2020 brings a new decade, new technologies, and new challenges for businesses. In today’s blog, based on an article by Wendy Wang, Group CFO and COO at Tricor, we will discuss three trends that are transforming the role of the CFO in 2020.
The expectations of a CFO are rising as technology is advancing, and no longer are they only responsible for focusing on a company’s bottom line. On average, five functions (other than finance) now report to a company’s Chief Financial Officer. In changing times, CFOs need to keep an eye on emerging trends and strategies so they can help their companies grow, succeed and stay one step ahead. Three emerging trends that CFOs need to be aware of are: the evolving technology-centric role, the emergence of data analytics, and being aware of global trade and regulations.
Embracing a Technology-centric Role
Today’s best CFOs recognize and harness the power of technology to gain insights, boost productivity and spot financial trends. Artificial intelligence is a growing field, and its programs and software can automate functions and provide better insight into factors that could affect a company’s bottom line. By using the benefits of AI, CFOs could allocate more time to other areas of need within the organization such as IT cybersecurity. As Wendy Wang says, with increased digitalization, more CFOs will likely be in charge of managing a company’s digital ecosystem.
The Emergence of Data Analytics
Data analytics is evolving the finance function because there are so many tools now that manage data collection to make it more streamlined and efficient. Analytics filter through raw data, saving time from manually sorting it, and identifying the most useful pieces. This helps people within the finance function better gather insight on their numbers to make more informed business decisions. With the right analytics software, CFOs can better predict the future of the company by analyzing current and past trends.
Global Trade and Regulatory Dynamics
Proficiency in global trade can help guide a company’s expansion or investment strategy. Being aware of trade and regulatory environments can help you better identify potential new investment opportunities. With a global business lens, the CFO can play a large and critical role in focusing on a company’s expansion strategy. With many new companies and people going online each day, week, month and year, companies have several opportunities to tap into new customer pools. However, in order to enter these new markets successfully, it is important to understand the trade and regulatory environments so that you can better advise on an expansion strategy.
As companies rely more and more on their CFOs for strategic management, having a CFO that makes better use of technology, data and a global viewpoint will help deliver business insights and growth strategies, as well as competitive advantages. What other trends have you noticed that are transforming the role of the CFO? Let us know!