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The CFO's Toolbox: Virtual Cards for Streamlined Financial Operations

Global Payments
Global Ecommerce
Global Expansion
Karolina Jarosinska
November 2, 2023

As a CFO, you need to constantly look out for new, innovative solutions to meet the efficiency and control needs of your global business. Enter virtual cards – the financial tool that is revolutionizing the way businesses handle payments. In this article, we'll explore what virtual cards are - including prepaid business cards, and how they can empower CFOs by offering streamlined financial operations, greater flexibility, control and cost-saving opportunities.

What are virtual cards?

Virtual cards are a financial instrument used to pay online - they work similarly to traditional physical cards, each having a unique 16-digit number, an expiry date, and a CVV. However, virtual cards, unlike traditional cards, offer unparalleled flexibility, control and visibility into spending that are paramount when dealing with a growing, cross-border business and can truly revolutionise financial operations.

1. Improved Cash Flow and Control
One of the primary advantages of virtual cards is their ability to accelerate transactions when compared to traditional bank transfers. Faster money movement enhances cash flow management, allowing CFOs to make more informed financial decisions and allocate resources more efficiently.

2. Lower Transactional Costs
Virtual cards combine the advantages of physical cards, the functionality of checks, and the efficiency of bank transfers, such as SEPA, ACH, and SWIFT. This blend of features results in lowered transactional costs, which is a significant boon for businesses, especially those involved in high-volume transactions, such as affiliate marketing or retail.

3. Increased Control
With virtual cards CFOs gain greater control over employee spending thanks to online management features. CFOs can set spending limits, schedules, and restrictions.

4. Fast Reconciliation Process
A granular view of company transactions through virtual cards and assigned budgets and all receipts in one place allows CFOs to cut down time spent on reconciliation of expenses. With that, they can shift their focus from manual work to value-added tasks like drawing insights and acting on them.

5. Flexibility
Virtual cards offer flexibility by allowing CFOs to customize spending rules, restrictions, and expense categories. This adaptability ensures that financial operations align with the specific needs and goals of the business, which is particularly crucial when operating cross-border and dealing with multiple currencies.

The role of virtual cards in fraud prevention

Fraud is on the rise in the world of digital payments and card transactions are not immune to that. In 2022, 36% of organizations reported falling victim to card fraud.* Physical cards can get misplaced or stolen exposing company funds to unauthorised use. Retrieving lost funds is hard and replacing lost or stolen cards is a time-consuming process. Virtual cards are a remedy to all those problems, providing extra security and control to eliminate fraud.

Enhanced Security with Virtual Cards

Virtual cards offer a robust solution to fraud by enhancing security through:
- Tokenization - replacing sensitive data with tokens, making it extremely difficult for cybercriminals to access card information.
- Dynamic CVVs - are CVVs that change regularly, making it challenging for fraudsters to reuse card details, significantly improving security.

Increased Control for CFOs

Virtual cards also provide CFOs with better control over spending and payment limits.
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CFOs can manage virtual cards online to set limits, top-ups and easily freeze or delete cards.
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Customizable rules and restrictions help align spending with company policies. Business prepaid credit cards also cap spending at the set amount.
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A misplaced card doesn’t need to cascade into a series of troublesome events. You can offer an unlimited number of virtual cards, which provides an extra layer of security at individual and organizational level.

Fleet Fuelling Cards for Cost Efficiency

Virtual cards have a specific use case for fuel payments and fleet management by streamlining spending and control - making it easy for both the CFO and the employees.

Control and Monitoring

Virtual cards can be issued for a vehicle or an employee to control fleet budget. A pre-assigned budget or recurring top-ups, as well as merchant and amount limits to control overspending makes them the best fuel card for business needs.

Fuel Savings

When it comes to fuel card comparison, the savings potential is a significant factor. By using virtual fuel cards for fleets, companies can earn cashback on fuel purchases. Virtual cards also enable faster payments, reducing waiting times and operational delays.

Flexible Usage

Virtual fleetcard is not tied to specific fuel stations, giving employees the freedom to fill up where it’s cost-effective. Additionally, having virtual cards readily available ensures that employees are not out of pocket during their work-related travels.

Reporting & analytics

Virtual fleet fuel cards come equipped with reporting and analytics features, allowing CFOs to track expenses in real-time.

