The CFO of the future and why you need one asap

The CFO of the future and why you need one asap

It’s no coincidence that the role of CFO has been established for more than 50 years in businesses worldwide. It’s the role that is called to add value by creating a strategy in the management of an entity's financial resources.

Rapid developments in the global economy (new technologies, business models, access to information, international crises, etc.) have now added increasing pressure to this role, which needs to redefine its added value and therefore its required knowledge and skills.

In search of the CFO of the future

The importance and scope of the CFO role continues to grow, shaping a future that looks very different from its course so far. To meet the opportunities and challenges ahead the CFO (of the future) will need a wide range of skills and capabilities such as:

  • Extensive business knowledge
  • Operational experience
  • Leadership
  • Strategic mentality
  • Ability to exploit large volume of data
  • Strong negotiation skills

The reality however is that the role of the CFO has already changed. From reporting results and closing books it has shifted to a core business position that interacts with all business operations on a practical level. In other words, the CFO is "key" executive who works with every department, at a strategic level, laying the foundations for future development.

Modern businesses are competing in an increasingly data-driven environment to make better decisions. Financial planning and analysis are no longer limited to static Excel spreadsheets that no one reads; they are tools that give management and executives the information needed in day-to-day decision making in order to serve the greater strategic plan.

The duty of the modern CFO is to locate these data, from inside and outside the organization, and turn it into actionable insights that will be available to the right people at the right time.

The more data-driven your business is, the more likely it is to anticipate opportunities or problems and therefore succeed! What you need is a professional willing to analyze everything and not afraid to challenge you. If you are the captain of the company, the CFO should be your GPS.

Returning to the necessary skills subject, a combination of financial-business knowledge is required along with an understanding of IT and analysis methods. Neither of the two alone can bring the desired result.

When does your company need a CFO?

If any of the following situations describes your company, then you should probably consider getting a modern CFO right away:

  1. There are sales but no cash.
  2. Managing your company's finance consumes more time than its growth.
  3. Reporting is a manual and extremely time consuming process.
  4. There is no regular budget planning.
  5. You cannot get a funding or you do not know how.
  6. You believe that it’s impossible to predict your cash flow.
  7. You cannot answer with an exact number to the question "What is the net profit or loss for each customer / product / service?".
  8. You are looking for an investor or an investment.

Is my business too small for a CFO?

Managing financial resources and finding new ones is a "necessary evil" for any business of any size. If this is not done by a separate position, then inevitably the responsibilities pass in most cases either to the manager / entrepreneur himself or to other employees. But do these individuals have the time available for such a competence to really work?

By finding a skilled professional in this position, management has the time to focus on what is, or at least should be, its primary task, namely a) the continuous improvement of products/services and b) sales growth. In a market where there is a lot of "noise", no small or medium sized business can afford to ignore these activities.

But the value of the CFO is not just simply in covering a time-consuming position. The CFO is your business partner, who has the luxury of not being overly involved in day-to-day processes so that he can see your business with an independent eye, but also be close enough to it to understand its data and suggests personalized solutions.

An innovative service by MDC Stiakakis

At MDC Stiakakis our goal is to strengthen and guide the change required by the modern business environment, thus we have designed an innovative CFO outsourcing service that incorporates all the skills that we believe the future of this business position demands to stay relevant and outperform.

The service is addressed to:

  • Small and medium-sized enterprises that cannot support internally the position of an experienced and specialized financial manager.
  • Parent companies or investors who want to have the control and/or supervision of the finances of the acquired/subsidiary company.
  • Companies that want to build modern structures and processes.
  • Companies that want to use their data to achieve a better financial result.
  • Every company that seeks valid and timely information to make better decisions.
This article intends to inform the reader and in no way substitutes the specialized consulting services.
For more information, please contact MDC Stiakakis SA (Monis Kardiotisis 49, Heraklion | +30 2810 280985)