CFO of the Future Mastercourse: Course Speaker: John Mckenzie BSc, MBA (Cranfield Directors List) John Spent 20 Years in the Automotive Industry with Ford Motor Company and Unipart. Then Came 11 Years in the IT Industry, with Armstrong Laing and SAS

Financial Management (UK), April 2012 | Go to article overview

CFO of the Future Mastercourse: Course Speaker: John Mckenzie BSc, MBA (Cranfield Directors List) John Spent 20 Years in the Automotive Industry with Ford Motor Company and Unipart. Then Came 11 Years in the IT Industry, with Armstrong Laing and SAS


This course has two aspects. It addresses the question of what the CFO of the future has to concentrate on as a result of changes and pressures in business, economic and corporate environments. It is also designed to prepare any aspiring CFOs for how the role is evolving, so it's aimed at both current and future CFOs and is broken down into five workshops:

1 Finance leadership.

2 Strategic management.

3 Cost and profitability analysis.

4 Flexible planning/rolling forecasts.

5 Best practice measurement and reporting.

The finance leadership workshop looks at the challenges the CFO faces in leading a finance team, realigning it away from fundamental accounting issues and focusing it more on business issues.

The CFO of the future should look at the areas the finance team can spend less time on, thus reducing cost and adding value.

As a result, the finance department is helping to be a catalyst for change, rather than being a "dead hand". This workshop also looks at how to define the vision of the finance function, and how it should be aligned with that of both the CEO and the board. IT issues and measurements, including finance functional scorecards, are also looked at.

Strategic management focuses on ensuring that the finance operation is in full alignment with the corporate mission, vision and strategic goals. It's about bringing together both financial and non-financial measures, looking at how they interre-late and then understanding how they are used to define strategic success. In doing so, the aim is to move away from a mind-set of short-termism by lengthening the typical finance viewpoint from one year to a more strategic three to five years. Through the use of appropriate KPIs, more balanced financial and non-financial measures, and looking at medium and long term risk, the finance department can create real value.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

The treatment of intangible assets of organisations is also considered in this workshop. There is usually a large gap between the asset value of an organisation and its market capitalisation.

In some cases, market capital could be worth five, or even ten times the value of tangible assets. So investors want to understand where the real value is by understanding the value of intangibles, such as brands, customer loyalty, quality, IPR and innovation in the company.

The cost and profitability analysis workshop takes, as a starting point, an understanding of how much of a company's costs are indirect or overhead, as compared to the early 20th Century. …

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