As corporate treasurers oversee ever more complex payment systems, many are discovering a key connection with the teams that manage the company’s merchant strategy and operations. “Previously, merchant services might have been seen as something for your IT or procurement team to work with,” says Natalie Willems-Rosman, merchant specialist executive with Merchant Services at Bank of America. Yet as companies transform digitally and explore new ways of selling, working with the internal teams focused on e-commerce and consumer payments can be a vital treasury resource for comprehensive data, foreign currency exchange, fraud protection and other services, she says.
One key driver of this shift: From cosmetics manufacturers to carmakers, “Global companies are dipping their toes into selling directly to consumers,” Willems-Rosman adds. As that happens, treasurers find themselves involved in responsibilities that span beyond traditional areas of oversight such as payroll, supplier payments, and receivables to monitor flows generated by thousands of individual consumers. “Suddenly, you’ve got new and different payment flows, refunds, and reconciliations to think about,” she says. What’s more, the treasury department is expected to be the ‘payments and transactions center of excellence,’ offering expertise and best practices companywide.