Undeniably, the role of the chief financial officer has evolved over the past few years as the market steers toward changing priorities, especially following the pandemic.
Businesses have dived deeper in other areas of focus such as environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals and digital transformations.
- ESG Initiatives: ESG initiatives are no longer confined to the periphery of corporate strategies; they are integral components shaping organisational direction. Surveys show a growing inclination among CFOs to play a larger role in sculpting ESG programs, aligning social and climate issues with the broader company vision.
- Strategic Digitisation: CFOs must undertake a meticulous evaluation of costs and benefits associated with digital use cases rather than succumbing to digital transformations merely because they’re deemed necessary. A targeted approach involves identifying the specific needs of the organisation or function in both the short and long term. Automation, a key facet of digitisation, requires process standardisation and a clear view of how automation benefits will be harnessed.
- Capability Building as a Strategic Imperative: Capabilities, which involve the mindsets and behaviours essential for organisational success are keys for sustained performance. CFOs recognise that capability building is not just a developmental initiative but a strategic weapon to create competitive advantage and enhance employee well-being. In the fast-paced business environment, low employee satisfaction can trigger a downward spiral of low productivity and morale.
- Empowering employees. Employees are expected to excel in their roles, and CFOs play a role in empowering them. This not only increases satisfaction but also augments overall performance. There is an opportunity for CFOs to bridge a gap, further solidifying their role as not just financial stewards but as champions of organisational agility and excellence.