Financial Teams Lack Time to Perform Effectively

CFOSome of Britain’s Chief Financial Officers are reporting that their staff do not have enough time to be able to perform their duties effectively…

Research has found that a number of the UK’s Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) believe that their finance teams so not have the time to be able to do their jobs properly.

Asked about a number of aspects which might impact upon their businesses, CFOs voted for "lack of time to complete work and projects" above any other reason.

Over a third (35%) of CFOs polled said that their finance teams fit this category.

In second place, nearly a quarter (24%) of CFOs believed that a lack of commercial skills was hampering their departments’ ability to deliver.

Other problems included:

  • Not enough permanent staff to complete work & projects (21%)
  • A lack of inter-departmental collaboration (21%)
  • Weak midlle management and leadership (18%)
  • A shortage of temporary staff to boost efficiency (18%)
  • Inadequate technical skills (19%)
  • "Scope creep" (9%)

With the lack of staff, skills and hours for their teams to be able to perform their roles, CFOs said that they themselves were being placed under great pressure to deliver perceivedvalue and performance to their busiensses.

31% of Chief Financial Officers had either "somewhat" or "significantly" increased their head counts in order to try and deliver business goals for their departments.

Phil Sheridan, the Managing Director of Robert Half UK, the employment agency that produced the figures, said of the findings:

“The role of the CFO is vitally important as they are increasingly required to provide strategic guidance and commercial leadership in addition to traditional financial management and accounting. The term ‘doing more with less’ seems to be quite a common phrase these days.”

Speaking of the pressure that CFOs found themselves underm, Sheridan added:

“However, when business critical tasks are being neglected due to a lack of time by finance teams, alternative measures need to be explored. Whether to provide support for daily tasks or leverage niche skill sets for technical projects, many CFOs are drafting in extra support from temporary and interim workers to help fill the skills gap.”

Solutions to the problems faced by financial departments include addressing the specific issues flagged up in the report.

38% of finance directors said they had plans to improve commnications between their company’s internal departments as a primary goal. CFOs hope that the new-found collaboration projects will enable cost-reduction benefits and make their businesses more efficient.

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