The above features of fuel cards can also bring significant benefits in other industries that rely on vehicles and crews like aviation, logistics and shipping. We have a full article on how virtual fleet cards empower CFOs to to take control of their fleet management budget, save on fuel expenses, and gain insights with real-time reporting.

Leveraging Virtual Cards in Software Subscription Management

As the company grows, so will the number of subscriptions and vendor relationships. Managing those can become a complex task for CFOs however virtual cards remove the need for a specific subscription management software.
Budget Control
CFOs can further manage subscriptions by setting restrictions and merchant rules with each virtual card. This means that you can issue one card per recurring subscription or merchant and set spending limits for a specific amount. With this giving you an extra layer of budget control and visibility you can eliminate the need for a specific software for subscription management.
Vendor Relations
Efficient and timely payments made possible by virtual cards can improve vendor relationships, potentially leading to early payment discounts or favorable terms that positively affect cash flow.
Software resellers
Virtual cards can be particularly revolutionising for spend control and budget management for software resellers. While managing multiple subscriptions for various clients you can set up an unlimited number of cards with specific rules to ensure smooth operations for their clients and hassle-free reconciliation for their own finance department.

Global Expense Management

Businesses operating cross-borders face yet another challenge - managing employee expense in different countries and currencies. Virtual cards are a solution tailor-made to businesses with a global workforce.
Cross-border Employee Expense
CFOs can issue virtual cards instantly from the online platform, ready for employees to use. You can choose between single-use or multi-use cards and tag them to specific countries, entities, departments, or projects, making reconciliation effortless.
Zero Fees and Contracts
Virtual cards are highly cost-effective, with zero fees and no contractual obligations. Block cards or create them instantly without managing complex banking relationships.
Currency Flexibility
Virtual cards can be issued in any currency, giving companies flexibility to suit various employee needs in different regions and minimise foreign exchange exposure for the business.
Receipt Management
Virtual cards offer easy and seamless receipt uploading, reducing administrative burdens and facilitating reconciliation. With the functionality to add receipts on the go from the mobile device and timely reminders, no transaction will go unreconciled.
Travel Business Expenses
Using virtual cards for travel expenses eliminates the need for expense reimbursements. CFOs can issue prepaid credit cards for business travel, remotely top them up, and assign them to specific trips.

Choosing virtual card provider

Choosing the right virtual card provider is crucial to maximizing the benefits of this financial tool.What Virtual Card Providers Should OfferLook for a provider that offers seamless integration with your accounting software to eliminate manual reconciliation.
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Ensure that the provider is transparent about fees and does not impose hidden charges.
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Multi-currency support is essential, especially for businesses with international operations.
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Virtual cards should be easy to manage online without the need for complex contracts.
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Mobile access to cards and the ability to upload receipts on the go are vital for remote employees.
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Robust reporting features are essential for tracking expenses and making data-driven financial decisions.
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For certain verticals like travel, the ability to create and control cards via an API can be invaluable, embedding card creation into existing workflows.

Fyorin Virtual Card Success Stories

Fyorin’s virtual cards offer CFOs unparalleled flexibility and control over company spend and employee expenses. Thanks to our network of financial institutions you get access to over 220+ currencies meaning you need one platform to issue cards in multiple currencies. All without hidden fees, extensive contracts and with cards readily available to use. Our cards offer some additional benefits:
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Granular control of the budget and spend by connecting the card to a dedicated sub-account
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Cashback on card transactions meaning you can turn costs into earnings and increase the bottom line.
Our cards are used by clients in a variety of industries including manufacturing, retail, affiliates and aviation to streamline global financial operations, pay faster and control their budgets.

Success Story: Thought3D

Thought3D implemented Fyorin’s virtual cards to make online payments for logistics and special services absolutely hassle-free - fast and without the need for extensive bank contracts. Connecting cards to sub-accounts also enabled budgets to be assigned directly to projects and teams, eliminating the need for management approval on each payment. If you’re looking for better control and flexibility of company spend and online payments get in touch with us at [email protected] to request your virtual card

Fyorin, your financial partner

Fyorin, a financial operations platform for digital businesses, automates and monetizes the movement of money, making financial operations smoother, faster and more efficient. The platform eliminates 90% of manual work, allowing businesses to connect with their preferred accounting platform to automate receivables and payables. 

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