From the board to management: BancaStato and Sherpany’s growing collaboration
To optimise document management along the entire meeting lifecycle, extending, thanks to Sherpany, the benefits already seen for board meetings to the general management.
Document management is 'greatly improved' in security, fluidity, and efficiency. Thanks to the broader adoption, both board members and general management have more time to prepare for their meetings.
The partnership between BancaStato and Sherpany began five years ago. Before then, the organisation of Board of Directors (BoD) meetings at BancaStato was entrusted to an ad hoc tool that was developed according to the bank's needs.
However, this solution was beginning to show its limits and needed overhauling. It was no coincidence that the urgency to change pace and switch to a specific solution began with the Board of Directors, the apex of the company. It is at this level that, in the first instance, BancaStato and Sherpany began collaborating.
BancaStato’s early experience of Sherpany was very positive and led them to decide to implement our solution for general management meetings, too. Subsequently, in 2021, BancaStato decided to further expand the use of Sherpany, extending it to a number of internal committees.
The strength of this growing partnership was founded in the enhancement of document management, which is core to making top management meetings truly excellent. For this to happen, document management needs to be efficient, fluid, secure and confidential.
A strengthening alliance founded on secure document management
Since 2017, BancaStato has given significant priority to effectively managing their formal meetings. This particularly applies to the secure, professional, and confidential handling of all documents involved in meetings.
Document management therefore represents the first and fundamental challenge that Sherpany helped BancaStato to solve. In the first instance, they decided to put Sherpany to the test in board meetings. This is recalled by Laiza Facchini, Assistant to the Chairman of BancaStato's Board of Directors:
Sherpany enjoyed a good reputation with the Boards of Directors of other cantonal banks. And we needed to entrust the organisation of meetings to a flexible and authoritative tool.
She continues, “We needed a solution that could solve some of the critical issues we had encountered — especially with regard to document management. Materials and processes needed to be managed more effectively throughout the 'lifecycle' of meetings — i.e. before, during, and after — allowing documents to be uploaded in a centralised and secure location.”
Prior to the adoption of Sherpany, the following were key priorities:
- The effective and secure handling of formal documents before, during, and after the meeting.
- The ability to share sensitive documents related to top management meetings without resorting to email.
- The urgent need to offer board members and participants the opportunity to prepare quickly, efficiently, and appropriately for various agenda items, without the risk of relying on outdated versions of formal documents.
- Ensuring a clear and well-structured agenda, with discussion points and timelines associated with each agenda item.
- Enabling effective, high-level tracking, control, and archiving of meeting documentation (including minutes) — even after a long period of time.
- Reducing the use of paper through a unique, professional, and digital document management tool.
The benefits that Sherpany introduced were felt swiftly, prompting BancaStato to progressively extend its use to other groups — now facilitating the work of managers involved in meetings, too.
Sherpany makes it possible to manage — and successfully resolve — certain crucial aspects related to document management. And this not only during meetings, but also before, and after. As a result, the entire meeting process is stronger.
Stéphane Pellegrini, Deputy Director and Head of Support and Communication at BancaStato, confirms these benefits, which were central to the expansion of the tool’s usage:
“Sherpany allows everything necessary to be converged in a centralised and secure location, which helps participants prepare for the meeting. The tool allows documents that need to be corrected or updated to be managed quickly and efficiently, avoiding the use of email and the consequent multiplication of different versions of documents. The system allows documents to be viewed in their final form, without the need to forward and receive update emails. The result is a more orderly and accessible agenda. And this benefits both those who deal with the administrative aspects and those who actually attend the meetings.”
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The decision to extend the use of Sherpany is therefore based on a number of objective advantages. Stéphane Pellegrini describes document management as 'enormously improved', highlighting the following aspects specifically:
- Facilitated access to documents makes preparing for meetings smooth and efficient, cutting down on the use of paper. He comments that "for the Risk Committee alone, which reports to the Executive Board, it is no longer necessary to print about 800 pages for each meeting.”
- After the expanded use of Sherpany, not only board members, but also members of the general management have more time to prepare for their meetings. In fact, Sherpany allows documents to be uploaded according to precise timelines and deadlines. This simplifies the work of the Secretariat. And this allows Board and general management members to be aware of the topic well in advance of the start of the meeting.
- All information is available in digital format, making the process uniform for all. During the meeting, participants can see the same document, in the same version, and at the same time. It is possible to take notes and notes on significant passages.
- A clear timeline can be assigned for each item on the agenda, so that delays and the derailment of discussion points can be avoided.
- Thanks to the optimisation of the preparatory phase, during the meeting it’s possible to 'cut to the chase' with no preamble needed to align participants on the items on the agenda. This results in faster and more effective decision-making. Stéphane Pellegrini acknowledges this, commenting that "Good preparation makes it possible to directly address the points under discussion during the meeting, and to make quicker decisions. The time saving varies depending on the type of topic, but it is undisputed.”
- Post-meeting management is smooth and efficient. All documents remain in one place, including the minutes. In this way, materials are always available, with controlled and selective access for confidentiality, for future reference and use.
- Digital archiving makes materials fully traceable, including minutes. "Meeting documents can be found within a few clicks, and archived in a secure and orderly manner. Each participant is able to trace a document or reconstruct the history of a discussion even after some time has passed.”
- Lastly, the reassurance that Sherpany offers in terms of security is appreciated, which is an absolute priority for any modern company.
Even before the use of Sherpany was extended to the general management, the system's high degree of security was validated by specialised internal staff at BancaStato. This process is renewed annually, also thanks to the continuous updates that Sherpany provides on cybersecurity.
Stéphane Pellegrini confirms this, stating:
Security surveillance is systematic. And it also involves good document management. Sherpany allows selective privacy of materials, which is crucial.
“In some meetings, employees who are experts in specific topics on the agenda are invited, but they must not have access to other confidential information. Sherpany allows us to establish graduated and flexible access, again simplifying the work of the secretary. Result? The feedback from participants is more than positive.”
Thanks to Sherpany and BancaStato’s growing collaboration, more executives can benefit from improved document management, resulting in a marked improvement of meeting processes. The high level of process security provided by a professional and dedicated tool gives reassurance and encourages fluidity and efficiency. The relationship between BancaStato and Sherpany therefore represents the story of a virtuous collaboration — one that is destined to last.
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BancaStato was established in 1915 with the aim of promoting the economic development of the Canton of Ticino and offering Ticino residents the opportunity to invest their savings in a secure and profitable manner. In 2010, the takeover of Axion SWISS Bank marked the birth of the "BancaStato Group". The Group offers all the services and products of a universal bank thanks to 499 employees working in four branches and 16 agencies throughout the Canton, as well as at Axion SWISS Bank's headquarters.
For the preparation of this expansion story, we would like to thank Stéphane Pellegrini, Deputy Director and Head of Support and Communication at BancaStato, and Laiza Facchini, Assistant to the President of BancaStato's Board of Directors, for their valuable collaboration.