Portfolio Finance Director: So what is it that you do?!

My answer to this question is often “Allow businesses to take control of their finances to lever commercial gains”, but what does this really mean?

To help explain I have put together a graphic.

When a business starts out, all it needs is a bookkeeper to make sure all the basics are being done, for instance reconciling the bank account, sales invoicing, paying suppliers, do the VAT etc. For me this comes under the banner of compliance, it is sometimes done by an external accountant.

As the business grows, better information is required to help manage the business. For instance, management accounts, budgets, targets and Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) etc. These allow the business to make better decisions about the actions to take, say if sales drop, suppliers are not being paid or if operational efficiencies are worsening etc

These types of activities are typically carried out by a Financial Controller (FC). Using an external accountant to provide this service is often expensive, and being external they are perhaps not so in-tuned with the needs of the business.

Then as the business grows further often the Managing Director needs support of someone to help formulate strategic plans, pull together business cases and forecasts for investors or push through operational plans. This type of role is normally carried out by a Finance Director (FD).

At Finance Interim our sweet spot is around FC/FD tasks, using the accounting system to lever commercial gains in other areas of the business. It has to be said that although I have distinguished the above roles, the lines that separate them (and other tasks in the business…) are often blurred. For instance, a good FC can act as FD and sometimes an FD can carry out bookkeeping!

However, if you are looking to take more control of your finance department and use it to add value to other areas of the business then why not get in touch to see what we can do. We offer a range of flexible options at competitive rates.

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