Study results: Digitalization in Treasury
The COVID-19 pandemic and the Ukraine conflict have been shocking not only to treasurers but the entire business world. The challenges include a large number of employees working remotely, efficient liquidity management in a volatile business environment with global supply chain difficulties, increased financial risks, and digital management of communications and projects.
But how has Covid-19 driven digitalization within the treasury industry? As ConVista Consulting AG, we have investigated this question. In order to gain insight into our clients' needs and provide them with the best possible support, we launched a study on digitalization and the impact of Covid-19 in treasury. Among corporates, we have achieved a diverse mix that allows meaningful conclusions with responses from different industries, continents and key treasury positions within the company.
The variety of respondents presents a realistic picture of Treasury
The corporates surveyed can be divided into four groups. 6.3% of corporates belong to the "underdogs" group and have been heavily impacted by the pandemic, but are planning no or only minor digitalization measures. In contrast, the "winners" (40.6%), who were also severely constrained by the pandemic, are planning to develop digitally on an ongoing basis. The conservative group (15.6%) includes those corporates that have experienced minor restrictions and see little need for further digitization. The final group - the "pioneers" (37.5%) - plan to expand and improve their digitalization concepts despite being affected to a minor extent by Covid-19.
Digitalization potential in the treasury area
The central finding of the study is that digitalization in treasury is a very current and relevant topic for corporates. 93% of respondents see high or some potential for their treasury system landscape. The focus here is clearly on improving data quality, processing and integration, but companies see a high need for improvement in almost all treasury-related topics.
However, the pandemic not only had an impact on the digitalization of a company, but also fundamentally changed the role of the treasurer. The respective treasury departments have taken on a more strategic role and become an important source of information for the management level. Another evident: Companies that had previously been able to rely on a stable digital structure were better able to withstand the constraints imposed by Covid-19.
Outlook for the future of treasury
The study also provides an outlook on future developments and challenges. For example, between two-thirds and 89% of respondents (depending on the degree of digitalization of the treasury) feel the need to drive digitalization further forward.
- Real-time treasury allows real-time connection of data via API and can thus not only improve transparency and response times, but also reduce complexity.
- "Digital workers" based on RPAs can take over repetitive, manual tasks, freeing up treasurers to spend more time on complex, individual tasks.
- Treasury dashboards enable the clear presentation and visualization of current data and information.
In the next few years, increasing digitalization will present us and our customers not only with new challenges, but also with new opportunities, which we look forward to.