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Roles and their associated responsibilities naturally evolve over time, and the position of CFO is no exception. During my 40 years within Finance, over 20 of those as CFO in FTSE listed companies, I’ve seen a huge change in the role that finance leaders and their teams play. The core DNA of a finance function is as important as ever—and getting the numbers right will always be critical—but today’s teams are using data and insights to add value and shape the future, not just report on what’s gone before.
This evolution means finance leaders have moved on from just being holders of the purse strings and keepers of historical records. They are now future-focused strategists, and advisors capable of providing guidance and commercial insights where their businesses need them most.
Our profession has moved from a sole reliance on historical data, to the utilisation of real-time analysis, and predictive modelling and forecasting—that helps businesses see around corners, rather than looking in the rear-view mirror. And as the world around us continues to change, the onus on organisations to show leadership has never been more prevalent. Technological prowess combined with human ingenuity will enable CFOs to influence company strategy and build deep resilience.