HOW COULD THESE PRIORITIES SHIFT POST-CRISIS?
While it is too early to predict with any degree of certainity what the longer-term effects of the crisis might be, whether at a personal, social or economic level, treasurers already anticipate some change in priorities. For many companies, the global nature of the crisis has shaken their assumptions about the stability and flexibility of their supply chains. 52% of CFOs and treasurers are now looking at greater supply chain diversification, a figure that may be larger amongst procurement teams. Likewise, given China’s dominance in global supply chains, and how further advanced the country is in the COVID-19 trajectory, this figure was 67% of treasurers and CFOs located in Asia, compared to 55% for those in North America and 35% in Europe.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, 45% of treasurers and CFOs globally highlighted that business continuity planning would be a priority, and linked to this, 36% anticipated reviewing their regional and global treasury organisations, and 27% setting up back-up treasury centres.
A likely priority for treasurers and CFOs globally, indicated by 40% of respondents, is to diversify their investments. With some global banks reporting significantly increased dollar deposit levels at the start of the crisis as treasurers looked for ‘safe havens’ for cash, the next logical step is to consider how to optimise investment of surplus cash.