The CFO'S Perspective

The Importance of Federal Tax Compliance for Businesses

Every business is required to file tax returns and make payments on income at the state and federal level. While each organization has its own requirements, ignorance of the rules is not an excuse for non-compliance.

Not only is it vital that a company dedicate resources to federal tax compliance, it is also costly. Since tax rules tend to change frequently, there is a high risk of mistakes as well as the potential to miss opportunities, both situations that could hurt your company's bottom line.

Make sure you pay your taxes; otherwise you can get in a lot of trouble."
- Richard Nixon

Topics: Taxes Legal

A Finance Leader's Support of the CEO Directly Impacts Your Business Success

In years past, a company's financial leader was largely disregarded when it came to strategic planning. In fact, many CEOs believed that a solid group of accountants could negate the need for a CFO altogether. Fortunately, these ideas have evolved.

Your company may have the most ground-breaking products or services and eye-popping marketing campaigns, but this is not enough to ensure financial success. This requires a closer relationship between the CEO and CFO, as well as the supporting roles within your company's finance team.

Topics: CFO Leadership

How a CFO Will Prepare Your Business for Unexpected Events

When business disruptions occur, it can be expensive. Most business owners and CEOs have a model for success in mind, but what about the other side of the coin? Failing to prepare or put contingencies in place for unexpected events can turn a potential blip into a catastrophe.

Increasingly, business owners and leaders are leaning more on their financial teams to help prepare the company for uncertainty. Specifically, the business's CFO is taking on a broader role that includes making sure that your firm will be able to weather unexpected events.

Topics: CFO Planning Financial Projections Forecasting

Your Business May Not Need a CFO

Many businesses don’t need a CFO.  Yours may be one of them.

To be clear, pretty much every business needs some form of finance lead, or at least a solid accountant.

But if you are the owner or CEO of a privately held, reasonably successful small to mid-sized business, it’s pretty unlikely you need a CFO.  Certainly not a full-time CFO.

Now, depending on some of the challenges your business is facing, you may have the need or desire for some form of interim, part-time or “fractional” CFO.  But a full-time permanent CFO?  There’s a good chance that just doesn’t make sense.

Why not?  Because in this type of business, the primary responsibilities of the true CFO are either not required or they are handled by the business owner or CEO.

Topics: CFO Hiring Controller

What Your CFO Should Do to Prepare Your Business for the Impact of the New Tax Laws

In the final days of 2017 the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was enacted. Considered the most sweeping U.S. tax code overhaul in recent history, there are changes to individual tax rates and deductions, but the most dramatic changes are for businesses. 

5 Keys to Accurate Cash Flow Forecasting

Running out of cash is not only a sign of poor planning, but it's also one of the biggest reasons that businesses fail. Forecasting your company's cash flow can be tricky because of the many variables that determine how much cash you will need for operations versus the amount available.

Developing Appropriate Salary Raise Levels for Your Business

A CFO is responsible for budgeting and accurate cash flow projections. While not necessarily an HR expert, the matter of salaries and raises is an area that a CFO must navigate in collaboration with the company’s HR team. We are sharing our thoughts on this area from a CFO’s perspective.

Topics: Economic Trends HR Budgeting

Business Drivers - Monitor, Measure & Leverage for Future Performance

What senior manager hasn't looked into the future to plan the growth of their business? The forces that drive the market acceptance and commercial success of your organization are going to vary depending on the nature of your products and services.

Whether you're in a traditional industry or a new one, business moves faster than ever today. Every millisecond a new app is download from Apple's online store. Walgreens now offers a walk-in one-minute flu shot, and customers can drop off their Fed Ex packages in the process. Any organization that wants to ensure its future must first figure out how to measure its past performance and then leverage that information to inform current decisions that impact their ongoing success.

Topics: Planning Analysis Financial Projections

Critical Information Financial Assessments Should Deliver to Business Leaders

Most small to medium-sized companies are owned and run by business leaders who are highly skilled in some key aspect of their business - such as technology, sales, or manufacturing - but are less savvy in financial matters. Financial performance measures are essential because they indicate whether a company's strategy, implementation, and execution are contributing to bottom-line results.

Whether it is your company's number one goal or not, the notion of turning a profit is sure to be in your top five short and long-term objectives. The only way to know if you are achieving your financial goals is to regularly assess your business. Are things running smoothly? If not, where are the bottlenecks? What parts of the business are acting as growth catalysts? Many of these questions can be answered by reviewing regular financial reports.

Topics: Analysis Financial Reports

3 Reasons to Consider Alternative Funding

Fully insured health plans not only limit an employer’s ability to manage their healthcare spend by restricting their access to claims and utilization data, they also lack flexibility and innovation.

Partial self-funding is a time tested and proven model for financing healthcare expense that allows employers to implement innovative plan designs and strategies while appropriately managing risk.

Solutions for Issues and Concerns When Conducting a Confidential Search for a CFO

A changing of the guard in a company's top position is a dramatic change for any business, but getting a new CFO is a close second. As with any executive transition, there may be several reasons for the shift. You may be a small company that has just now decided it's time for a CFO, have an executive who is nearing retirement, or has a legitimate issue that prompts the need for a change.

No one likes uncertainty, so it's best to approach a CFO change with as much caution as possible. There are some telling signs that it's time to launch an executive CFO search, as well as advantages and disadvantages to conducting a confidential search for a CFO. Your company may want to consider an interim position, as well as enlisting the help of a financial consultant during this process.

Topics: Recruiting Search Services CFO HR

Resource Planning for Optimized Client Acquisition and Aggressive Business Growth

 

For many owners and executives, some of the most trying times are not when the business is in stagnation, or even decline. The difficult times often surface when a company is growing rapidly.

Aggressive growth phases test every aspect of an organization’s leadership, making growth one of the biggest challenges faced by small-to-medium sized businesses and startups.

On a growth trajectory, leadership is left wondering “How can we get the most out of existing resources?”, “Which new resources will we need to acquire?”, “How do we prioritize our needs?”, “How many new employees will we need to hire to achieve our goals?”, and “How can we get everyone bought into the growth plan?” In short, “What comes next?”

Topics: Planning Growth Resources

How to Find & Hire Qualified CFO Controller Candidates

Whether your business has grown to a size that requires a trusted professional to handle your financials, or it has become apparent that a replacement is necessary for someone in a key position, hiring a qualified CFO or controller can be a challenge.  Your company's CFO or Controller is an essential member of your senior management team.

When you hire a CFO or Controller, where do you start? What should be your primary focus? The answers to these and other questions could be the difference between qualified candidates and warm bodies with resume in hand.

Topics: Hiring Planning Controller

How to Hire the Best Office Staff - Recruit with Confidence

The employees in your company's office can make or break the business. They are often on the front line delivering customer service or managing critical information. Hiring highly talented and skilled individuals who will fit well into a company culture can seem almost ‘impossible’. When short staffed or during rapid growth, it may be tempting to hire almost ‘anyone’ as quickly as possible. This is usually a mistake because of the extra costs of carrying ‘dead wood’ on the payroll. The good news is that many office and administrative support occupations often require only a high school diploma with some specialized skills to qualify.

Topics: Recruiting Hiring Staffing HR Leadership

The Benefits of Outsourced Bookkeeping Services

The value of working with a bookkeeper is undisputed; bookkeepers are professionals at managing the day-to-day financial transactions of business, providing the business owner with the information necessary to make sound financial decisions for the future. What’s more, there is no doubt that regardless of the type of business that you operate, bookkeeping and accounting services are invaluable, and essential for efficient operation.

Topics: Staffing Bookkeeping