4 Profit-Driven Reasons Why Treasury Services Should Embrace Automation
At the nucleus of any bank or credit union is the treasury service team. This vital department helps decide where to invest capital, how much to hold in reserve, assess liquidity, and ensures each department has enough cash on hand to service clients account holders.
Despite its fundamental importance, treasury professionals are still handcuffed by manual processes and antiquated procedures. Luckily, new automated tools are available to increase profitability and skyrocket productivity. Here’s four reasons your treasury service team should embrace automation.
Reduce repetitive tasks
Automation has taken hold in many treasury functions like forecasting, risk management, and cash visibility. However, many vital activities like accounts payable, accounts receivable, and new account opening are still under the thumb of outdated manual processes.
In smaller financial institutions, most treasury activities start with the humble spreadsheet where a team member spends 80% of their time collecting and consolidating data. This only leaves a mere 20% of time for strategic review and analysis. Treasury services spend four times as much time handling data than they do assessing the overall efficiency of their strategy.
Automation can help close the productivity gap and free up time to focus on more profit-centric activities. For example, if a team spends multiple days per month sifting through paper checks, they’re unable to tune their focus towards improving the process itself. By automating check processing and verification, teams can use their time to strategize new ways to discourage account holders from using time-consuming systems and encourage them to use more profitable online self-service tools.
Achieve better visualization of owned data
Each day, corporations around the world lose hundreds of thousands of dollars poring over the 2.5 quintillion bytes of data whirring through the air. With more data generated in the last decade than previously existed in the entire history of the human race, businesses have no shortage of data to aggregate and examine.
Companies wrack their brains to aggregate and extract strategic insight from massive data dumps. Piling data only highlights the inefficiencies of manual processes within treasury services, so banks are turning to the cloud to find new ways to automate the analysis of available data. In fact, in a recent study, cloud computing topped the list of the most important tech developments for treasuries, with many executives hoping to achieve higher operational efficiencies and improve their return on investments.
Increase the number of new account applications your system can process
Endless signatures, stacks of forms, and piles of documents. Opening new business checking or credit accounts still requires a substantial amount of paperwork. In-person appointments can take 30 minutes to an hour. Paired with the administrative bottlenecks that can drag out the entire process up to ten working days, opening new business accounts is one of the most time-consuming processes under the treasury services wing.
By automating many of the steps involved in opening new accounts, your treasury services team can minimize processing time. Using a platform like ProcessMaker, you can deploy easy-to-use, compliant account applications to increase the number of new accounts you can handle throughout the quarter. Build intuitive online applications and establish rules and workflows that automatically verify information and pass it up the ladder to the next step. By automating many of your application steps like dedupe checking and cross-validation, you can reduce manual intervention and speed up your onboarding process.
Optimize management of exceptions
Managing exceptions remains another treasury function still marred by manual processes. Combing through spreadsheets and manually moving and rekeying data cripples institution-wide productivity.
Using automated tools, treasury departments can spend 99.9% of the time managing and mitigating exceptions instead of the manual massage of data.
Flag exceptions in new account opening
Opening new accounts generates stacks of paperwork, sending staff on wild-goose chases to corral missing signatures and information. Onboarding new customers with a seamless opening process eliminates these laborious processes. Intuitive workflows automatically flag exceptions along the way and can send alerts to the right staff member. Alerts are sent right to their inbox where they can approve or deny the exception without leaving their email client.
Identify payment exceptions
From ACH to wire transfers, each payment type has its own timeframe for review. While a customer has up to 60 days to file an ACH dispute, businesses have only two days. Automated systems can quickly flag potential payment exceptions without human intervention and make it easy for your team to cancel or approve pending transfers.
Embracing automation does not have to be an overwhelming process for your team. The first step to making the transition to automation is to identify the key bottlenecks weighing down your bank or credit union’s productivity and profitability. Start with one or two major roadblocks and give your team time to learn new systems at the appropriate pace. Instead of falling back on old, profit-draining habits, they’ll learn to intuitively integrate more profitable processes into their everyday operations.