Analyzing the maturity of treasury and cash operations with clarity
What you’ll learn
Understand the treasury maturity model
Determine your treasury’s phase
Learn how to be the best-in-class for accurate cash forecasting
What is treasury maturity model
Treasury has changed dramatically in recent years as a result of expanded responsibilities and activities, as well as rising expectations and demands from CFOs. Because a poorly operating treasury can have a major impact on the company, it must be robust and well equipped to carry out its operations. To increase supply chain efficiency, optimize cash conversion cycle, and, ultimately, drive revenue growth, today's corporate world is moving toward technology-driven operations.
A treasury maturity model assists organizations in assessing the current effectiveness of their treasury process and determining what capabilities the organization needs to focus on to improve their performance. It is a business tool that allows the CFO to measure the discipline, effectiveness, and efficiency of their organization's treasury administration.
Types of a treasury maturity model in cash operations
Foundational: This is the model’s lowest level of maturity. There is no standardization of work or centralization of data to optimize processes, and the roles relating to cash and liquidity management, financial planning, are at the basic stage.
Developing: The team has some level of task clarity, and some data for functions is standardized. There is still a lack of clearly defined roles, as certain tasks overlap due to fewer core activities being centralized.
Established: The treasury team is well-organized and experienced, and they have access to tools such as ERP or TMS. The system works as it should, with little room for improvement.
Enhancing: Treasury functions also work with other departments to assist with strategic planning and optimization, while maintaining a centralized process.
Optimized: Treasury actively participates in strategizing and advising the CFO on investments and operations at this stage of the maturity model. This stage is reached after implementing and gaining experience with treasury solutions to maximize the value of the data presented.
Treasury maturity model
Many company treasurers are looking for ways to improve their treasury function to satisfy ever-changing internal and external needs as well as market changes. However, defining the next steps for the treasury’s strategic development might not be a straightforward task. Before deploying new technologies, it’s essential to understand the treasury department’s current approaches. The approaches in the cash forecasting maturity model are as follows:
Laggards: The organization has some processes in place, but they are insufficient in that there are significant holes that impair the organization’s day-to-day operations.
Proactive: The organization has process methods in place that are adequate for maintaining the firm under stable conditions and allowing it to grow, but they will not be sufficient in difficult times.
Strategic: The organization has professional processes in place that allow it to cope effectively in difficult times, and it will identify certain areas where it may improve its performance.
Best-in-class: The organization has cutting-edge processes and practices that enable it to anticipate both difficulties and major opportunities, allowing it to maximize its performance.
Treasury maturity assessment
A maturity assessment compares an organization’s treasury activities to quality standards to see how advanced they are. It also allows the organization to compare itself to others and immediately identify areas of improvement.
The seven sections of maturity assessment are:
Vision and strategy
Procedures and controls
People, skills, and training
Organization structure, roles, and responsibilities
Payments and confirmations
Cash flow forecasting
Cyber and security risk
External performance and reporting
Internal performance and reporting
Benefits of Maturity Assessment
Performing a maturity assessment has many benefits such as:
Improved cash management and liquidity
Improved risk management
Greater certainty around Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization (EBITDA)
Confident data-backed decision making
How to be the best-in-class in cash forecasting
The ability to provide forecasts regularly to understand daily cash positions and take proactive measures for future financial circumstances relies heavily on automation. The following are some of the areas where automation can help you save money:
Visibility: Local forecasts are built from entity-level data, such as locations, company codes, currencies, and cash flow categories, and then rolled up to global forecasts, which improves visibility.
Accuracy: Following these best practices will improve the accuracy:
Make use of appropriate models: Use specialized models for different types of cash flows, such as heuristic models for payroll, taxes, and other simple cash flows, and AI models for more complicated cash flows like A/R and A/P.
Modify adjustments if necessary: Make modifications to predictions for one-time events like M&A, dividends, and so on.
Examine variance: Monitor variance over several time horizons and make adjustments to the models as needed.
Frequency: Since each organization has various sizes, systems, technology, and needs, forecast frequency is very subjective. But forecasting frequently helps treasurers take proactive measures in cases of uncertainties.