The role of the modern Chief Financial Officer is changing. In recent years the onset of the world financial crisis has led to ever growing responsibility for the CFO with an increasing number of CFOs playing a pivotal role in the organization's business health, well-being and success and carrying an elevated responsibility to the company, shareholders, customers and staff.
These changes in responsibility that the recent economic crisis wrought for Chief Financial Officers are destined to impact the CFO role well beyond resolution of current economic trends.
During the downturn, CFOs and their Finance organizations were forced to address urgent challenges in a volatile environment. As part of this, they were drawn into higher-level boardroom discussions and strategic decisions and, as a result, gained far more influence at the enterprise level.
And with good reason; whilst many companies and business owners have focused on a relentless pursuit of increased sales during these troubled times, the future health of a company can get lost in the heat of the moment.
What is forgotten is the attention that should consistently be paid to the future, and no other person other than the CEO is better placed to take on this responsibility than the CFO whose primary role is to develop effective financial controls that monitor and minimize expenses, and maximize profits and cash flow.
Not only is the CFO now responsible for identifying and assessing profitable business ventures, signing off on technology purchases and leading M&A activity. Additionally, for many companies the CFOs role has expanded to include managing business functions such as an expanded HR role, Outsourcing, IT management, environmental issues, logistics and site management. With such an array of responsibilities it is vital that today's CFO is a strategic thinker who is able to assist in leading not only a company's executive team, but also its entire workforce in adapting to change.
The CFO Summit is designed specifically with the CFO in mind – to assist forward-thinking CFOs to meet these challenging demands.
The CFO Summit will serve to bring together CFOs who are currently investing in innovative solutions that will positively impact their bottom line and solution providers who will need to position themselves at those precise investment hot-spots in order to reap the benefits.
"What stands out from this event was the quality of the speakers chosen to moderate the round tables. I like working with genuine facilitators who can open people up and keep the discussion moving."
Paul Bergamo, VP and CIO, Liberty Mutual