Product investment projects are a sensitive issue in every company. You’re about to invest money, you want this tool to be good. And not just good: when decision-makers approve the budget for a new tool, they expect it to be the best at everything. Not to mention faster and, most importantly, more efficient.
In treasury, too, people dream of this all-powerful tool that can do everything and that immediately catapults them into a stress-free future. Sound familiar? Don’t worry, it is possible to optimize your treasury. To get to that point, however, some analysis need to be carried out first and you should not shy away from questioning your existing setup. If you are looking for a treasury management system that really adds value and is best suited to your company, you need the courage to change – and a demo system that gives you the confidence that you are making the right decision.
What do you want to achieve and what do you need to achieve it?
A company’s treasury often resembles a large number of strands which have become tangled together over many years and formed a complex knot. These strands represent interwoven workflows, which also connect the treasury department with other units. In many companies, processes take unnecessary twists and turns or even lead nowhere. Your job in finding the right treasury management system is to unravel the knots and sort out the strands by determining requirements and checking them against functionality.
Simply foisting a new application on a business doesn’t work. It is essential to have a clear understanding from the outset of how a company is structured and what goals it wants to achieve. In doing so, you should define concrete scenarios and put these to the test. After all, system providers are trying to sell you something. Let them demonstrate how their tool will benefit you. How do you do that? With an extensive product demo!
How to initiate change management
Changes enforced from above are often met with resistance. And when it comes to replacing familiar structures associated with responsibilities and privileges, the path seems even more fraught with difficulties. The secret to a good demo? It should be as tailored to your company as possible. Any treasury system can only realize its full potential if company processes fit with the system.
Unlike a new tool in an individual production unit, selecting a new TMS has an impact on many areas of the business. If you opt for a solution that can map your company’s profile in the system, you avoid the need to turn your entire company upside down and your employees immediately perceive changes as improvements. A single treasurer’s decision to opt for a particular system is worthless if the rest of the staff are not on board. Project success depends on involving and persuading future users across the corporate group.
Demo system: taking the TMS for a test drive
If you want to reorganize processes and improve implementation of compliance rules when introducing a new TMS, you can use a demo system tailored to your company to get your stakeholders and future users on board before the change. The company-specific test version, carefully put together by your system vendor, enables users to simulate workflows, understand how processes are interrelated and gain an insight into the simplified working methods the system offers. As a project manager, you receive important information from the entire company at the decision-making stage and can take this into account when choosing your TMS. This provides a solid foundation for your selection and ensures the decision will gain support across the company.
When you are trying to choose a new car, your dealer offers you a test drive. The dealer wants to win you over by focusing on your personal experience: is the steering wheel comfortable, how does the acceleration feel, how clear is the dashboard? These are all valuable glimpses into the vehicle’s performance and provide a good basis for deciding which car to buy.
The situation is very similar with a new TMS. You – and all your colleagues who will use the new system – should have the chance to experience how the new software will work in practice. What does the user interface show? How can data entry be as decentralized as possible and supported by targeted import options? How can information then be aggregated centrally for analysis to present things more clearly? Conversely, how easy is it to quickly retrieve further information on individual details? A demo system provides you with clear answers to the many questions you have.
Demo support: getting your vendor to listen to your requirements
To enable potential customers to simulate carrying out their tasks as authentically as possible, the onus is on treasury management system vendors to adapt demo runs to every company. No two company’s requirements are the same; so no two demos should be the same. At BELLIN, we put together a team for each potential customer to provide advice and support throughout the entire selection process.
Demo systems are tailored to the individual profile of the company. This is presented in a workshop in which the participants can explore various processes and subsequently test them and gain some initial experience using the software. The workshop is accompanied by comprehensive documentation which also covers the questions asked by participants and the tailored solutions in the demo system. After a workshop day full of new insights and experiences, this enables participants to get to grips with their potential new treasury management system in their own time, work independently with the demo system and try out further aspects of the software.
When shopping for a treasury management system, you shouldn’t leave anything to chance. The right system will add tremendous value, not just to your treasury but to your entire company. So take the time to test it thoroughly and make use of an extensive demo. And you may just find the system that can do everything.
About the author:
Christin trained as an administrative officer and worked for eight years as a product manager. She went on to complete a business administration degree at Heilbronn University and graduated with distinction. Christin gained valuable experience as a placement student, in internships (including with Deutsche Bank) and also spent one semester in the US. Great preparation for entering the world of treasury!