Today nothing in business is done without the use of technology.
The ability to send messages to people in real time, operate machinery or even make a payment, are often dictated by computers and software. This means that everybody in the company needs to have some competence using digital technologies.
With the importance of technology within any organization, having senior figures who can not only understand, but also take full advantage of new technologies is going to give a boost to the company.
The CFO is going to be vital in this regard.
Having a digitally engaged CFO means that you are not only going to have somebody who can understand how the finance team is working, but also how they can maximize their potential.
Almost all financial innovations in the last 20 years have come from improved technology. This could be from improved forecast accuracy to increased speed in results. The companies who adopt these new technologies early are invariably the ones who have the most success from them.
This takes a CFO who can not only use technologies, but who has a firm grasp on new trends that could potentially improve performance. It is about more than simply using what you are given, but also getting what will make you better.
This needs to expand beyond the finance team.
As the main power in the company for budget allocation, a CFO needs to be able to identify what would and wouldn’t be useful for other parts of the company, then budget accordingly. Knowing what would actually make a difference to the performance of the marketing team will inform the CFO of what a budget should be spent on and how much that budget should be.
This would simply not be possible with a CFO who is simply looking at what they have in front of them rather than what technological breakthroughs are on the horizon.
Having a digitally engaged business is more than just having people within the company who are interested in new technologies, it takes people who make the decisions to support or lead these changes. Although strategically this will come from a selection from the board, the real impetus needs to come from the CFO. Essentially they are the ones who will truly put the money where their mouth is.