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It’s that time of year again: time to think about your Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) return. Employers must lodge an FBT return if they’ve provided fringe benefits to any employees or associates during the FBT year. With the FBT year ending 31 March 2022, you’ll n.....

CFO - 7 min read

Today's businesses have access to incredible tools and information to improve and stay competitive. But it's challenging to keep up with all the skills necessary to build and maintain an edge.

Our CFO services can provide you with the following skills to help improve your financial results.

1. The Ability to Harness Emerging Technologies

A recent Fortune/Deloitte CEO survey found that the current business environment has fast-tracked digital initiatives. An incredible 85 per cent of CEOs agreed that the coronavirus pandemic has significantly accelerated digital transformation, up from 77 per cent in June 2020. 

As businesses adopt emerging technologies, they take advantage of greater efficiencies. If your organisation fails to keep pace, it's challenging to compete with the rest of the industry.

What emerging technologies might improve your financial results?

Cloud Computing

When businesses adopt cloud computing, they eliminate the need for on-site servers, and may also reduce software licencing costs as they no longer have to purchase multiple copies. If you're ready to reduce friction by eliminating software updates and increase the safety of your data, talk to us about cloud computing.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

The future is here when it comes to machine learning and AI. It's allowing businesses to save resources by automating specific repetitive tasks that currently consume much of employees' time. 

AI allows for the automation of tasks like data entry, scheduling, planning, and even replying to emails. Artificial intelligence can also assist with analysing data and identifying leads. Ultimately, it frees up your employees' time so they can focus on more advanced tasks that require a human touch.

Internet of Things (IoT)

From phones and cars to security systems and thermostats, devices and objects are increasingly connected. Business Insider Intelligence predicts the installation of more than 64 billion IoT devices installed worldwide by 2026. 

Some businesses are finding innovative ways to use IoT technology for day-to-day tasks such as tracking products through the supply chain, augmenting the role of data analytics and managing the workforce. 

2. Value Creation and Preservation

What components add up to the sum total of your organisation's value? The number on the balance sheet represents just one-fifth of your business's value, and that's one of the reasons the CFO's role has become more complex.

In recent years, we've seen a growing emphasis on intangible assets. A recent report, The CFO and Finance Function Role in Value Creation, lays out a value-creation plan, much-needed amidst the COVID-19 crisis. 

In 2013, the IIRC defined the six types of capital that circumscribe an organisation's value: 

  • Natural capital
  • Social and relationship capital
  • Intellectual capital
  • Human capital
  • Manufactured capital
  • Financial capital.

In the past, CFOs have primarily been responsible for their organisation's financial capital, but today's financial executives must use a more well-rounded view of value. If this is a piece that's been missing from your company's strategy, work with us to expand the organisation's vision.

3. Principles-Based Governance

In addition to acting as a strategic partner to the CEO, the CFO must be the face of principles-based governance for the organisation. Disciplined practices build a culture of integrity and transparency, and the leadership for these traits must come from effective leadership.

Principles-based governance is different from rules-based governance. Rules quickly grow out of date and can be manipulated to favour a strong-willed person's interests. Principles outlive rules, and they're sound enough to provide an anchor, even when the sea winds change.

Good corporate governance consists of honesty, integrity, accountability and mutual respect. The constantly shifting environment within which decisions are taken, and services delivered, constructs a web of stakeholders, each of whom has interests and influences. The CFO must acknowledge, understand and manage these factors, and a principles-based governance system allows for openness and transparency in such an environment. 

4. Adaptive Finance & Accounting (F&A) Capability

Today's CFO must be adaptive, flexible and proactive, not reactive. While CFOs have always been tasked with F&A (finance and accounting), uncertainties in modern markets require rapid responses and easy adaptability.

By gathering and analysing data, CFOs can provide up-to-the-minute information that allows key decision-makers to react swiftly and confidently to market swings, investment opportunities and even crises. 

5. Strategic Management Skills

The CFO is positioned to facilitate a unifying perspective on a business's strategic objectives, opportunities, risks and business model. If your business strategy is still in the developmental phase, you might want to work through these questions with your CFO:

  • What are the aspirations and long-term goals of the business?
  • What products and services will our company offer, and in what markets will we operate?
  • How will we play to win? How will our business differentiate itself to gain an advantage over competitors?
  • What capabilities do we need to maintain a competitive edge?
  • What management systems and processes will we need to succeed?

A competent CFO will provide the strategic management to steer your business toward its goals.

Our CFO team can help you with each of these five skills that will help you improve your business's financial performance, and that's not all. From payroll solutions to organisational design and restructuring, we have the resources and know-how to help you succeed. Reach out to us at Altus for a consultation. Let's chat!

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