Strategy and organisational functions are now as important to corporate treasuries as process and technology.
Corporations expect their treasuries to focus on value creation, not to simply act as cost or profit centres, says a new report by Treasury Strategies.
Based on a survey of 200 corporate treasuries and 33 treasury functions, the report concluded that dealing with financial volatilities and uncertainties will be top of the agenda for these professionals in 2015.
The vast majority of respondents said that they have projects planned in the areas of cash forecasting, financial risk management and FX, access to credit, balance sheet optimization and treasury management systems (TMS).
With respect to treasury organisational structure, another primary area of interest, those surveyed said that they plan to prioritise cross-sile initiatives, training, centralising or decentralising treasury functions, shared service centres, integration with other business units and other tasks relating to treasury’s functional organisation.
On the technology side, companies said that they were keen to explore more integrated and powerful systems that offer real-time data and reporting. The most popular technology areas were TMSs, ERP systems and investment portals, although cyber security and exploring entirely new technology options also attracted significant interest. Three-quarters of respondents said that they would focus on at least two of these areas over the coming year.
When it comes to treasury processes, the survey found that executing foreign exchange tasks, outbound payments and inbound receipts, short-term investments, and banking services all scored high on the agenda. More general problems such as operational efficiency, process documentation and pooling structures were also cited as major areas of concern.
Treasurers are more interested in cross-border payments and automation than real-time payments, as they are consistently asked to do more with less, argues Rick Burke, head of corporate payments at TD Bank in an exclusive interview.
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