In this TMI article, Gautier Mouzelard, Head of Transformation Programs writes about how banks and their corporate clients can significantly improve the management of cash and the integrity of cash and payment reporting by automating their payment processes to ensure timely and accurate delivery of payments.
Treasury departments today, in any corporation, are constantly striving to improve payment processes and procedures. By automating their payment processes to ensure timely and accurate delivery of payments is achieved, banks and their corporate clients can significantly improve the management of cash and the integrity of cash and payment reporting. Today banks and treasury departments are further impacted by constant and ever-changing regulatory and compliance requirements which in turn cause delays and increase the burden of operational administrative overheads when it comes to payments processing. It is further complicated when companies expand beyond their existing countries of operation into new jurisdictions and thus need to comply with additional, often very diverse, regulatory requirements placed on cross-border payments.
The reality is that for every change or new regulatory requirement there is an impact on the payment flow. Banks and their clients are experiencing an increasing number of compliance alerts for suspended payments, and the consequence is that it takes extra valuable time to resolve any issues using the manual processes. The impact on the organisational efficiency should not be underestimated: an increasing number of suspended payments has the potential to cause an escalation in the manual effort required to manage the payments which equates to operational cost increases and reduction in efficiency.
In response to the noticeable increase in the number of payment enquiries and time taken to resolve the payment delays attributable to these compliance issues, BNP Paribas resolved to identify and deliver a technology solution that would help overcome the problem. This has resulted in the creation of INQUIRO, a web-based enquiry app, now live with a number of BNP Paribas Cash Management clients. Working closely with a group of pilot clients, BNP Paribas developed this app (live in 15 countries) to facilitate digital compliance enquiries between the bank and its clients. After successful testing it went live in March 2017, and received positive feedback from more than 95% of clients who are now live or currently on-boarding INQUIRO. Since Q3 of 2017 the product has been rolled out across BNP Paribas Tier 1 clients.
INQUIRO significantly increases customer satisfaction by reducing the processing time of suspended transactions, improving quality of information exchanged and providing a flexible digital experience. There are three main areas of value: it reduces payment processing time, improves quality and provides aflexible digital experience.
The customer experience
- Client receives notification that an action is required
- Client logs in to a dashboard with a consolidated view of all requests that can be easily searched, filtered and ordered to find the relevant suspended payment
- Client can view specific payment information i.e., amount, value date, transaction reference, ordering party, beneficiary, remittance information and client reference and for each request, specific guidelines are provided to help answer question(s) appropriately and requests can be automatically assigned to a designated user or team
- Upon resolution, the client receives a notification that the response has been processed and can also follow progress of the payment via the dashboard
BNP Paribas embraced the challenge to ensure a quick and easy onboarding of clients on this new application. With this in mind, INQUIRO has been developed to ensure the time between making the decision to adopt the app and achieving results is short: it takes just one day from decision to completion of the on-boarding process.
By the end of 2017 onboarding will be available for clients in a number of European countries including France, Germany, the Nordics, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, the UK, Belgium, Italy, Luxembourg and Austria, and in the Middle East. Starting in 2018 the solution will be extended into regions with an appetite for the web app including North America, Asia, Poland and Eastern European countries. The system has also proved to be a great success within BNP Paribas as other business lines are now requesting access for their clients.
Collaboration plays a vital role in being successful in today’s world and BNP Paribas will continue to work closely with its cash management clients to enrich the capabilities of INQUIRO as an innovation that meets the challenges that inevitably arise as regulations further evolve and compliance requirements continue to develop.
This article first appeared in Treasury Management International and can be found here