The role of a Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is dynamic and demanding. This position is at the heart of an organisation’s financial operations and it has changed a lot over the years. A CFO’s day-to-day activities encompass a vast range of responsibilities, from monitoring key metrics to strategic financial planning. However, there is always more that can be done to drive a business forward. After all, the CFO plays a pivotal role in shaping the financial health and overall success of the organisation.
For CFOs looking for ways to not only improve their organisation’s financials but stay abreast with other aspects of the business and cement themselves as strategic stakeholders, we have created a list of key additions to a CFO’s checklist. While there might not be enough hours in every workday for these tasks, finding time to incorporate them into your workload can help to improve your professional performance as well as the performance of the business.
Host Frequent Meetings With Team Members
There is no denying that communication is essential in business and as they’re in a leadership role, a CFO should keep in touch with their team. To improve communication throughout your department, it’s beneficial to host meetings with your team on a more regular basis. Not only do these meetings provide you with an opportunity to support your team with any concerns they may have, but it enables you to offer coaching to aid ongoing development.
In addition to hosting meetings within your department, you should find time to stay up-to-date with other aspects of the business too. Improving communication between departments can help others to understand how they impact the overall financial performance of the business. By openly discussing with different departments how their decisions can affect cash flow for the whole business, you can ensure everyone is on the same page. Improving communication can have a positive impact on financials moving forward.
Automate More Processes and Daily Tasks
All CFOs should be using technology to their advantage on a day-to-day basis. Automating time-consuming and error-prone tasks is a great way not just to improve productivity, but boost the organisation’s bottom line. During financially challenging times, automating business processes can help to reduce the need for hiring more employees too. You may be surprised by just how many different tasks you can automate with the right technology.
It’s not just the finance department that should be automating tasks either. Introducing more efficient ways of working throughout the organisation can have a huge impact on budgets. So, new software and systems should be seen as an investment. Using technology throughout the whole supply chain can assist with everything from inventory management to faster decision-making, boosting overall business performance.
Be Proactive on Social Media
In this digital day and age, it’s more important than ever for CFOs to maintain their personal brand. Using platforms like LinkedIn, CFOs can stay up-to-date with the latest financial news and get involved in conversations with other industry professionals.
Regularly updating your LinkedIn profile with qualifications and awards is always beneficial, and you should be proactive in connecting with other financial professionals in your industry. In addition to commenting on other professionals’ posts on LinkedIn, consider writing your own posts. This is a great way to engage with other CFOs and boost your profile. Think of social media platforms like LinkedIn as a modern alternative to networking events.
Keep in Touch With Other Departments
As mentioned above, a CFO needs to communicate with other departments and educate them on the impact their decisions have on the business as a whole. However, as head of the finance department, you should also take some time to learn more about the struggles faced by different departments and the inefficiencies they’re experiencing.
Encouraging the whole finance team to engage in conversations with people from other departments can provide you with invaluable insights into what’s going on in the rest of the organisation. Simple ‘water-cooler chats’ during coffee breaks or lunches can help you to learn more about the challenges, priorities and goals of different departments. As a CFO, this puts you in a better position to collaborate with others and make decisions that benefit the business.
Provide Analytics Beyond the Finance Department
Tracking a range of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) across the business can help you to understand how the organisation is performing in real time. Not only should you be tracking financial KPIs, but there is an array of operational KPIs that can help to improve business processes and support data-driven decision-making.
Helping other departments understand the data and analytics that are available to the finance team, and use these to improve their operations can have a positive impact on the business. Providing departments with KPI graphs, for example, can simplify information and help to improve their understanding of current performance from a financial perspective. When you provide different departments with straightforward analysis of KPIs, you can ensure that everyone is working together toward the same goal of improving the bottom line.
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Invest in New Technologies
Should you find that your technology is no longer working efficiently for your business, investing in new systems can transform your day-to-day operations. When trying to automate more processes, you may find that you don’t currently have the capabilities to streamline everyday tasks and this can highlight the need for new technologies. With such a huge array of options on the market now, there is a software solution that can improve every aspect of your business.
Making the right technology investments at the right time can transform the way different departments operate and in turn, the organisation’s financial situation. Implementing powerful and intelligent software like NetSuite has proven time and time again to change the way organisations do business. NetSuite solutions can improve efficiency by simplifying and streamlining complex processes across various departments. Not to mention, these flexible, cloud-based solutions offer unparalleled transparency. By bringing a new level of intelligence to your organisation, NetSuite can boost your bottom line.
As a modern-day CFO, adding the above tasks to your checklist can help you to ensure you remain a strategic advisor that’s benefiting the whole business. Remember, finance directly impacts every department and CFOs can improve an organisation’s long-term profitability and prospects. If you’re interested in finding out more about how you can use technology to support both financial management and business management as a whole, contact our team at OSSM.
We are leading NetSuite consulting partners. Our expert team understands that all businesses have different problems and our consulting services can help you to determine the best systems for your specific needs. The creative and flexible NetSuite solutions we provide can help to improve your business both now and long into the future. We genuinely care about the outcomes of our projects, and we are passionate about helping our clients implement changes within their organisation.
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