"Digital banking is no longer a 'nice-to-have' for corporate clients, it's a 'must-have.' The pandemic has accelerated the shift to digital channels, and banks that don't provide digital banking solutions risk losing their corporate clients to competitors who do." - David Schwartz, Executive Vice President, and Head of Payment Services at Fidelity National Information Services (FIS) – ‘FIS Survey: Banks Risk Losing Corporate Clients Without Digital Banking Solutions – 2021’.
With advancements in technology, digital corporate banking has emerged as a more relevant and crucial means of managing corporate clients' finances. Relationship managers now have access to powerful digital banking tools, enabling them to offer more personalised and efficient services, improving their own productivity and decision-making abilities. Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital banking solutions, as remote work and social distancing have rendered traditional banking methods challenging. Banks have been driven to invest in digital banking solutions due to increasing competition in the financial services industry, to stay competitive and cater to the evolving needs of their corporate clients.
Below are some real-world examples of digital corporate banking tools that relationship managers can utilise:
To stay competitive, banks have widely adopted online banking platforms that enable relationship managers to remotely access and manage their clients' accounts, transactions, and financial data, while also providing real-time reporting and analytics. Such platforms equip relationship managers with improved decision-making capabilities and the ability to offer bespoke advice to clients. For instance, Citibank's CitiDirect BE offers a centralized online banking platform that enables corporate clients and their relationship managers to access real-time reporting and analytics, alongside customisable dashboards to monitor key performance indicators and track their clients' financial health.
Many mobile banking apps have emerged as another key tool for relationship managers, providing them with the ability to manage their clients' finances while on the go. These apps typically offer push notifications for important account activity, such as large transactions or overdrafts, and often include advanced biometric security features to ensure the protection of sensitive financial information. By leveraging these features, relationship managers can stay on top of their clients' financial needs and respond quickly to any issues or opportunities that arise, regardless of their location.
In order to enable effective management of cash flow by clients, certain banks provide relationship managers with virtual account management tools that permit them to create and manage multiple virtual accounts for their clients, which are dedicated to specific business purposes, such as payroll or vendor payments. An instance of such a tool is the Virtual Accounts solution by Standard Chartered. This solution facilitates the creation of virtual accounts that are intended for specific business purposes, thus enabling clients to better manage their cash flow.
Advanced digital cash management services can aid relationship managers in maximising their clients' cash positions by providing instantaneous visibility into their cash balances, enabling them to execute cash sweeps that allocate excess cash into high-yielding accounts or investments.
HSBC's Liquidity Management Portal serves as an example of a comprehensive cash management solution that empowers corporate clients and their relationship managers to effectively manage their cash positions in real-time, optimise their liquidity, and automate their payments and collections. The portal features a dashboard that enables relationship managers to seamlessly monitor their clients' cash balances, transactions, and account activity, as well as initiate and authorise payments and transfers on their clients' behalf.
Treasury management solutions offer a range of features and functionalities that can aid relationship managers in overseeing their clients' liquidity, risk management, and investments. These solutions encompass automated payments and collections, cash forecasting and optimisation, as well as foreign exchange and trade finance services. With the rise of digital corporate banking tools, including treasury and cash management solutions, relationship managers have been empowered to manage their clients’ financial risks more effectively.
JPMorgan Chase's Liquidity Direct is a digital treasury management platform that enables corporate clients and their relationship managers to manage their cash positions and liquidity in real-time. The platform provides customised dashboards and reporting tools that allow relationship managers to monitor their clients' cash balances and transactions, and to execute transactions on their behalf.
These tools can help relationship managers provide more personalised and efficient services to their clients, while also improving their own productivity and decision-making abilities. With the rise of digital banking, banks are expected to continue investing in new and innovative tools to enhance their corporate clients' banking experience. Starfish Digital are on the cutting edge of corporate banking tools that can help financial institutions improve their relationships with their clients and grow their businesses.
In the current business landscape, what are the challenges that Relationship Managers encounter?
Corporate banking relationship managers are required to skilfully navigate a multitude of challenges and effectively manage their clients' expectations in the ever-evolving and fast-paced business landscape of today. Among these challenges of corporate banking are transaction errors, reconciliations, and downloads, which demand a great deal of attention and care to maintain strong client relationships. Starfish Digital, with its advanced financial technology solutions, is supporting banks in managing these challenges effectively, cultivating improved relationships with their clients, and keeping abreast of the rapidly changing and dynamic trading environment in Asia.
Corporate banking relationship managers must prioritise maintaining strong relationships with clients by identifying their needs and providing relevant and valuable services. However, transaction errors can have severe consequences for banking services, including delayed processing, inaccurate balances, customer dissatisfaction, and increased costs. Therefore, it is essential for banks to have robust systems and procedures in place to promptly detect, investigate, and resolve transaction errors to mitigate negative impacts.
Starfish Digital provides several products that can help banks address these issues and help strengthen relationships with their clients. Their Starfish Universal Adaptor enables API banking and data integration with customer-side ERP systems, improving the accuracy of transaction processing and reducing the risk of errors. Starfish Connect, a cloud-based SaaS platform, simplifies financial integration, providing a secure and reliable connection between banks and businesses, and data validation tools that can assist banks in detecting and preventing errors in transaction processing.
As trading volumes grow and the demand for real-time updates increases, Starfish Connect can facilitate faster and more efficient data transfer between banks and their corporate clients. The Starfish Universal Adaptor enables banks to integrate data from customer-side ERP systems, providing a more streamlined and automated way of managing financial data. Furthermore, Starfish Connect's design pillars of security, privacy, and resiliency can help banks and their corporate clients protect their critical financial services. This platform can scale to meet the needs of banks and their corporate clients as their transaction volumes increase. The video explainer above shares more information on how Starfish Digital automates corporate banking relationships.
In summary, Starfish Digital's financial technology solutions provide banks with more streamlined and automated ways of managing financial data, allowing them to reduce the risk of errors, improve balance accuracy, and provide a higher level of service to their clients. This positions banks to better manage transaction errors, foster client relationships, and remain competitive in Asia's fast-paced and dynamic trading landscape. The financial connectivity platform also allows for easier and faster cross-border transactions, enabling banks and their corporate clients to operate seamlessly across different countries and currencies.