Not every business will appoint a full time Chief Financial Officer (CFO) or financial controller. This may be due to its smaller size or other business considerations. As a result we’re seeing the rise of the virtual CFO.
In today’s highly competitive business environment, expenses have to be carefully controlled more than ever before. If resources are used in a way that does not directly benefit the bottom line, they are largely put to waste.
Considering employees are the single biggest expense for most businesses, monitoring who is on the payroll closely can be the greatest potential savings for a small or medium sized business. But how do you limit payroll while still having access to highly qualified professionals that can point your business in the right direction? The answer lies in the form of a virtual CFO.
A virtual CFO is a highly skilled finance professional working with your business on a contractual basis rather than being a full time employee. The virtual CFO does the same job as any other CFO with the main difference that they are not on site and they work on an as needed basis. They use technology such as skype, email and cloud based accounting systems to carry out their work.
“Experienced business owners have more often than not developed basic accounting and finance skills. So they can manage the payroll and things like profit and loss reports but beyond the basics they need some assistance. That’s where the virtual CFO comes in – they bridge the gap between your capabilities and hiring a full time CFO for your business” says Mark Roderick, Managing Director of Perks Integrated Business Services.
The cost of employing a highly qualified professional as a full time CFO for a SME would likely be far beyond the benefits gained. By hiring a contracted virtual CFO, business owners get the best of both worlds. They get the knowledge and experience of a qualified CFO, with the financial savings of using their services on a contracted basis.
A virtual CFO not only assists with establishing the support and systems, but also helps with the strategic plans and cash flows to ensure that there is adequate funding for business growth.
“As part of the virtual CFO service, we offer accounting and advisory services from financial governance through to transaction processing using cloud software applications. We work with clients from one day per month up to as many days needed and tailor the level of involvement to suit our client’s needs and budget” says Mark Roderick.
In addition to affordability there are also other advantages of investing in a virtual CFO, including the following:
Experience and perspective – having worked with a number of businesses, virtual CFOs have diverse experience and can bring fresh perspectives to an organisation.
Scalability – if an organisation’s need for professional financial management grows, the financial management services provided can be scaled up to accommodate the need, which may be only short term due to specific circumstances.
Sustainability – by working with a firm like Perks, you don’t have to worry about what will happen if your CFO becomes unavailable due to unexpected emergencies. Other team members can step in as needed. You can also draw upon skills across multiple disciplines as required.
“We view our role as virtual CFOs not just as outsourcing all or part of a finance team, rather we serve as a strategic business partner whose success and reputation is directly aligned with the organisations that we serve” says Mark Roderick.
If you would like more information on how Perks can assist your business as a virtual CFO, call us today on 8273 9300.
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