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Treasurers will have to find new paths do improve value. (Photo: Pixabay)

This is the ‘new’ role of a treasurer

Treasurers will have to take on new roles as technologies improve. But the question arises: is the treasury function ready for the changes?

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Results from a recent report by Deutsche Bank and The Economist reveals that treasurers believe big data analytics systems to be the most important technology for treasurers in the future, followed by artificial Intelligence and machine learning systems and instant payments.

Meanwhile, only 13 percent of respondents believed blockchain to be the future’s most advantageous technology. The report reasons that the weak belief in blockchain, in regard to the debated natural fit for the function, is due to treasurer’s inability to look beyond their traditional role of centralization, better visibility and forecasting.

Optimizing processes creates strategic development

In this new environment, treasurers must expand their horizon and take on the hat of investors, strategic partners, forecasters, data managers, team leaders, risk management specialists and executive managers. Only optimizing current traditional processes will be insufficient for new value generation in the treasury department, according to the study. 

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Don’t innovate for the sake of it

Application of new technologies does not automatically correlate to better results. Regardless of what advancement opportunity a technology can bring, ‘good data’ is still fundamental. However, the report argues that acknowledging the function’s pain points is a good first step to understand which technology that generate the most value.

“I noticed at a recent treasury event that the majority of the companies present had legacy treasuries ripe for modernization. Yet, leveraging new technologies and engineering talent to automate processes didn’t ring true as focal points or priorities for most of the treasurers I talked to.”, says Christopher Van Woeart, treasurer at the technology company Stripe, in the report. 

The question arises: is the treasury function open to taking on the role ‘new’ broader role to make better strategic decisions in an increasingly uncertain business environment? 

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