With technology taking up more and more space in companies, a chief financial officer (CFO)’s role is changing. Once responsible for protecting the company’s assets and fulfilling key financial responsibilities within the business, a CFO now contributes in a much more complex manner. The CFO of the future will need to develop skills that extends beyond finance, be able to use the vast amount of information produced for the benefit of the company, and adapt to their ever-changing role.
Bringing IT and finance together
The CFO must now learn to juggle technology in addition to finance. Their team will have to include people with varied fields of expertise so they can extract and interpret the incalculable amount of data that software produces. To be an effective chief financial officer, it is no longer enough to simply know financial concepts; you have to be able to incorporate new tools to the mix and extract as much as possible out of them. Powerful tools let CFOs spend less time on financial manipulations, so they have more time to invest in reshaping their role and bringing as much benefit as possible to the business.
Information compiled from various sources
Nowadays, obtaining data is easier than ever. Knowing what to do with the vast amount of extracted data has become the primary challenge. Software is constantly producing data. Information is compiled from a variety of sources and is accessible from everywhere. A business’s finance team no longer needs to spend so much time looking for data, creating tables, etc. They can, instead, focus their efforts on analyzing and interpreting the data and ratios that the new software produces.
A changing role
The CFO of the future will have a duty to participate in decision-making that goes beyond the traditional financial framework. They will continue to act as the guardian of compliance and ensure financial data accuracy, but they will also play a more strategic role and will be seen as more of a business partner. The CFO will be able to use the results of the data they have analyzed and interpreted to drive management teams as they make decisions on the direction of the business.
The CFO will continue to be a major player in companies. Their position, even though different, remains of paramount importance to a business’s development and continuity. If they want to continue providing added value, they will be expected to master more than just financial concepts. And, as new technology develops, their role will morph. They will have to understand financial rules, be comfortable with process automation and rely on artificial intelligence to support them in their role.