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Finance executives outline their top 7 priorities for 2016

A recent survey from Potiviti (as reported by Business Insider) reveals that CFOs are continuing to focus on the strategic value of finance instead of just accounting processes and operations. Although the survey was a national survery, the results mirror the trends here in the San Francisco Bay and Silicon Valley among small businesses and startups.

Overall, the top goal for CFOs is margin and profit performance. Various areas of financial analysis that have grown in priority for CFOs include strategic planning, budgeting, performance management, business intelligence, periodic forecasting, profitability analysis, and risk management.

Additionally, the top processes prioritized for improvement include:

  • Cash forecasting

  • Period-end close

  • Variance analysis

  • Account reconcilliations

  • Accounts receivable

  • Working capital management

  • Pricing

  • Invoicing / billing

  • Banking relationships

  • Cost allocation

  • Investment relationships.

Here's an excerpt from the report which summarizes the strategic emphasis by CFOs:

"Finance functions are working … to equip business partners throughout the organization with more precise and real-time information on performance, cash positions, and profitability drivers to strengthen strategic decision-making.”

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