What are panels?

  • When your organisation registers for Commercial Banking Online you will be given the option approving payments either by using panels or by using votes.
    With panels approval, you approve payments created in Commercial Banking Online with a panel of up to six users before the transaction can proceed.

    How to set up panels 

    If your organisation has selected panel payment approval for the Commercial Banking Online service, your Primary Administrators must perform a number of actions before users start creating payments in Commercial Banking Online. They need to:

    1. Rename the approver types
      The default approver types supplied in Commercial Banking Online are named A through to J. Primary Administrators should rename these approver types to names that are more meaningful to their organisation.
    2. Create the panel profiles
      Panel profiles are the groups of panels an organisation needs to approve different payment thresholds, payment types and payment entry methods. Primary Administrators need to add their renamed approver types to the appropriate panels and specify the maximum payment amount that each panel can approve as a payment threshold. 
    3. Assign a payment type and payment method to the panel profiles
      Panel profile assignments are the types of payment and payment entry methods a panel can approve. Primary Administrators need to assign payment types and payment entry methods to panel profiles if different panels need to approve different kinds of payments.
    4. Create Roles with payment approval entitlements
      Payments and cash management Roles determine what entitlements users have and what information they can see in Commercial Banking Online around payment creation, management and reporting and accounts and balances management and reporting. Primary Administrators should create appropriate payment approval Roles that can be assigned to the users who need to be in the panels.
    5. Assign Roles and Approver Types to users 

    The key feature of panel payment approval is that it gives you multiple options for who can approve a payment. For your security, and to help protect against fraud, we recommend that each panel has at least two payment approver types assigned.

    How panels work

    • A panel profile contains one or more groups of approvers who can approve a payment. These groups are known as panels
    • Each panel, or option, can contain up to six approvers. These are the approver types
    • For a payment to be approved, all approvers in the panel must approve the payment
    • Each panel can have one of four approval sequences:
      Not Fixed – the approver types in a panel can approve a payment in any sequence
      Fix All – the approver types must approve the payment in the specified sequence
      Fix Last – the last approver type in a panel must give the last approval
      Fix First – the first approver type in a panel must give the first approval

    In the example below, the company has created a panel profile containing four panels. A payment for £1,500 is submitted for approval. It is within the payment threshold for this panel profile so there are four options for who can approve the payment.

    Panel No.

    Approval sequence

    Approver Type 1

    Approver Type 2

    Approver Type 3

    Approver
    Type 4

    Approver Type 5

    Approver Type 6

    1

    Not Fixed

        

    CFO

    Treasurer

           

    2

    Fixed All

    VP of Finance

    Controller

    Senior Payments Clerk

         

    3

    Fix First

    Senior Payments Clerk

    Accounting Manager

    Senior Payments Clerk,

    Accounts Payable Manager

       

    4

    Fix Last

    Accounting Manager

    VP of Finance

    Senior Payments Clerk

    Controller

    Director of Finance

     


    The panel that approves the payment will be determined by the first person to approve the payment. For example:

    • The CFO is on annual leave so Panel 1 is not an option
    • The first approver is a Senior Payments Clerk. This means only Panels 3 and 4 remain able to approve the payment. Panel 2 is eliminated as an option because Panel 2 is Fix All and in that panel the first approver must be the VP of Finance
    • The second approver is a Controller. This means that only Panel 4 remains able to approve the payment. Panel 3 is eliminated as an option as it does not contain a Controller approver type
    • The third and fourth approvers now have to be an Accounting Manager and VP of Finance, and they can approve in any order
    • The fifth approver has to be the Director of Finance because Panel 4 requires Fix Last

    Payments need all users in a panel to approve them before a payment is fully approved and can proceed. Whether a user belongs to a panel is determined by the payment approver type assigned to them. Which payments a panel approves is determined by the payment threshold specified for the panel and any payment types and payment methods assigned to the panel. A payment cannot be created if there isn’t a suitable panel to approve it. Panels are set at registration.

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