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AFP 2023 Blog

AFP 2023 Blog

AFP 2023 Blog

If I Had Only Known …

Sep 15, 2023

By Holly Harrison, PNC Bank

In business and in life, hindsight is 20/20. We have all been in situations where we wish we knew then what we know now. No matter if you’re grappling with the purchase of a home or a new car or choosing a treasury workstation (TWS), it would be nice to reap the benefits of hindsight without actually living through the experience.

If you’re thinking about a TWS, you are probably focused on the benefits of improved cash management, reporting and scalability of the current team. However, you might not be thinking about the steps that have to transpire — and be completed effectively — to generate the positives that belie the business case. In fact, studies show that only 20% of companies manage to capture more than half of the expected benefits of system implementations.1

While I can’t fast-forward this experience for your business, I can offer advice, case studies and lessons learned during the AFP 2023 session, “Life After a Treasury Workstation or ERP Implementation,” held at the Executive Institute, Monday, October 23, at 1:45 PM PT.

This session is designed as a frank discussion with two experienced professionals who have survived a TWS implementation (or five!) across the course of their careers. While there are lots of detailed resources available to help navigate the TWS selection process, few places exist that provide a roadmap. You will hear straight-talk advice based on past implementation experience across categories, including blueprinting, implementing, making it work, integrating, keeping it going and other available options.

Some of the learnings will be practical:

  • Make sure to review what is agreed upon with the pricing and the implementation plan;
  • Get your IT partners engaged early; and
  • Start with the functionality you know you’ll use and upgrade with other features later.

Other takeaways will compel your organization to prepare differently before you even begin the planning process:

  • Rationalize your structure;
  • Understand how many other systems the TWS will need to integrate with;
  • Pull in your accounting team;
  • Consider the past experiences of your CFO and other executives; and
  • Weigh other options and approaches.

Finally, this session will solve for questions like: What is the true value of the treasury workstation? How likely is the out-of-the-box solution to deliver as expected? How can you adapt the functionality to better fit your organization? What are some of the unanticipated benefits you may experience? And if you had a choice, would you do it again?

The session will not focus on specific TWS providers, nor will it talk about the RFP process or the benefits of certain systems over others. The goal of the session is to share the things treasury and finance executives should think about before they make a decision, and tips for how to set their organization up for the smoothest implementation possible.

This session will be highly interactive, so come ready with your questions and concerns to walk away with guidance you can use!

The Executive Institute, sponsored by PNC, is limited to corporate practitioners with the title of CFO, Treasurer, Vice President of Finance, Assistant Treasurer or Controller.

1 McKinsey Digital. Enterprise Resource Planning.