A company’s internal division that ensures sufficient immediate cash to fund priorities and demands, corporate treasury involves constant monitoring of the liquidity of finances, as well as cautious managing of various monetary risks.
Corporate treasurers are also often required to advise on, and prepare, financial policies and controls that can aid in funding the organisation on top of considering how financial service providers can help reinforce financial security.
Because of this, professionals have to be attentive to releases of new loan schemes, foreign exchange rates and banking and credit facilities in order to keep an establishment’s financial plans updated.
Most graduates begin as treasury analysts or treasury accountants, where on-the-job training is received. Newcomers are also expected to take professional qualifications on the side with the Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT) in Singapore, or other equivalent professional bodies, in order to advance or specialise further.
On most occasions, graduates will work closely with senior management and manage large sums of money. Duties can be diversified, however, depending on the projects and cases handled at a particular time.
As a corporate treasurer’s work is largely tied to the enterprise they work for, working hours are fairly stable except during periods with urgent deadlines.
Those who wish to succeed in this field need to be well-informed of their firm’s goals, the business and economic climate and the condition of the international banking sector. Such knowledge will indirectly strengthen decision-making skills and help avoid pitfalls and potholes in the market, especially during forecasting sessions and pooling arrangements.
Though it would be an advantage if basic accounting knowledge is possessed, it’s usually not a prerequisite. Rather, the abilities to work according to procedures as well as simplify complex matters for the benefit and comprehension of senior management are much more important.
Pros and cons
Corporate treasury entails close working relationships with senior management, which means that — depending on company culture — graduates may be pressured to perform. Anxiety can also come due to the responsibility of handling large sums of money during transactions.
Working in the field, however, offers a broad overview of the inner workings of organisations, especially through the allocations of funds. This is a line of work that has remained largely unchanged – yet necessary – across various industries, so it can offer plenty of flexibility for potential employers over the course of a career.