Travel and Expense
Easily Make Global Payments: An SAP Concur Conversations Podcast with TransferMate
Paying vendors in multiple currencies in multiple countries is a significant challenge for most organizations. Processes tend to be highly manual, time consuming, and complex. Plus, exorbitant bank fees add up quickly, and security and compliance issues abound. In short, international payments can be a huge headache for finance teams.
Jeanne Dion, Vice President of the Value Teams at SAP Concur, spoke with Michael Cullen, Vice President of Sales at TransferMate, a recent SAP Concur Partner Innovation Award winner, about the challenges of cross-border payments.
Legacy Manual Processes Sap Labor
Why are cross-border payments so complex? Cullen says many of the financial institutions that companies use to handle cross-border transactions have manual processes built upon manual processes. (For instance, organizations often must manually upload individual files to their bank.)
When these processes were originally designed, they didn’t have the foresight to know what a modern, global technology-driven landscape would look like, so modern processes have often been built upon poor foundations.
As a result, traditional processes are time consuming and expensive. Fortunately, new technology and approaches allow finance leaders to drastically reduce the amount of people required to format, submit, and reconcile international payments.
Streamlining Cross-border Payments
Integrating and automating this workflow—for example, automatically red flagging potential security issues and sanctioned countries, as TransferMate does—decreases the amount of labor needed to process cross-border payments. Payments can also be made immediately. “You can take what normally took 10 AP [accounts payable] staff for a small- to medium-sized organization a full day to do and condense that down to two to four key people. This allows you to redeploy that resource and time gained elsewhere,” says Cullen.
TransferMate stitches together what can be two separate bank processes: approvals for invoices and approvals for international payments. Cullen says, “When those systems speak together, you don’t need to double- and triple-check everything because the system is doing that for you.” The result? Increased accuracy and reduced labor.
Automating What Makes Sense
When it comes to automating invoice approval and international payments, it’s important for your organization to figure out what needs to be automated and what the optimal solution needs to be instead of just automating an existing manual process. Dion recommends that organizations look at the entire process and reimagine how it can be more efficient and effective.
When organizations do that, Cullen explains it enables them “to take away those processes—and also the preconceived ideas around those processes—and do what actually makes sense.”
“It’s really about finding a solution that connects your invoice and your payment process in a way that allows and accounts for different teams’ objectives,” Cullen says.
A Better Way to Make Global Payments
Making B2B international payments can be challenging, especially because they so often involve manual steps and separate processes, and are costly in terms of fees, labor, and time.
However, TransferMate’s technology and global banking infrastructure enables organizations to make and receive payments in 162 countries and 134 currencies, at any time, backed by comprehensive security and cost efficiency. Pairing TransferMate with Concur Invoice enables your organization to make payments easily and instantly around the world.