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Banking and Payments

BANKING STRUCTURES

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An optimized bank structure is one key to treasury efficiency. Inefficient bank structures lead to excess costs, wasted time, errors and more complicated oversight. Superfluous accounts result in more monthly bank statements to be reconciled and more account analyses to be scrutinized; balances accumulate in “wrong” locations; bank account administration and control responsibilities expand.

Maintaining numerous relationships can make activities like daily cash positioning and funds concentration cumbersome and inefficient. Too many accounts at too many banks actually reduces cash visibility and multiplies the costs of transferring funds to a centralized cash pool.

Treasury Strategies’ experienced team helps you create an efficient banking structure while ensuring your banks deliver the services you need. Our time-tested processes:

  • Maximize the value of services you receive from banks
  • Improve visibility of balance and transaction information
  • Reduce the cost of maintaining even complex banking structures
  • Streamline cash flows
  • Minimize risk
  • Maximize control

BANK RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT

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Bank relationship management is a top priority for Treasurers. How do you ensure your banks can serve your changing needs? How do you access their best services and tools? How can you promote an effective dialog between you and your banks and improve their responsiveness to you? Are bank fees paid proportional to your bank’s credit commitment? A proactive bank relationship management strategy can help address these issues.

Regulations such as Basel III, Dodd-Frank, EMIR, MIFID, and FACTA are dramatically changing how banks and their customers interact. The old relationship banking customs no longer apply. Banks now see their corporate relationships very differently than they used to. How can you allocate your credit and operating services to make yourself most attractive to your banks?

New regulations have changed banking cost equations, and banks are refocusing their business models to generate adequate returns in the face of this. This impacts you directly. Some banks are narrowing their product set. Others intend to focus on selected industry verticals. Still others are realigning their geographic footprint. Are you still in your banks’ target market?

Treasury Strategies’ experts will help you engage with your banks to get the most from these critical relationships.


BANK FEE ASSESSMENT

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Are your bank fees properly calibrated and managed?

Grappling with monthly bank account analysis statements is one of treasury’s most daunting tasks. Many statements stretch dozens, if not hundreds, of pages. The more than 1,000 AFP service codes defy translation. Yet this is the vehicle through which companies pay for their banking services.

How do you really know your fees are appropriate for the services your company uses? Are they what you contracted for? How do they compare from one bank to another? How does your pricing compare to that of your peers?

To further complicate the equation, banks generally compensate you for the value of your balances via an earnings credit rate – a managed rate that can vary substantially across banks, or even within the same bank. At some banks, “excess” earnings credits can roll over from month to month. At others, they expire. Are you getting the most from your compensating balances?

You need an automated (or streamlined) monthly process to review account analysis that doesn’t take a ton of time. Yet you also need assurances that bank fees are in order, and that this typically large monthly expenditure is under control. Treasury Strategies’ clients routinely save up to 15% or more through our bank fee assessment. They also achieve ongoing confidence through an efficient monthly review process. Our experienced professionals identify redundant services, find ways to substitute less expensive automated services for costly manual ones, and help you negotiate fair bank pricing.


BANK SERVICES RFP

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Selecting the right bank for the right services can be time-consuming and confusing. It can be tough to differentiate the steak from the sizzle; to wade through the complex product codes and product descriptions; to find meaningful points of bank differentiation.

Deciphering pricing elements and comparing apples to apples is a daunting challenge. There are fees, balances, premiums, maintenance charges, exception surcharges, and vendor pass-throughs. Compound that with earnings credit rates, reserve requirements and deficit balance charges.

Treasury Strategies’ veteran team has been through this process literally hundreds of times. We know the ropes and will help you:

  • Define and prioritize business unit and headquarters banking requirements
  • Convert those requirements into an effective request for proposal
  • Develop a focused and relevant scoring system
  • Ensure potential banks meet those requirements
  • Manage the RFP process
  • Facilitate bank presentations
  • Advise on negotiations

MERCHANT CARD PROCESSING

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Credit cards are an efficient way to collect. But as consumer and business use has grown, so have interchange fees and data protection needs. How do you control fees and minimize risks?

Treasury Strategies’ veteran team fully understands all aspects of merchant card processing. We’ll help you implement services that fit your needs, achieve industry benchmarks and establish appropriate controls. We can:

  • Design and implement a merchant processing program
  • Lower credit card expenses — both interchange and processing fees
  • Enhance security and controls
  • Improve reporting
  • Conduct an RFP to select or compare merchant processors

PURCHASING CARD

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Savvy treasuries understand the value of PCard programs. They earn rebates on transactions, increase working capital and control costs. If your firm doesn’t have a PCard program, what’s the best way to get one?

Treasury Strategies’ expert team has implemented PCard programs for organizations in a wide range of industries. We can help you:

  • Make the business case for using PCards
  • Design a PCard program
  • Conduct an RFP to select a program vendor
  • Implement your PCard program with minimum hassle
  • Enhance controls
  • Maximize transaction rebates
  • Improve reporting

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