Years ago, emerging technologies and digital transformation were transforming the world as we know it. Now, the pandemic has strengthened and accelerated these forces, rapidly redefining what it means to run a successful financial organization.
A new report of Deloitte looks to the year 2025 – sharing predictions about the future of finance. He revisits a 2018 article on the same topic, recalibrating each prediction given the immense change we’re seeing right now. Perhaps the most important of the trends explored throughout the report is talent, as talent strategy has transformed faster than anything else.
As organizations around the world send their employees to work from home, CFOs have discovered new ways of working that simplify processes and strengthen strategic thinking to ultimately improve business results. While we expect a ‘return to work’ in some form or another soon, operations will no longer look like they once were. CFOs looking to forge a more effective and efficient finance organization should take stock of these lessons learned.
Capitalize on new operating models
Financial executives have traditionally focused on reducing costs as a key motivator for operational change. While cost remains crucial to decision making, leaders need to be mindful of other opportunities and factors to improve their operating models. Successful organizations will be set up to adapt and take advantage of hybrid work models.
Remote working has proved its worth during the pandemic. Not only does it offer significant savings through a dispersed workforce, but remote working also balances employee demand for flexibility while opening up opportunities for innovation. For example, closing books completely remotely has never been seen as a possibility in the pre-pandemic landscape. Now, this is not only possible; it becomes the norm. Collaborative technologies and virtual sites have also generated greater potential around off-cycle reporting and self-service.
CFOs looking to deliver new value and drive tangible business results will benefit from these hybrid operating models, with a focus on end-to-end processes, on-demand offerings, and better coordination across the board. within their workforce.
Tap into the world’s talent pool
New expansive operating models are opening up needs within the workforce. In a tough talent market where seemingly every function, industry, and industry competes for top talent, CFOs faced with this dilemma should ask themselves: how can I access more talent in more locations across different locations? delivery methods to fill the gaps in my team?
With the wider acceptance of hybrid work, it is likely that other modes of delivery, including subcontractors, freelancers, and gig workers, could fill the gaps for many finance teams. We are in an increasingly tight talent market, not only in the United States but around the world. Hybrid and remote models allow financial organizations to access global talent pools and specialized resources that they may not have previously had.
Hire for new roles and skills
Savvy and efficient financial services will also expand the roles and skills they hire for. Many leaders recognize broader evolving needs and capabilities as CFOs become more integrated into the C suite, armed with better financial literacy and broader strategic thinking. This change is dependent on technologies such as artificial intelligence and predictive analytics and fueled by talents with expertise in these areas.
Maintaining the flow of operations and information within the financial organization means reducing dependence on the IT function.
Maintaining the flow of operations and information within the financial organization means reducing dependence on the IT function. We’re seeing various departments starting to hire data scientists for their own needs, and this is a critical pivot that finance executives will need to make to take advantage of new digital tools. While traditional finance skills remain essential, digital savvy ones will be in high demand. Finance managers can encourage rotations and other development programs for the existing workforce.
CFOs should also seek to acquire people with business acumen to strengthen the financial organization – by analyzing swathes of financial data to make sound, impactful decisions while always keeping top priorities in mind. business strategies. In the future, finance professionals will play a more important role in information strategy and, therefore, they must have a more complete understanding of the potential opportunities and risks.
The world continues to reimagine what work is like – and this is also true of CFOs and the workforce that supports them. There are significant opportunities to improve performance and reimagine what financial talent can do, and leaders should look to make those changes or be left behind.
Mike Danitz is a Practice Director of Finance and Corporate Performance at Deloitte Consulting, LLP.