Optimising financial processes

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The CFO Agenda and Performance, Risk & Compliance: The Next Chapter

At the end of last year, I read an excellent book by Jeremy Hope entitled ‘Reinventing the CFO .

The book challenges some long held assumptions about centralisation, planning, budgeting and forecasting as well as the role of the finance function as real business partner. The chapter headings really encapsulate the focus, but I recommend this book to anyone looking for breakthrough approaches to business as a whole, not just finance. Here are just a few:


  • The CFO as Freedom Fighter
  • The CFO as Analyst and Advisor
  • The CFO as Warrior against Waste
  • The CFO as Master of Measurement
  • The CFO as Regulator of Risk
  • The CFO as Champion of Change

There are two video summaries here also;

Performance and Risk are two sides of the same coin. In the world of Continuous Monitoring, we continue to see that ‘Key Risk Indicators’ (KRIs) are just another perspective on ‘Key Performance Indicators’ (KPIs). It is all about managing business exceptions.
This creates some interesting insights for the financial controls profession. Hackett Group reported that world class Finance functions with effective controls operate with 51% lower costs.
An IBM Global CFO Study reported some interesting conclusions also. Performance and Risk were the top 2 priorities. You can get their report here.
You can also view a webcast where we developed on these themes with Vagn Hansen, former VP Finance at Shell and David Mitchell, Partner at Kurt Salmon. You can access it here.
Food for thought . . .