Businesses choose to engage a Virtual CFO for a multitude of reasons. Among some of the most common of these are to achieve better cash flow management, strategy and direction, leadership, productivity, financial reporting or analysis, informed decision making and diversified access to resources.
While Virtual CFOs (otherwise known as outsourced CFOs) provide the same expertise as traditional CFOs, they offer their service on a part-time or ad-hoc basis. This explains the increasing demand for Virtual CFOs from businesses who appreciate that they can reap of benefits of having indispensable guidance that leads to business growth and success, without needing to pay a full-time CFO salary.
Related: In-House CFO vs. Outsourced CFO
Whilst many understand the benefits that a Virtual CFO can bring to a business, fewer people understand how to actually find an appropriate CFO, that will be able to satisfy the demands of their business.
Here are 5 ways to ensure that you find a Virtual CFO that suits your business’s needs.
5 Considerations for finding the right Virtual CFO for your business:
1. Have you identified your business goals?
Given the importance of the CFO role to a company’s financial health, longevity, and success – appointing the right Virtual CFO that understands your business requirements and can tailor advisory solutions, accordingly, is crucial.
Finding an appropriate outsourced CFO lies in a business owner’s or team’s ability to thoroughly understand what their goals are, and what they want to achieve by hiring an outsourced CFO.
Some business owners want to generate cash for themselves from their business each year and others are looking for a sale to be able to exit the business with a lump sum of money in a fixed period. Some want to build a business they can pass onto their families. Whatever the goal is, it is important that it is clearly defined. The goal may change but continued clarity on the financial destination is very important when recruiting an outsourced CFO.
2. What does the business owner want to achieve?
Once goals are identified, business owners should clearly outline what they want to achieve by hiring an outsourced CFO. Whether that may be to facilitate cash flow management, financial reporting, strategic analysis and planning, risk management, structural changes, or investment – understanding and prioritising the deliverables needed and ensuring these align with your business goals will streamline the Virtual CFO selection process.
Simply put, without a core understanding of the necessary services that your business requires, it is impossible to deduce which outsourced CFO is most capable of successfully providing such services.
3. Qualified CFO firm or individual CFO?
Whether you engage an individual CFO, or a qualified CFO firm will depend on the scope of your business’s requirements. Utilising a firm gives your business access to a multitude of resources, meaning you can keep all your finance and accounting services under the one roof, resulting in improved efficiency, reliability, and cost-effectiveness. Having access to a team of CFOs, as opposed to just an individual enhances the offerings and resources available to you, without comprising on cost.
4. What qualifications does the CFO have?
To ensure that your prospective outsourced CFO is suitably qualified, look for members of the CPA, Chartered Accountants Australia & New Zealand, or the Institute of Chartered Accountants. Members of these institutions are proficient and bound by professional standards and a code of ethics.
5. How experienced is the CFO?
At CFO Australia, we believe that experience is the greatest source of knowledge, and that first-hand experience lends itself to a better understanding of a client’s needs. Virtual CFOs are unique in the sense that they have a wealth of experience advising a variety of businesses within different industries. This means that VCFO’s have often been confronted with a myriad of issues and are subsequently well equipped to both solve and foresee business problems. When considering a CFO for your business, review how long the CFO has been in accounting or management and which industries they have worked in. By focusing on the experience of each individual CFO within a company, rather than the company at large, you may be exposed to better opportunities.
Outsourced CFO Service
Many businesses have outsourced their CFO function to a CFO company for a number of reasons. CFO Australia has been built by a team of CFOs, who passionately believe that their personal success lies in the success of their clients’ businesses. CFO Australia optimises all of its resources, namely, collaboration amongst a diverse team of commercially focused CFOs, global partnerships and the backing of a leading accounting firm Azure Group, to achieve remarkable client results.
Get in Touch
To learn more about our outsourced CFO service, get in touch with our team.