What a week it has been! We are living in ever changing times, following an extended period of Political unrest, the fallout from Brexit and now a once in a generation virus pandemic we could all be forgiven for feeling fear and apprehension about what lies ahead for the corporate world. Whilst it is impossible to predict what impact the latest shocks to our business landscape will have in the short, medium and long term, one thing is for sure…there is uncertainty ahead and we must prepare for all eventualities.
As we see the global markets fluctuate, interest rates being slashed and companies reacting to unforeseen challenges the role of the Group Treasurer comes to the fore. In times of uncertainty we see the focus of both large and smaller organisations shift towards cash and liquidity, with businesses looking to their Treasury department to steady the ship with robust and diligent risk management.
In 2008 when the Global Financial crisis sent shock-waves across the world we found that within Treasury recruitment we were busier than ever with many companies realising an urgent need for this strategic skill-set to guide them through what was certain to be a challenging period. A history of sub-standard FX and Interest rate risk management meant that many organisations felt the impact of the recession more keenly, poor cash visibility impeded speed to react and those businesses without strong cash management infrastructure were less prepared to cushion the blow of a sharp reduction in revenue.
Many of our clients have learnt their lessons from this period and strengthened their Treasury team as a result, those with a strong strategic Treasurer who is able to look forward and manage risk in a proactive way will feel far better prepared for the increasingly likely rocky road over the next few months.
As we move forward through this uncertain period, and organisations quite rightly prioritise the health and well-being of their employees, we are already seeing an impact on how we do business which could change the financial landscape for this year and beyond. We can expect the role of the Treasurer to be a vital part of steering our corporate world through the challenges ahead and in return, treasury professionals can look forward to getting exposure to interesting and challenging work that raises their profile and develops their skills.
I hope everyone in my network stays safe and healthy over the next few weeks, don’t hesitate to get in touch if we can help with any advice or support during this period.