CFOs do more than prepare financial reports. They help guide businesses through challenges and opportunities, offering an expert financial perspective of every area of the business. And their contributions result in significant growth.

CFO magazine recently reported the results of an interesting study that surveyed over 600 senior finance professionals across 10 industries. The study showed a correlation between high business performance (defined as above-average growth, profitability, longevity, consistency of super performance, and positioning for the future) and active engagement of a CFO. 

Here are a few ways CFOs can make an impact on business growth.

  • Developing a Master Strategy — Businesses are complex, with many parts affecting others. Actions often have unintended consequences. CFOs can align these parts, understand how to prioritize resources, and evaluate risks. CFOs take a big-picture view that others in the organization may not have.
  • Discovering Improved Operating Models — In today’s global economy, companies have more competition than ever. When they stand out with true value-added services, stay flexible and agile, and scale as needed, companies are better able to compete. CFOs are always thinking how operating models can be improved and innovated. 
  • Extracting Value from Data — We hear the term “big data” a lot these days. But it’s more than just a buzzword. Knowledge is power, and when a company understands what’s going on and why, as well as precisely who their customers are and what they desire, the company can make smarter decisions. 
  • Delivering Advanced Financial Services — Let’s not forget key financial skills. CFOs understand the complexities of finance and its impact on the various parts of a business. CFOs can advise in areas like pricing, trade promotion, operations costs, and many others. 

The CFOs role is more important now than ever, as companies face new challenges. The value they bring to the table makes businesses stronger and more competitive, and helps them grow sustainably.