GPI Fridays episode 3 features James Higgins, Product Director at AccessPay.
James explains how the corporate customer can take advantage of SWIFT gpi.
Hi, good afternoon. I’m James from AccessPay and welcome to the latest in our series of gpi Friday sessions. So, we’ve already spoken about what gpi is and what it can do for the banking community. Well, today we’re going to talk a bit about what it can do for the corporates. So, corporates are our primary customers here at AccessPay and we often get asked the question as to how this gpi information and these new gpi tools can be a benefit to them. So, basically, if we think back to some of the features that gpi provides in terms of the rich dataset, then there’s a whole host of benefits that that could potentially provide to the corporate customer.
Using the directory, The observer, the tracker, then we could actually get into the realms of doing smart payment routing. So, a corporate customer armed with that kind of data will be able to assess exactly what the path of least resistance would be for any individual international payment, taking into account as well things like what’s the most cost-efficient from an FX perspective, what intermediary banks are likely to take the smallest amount of lifting fees off the payment, and crucially as well, who’s going to process these payments in the fastest time possible?
So, that kind of smart payment routes in decision-making solutions, allowing the customer to select the best route for a cross-border payment that’s going to deliver cost benefits to the organization is clearly one of the opportunities from SWIFT gpi. Additionally, the corporate customer could benefit from all kinds of a bill pay an invoice pay type solutions. So, using SWIFT gpi, then actually, you could reconcile payments based on forewarning and fore-notice of those payments coming in against the invoices that you’ve issued if you’re a supplier waiting to receive funds.
Equally, if you had a platform where the supplier could upload invoices, the payer or the buyer automatically triggers a payment off the back of those invoices and then shares the tracking data with that customer with the supplier, then you’ve got the makings using the gpi data and the tracking solution of a much further enhanced invoice pay type solution. Additionally, around bank SLA monitoring, well, if you’ve got this kind of information on processing times or intermediaries lifting fees, FX charges, then corporates can start to hold their banks to account, according to SLAs.
If your bank is not providing you good value on receipt of funds on a consistent basis because those funds are being received late, actually, that might be inefficiencies in their back-office operations processing departments not quite qualifying those funds to your account in time. So, actually, if you’ve got gpi and you’re able to track the payment incoming and you can see what time that payment has arrived at the bank, then you’ve got recourse to go back to the bank and say, “I want good value on these funds because you had them for 60 minutes before cutoff,” etc.
We’re going to focus a little bit in detail on the forecasting of receivables. So, in our first session around what is SWIFT gpi, we talked about the fact that AccessPay are winners of the SWIFT gpi Industry Challenge. The solution that we put forward in that industry challenge was all around forecasting of receivables for corporate treasurers and the benefits that the gpi can bring to enhance cash flow forecasting.
So, just to quickly go over exactly what that solution is, we know that corporate treasurers the world over are looking for ways to better forecast cash flow, establish better practices for working capital management and forecasting their incomings, their receivables is one area where there’s plenty of scope for improvement. Sure, there’s pre-advice notices that you can put up, but actually, they’re pretty unintelligent, messages right now. They don’t update based on the payment status as it goes through the chain of intermediaries. Gpi has this data.
So, if in the future, the gpi information can be exposed to the corporate customer, and imagine if the amount is remitted from the payer, from, from, you’re the supplier from your bio for example, and you’ve got access to this kind of data where there’s the remitting bank, the receiving bank, the beneficiary bank, and two other banks in the intermediary banks in the chain. You’re able to track exactly what stage that payment is at, at all times. It’s fully transparent to you.
You can track how much charges have been lifted off the principal amount as it goes through in each of those banks, you can track what effect rate has been applied on the cross-border payment, and you can then work out exactly the specific amount that’s going to be received and what time it’s going to be received because you’ve got all the information to tell you the processing time at each stage in the chain. We know that gpi is delivering huge benefits in terms of the speed that these payments are being processed to the end beneficiary as well.
So, if you had all this information from the gpi APIs that was available to the corporate customer, then all of a sudden, your corporate customer has got better cash flow forecasting, better working capital management information, better intraday liquidity data that’s coming to them to enhance their current post processes. So, our proposition was that this type of information as well as gpi allowing you to trap your outbound payments.
The tracking of receivables and the forecasting of cash that’s coming to you is of equal value. In a world where interest rates are likely, on a broadly global basis, to go upwards, then being able to better forecast your cash positions make more timely and earlier investment decisions on your cash balances, multicurrency for a corporate treasurer, that’s usually valuable information and just one example of how gpi can be of real benefit to the corporate customer.
Watch our other GPI Friday videos –