History of the Chief Financial Officer
The focus of the chief financial officer used to be accounting, controlling and closing the books, who was often faced with the issue of accounting standards, fast close at month end, and finance ERP systems. There are several financial consolidation related tasks that finance teams find cumbersome and time consuming:
- Managing/adjusting journal entries, intercompany eliminations and foreign currency exchange.
- Preparing and distributing financial statements.
- Collecting and validating data
- Consolidating various financial statements with or without joint ownership applied.
- Preparing for disclosure requirements.
This traditional accounting role of the CFO in the 1950s adapted into the role of a business partner in the early 1990s. In the 90s, the CFO was someone who became focused on insights and decision support, merger and acquisitions, financial communication, risk and compliance. The issues were selecting corporate performance management solutions, enterprise performance management solutions, driver based forecasting, scenario & contingency planning, analytics, value based management, investor relations and financing.
Managing volatility, enterprise complexity, cost advantages and digital strategies
In the modern economy of 2016, the CFO should be managing volatility, enterprise complexity, delivering competitive cost advantages and architecting digital strategies. To do this, he or she must address the issue of digital operating models, data, cost management, new value calculations, and forecast credibility. Finance teams should be digitally powered, value-centric and predictive.
Beyond more accurate, efficient and accessible data, automated financial consolidation enables collaboration across organisations. To help get your business on the fast-track to enterprise-wide views of finances:
- Implement enterprise scorecards, standard reports and analytics
- Implement region scorecards, standard reports and analytics.
- Implement real-time predictive analytic engines.
- Automate and simplify workflows.
- Provide easy access to data.
- Enable data sharing.
- Enforce compliance on full and partial ownerships.
- Enhance your currency conversions.
- Improve your intercompany eliminations.
Liberate the office of finance from the dictatorship of the spreadsheet
Finally, liberate the office of finance from the dictatorship of the spreadsheet! Stop spending all week collecting, manipulating, reconciling, reporting and controlling transactions, then spending the weekend recovering from burnout. Implement a digital solution to perform these basic non-value added tasks. This will allow you to allocate your time throughout the business week and across all members of the office of finance by automatically collecting data, developing customised reports, performing analysis, interacting with decision makers, strategic initiatives and personal development. Provide colleagues with insightful, analytical, collaborative material, to create a culture of external focus, risk awareness and agility.