What Matters Today
#5: Visibility and Control: Global Card Programmes
by Alan Koenigsberg, Managing Director, International Commercial Card Product Executive, J.P. Morgan Treasury Services and Cate Luzio, Executive Director, J.P. Morgan Treasury Services EMEA
In this penultimate article in J.P. Morgan’s series on the issues that matter most to treasurers today, we explore trends and opportunities in the use of global commercial card programmes including travel and entertainment (T&E) and purchasing cards. Looking back on the series so far, we have focused on risk management, efficiency, bank relationships and supporting a sustainable liquidity strategy. Taking full advantage of a global commercial card programme can contribute positively in all of these areas, providing the control, visibility and efficiency processes that finance managers are seeking.
As we have seen in previous articles in this series, companies of all sizes are seeking to make financial processes more efficient and manage working capital more effectively. An important element of these initiatives is to optimise the financial supply chain, from order-to-cash (collections) through to purchase-to-pay (payments). Enhancing collections is often the more difficult of the two, as many elements are outside a company’s control; however it is easier to make improvements in purchase-to-pay processes and drive immediate benefit. Introducing or expanding the scope of existing commercial card programmes can be a valuable way of achieving this, both with T&E and purchasing cards. Furthermore, companies that have established card programmes in different countries are often now seeking to rationalise these programmes into a regional or even global card programme with a single provider to leverage the benefits even further.