Where is finance going over the next few years, and what will it mean for the skills and focus of those that lead it? In a recent survey sponsored by SAP and conducted by CFO Research, we asked these questions and more. And the answers are very enlightening.
Finance professionals are clearly expecting their role to change. Only 24% think they will be doing largely the same type of work they are now.
In turn, that means finance leaders are looking to expand their skills and experience. Fully 78% of them say they are seeking out experience in general management and information technology.
But it is how they describe the finance function in the future that is really telling. In five years, compared to the past:
- Twice as many say finance will be technologically self-sufficient
- Over 2.5 times as many think finance will work collaboratively
- Over twice as many expect finance to be more business oriented
- Nearly three times as many see finance as thinking strategically
- Over twice as many think finance will be forward looking
The message is clear. Finance leaders are keen to work more collaboratively with their line-of-business colleagues on setting the strategic direction of their companies.
Source: CFO Research study on the future of finance, October 2015.