Grab a Seat at the Table: The Strategic Role of a Corporate Treasurer
Managing cash and liquidity, mitigating risk, and ensuring their organization can stay afloat while navigating economic crises, a global pandemic, and fluctuating interest rates… financial professionals are no strangers to change (or pressure). Amidst these changing environments, the corporate treasurer’s role has evolved to become a more strategic and forward-looking function.
In order to meet increasing demands and expectations, treasurers must leverage technology in the financial services space. With an in-depth understanding of their firm’s financial performance and access to real-time data acquired through technology, treasurers can prepare organizations for long-term success.
Corporate treasurers can and must be poised to support their financial department and organization: it’s time they take their seat at the table.
The Rising Importance of Treasury Technology: The Era of Manual Treasury is Over
The corporate treasurer’s role consists of many tasks: from cash management, risk management, AP/AR, foreign exchange, reconciliation to managing teams and bank-relationship management. The list goes on! In order for a corporate treasurer to provide actionable insights and support their organization’s sustainable growth, they need to work efficiently and keep their finger on the pulse. Financial professionals can no longer afford to be bogged down by manual, repetitive, or tedious processes: automation and technology are key.
Automation may seem like today’s norm (and it is in many industries). However, automation is still lagging in treasury: while 91% of treasurers use cash flow forecasting, nearly three out of four (72%) are still using manual processes to do so. The prevalence of manual processes introduces vulnerabilities and detracts from the treasurer’s ability to tackle strategic functions.
Rapid innovation and technological developments play a huge role in advancing treasury management processes. As more and more digital transformation efforts reach the financial landscape, treasurers benefit from increased opportunities to chart a successful path for their organization. Next, let’s review some new technology currently available to corporate treasurers.
Corporate Treasury Solutions
Treasury Management Systems (TMS)
It’s in the name: Treasury Management Systems (TMS) simplify core treasury processes for financial departments and help treasurers manage various systems. This enterprise software offers a comprehensive solution to simplify redundant and manual treasury tasks. From cash management, to financial transactions and account management, TMS software enables treasurers to have more visibility over their organization’s financial wellbeing at the touch of a button. While treasury demands and needs differ across organizations, core functions of the TMS largely hold true across all platforms, with differences in terms of complexity and depth needed by specific organizations.
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems
Arguably one of the most critical business solutions, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software helps keep organizations connected. Through an ERP, organizations can manage their supply chain, manufacturing, accounting, human resources, and other workflows from a centralized platform. Rather than operate separately, departments become more unified through the integration of company information. This integration enables treasurers to have a comprehensive understanding of the entire organization’s standing. While various ERPs consist of a range of functions and range in complexity, financial management modules remain integral to any ERP software.
A variety of ERP systems are available to meet the varying needs of financial departments:
NetSuite’s Financial Management solution displays consolidated and individual transactions, automates financial processes such as bank reconciliation and payables, and easily generates forecasts and reports.
Lost: The Missing Piece to the ERP
While treasury management solutions like ERPs help treasurers automate and simplify their processes, one critical piece remains left out: banking integrations! Now, treasurers must navigate between their banking portal and ERP system to complete core treasury functions. For example, treasurers can use data found within the ERP to execute a payment, but then need to log into the separate banking portal to reconcile the payment with the bank. Processes like these certainly expose vulnerabilities for human error, demand hours for manual and repetitive processes, and divert focus away from high-value operations.
Found: ERP Banking With Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)
Enter a solution to the ERP’s missing piece: ERP Banking. The whole idea of ERP Banking entails bringing the banking experience into the ERP. Gone are the days of navigating between the bank to the ERP (or, as we like to call it, swivel chair accounting). Thanks to APIs, treasurers can realize the benefits of ERP Banking.
It’s not just another acronym: Financial Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are redefining financial experiences. Using a set of protocols and codes, APIs work in the background to enable communication between application software. APIs have been integral to the rise of Open Banking (a practice that enables financial institutions to share consumer-permissioned data with third parties, like FinTechs) and Embedded Banking (the notion of integrating banking services in commercial client’s touchpoints; going to where the customer is!). In effect, APIs are the key to securely exchanging data and are a catalyst for new innovations.
What do APIs mean for treasurers? Through APIs, financial professionals can connect their bank accounts to financial service applications and products (such as ERP Banking’s integration between the bank and ERP): this means that treasurers have access to better, more enhanced, and streamlined experiences — exactly what’s needed to take a more strategic seat at the table!
J.P. Morgan’s Treasury Ignition™ plugin simplifies payables and receivables in their clients’ Oracle NetSuite or Sage Intacct ERP environments. The plugin automates and streamlines the treasurer’s repetitive tasks: treasurers no longer need to manually process payables, receivables, or spend hours in manual data entry. The result? Treasurers have more time for strategic, high-value functions.
Looking Ahead: A Seat at The Table
As the corporate treasurer’s role increases in complexity and their demands continue to rise, technology is the key to staying ahead. Treasurers must be poised to integrate new technologies and keep their fingers on the pulse. The era of manual treasury management is over.
Book a free, personalized demo to see how FISPAN can help you transform your treasury management experience: take your seat at the table.