Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageAre CFOs the answer to digital transformation leadership crises?

By Tim Sandle     Jun 7, 2018 in Business
There's a great deal of debate in business circles about which role is the optimal one for championing digital transformation. Is it the CEO, CDO, CIO? How about the CFO?
According to a report in Global Banking and Finance Review, it's time to drop assumptions that the CEO will have time to spearhead digital transformation. As for the Chief Data Officer (or Chief Digital Officer) and the Chief Information Officer, their focus could be too narrow. The report recommends: "only one C-suite executive sits at the intersection of strategy, technology, operations, and financial management: the CFO." In other words, let the Chief Financial Officer lead.
The CFO has primary responsibility for managing the company's finances, including financial planning, management of financial risks, record-keeping, and financial reporting, which makes the position central to each key decision made. In addition, many CFOs are responsible for the analysis of data: inspecting, cleansing, transforming, and modeling data.
Many surveys suggest that digital transformation stumbles due to uncertainty around leadership in the enterprise. For instance, Wipro Digital released a survey which indicated that leadership within digital transformation, in many firms, may be in crisis. Here a study of 400 U.S. based executives revealed that half of those polled across companies in different sectors felt their company was not successfully executing against 50 percent of their digital strategies.
Moreover, across those tasked with leading digital transformation, the executives reported that resistance to introducing new ways of working was common and many felt overwhelmed by digital complexity. The CFO could come to the rescue, as the Global Banking and Finance Review examination points out:
CFOs see all of the vital company data, and they have the skills to analyze and interpret it.
CFOs can examine digitalization projects to assess deliver return-on-investment, value, revenue benefits and sustainable cost-effectiveness.
CFOs are better placed to assess the "longer-term benefits of transformation, such as competitive differentiation, talent acquisition, improved service and business agility."
According to the IFS Digital Transformation Survey, the proportion of CFOs taking the lead in digital transformation appears to be growing, currently standing at around 35 percent. It's behind the CIO and CEO, but a shift in leading on DX processes appears to be occurring.
More about cfo, chief financial officer, digital transformation, csuite
Latest News
Top News