The finance industry utilizes many technologies. It’s therefore difficult to keep up with the rapidly changing technology landscape and still be successful.
As CFO discusses, there are five ways to prepare for success:
- Become a leader, and expand your view
- Turn finance into a team of information analysts, not data caretakers
- Adapt to changes in technology with a new generation of finance professionals
- Transform expectations, and extend the use of advanced analytics throughout all functions
- Strengthen your expertise – educate yourself about real-time analytic capabilities
Implementing and reinforcing these techniques is the key to a successful future in finance. The biggest factor is adapting to technological change, because not doing so can be the greatest stress on financial operations, according to Journal of Accountancy. In order to keep up with the rapid changes, it’s important for CFOs to hire staff with strong technology knowledge in programs like Excel, Access, IBM’s Congos, and Intuit’s QuickBooks, as well as emerging technologies.
Strong and consistent communication between the CFO and the finance staff – inside the company and outside the company – can help businesses keep up with changes in technology. Attending conferences on new and emerging technologies also helps give CFOs an overview and head start on what is new and in development. Joining and participating in technology user groups can provide valuable insights into what service levels end-users and customers want and expect. Communicating and networking with fellow CFOs can be particularly helpful to understand and learn from shared experiences, as well as obtain knowledge of technology use across industries.
A good CFO should understand the business entirely, collaborate well, be flexible, and be up-to-the-minute on changes within the industry. The function of the CFO has evolved, but the basic tasks are largely the same. However, the available tools to perform those tasks and analyze results have changed tremendously. It’s up to the successful CFO to stay on top of those changes and implement them effectively.