Chief Future-proofing Officer: the evolving role of the CFO

Only one in three business leaders believe their chief financial officers are up to the task of evolving with the times.

A new report reveals that technology is the biggest chink in the armour for chief financial officers looking to future-proof their position.

A white paper released by software firm, Advanced, builds on a recent KPMG survey, which found that 63 per cent of CEOs believe that the CFO’s role will increase in significance over the next three years, compared to other C-suite positions. Yet only one in three of those surveyed felt that their CFO was up to this challenge.

Many finance tasks are increasingly being automated, which allows finance professionals to focus on strategising, forecasting and planning, rather than spending a chunk of their time gathering and comparing data.

The white paper, The Connected CFO – a company’s secret silver bullet?, highlights the technology that every CFO needs in their arsenal, including data analytics. The report suggests that by providing real-time analysis, CFOs can instantly identify and correct inefficiencies, while supporting the rest of the C-suite with strategic decisions.

Technology and big data are going to play an increasingly prominent role in the CFO’s day-to-day job. This in turn gives the connected CFO greater information and power, offering them the opportunity to elevate their own position in the organisation as key strategic advisors and enablers of business change,” Advanced’s CFO, Andrew Hicks, said.

According to Hicks, the increasing availability of data has made businesses and investors “information-hungry”, and this scenario can bolster the role of the CFO. “The CFO tends to sit at that intersect point between operations and the numbers so they are ideally placed to interpret plans and improve business performance,” he said.

“Many organisations are only in the early stages of this transformation but the savvy CFO can seize the opportunity to drive real change and be seen as a leader. Businesses are crying out for that connected, end-to-end view of data across departments, and CFOs are in the position to deliver this.” 

Praseeda Nair

Praseeda Nair

Praseeda was Editor for from 2016 to 2018.

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