Going Beyond the Numbers: CFOs Now Hold Pivotal Roles in Modern Corporations

March 21, 2019 | Lori Stewart

Lori Stewart, SPHR®, SHRM-SCP, HCS; Partner; HKP

The consistent evolution of the CFO’s role over the last generation has been heavily impacted by regulatory demands, digital technology, narrowing margins and political landscape shifts. To keep pace, finance professionals have needed to continually develop in the areas of business acumen, operational excellence, compliance, strategic planning and creative financing. Very few have ever questioned the importance of reporting on the data. However, knowing how to translate the data into lucrative business initiatives in a volatile economy is a skill that few companies can afford to be without.

A paradigm shift has been the need for the CFO’s role to identify and mentor emerging talent with financial acumen to round out the expanding demands of the finance world. Gone are the days where the CFO stayed in their office compiling reports and crunching numbers, occasionally being invited to the monthly executive meeting. Today’s CFO holds the pivotal role in organizations, consistently leading the strategic planning and holding stakeholders accountable to key performance objectives. Such individuals must possess a marketable presence, foster a culture of leadership development and drive successful metrics throughout the business.

The traditional accounting career path of yesterday’s CFO has gone by the wayside. Now, companies look for a wide and varied leadership skill set when hiring or developing today’s CFO. International business experience, advanced technology knowledge, economics savvy, risk management expertise, varied industry exposure and investor relations are just a few of the highly sought attributes of the CFO candidate.

So, if you want to be in a top role, leading transformation, impacting the daily lives of employees and positively contributing to community, maybe the quest of a CFO role lies in your future!

Lori Stewart, SPHR®, SHRM-SCP, HCS, is a partner at HKP. (HKP is the workforce management affiliate of Honkamp Krueger.) Contact her via email at Lstewart@hkpayroll.com.