Solutions banks can offer during the COVID-19 pandemic
4 critical areas where banks can provide much-needed support
Most treasury managers are operating under a business continuity plan as they respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and a new environment where staff members are typically working remotely. No such plan is perfect, however, and as you validate and maintain yours, the need for adjustments will inevitably arise.
Improvements might come in the form of additional training or giving employees automated tools or capabilities that will enable them to work more safely and efficiently from home. And here’s where your bank can help. Below are four critical areas you will need to address during the pandemic and the solutions your bank should be able to offer to shore up your go-forward plans:
1. Accounts payable management
It’s important to eliminate paper in your accounts payable (A/P) processes, given the heightened need for efficiency brought on by the pandemic. Many A/P staffers are working at home now amid concerns about spreading the virus and you will need the ability to quickly transition from a traditional work environment to a remote work environment. Here are just a few bank solutions you should investigate:
2. Accounts receivable management
In the current environment, it’s more important than ever to make it easy for customers to pay you. If you offer an array of electronic payment options, you will get paid faster, which boosts your cash flow, and your customers will get the convenient and safe payment experience they want. Customers looking to avoid service shutoffs and comply with payment terms will appreciate the speed and certainty of electronic payments.
You need the ability to enable your staff to work from home at a moment’s notice and ensure they can process incoming payments without disruption. You should not only consider the equipment they will need but also decide which tools are best used in a remote work environment to maintain efficiency and controls. Solutions your bank should offer include:
3. Liquidity management
One of the most pressing challenges for any organization during this coronavirus crisis – indeed, the key to survival for some – is maintaining access to enough liquidity. Here are some liquidity solutions that your bank can bring to bear as you face the economic downturn created by COVID-19:
4. Fraud prevention
Minimizing fraud is a critical part of any strategy to preserve cash. Unfortunately, in difficult times like these, we tend to see an increase in fraud attempts, making fraud mitigation efforts even more important. Here are some solutions that should be available through your bank:
As you look to adopt solutions across these four areas during the pandemic, another value your bank may be able to offer is touchless implementation.
Touchless implementation allows you to initiate new banking services faster and without having to access office printers and scanners. Banks are starting to offer electronic signature and electronic document exchange capabilities that speed service implementation, accommodate working from home and, at a time when there is concern about contracting COVID-19, don’t require you and your employees to touch paper handled by others.
Solutions for the “new normal”
The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to be one of the most challenging crises your business will ever face. To successfully navigate to the other side of this disruptive environment, you need to be proactive and take stock of all the solutions your bank can offer.
Visit our COVID-19 site for updates, insights and resources you need to navigate the changing environment. You can also find ideas for responding to the pandemic by accessing our webinar, “A Look at Payments in Times of Change.”
For more information contact U.S. Bank.
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