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Our Approach

How can CFOs and their teams drive transformation in the finance group while simultaneously orchestrating finance’s traditional, everyday activities?

BCG’s Center for CFO Excellence draws on our extensive experience working with finance functions across diverse industries and our in-depth collaborations with finance leaders around the world. We have developed a comprehensive approach that can help CFOs and their teams achieve Finance Excellence. This approach encourages CFOs to master six core topics.

Structuring an Excellent Finance Function

An excellent finance function is built upon an encompassing framework that aligns the finance function with the overall company strategy through clearly assigned mandates, roles, and skills. A well-defined operating model structures the function into distinct processes and establishes clear rules, guidelines, and procedures for finance interactions. A modern and lean finance organization can be achieved only when a company takes a holistic perspective.

Steering Performance Effectively

Developing a clear understanding of a company’s business models—both conventional and new business models—is vital to actively steering performance. It requires self-service reporting and collaborative efforts to enable real-time insights and allow proactive decision-making. In addition, a company must find ways—such as choosing the right incentive scheme—to translate its steering models into value-adding actions.

Steering Performance Effectively
Maximizing Value Through Effective Capital Allocation

Maximizing Value Through Effective Capital Allocation

Effective capital allocation, aligned with a company’s strategic priorities, forms the basis for long-term value creation. World-class companies carefully select investment categories—choosing for example, between investments in growth or maintenance. They also support investment decisions with clear governance and feedback mechanisms. More broadly, finance must guide major business decisions by efficiently allocating resources beyond the classic capex decisions such as marketing expenditures.

Creating World Class Digital Finance Processes

Finance processes can be streamlined by selectively deploying technology solutions. Digitization allows a company to systematically counter weaknesses and to capitalize on unique opportunities, such as Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Artificial Intelligence (AI). In this respect, harmonization of data and IT systems is inevitable and must be complemented by new and agile ways of working.

Creating World Class (Digital) Finance Processes
Sustainability Improving Capital Market Perceptions

Sustainability Improving Capital Market Perceptions

Cultivating favorable perceptions from the capital markets requires clearly understanding investors’ characteristics and needs. In addition to creating tailored strategies, a CFO must act as an internal activist and continuously monitor all internal activities that could potentially diminish shareholder returns. Additionally, effective communication of large-scale transformations is also key.

Successfully Leading a Finance Transformation

Quick wins in lighthouse projects can portray a transformation’s effectiveness in the near tearm and generate reliable and steady funding. In the medium term, a transparent roadmap with meaningful milestones ensures commitment and diligence. Ultimately, promoting a flexible culture that is centered around performance and continuous improvement represents a key lever for CFOs seeking to achieve a successful transformation.

Successfully Leading a Finance Transformation
Center for CFO Excellence

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