News from the VDT

VDT Working Group on Electronic Signatures / Digital Workflow

One thing has become abundantly clear in recent time: the digitization of corporate processes can no longer be delayed. As part of this and sooner rather than later, the physical signature will belong to the past. As a consequence of the pandemic, Work From Home (WFH) arrangements will become an increasing part of the new normal, rather than just an exception.

As a sign of the times, the VDT launched the working group “Electronic Signatures / Digital Workflow” in June to deals with the adaptation of internal and external processes to the “digital treasury world”. The working group currently consists of 12 members who share their experiences and insights. Whilst some are only just beginning to approach the topic and are primarily looking for ways to replace the physical signature, others are already on the verge of introducing seamless end-to-end digital workflows for selected treasury tasks.

The target of the working group is to create a “Best Practices” toolkit which will support peers in mastering their digital transformation in treasury!

Are you interested in sharing your thoughts on the topic or becoming an active member of the working group? If so, please do not hesitate to contact service@vdtev.de

Anecdotes from life in treasury

A treasurer had this amusing story to tell: “In the retail sector, payment settlements automatically generated from our TMS that included the abbreviation SPO for spot plus reference number in the reference field led to massive problems with our banks.”

Sounds strange doesn't it?

The reason for this oddity is that payments with this reference are held up by the compliance filter of banks, as SPO as an abbreviation can stand for “State Purchase Organization of Iran”. The result is that SWIFT messages have to be routed across the correspondent banks to clarify the payment issue. This takes up unnecessary time. “Now that we have entered SPT instead of SPO in all systems, our payment settlements run smoothly again,” says the treasurer. Jokingly, he adds, “Let's hope that SPT won't be associated with any “State People Terror Group” in the future.”

Another treasurer tells us that outgoing payments with “Cuba Sports Bar” in the free text field (MT 103) will not be executed. However, if the payment is submitted in the ISO 20022 form(pacs.008) and thus in a structured format, there are no problems whatsoever when executing the payment. “That is one of the advantages that the changeover to ISO 20022 brings” the treasurer says and smiles.

Abbreviations in the reference field of payment orders can also delay the execution of the payment internally, reports a colleague. To be able to automatically assign outgoing payments, the abbreviation CU (Commercial Unit) + consecutive number should be used in . The order was withheld with the note “we need background information on this Cuba payment” and the treasurer was forced to make it clear that CU is not the abbreviation for Cuba.

Do you have similar anecdotes from your life in treasury? Share them with your treasury network and smile together.

Verband Deutscher Treasurer e.V., Ressort Cash & Liquidity

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