Strategic management simulation for financial services cooperatives

The Alphonse and Dorimène Desjardins International Institute for Cooperatives develops simulations intended for the strategic and operational management of financial services cooperatives. In this context, a project called Str@tégiCA has been developed for Crédit Agricole, in partnership with the Institut de Formation du Crédit Agricole Mutuel (IFCAM).

What is Str@tégiCA?

The Str@tégiCA simulation allows participants to develop a strategic vision for the management of a retail bank. Designed to incorporate the features of a caisse régionale of the Crédit Agricole Group and its market, Str@tégiCA can also be used generically.

An interactive online tool

The participants, organized into executive committees, manage their caisse régionale under fictitious but realistic conditions, by taking control of all strategic functions of the caisse. Participants determine strategic direction and make decisions concerning resources allocation for all major management functions: products, marketing, sales, distribution, human resources, risk management, assets and liabilities management, including liquidity and capital.

The training offered with the Str@tégiCA tool alternates between theoretical modules and practical case studies through the implementation of the management of a caisse régionale using the simulation. The concepts and settings are adapted according to the audience profile and the expectations of the participants.

Participants

Types of participants targeted for the Str@tégiCA training

Str@tégiCA helps junior employees understand the operations of a caisse régionale and how it performs its activities.

Often customized with real data from the caisse, the training for caisses managers addresses specific issues such as business development, asset and liability management, risk management and the improvement of management ratios, according to the orientations defined by the general management of the caisse. Objectives include:
– Involving managers in understanding the management of a caisse, as well as bank management mechanisms;
– Involving managers in the operational implementation of a business plan;
– Involving managers in the implementation of the corporate strategy defined in the strategic plan.

During these trainings, the caisse prepares a specific program for its senior managers to allow them to develop a strategic vision and help them adopt to a new managerial position. Objectives include:
– Establishing a diagnosis and a strategy from a caisse that is unfamiliar to the participants;
– Implementing the strategy in an uncertain environment;
– Addressing key financial issues, such as financial risks (conversion rates , off-balance sheet hedging , liquidity).

Str@tégiCA is part of the director training program, which includes participants from all backgrounds. Objectives include:
– Establishing a diagnosis and a strategy from a caisse that is unfamiliar to the participants;
– Implementing the strategy in an uncertain environment;
– Accentuating the strategic vision in a constrained regulatory environment (Basel II requirements and anticipation of Basel III, concepts of solvency, rules and arrangements established by the Board of Directors and the supervisory agencies, capital management).

Str@tégiCA also targets caisses presidents wishing to complete the training program in order to make them understand the scope of their commitment and responsibilities, as well as the weight of regulatory constraints imposed on the caisses. Objectives include:
– Recalling the major elements of managing a retail bank, the financial mechanisms, and the constitution of the income statement and balance sheet;
– Addressing the notions of counterpart, operational and financial risks. Explaining the regulatory notions, obligations and consequences on the banker’s responsibilities of the Board of Directors in the decisions taken;
– Offering the long-term perspective of decisions.

 

Overview of Str@tégiCA

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Use of the simulation in various contexts

Str@tégiCA provides a flexible tool that can be used as standard, or that can be adapted to the needs and environments of other types of financial services cooperatives.

For more information, please contact institutcoop@hec.ca.