The Ultimate Guide to Cash Management

"Never take your eyes off the cash flow because it's the lifeblood of business." - Sir Richard Branson

Poor cash management is the number one reason for small business failure in the United States.

  • 82% of participants in a study by U.S. Bank identified cash flow problems as a cause of breakdown
  • 63% of CFOs in a global survey by CFO Research said cash management has become more difficult because of increasing complexity and regulatory requirements
  • 76% of respondents in the same survey expect cash management to become even more difficult over the next five years

What is cash management? Cash management includes collecting, managing, disbursing, and investing cash and forecasting future needs. The term "cash" may refer to currency, coins, deposits, checks, money orders, and short-term investments (less than 90 days).

Without an effective system in place, businesses remain vulnerable to internal and external theft. Long cash cycles tie up funds. And businesses risk loss from accounting errors, counterfeit bills and fraudulent checks.

Secure solutions enhance employee safety, detect fraud, and reduce theft. For example, Cash counters support accurate accounting and detect counterfeit bills. Smart safes give banks and the businesses they serve the ability to track deposits, reduce courier trips, and review data. And electronic Check scanners protect against fraud and boost balances with provisional credit through remote banking.

Here's a short guide to the most effective tools for cash management.

Treasury Management

Cash management is part of Treasury management, which includes:

  • managing payments
  • counting, moving, and storing currency
  • managing cash flow
  • electronic transactions
  • monitoring accounts,
  • policies and procedures that govern finance in an organization

Treasury management programs allow businesses to know where their funds are and keep them safe. Advanced security features shield against theft and fraud. And integrated devices and managed programs shorten cash cycles, reduce employee hours, and provide data for predicting cash needs.

Without sound financial management programs, businesses remain vulnerable to internal and external theft. They have reduced access to funds and risk loss due to accounting errors, counterfeit bills and fraudulent checks.

Business Checks

Small business owners are often tempted to use personal checks for company expenses. However, writing checks from a separate business account has several distinct advantages.

What's the difference between a personal check and a business check?

First, a personal check draws from a personal account, and a business check draws from a business account. Using a company check can reduce your legal liability by keeping the accounts separate.

Second, additional features in business checks streamline accounting and protect deposits. Business checks are typically larger than personal checks, allowing space for dual signatures and company logos. Coupons allow businesses to identify payments for accounts payable and payroll.

In addition, the paper stocks used in business checks have features offering protect against counterfeiting and fraud.

  • Artificial watermarks can only be viewed at an angle
  • Invisible fluorescent fibers appear under UV lights
  • Microprinting is noticeable only with magnification
  • Thermo-secured logos fade temporarily when warmed by touch or friction
  • Chemical change indicators protect against check washing and spot alteration. In both procedures, a solvent such as acetone or benzene is used to remove or lift all or a part of a check's entries.

Printable checks work with popular accounting software such as QuickBooks, Peachtree, SMS, and ACCPAC.

Superior Press offers a variety of security features in their pre-printed and printer checks. Custom printing options include size, stock, custom wording, design and more. Businesses can order checks online for fast and easy refills.

Cash Counters

With 32% of all purchases made in cash, it remains the number one choice of payment in the United States.

Counting cash the old way meant spending hours sorting, rearranging, counting, stacking and bundling bills by hand. The money counter was tied up in a back room. Counterfeit bills were identified one at a time with UV pens and lights – and only if they looked suspicious.

Thankfully, Cash counters now save time and money by sorting and processing bills and coins with high speeds and accuracy. They limit cash handling and bundle bills automatically, reducing employee hours and risk of internal theft. They provide reconciliation and data collection to speed end of day accounting. And they identify and separate counterfeit money with ultraviolet light and magnetic screening to verify secure stock and magnetic ink.

There is a cash counting machine for every type of business. Compact counters are often ideal for smaller businesses. They run at a single speed and offer batch stop settings to customize the number of bills per stack.

Financial institutions, casinos, large retailers and other businesses processing cash at high volumes benefit from heavy duty and premium models. These units can process up to 1800 notes or more per minute. In addition to high speed counters, they may also have numeric keypads, dual displays, and multiple speed settings.

Superior Press has worked with businesses in diverse industries to provide the best cash counter solutions for each:

  • banks
  • credit unions
  • convenience stores
  • retail
  • casinos
  • government/non-profit organizations

Smart Safes

Smart safes count, validate, and store cash securely in business-facing units, typically installed under a counter or in a back room. Wi-Fi integration allows businesses to receive provisional credit for cash through a secure, internet-connected system and generate reports. Managers know where their funds are in real time and enjoy access to transactional data on connected devices.

Using a Smart safe for remote cash capture promotes business growth over the long-run by increasing security and improving operational efficiency.

With 5% of losses and one-third of businesses failing due to internal theft, security is a top issue. Smart safes accurately count and track individual employee deposits. Counterfeit detection technology reduces fraud. Like cash counters, smart safes reduce cash handling and increase accountability. Unable to access the contents, employees are protected from external theft. New models feature anti-lock drilling features, secure doors, and locking bolts for reinforcement.

Smart safes optimize cash flow and reduce expensive courier deliveries. Businesses receive provisional credit for in-safe cash. And without making extra trips for deposits, managers have more time to spend training employees and to keep store operations running smoothly.

Smart Safes are available with single and bulk note validators. Color consoles and built-in printers made it easy to navigate menus and access receipts and reports. And units are available with extra storage vaults and coin counting and storage modules.

Check Scanners

Check scanners create high resolution images for Remote Deposit Capture (RDC). The units connect by USB to PCs. Macs, and mobile devices. They can scan checks, magnetic stripe cards and IDs, submit information for electronic deposit, and print receipts. And they allow employees to process checks without taking their attention away from the customers and clients they serve.

Remote capture has become indispensable to businesses who want to increase security and streamline operations. Scanners offer counterfeit detection and transaction encryption. They provide automated endorsement with accurate tracking information and scan IDs for authentication. Advanced technology ensures high accuracy for magnetic ink character recognition (MICR) of routing and account numbers at the bottom of each check.

Remote deposit also reduces float, the time span between when a business receives a check and receives credit in their account, so businesses maintain higher account balances. Managers spend less time entering information manually and driving to the bank to make deposits.

Superior Press offers both single and batch feed scanners. Both types fit easily on a desktop or counter top. Single feed scanners are ideal for small businesses processing 50 or fewer checks per day. Some units feature a storage pocket, reducing paper handling and keeping transactions organized. 

Larger businesses, utilities, and financial institutions benefit from batch feed scanners, which can process more than 90 documents per minute. In addition to checks, batch scanners may also process payment slips, postcards, and coupons.

Be a Superior Press Success Story

"Your superior products services have helped me give the best service I could to some very important clients." - John B. Treasury Management Sales Specialist

When it comes to money management, having the right systems in place is critical to success. Superior Press has provided customized products and programs for commercial banks and their clients for over 87 years. They continue to provide new solutions as the financial industry evolves.

When Andrea Smiddy-Schlagel was approached about offering a Smart Safe program at First Source Bank, she turned to Superior Press. The result? New hardware was in place and operational within two months. An integrated system was customized for the client's needs. First Source now has the ability to offer customized, managed solutions to the clients they serve.

Ultimately, your cash management solution should help you reach your greatest goals while offering superior service to your clients.

Sources:

https://www.preferredcfo.com/cash-flow-reason-small-businesses-fail/

https://blogs.sap.com/2015/10/28/next-generation-needs-for-cash-management-part-1/  

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