Within the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley, the integration of technology solutions continues to reshape businesses. As a result, C-suite collaboration has rapidly been increasing, and is standard procedure in many successful companies. A recent survey from Robert Half revealed that 82 percent of Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) collaborate with their company's CIO more now than they did three years ago.
The research also shows that technology investments (56 percent of the response) and business systems changes (52 percent) are the top collaboration areas for CFOs and CIOs, followed closely by staff technology training and cybersecurity (both at 45 percent). Finance and technology leaders are also partnering on digital transformation efforts (39 percent) for their company.
“The adoption and implementation of new technologies like artificial intelligence and robotic process automation are no longer in their infancy," said Tim Hird, an executive vice president at Robert Half. "It's a business imperative for CFOs and CIOs to closely work together to consider the operational and financial issues of technology solutions.”
John Reed, an executive vice president for Robert Half, added that while a closer working relationship between CFOs and CIOs is essential, organizations derive further benefits from increased interaction between finance and IT staffs in general. “Providing opportunities for the teams to collaborate builds awareness of operational challenges and needs, which often leads to more astute insights on best practices and solutions.”
The following are three business advantages of a strong CFO-CIO relationship:
Smarter IT investments — Digital transformation initiatives require a substantial allocation of resources and have an enormous impact on a company's future performance. The CIO can provide expert guidance on which technology can best achieve business goals and increase competitiveness, while the CFO offers critical financial and operational insights (e.g., measuring the ROI on technology investments).
Improved information security and compliance — With firms increasingly reliant on technology, the need to protect sensitive data has never been greater. The CFO and CIO must coordinate and develop measures to address the risks posed by cybercriminal activity and compliance demands.
Actionable data analytics — A solid working relationship between C-level executives can produce the right combination of technologies and processes to extract the most accurate financial and operational information for the CFO to analyze. Analysis in these areas often reveal crucial areas of improvement that will lead to more efficient sales growth, cost management, and margin and profit increases.
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