Treasurers Gain Greater Strategic Responsibility
The 2005 Corporate Treasury Research Program, conducted by Treasury Strategies, indicates that US corporate treasurers are being asked to shoulder expanded strategic responsibilities, such as working capital management and enterprise risk management. The annual survey, based on interviews with 375 treasurers, identifies trends in treasury management. Corporations are beginning to centralize the management of a wide range of financial and non-financial risks, giving corporate treasurers a broader role in risk management as well as other strategic areas such as working capital management. Treasurers also report plans to redistribute operating services among banks this year. The realignment naturally follows recent moves to renegotiate credit facilities to lock in rates for longer terms, as well as the massive consolidation that concentrated cash management in the largest banks. Treasurers continue to place regulatory issues at the top of their most important issues, citing the ongoing demands of Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, which two-thirds of respondents predict will take as much or more time this year than last. Technology issues came second as treasurers report increasing implementation of treasury workstations, software upgrades and electronic payment systems. Risk management ranked third.