Lower costs and increase profits; that’s the universal mantra for CFOs. It’s as old as business itself.
What’s changing is the CFO’s role within business. They’re increasingly being asked to step up in tech and automation to propel growth while keeping costs down.
Partnering with IT
CFOs are now being asked to work closely with IT teams in designing and implementing digital tools that can provide data for decision-makers or analytics that help to identify areas within a company ripe for new growth and revenue.
As a result, CFOs are becoming more data-driven and basing key decisions on advanced analytics.
For example, the CFO of a multi-national company was tasked with overseeing the reduction of expenses by more than $750 million. The changes didn’t occur overnight, but gradually through the use of digital tools designed for specific needs like salary planning, financial forecasting, task automation and broader expense planning.
Driving front-end revenue
Cutting costs is no longer enough for successful CFOs. They must also look to long-term strategies for improved margins, revenue growth and development of new product or service lines.
Here’s where the analytics mentioned above also play a vital role in driving your company forward. If there’s no easy access to data around product line performance and profitability, sales and labor costs or sales forecasts, work with your IT team to make it happen.
Taking on non-financial roles
CFOs are also being asked to cross-train in non-finance roles within a company. It’s believed CFOs will gain better insights and develop new perspectives leading to a higher quality analysis of company data — in turn, leading to sound financial decisions for the company.
While some jobs are lost due to automation, others are created. Instead of gathering data, displaced employees can begin to analyze it. Companies will often provide the training programs needed to become an analyst.
Simply put, analysts have the ability to condense data and present it. Data that is not only invaluable to the CFO, but others in the decision-making chain of the company.
By plugging-in all of the digital tools that are now available to them, company costs will decrease and profits will increase. Just as the company used in the first example, it surpassed the goal of slashing expenses by more than $500 million within a year of plugging-in its new technology.
Manage the rapid change of the CFO’s role with Magone & Co
We know the challenges privately held companies are experiencing — we’ve been there. That’s why we designed our Business Advisory services to help find areas that will most impact your organization’s success. Check them out and give us a call to see if they’re a fit with your company’s growth plans.