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Treasurers plan rapid digital transformation to survive and thrive

GTreasury today released their first Treasury Technology Survey Report, carried out by Strategic Treasurer, which examines how far along treasury and finance teams are in digital transformation, the technologies they are most excited about, and where resistance remains.

Survey highlights

The 50-question survey across many facets of treasury technology deployment, opinion, and planning drew responses from 250+ treasurers, treasury analysts, and other treasury and finance professionals from around the world and across industries.

Some of the more predictable findings were:

  • Significant growth is anticipated. Payment factories, treasury aggregators, and TMS solutions are expected to realize 35-45 per cent growth over the next two years
  • APIs are becoming must-have capabilities. Seventy-three per cent of corporate treasury groups indicated that APIs are critical to their current processes. Machine learning capabilities are also drawing outsized focus from treasurers further along in their modernization initiatives
  • Fraud prevention has a heightened focus. Thwarting fraud is a top focus for 77% when considering the application of new technology in product development. Treasurers also report high demand for incorporating automation into fraud prevention processes

“Across continents and industries, treasurers are grappling with how best to transform their treasury technology stack to make processes more efficient and effective, and to drive visible value within their organizations,” said Pete Srejovic, Chief Technology Officer, GTreasury.

(The full survey with all results and data is available for free download here. Additionally, a webinar offering analysis of the report’s findings and featuring Srejovic and Craig Jeffery of Strategic Treasurer is available here.)

Surprising Findings

There were two findings which were particularly counter intuitive.

Cash flow forecasting

The gap between cash forecasting importance and reality is high. While cash forecasting is very important to 84% of treasurers, only 38% indicate they are performing at a high rate of accuracy, as the figure below shows:

Source & Copyright©2021 – Strategic Treasurer

It was also surprising that 37% of respondents have a cash flow forecasting module, but don’t use it. However, not surprising the finding that cash flow forecasting is the 4th highest product development priority.

Resistance to new formats

Comparing legacy formats to newer and more enriched formats like XML, treasurers showed surprisingly high levels of resistance to adoption. The responses show for “When setting up new banks for information” that, by 20% net margin, participants favoured historical formats like MT940/BAI2 (44%). Newer formats such as CAMT/XML were favoured by only 24%. (Importantly this applies to all sizes of company.) See figure:

Source & Copyright©2021 – Strategic Treasurer

New data available

Given the depth and range of data available in this survey, not surprisingly, Pete Srejovic, Chief Technology Officer, GTreasury commented:

“This survey provides a unique window into what excites and frustrates treasurers right now, and how the industry is approaching transformation in a quickly-moving ecosystem. This is a must-read report for treasury and finance professionals."

Unusually, extra exclusive data is available to ‘ambassadors and respondents’ who are offered access to the further survey results via GTreasury.

CTMfile take: This survey is unusual – it is useful for both corporate treasury departments AND for many types of supplier. Well worth a download and review as to how the findings impact your organisation.

It also highlights one of the major issues in treasury and banking today: adoption rates of new standards. It is no good keeping on developing new standards when the current adoption rates are so low AND vary widely worldwide how they are implemented. Setting up global cash management programmes are a nightmare because all too often few are using the same standards.

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