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Should you appoint an outsourced CFO?

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If you are reading this, you’re likely a small-to-medium sized company that is undergoing rapid growth. At this point in your journey, you acknowledge the need for C-suite level financial guidance. But how do you plan for expansion when money is tight? And how can you possibly afford to hire a CFO? Appointing an outsourced CFO may just be the answer.

But first, what is a CFO anyway? 

A CFO, or Chief Financial Officer, is a senior-level executive that oversees the financial aspects of your company. A CFO’s responsibilities include financial planning, tracking cash flow, and analyzing your company’s fiscal strengths and weaknesses. An essential function of the CFO is to determine what corrective actions need to occur to establish and optimize financial viability. Some of the tasks they carry out include budgeting, forecasting, KPI analysis, and recommending best practices. As you can guess, CFOs and the knowledge they impart to your business are vital components for success.

So…what do outsourced CFO services entail?

With outsourced CFO services, your business receives strategic financial insight and guidance that leads to fiscal health, without needing to pay a full-time CFO. An outsourced CFO will fulfill that same strategic role as a staff CFO – but instead of joining your company as a corporate officer with a corporate officer’s salary, they will work with you on a contract basis. The amount of support you receive is completely up to you and what your budget allows. You can retain your CFO for one day per week without completely dismantling your company’s bottom line. Even a minimal level of involvement with a knowledgeable CFO can considerably transform your operations. 

Why might outsourcing be the right option for your business?

Having the assistance of a knowledgeable and experienced finance professional to help guide business decisions is invaluable. This is especially true for startups and small businesses whose founders don’t necessarily have a background in finance. While there are numerous benefits to working with an outsourced CFO, here are the most significant advantages that apply to all businesses, no matter the size or industry:

Outsourcing CFO services saves you $$

Hiring a full-time staff CFO can be pricey. According to Salary.com, the average salary for a CFO is $394,235 – not including insurance, bonuses, and other perks. For many businesses, it is just not possible to budget in that kind of expense. Outsourced CFO services let your company tap into executive-level financial expertise for a fraction of the cost.

Outsourcing CFO services saves you precious time

An outsourced CFO can handle the management of financial processes that are currently being carried out internally. Their expertise eliminates the guesswork from tasks like budgeting, payroll processing, and debt management. This frees up your time so that you can focus on business development and other important initiatives. As their services assist your company’s growth, you can then scale up their involvement with your business as needed.

Outsourcing CFO services gives you a fresh perspective

Getting an objective outsider’s analysis of your financials can offer new insights regarding the fiscal health and direction of your company. Since an outsourced CFO isn’t involved in the day-to-day operations of your business, they serve as a fresh set of eyes to give you an unbiased assessment of your company’s financial data. 

Outsourcing CFO services keeps you proactively monitoring your business strategy

Under the direction of a CFO, accounting and reporting systems can be put in place to guarantee you have full visibility of the core metrics required to make important business decisions quickly and efficiently. With these systems, you avoid the challenges that ensue from reactive decision-making. This gives you a dynamic view of the next steps to take to grow your business and be profitable along the way.

Things to consider…

To make sure you get the most benefit from your outsourced CFO, think about the challenges you’re trying to address and the results you’re hoping for. You may need a specific analytic report completed or just general guidance on what crucial benchmarks you should target. Knowing what your goals are before you involve an outsourced CFO will help you know what questions to ask, and what criteria to consider.

At Satterley Accounting Services, our CFO and advisory professionals don’t work like traditional consultants. We integrate into your company and become part of the team. We aim to support your company’s vision, mission, values, and culture while providing exceptional financial services that help drive growth and profitability. For more information visit our website or schedule a consultation to discuss how we can assist you.

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Scott Pickering

Scott Pickering has been on the East Bay Newspapers team for more than two decades, since starting as a reporter for the Sakonnet Times. He's been editor of most of the papers, was Managing Editor of all the papers for many years, and became General Manager in 2012. Today he can be found posting to EastBayRI.com, steering news coverage, writing editorials, talking to readers, working with the sales team, collaborating on design, or helping do whatever it takes to get the papers out the door. Reach him at spickering@eastbaynewspapers.com.