Financial Management Firm Braun Streamlines Payments and Bolsters Client Services through Book2Bank Offering powered by MineralTree
Despite their many disadvantages, checks remain the de facto standard for business-to-business (B2B) payments. Online bill pay use by businesses is minimal because today’s bill pay solutions don’t meet the needs of growing businesses – they lack integration with business accounting systems, have limited workflow features, and don’t effectively protect against employee and online fraud. Enterprise-class invoice payment automation solutions are too complex and expensive for most businesses.
Lacking this core B2B service from their bank, businesses often turn to manual, ad hoc, risky, paper-based processes to manage their accounts payable (AP) tasks because they have no other choice. Payment solutions offered by their banks don’t meet business needs.
When Braun Business Management, a financial management firm serving high-net-worth families, found that paper-based processes couldn’t adequately handle its bill pay service offering, it turned to City National Bank’s Book2Bank, a private-label version of MineralTree’s award winning Invoice-to-Pay solution. MineralTree’s payment solution integrates seamlessly with City National’s commercial banking platform, and with Braun’s accounting system (Intuit QuickBooks). The result: efficiency and cost reduction to the entire AP invoice approval and payment process – while reducing risk and operational errors.
The Challenge: Streamline payments while reducing risk
Like many multi-family offices providing wealth management services to high-net-worth clients, efficiency, service quality, and responsiveness are fundamentally important. And, as Braun grew, consistent, error-free, white-glove service for its client base became critically important.
In the past, Braun’s paper-based AP processes involved printing out confirmations for each check, preparing a cover sheet, and handing off the paperwork to a busy financial manager for approval before mailing. “We definitely needed to make payments more efficiently and reduce risk,” said Brittany Prost, financial manager at Braun. “We’re a small group, so everything has to be as quick and reliable as possible.”
The Solution: Book2Bank streamlines payments and more
When looking for a new solution for handing payments for its clients, Braun turned to City National Bank. “It was really important that we get our solution from City National,” says Prost. “The bank is on top of our business, and all of our clients have City National accounts.”
City National recommended MineralTree Invoice-to-Pay, branded as Book2Bank.
Offered as a value-added service, Book2Bank meets Braun’s key criteria:
- Integrates seamlessly with QuickBooks
- Allows Braun to use critical banking capabilities right from Book2Bank – such as Positive Pay, payment reports, and ongoing balances
- Includes advanced security
In 2014, Braun began using Book2Bank as its payments solution, switching all of its clients to a new, more efficient way of making payments. “Book2Bank appealed to us right from the start,” says Prost. “We looked at other solutions, but they were either not cost-effective or required us to switch from QuickBooks to another accounting system, which we weren’t willing to do. Plus, we wanted to work with City National instead of a third-party solution provider.”
Braun started with a pilot project, migrating two clients, but quickly moved ahead. “We definitely knew that Book2Bank would save us a lot of time, so we decided to dive in and move all of our clients to Book2Bank.”
The Benefits: Efficient payments, less risk
The main benefit that Book2Bank brings to Braun is noticeable and measurable efficiency. “I’d say that Book2Bank cut our payments process in half,” says Prost. “On the first of the month, the payments get done quickly, so we can move to other work.” Vendors also get paid faster, reducing queries and other issues.
Now, Braun uses Book2Bank to process approximately 200 invoices a month, from $12 checks for everyday expenses (e.g., FedEx) to major payments and transfers. The process moves quickly, easily and electronically from invoice and payment approval by its account executives to payment execution by City National. Book2Bank streamlines the approval process and lets busy financial managers approve payments anywhere, anytime.
“There’s not a lot of back and forth discussion about bills now,” says Prost. “Book2Bank keeps it clean and easy.” Seamless integration with QuickBooks eliminates dual entry. “There’s only one system – Book2Bank,” says Prost, “so there’s much less opportunity for error.”
Being able to work with dozens of high-value customers seamlessly was a top priority for Braun – and City National. With Book2Bank, users can sign in once and work with multiple client accounts, which are all completely segregated – lowering risk. Clients want more than comprehensive services from Braun. They require reliability, and the confidence that comes from knowing that everything is handled correctly, all the time.
The impact and improvements that Book2Bank brings to Braun goes beyond enhancing and automating payments. The complete, searchable electronic record that Book2Bank creates also gives Braun quick access to payment information for audits, taxes, and more.
The Bottom Line: Why choose MineralTree Invoice-to-Pay?
City National Bank chose to make MineralTree Invoice-to-Pay part of its offerings to offices like Braun and other growing businesses to better serve their needs. “MineralTree let us offer great technology that most other banks don’t have available for growing businesses,” says Rosetta Rajoyan of City National. “Book2Bank is a huge value-add for clients hoping to streamline their payments process.”
For City National, MineralTree Invoice-to-Pay offers a powerful combination of easy integration with QuickBooks and other accounting/ERP software, the ability to streamline all stages of the payment process, and sophisticated security features. “It’s clear that MineralTree has a deep understanding of business payments,” says Rajoyan. “They understand how banks work and share the same commitment to keeping client information safe and secure. And they’re helping us serve our current clients – and attract new ones.”
“We used to be with another bank,” added Prost, “and it didn’t offer half the capabilities as City National Bank. Our clients don’t want to deal with complexity. The fact that we can get Book2Bank right from City National Bank helps us – and our clients.”