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Viva Standards!

Proprietary interfaces are out, and common message standards for banks (and their clients) are in.

What are best practices in the payments industry?

Good question. That's why Bank Systems & Technology interviewed a corporate treasury executive and payments strategist at one of the banking industry's biggest customers: General Electric. The customer's always right, and GE's perspective should give bankers plenty to think about.

GE is one of the corporate leaders connecting to SWIFT, the bank-owned messaging standards and infrastructure cooperative. In this special report, Lazaro Campos, SWIFT's top banking executive, provides an additional perspective on the ways in which SWIFT is knitting together banks, corporations and software providers.

Also, Jacob Jegher from Celent Communications takes a look at the players involved with cross-border business-to-business payments, and finds that collaboration is the key to success. That's equally true for a regional institution such as First National Bank of Arizona, which is seeking to achieve a straight-through funds transfer process.

So if you're a banker for GE - or any other of the components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average - or even if you do business with firms that model themselves after the largest global corporations, you'll want to read this Special Report.

As far as payments best practices go, here are the foundations:

-Promotion of industrywide payment messaging formats.

-Development of self-service models.

-Diffusion of information into corporate ERP systems.

-Advancement from proprietary to standard interfaces.

The days of secret handshakes between banks and their corporate clients are coming to an end. Long live industry standards!

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