For companies thinking about launching a new global card program or making improvements to an existing one, following an established roadmap can help. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach, smart finance departments look to best practices to reap benefits and avoid costly mistakes.
At the 2018 Global Payments and Card Conference, Bank of America talked about several ways for treasurers to roll out a single card program to thousands of users worldwide.
PATH 1: THE PHASED APPROACH
Ideally, you’ll have months to plan your global rollout. Use this time to strengthen your business case, secure support from senior management and other internal stakeholders, and closely investigate regulatory nuances in each country where you plan to launch.
If you’re going live in many countries, a phased approach can help you take gradual steps toward a full implementation. If you’ll be launching in several neighboring countries within a single region, consider grouping them together into a single wave.
PATH 2: THE ACCELERATED APPROACH
There is also a playbook for a global launch that requires more urgency. First, get support from senior leaders who can expedite your implementation. Then choose a bank that can help you get the details right up front. Every country has different nuances, from KYC regulations to local-issuing bank partnerships and application procedures. It’s essential to anticipate solutions for potential obstacles so that your launch is not delayed.
In some cases, we can send plastic overnight with local-language support so that your employees can get up and running quickly.
BEST PRACTICES FOR LAUNCHING GLOBALLY
Create plans well in advance of implementation (when possible)
Establish global project managers and local, in-country teams
Solidify executive sponsorship by highlighting working-capital opportunities
Understand local-market variations, including Know-Your-Customer (KYC) requirements
Draw on other internal teams, such as training and communications, to make things easy for cardholders
- Creating a global card program can help boost working capital and visibility while reducing risks
- The best practice is to plan ahead and design a phased approach where small groups of countries go live at the same time
- If you need to move quickly, work closely with your bank to make sure you get the details right