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Bytes MS reduces costs with NCR

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Banks can each save up to R5-million per year by employing a tailored cash management solution. This is according to Alan Anderson, Bytes Managed Solutions’ Business Development director, who says that Bytes Managed Solutions (Bytes MS) can ensure significant cost savings through its latest cash management technology from NCR Corporation, the global leader in consumer transaction technologies.

Bytes MS, whose partnership with NCR spans more than four decades, is the exclusive South African supplier of NCR APTRA Cash Management Solutions that enable banks to achieve cash optimisation through targeted cash balances in their branches and ATM networks.

According to Anderson, banks, at the top end of the spectrum, are losing up to R5-million through cash management inefficiencies at all stores of cash, be it ATMs, branches, teller cash recyclers, vaults, cash in transit, merchant site cash or anywhere where there is a quantity of cash that has to be accounted for and decisions made about it.

“A bank’s dilemma is to ensure the right cash is in the right place at the right time without large cash holdings and excessive transportation costs,” says Stefanos Mentonis, sales leader for NCR Cash Management Solutions.

“Too much cash at any point translates to lost opportunities to deploy the cash and investment in the best possible place, while too little inventory can result in running out of cash leading to customer dissatisfaction and loss in confidence. Both of these ultimately affect the bank’s bottom line and therefore efficiencies are required to optimise cash volumes at different locations,” Mentonis adds.

“The purpose of the NCR’s cash management product solution is simple. It balances the competing costs of cash processing and transportation against inventory and insurance costs, driving down the overall cost of cash while ensuring availability. It is costly and risky for banks to physically move cash without a scientific accounting of what is required where and when. The potential risk is twofold – there is more exposure to theft whilst in transit and when a bank is overcapitalised, the bank itself is overexposed and poses a higher risk,” Anderson says.

“As a secure online-based system where various users from the bank, including branch managers, operation planners, cash-in-transit depot supervisors or even merchants can log-in, the NCR system can ensure accurate cash-keeping records through a reliable user interface, all guarded by the most advanced protective software,” Anderson concludes.

As more digital banking platforms are becoming increasingly accessible, a misconception exists that banks are subsequently holding less cash and that cash in circulation is decreasing. Statistics from the South African Reserve Bank suggest otherwise as there is a higher demand for physical cash on site than ever before. According to SARB, the Money Supply M0, which is the most accurate measure of liquid or cash assets including physical currency such as notes and coins, reached an all-time high in December 2014, and increased marginally in March 2015 from February’s numbers. This cash requires management.

NCR has estimated that through the correct application of the cash management solution, banks can reduce costs by at least R12 000 per ATM, and R25 000 per branch. The figure increases for the application at cash centres and vaults. Therefore, a large South African bank with several thousand ATMs, a few hundred branches and several large vaults, could incur significant cost savings.

Bytes MS, working with NCR, can provide a full range of cash optimisation solutions ranging from automated ATM cash ordering to complete, end-to-end supply chain optimisation solutions that entail the co-ordinating and optimising of inventories from central vaults to ATMs and branches, managing cash-in-transit vendors and providing a real time view of the performance of the network. All these solutions ensure the most efficient use of cash inventory and cash supply chain services and deliver the highest level of availability.