaborated on how “APIs are making ERP integrations even more accessible and attainable for banks,” adding, “it tends to standardize our external interfaces, our clients — who are sophisticated and want to connect directly — and the FinTech community who are serving those areas of the market that larger institutions can’t keep a pulse on.” The End-User Testimonial Prior to installing the KeyBank NetSuite Plugin, Taylor and National Enterprise Systems used a significant amount of resources designated to sync their ERP and banking systems together. This left a lot of room for error because of the manual intervention — not to mention how cost and resource-heavy this approach was. Today, FISPAN’s plugin has truly taken Taylor’s team to the next level when it comes to integrations, saving them a significant amount of time, improving accuracy, and preserving their resources for higher-value activities. Taylor added that now with the ERP plugin, and with only two clicks of a button, he can directly tell KeyBank to cut a cheque or pay a bill if the vendor doesn’t automatically accept the ACH or wire payment. All of the printing, signing, and mailing is being taken care of by the bank, and can happen without ever having to navigate away from the ERP. Not only has the plugin enabled more efficient bills and payments directly into their ERP, but Taylor’s team now has full transparency into all balances and transactions. The company initially operated using the traditional reconciliation process of printing out a bank statement, combing through line by line within the ERP, and reconciling those account statements; which was tedious and extremely manual. But now, it is all integrated and automated. Taylor finished off by stating: “as we move forward with other technologies, it is important to keep the relationship with your customers ongoing and building so it doesn’t become a stagnant relationship. With FISPAN and KeyBank, I felt like I was the center of the customer experience, I felt listened to and cared for. My experience has been great.” Positive FinTech Partnerships in the Future In a second panel discussion with Clayton Weir, Co-Founder and CEO of FISPAN, and Peter Wu, Vice President-Group Product Manager at City National Bank, Wu stated that the FISPAN plugin is “truly a plug-and-play solution for the end-users. A lot of our clients appreciate the ability to communicate to the bank, submit transactions directly into their accounting software, and the ease of installation.”
During the session with KeyBank, Hodgen explained that when assessing FinTech partners, KeyBank looks for a culture that prioritizes the client and a product that won’t dilute the digital relationship they have with their customers. Wu also mentioned a similar approach they use at City National Bank, who refer to themselves as “client obsessed” and continuously build solutions that solve their clients' biggest pain points. At the end of the day, it’s apparent that many financial institutions, like KeyBank and City National Bank, are increasingly realizing the importance of understanding their clients’ personal needs in order to provide the best banking experience. And now more than ever, they need to understand how their clients conduct their day-to-day business, the software they use, and how that impacts their operations and the connectivity to the bank. FISPAN’s CEO, Clayton Weir, concluded his panel with the imparting thought: “Don’t let anybody tell you it’s just accounting software, B2B software, or just banking. Everyone deserves to expect great experiences. We’re in the early innings of a very big macro trend towards the consumerization of software experiences and even for accountants and treasurers, they deserve and should demand more of those experiences as we look forward to the future.”