A recent survey conducted by Gartner, Inc. has identified the top 10 priorities for CFOs in 2023. The survey, which interviewed over 150 CFOs in November 2022, found that four of the top five priorities for CFOs relate to bringing about significant strategic change within the finance function.
Top Priorities for CFOs
The top 10 priorities identified by Gartner’s survey (ranked by % of CFOs significantly involved in or leading the initiative in 2023) were as follows:
- Evaluating finance function strategy, scope, and design (90%)
- Planning and sequencing finance transformation activities (83%)
- Communicating and engaging with the board (82%)
- Setting finance’s technology strategy and roadmap (80%)
- Developing a planning, budgeting, and forecasting strategy (80%)
- Improving staff engagement (77%)
- Leading organisational change initiatives (75%)
- Aligning costs to growth (75%)
- Leading transformation programs (69%)
- Improving budget process efficiency (68%)
The survey results show that the top five priorities were picked by at least four in every five CFOs and, except for communicating and engaging with the board, they all relate to redefining and remodeling the ways in which the finance function supports the business for the future.
CFOs’ Focus on Digital Transformation
The incorporation of new technology and data into finance processes has the potential to elevate the function into a real-time provider of strategic insights and data. CFOs are therefore adopting a keen focus on this area. Many CFOs see incorporating digital technology as a key route to improving profitability in volatile times.
According to Gartner, CFOs are not comfortable delegating oversight over digital transformation matters. Tech-enabled change – both in the finance function and the wider business – is prompting most CFOs to reevaluate and reframe the role of finance in their firm.
The Gartner survey highlights the importance of CFOs being involved in strategic decision-making and driving change within their organisations. CFOs are increasingly focusing on digital transformation to improve profitability and remain competitive in uncertain times. By prioritising the evaluation of finance function strategy, scope, and design, CFOs can ensure that their organisations are well-positioned to succeed in the future.