Bank of us

by | Aug 1, 2017

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Key Points

  • Financial institution swaps spreadsheets for automated treasury management solution
  • Time to produce ALM reports reduced from more than one week to less than a day
  • Manual processes replaced with faster, accurate and streamlined automated alternatives
  • Visual Risk now handles activities that used to be handled by banking platform, such as wholesale funds management

Background

Bank of us (previously known as B&E Private Bank) is a Tasmanian financial institution with a comprehensive suite of personal and business banking products and services. The proudly conservative institution serves over 30,000 clients. It has eight local branches and manages more than $700 million in assets.

Challenge

Bank of us managed its treasury operations for several years with a hybrid solution of retail banking applications, Excel spreadsheets and paper- based processes. This approach suited Bank of us in the short term, but as data volumes increased, it created challenges for both operational staff and senior executives.

Bank of us lacked central oversight over its treasury portfolio because data was distributed across disparate systems. Within each system, the accuracy of investment, budget and decision records was dependent on staff remembering to manually update them.

Furthermore, Bank of us had a limited ability to use treasury data to inform strategic decision making or generate insightful reports. Its systems lacked necessary analytical and predictive capabilities. External providers were engaged for some analytical functions, such as ALM reporting. However, with poor visibility of the analysis undertaken, Bank of us staff often lacked confidence in the reports provided. At the same time, manual processes for collating financial data were time-consuming and inefficient. Some reports took weeks to complete.

As a conservative customer-owned institution, Bank of us had a strong strategic focus on minimising its exposure to risk. It needed an integrated treasury management system that not only kept accurate and centralised records of investment decisions but also offered insight into the overall performance of the treasury portfolio.

“The previous solution worked for a while, but we lacked the ability to analyse data ourselves or understand the results of the analysis”

Gerald White, Chief Financial Officer, Bank of us

Solution

Visual Risk offers a broad suite of treasury modules for Financial Services and after careful deliberation, Bank of us chose to implement three Visual Risk modules: Treasury Management, Asset Liability Management and Integrated Market Data.

For the team at Bank of us, Visual Risk’s easy-to-use software was a key selling point.

“At a presentation, we saw that Visual Risk was much more intuitive and user-friendly than other products we’d seen.” – Honni Pitt, Financial Controller

Additionally, Visual Risk’s flexibility, which allows multiple features to be integrated based on a client’s specific requirements, proved highly appealing to Bank of us.

Results

Visual Risk has transformed Bank of us’s treasury management and ALM operations over the past three years. It has created powerful efficiency gains and enhanced its ability to draw insights from data.

  • Streamlined reporting: With previous systems, staff typically spent four days collating data for ALM reporting (managed by an external provider) and waited a week or longer to receive the final report. With Visual Risk, Bank of us staff run ALM reports in-house. The entire process, including obtaining data, entering data and generating reports, takes just one day.
  • Data visibility: With a centralised and intelligent treasury system, Visual Risk has provided Bank of us with full visibility of its treasury portfolio. Importantly, this capability extends beyond static records by allowing treasury staff to calculate, analyse, evaluate and forecast key metrics.
  • Powerful data insights: Visual Risk has provided Bank of us new abilities to build scenarios for modelling investment and budget decisions. Staff can assess and explain impacts in new ways.
  • Process automation: Visual Risk has automated time-consuming processes including manual data entry, sending confirmations and reporting. Bank of us staff members have more time and energy to focus on high-value work, rather than expending effort on manual tasks.
  • Expanded treasury functions: Visual Risk’s data capabilities have enabled Bank of us to broaden the scope of its treasury operations.They now apply Visual Risk to handle all investments and wholesale bookings, and to streamline repurchase agreements with the Reserve Bank of Australia.

“We spoke to similar organisations using Visual Risk and the feedback was very positive. Visual Risk allowed us to move ALM reporting in-house and integrate it with treasury management – we could do more with it and trust it all.”

Honni Pitt, Financial Controller, Bank of us

Future plans

Having used Visual Risk with excellent results for three years, Bank of us will soon engage a consulting firm to undertake a treasury review. As part of this, it will identify further opportunities to use Visual Risk, such as to simplify hedge accounting.

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