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The CFO

Changing Role

In recent years, the role of the CFO has evolved significantly. Traditionally being viewed as a financial gatekeeper, the role of the CFO has expanded and evolved to a strategic partner and advisor to the CEO. In fact, in a report released by McKinsey, 88 percent of 164 CFOs surveyed reported that CEOs expect them to be more active participants in shaping the strategy of their organizations. Half of them also indicated that CEOs counted on them to challenge the company’s strategy.

The uneven pace of recovery worldwide has made it more challenging for many companies. CFOs are increasingly playing a more critical role in shaping their company’s strategies today, especially in light of the highly uncertain macroeconomic environments, where managing financial volatilities is becoming a centerpiece for many companies' strategies, based on a survey held by Clariden Global. CFOs are increasingly being relied upon as the owners of business information, reporting and financial data within organizations and assisting in decision support operations to enable the company to operate more effectively and efficiently.

The duties of a modern CFO now straddle the traditional areas of financial stewardship and the more progressive areas of strategic and business leadership with direct responsibility and oversight of operations (which often includes procurement) expanding exponentially. This significant role-based transformation, which is well underway, is best-evidenced by the “CEO-in-Waiting” status that many CFOs now hold. Additionally, many CFOs have made the realization that an operating environment that values cash, profit margins, and risk mitigation is one that plays to the primary skills and capabilities of a procurement organization, and become increasingly involved (directly via oversight or indirectly through improved collaboration) with the procurement function according to a recent research report that looks at the CFO's relationship with procurement.

Fundamental CFO Services for Start Up Companies

  • Understand the investor’s mind and will lead funding efforts.
  • Making the right strategic decisions up front lowers cost and shortens time to market
  • Understanding industry and financial benchmarks positions a company for maximizing value creation.
  • Leverage a broad scope of network contacts and service provider relationships.
  • Consult in matters of corporate governance, board formation and advisory committee formation.

Fundamental CFO Services for Existing Companies

  • Understanding industry and financial benchmarks positions a company for maximizing value creation.
  • Capital planning supports the operating plan and ensures the company’s financial metrics enhance its view to outsiders.
  • Maximize short term and long term cash flow by applying proactive management and utilizing forecasting tools.
  • Organize management and lead development and growth strategies.
  • Understand the industry and economic drivers that impact a business and will proactively position the company to take advantage of economic booms and cautiously guide the approach to uncertain economic times

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