Content thumbnail Is the Future of Finance New Technology or New People?

23 ;`Ydd]f_af_l`]YkkmehlagfkYZgmlo`Yl[gfklalml]k To help attract, retain and develop the right talent, CFOs finance talent should consider these two key steps: As CFOs transform their function’s operating model, they will 1. HdYflg\Yq^gjlgegjjgoËk[jala[YdlYd]fl need to abandon many traditional ideas about what a finance CFOs need to get better at strategic workforce planning for executive and members of the finance team bring to the table: their finance function. Drawing on market trends and business units’ forward-looking plans, finance leaders can more • Look beyond traditional financial analysis skills. accurately forecast what talent is going to be needed, where Data gurus — such as statisticians and data scientists, and the major gaps are and how those gaps can be addressed. even behavioral scientists — will be critical in helping the finance function of the future turn data into fresh Our research revealed that CFOs see skills in sophisticated perspectives and strategic insight. analytics and deep regulatory knowledge as critical over the • Find digital finance talent. coming years (see Chart 6). In the digital age, finance functions will increasingly rely on ;`Yjl.2Skills for managing uncertainty and volatility those rare executives who are steeped in finance but are also literate in technologies such as blockchain and AI. Looking ahead five years from now, how important will the following people and Digital expertise will be needed not only to lead technology- skills initiatives be for your finance function? driven changes to the finance operating model, but also to 57% 57% 55% identify the implications of digital for the organization’s 47% business model and growth agenda. • <]n]dghZ]ll]j^afYf[]Zmkaf]kkhYjlf]jk& Great business partners have the influencing and communication skills to be able to convey fresh insights to internal clients on the strategic challenges faced by the business. Building skill in Improving Improving digital Developing predictive and regulatory technology skills deep technical • Mk]YddaYf[]klg_gZ]qgf\o`Ylqgmjgj_YfarYlagf[Yf prescriptive knowledge to keep in areas such as skills in key analytics abreast of an mobility, cloud, areas of risk deliver alone. uncertain and SaaS such as cyber As the world becomes more volatile, uncertain, complex and changing ambiguous, organizations are increasingly needing to look environment beyond their own borders to address business challenges and keep on top of innovations. Alliances with universities, As increasing automation of transactional finance tasks alters start-ups and other third parties will be essential to providing the finance professional’s traditional career path, finance the ongoing development that will be necessary for the leaders will need to redefine a new development curve. This organization to remain nimble and continually adapt. will include mapping out how they intend to develop people to acquire the breadth of skills necessary to progress through the ;geh]laf_^gjlYd]fl finance function, and nurture the finance leaders of the future. Finding the right talent for the future finance function is As they plan, CFOs may also keep their eye on several time becoming an ever more critical challenge, complicated by horizons in the near, medium and distant future. For Richard demographic trends, intense competition and changes in the Baker, EY Thames Valley and South Markets Leader, UKI, while ambitions and expectations of young finance professionals. In technical skills are at a premium now, they may ultimately take fact, 22% of CFOs cited “meeting the need for new skills by a back seat. “If I were advising a teenager on what to study transforming how finance talent is recruited, retained and now, I would recommend they learn IT and digital skills, as developed” as their number one strategic priority for the demand for those skills will continue to grow for at least the finance function of the future. next 10 years. But for the generation being born now, the skills needed when they enter the workforce may be different. Many jobs that are done today will be largely automated. However, the interpersonal and strategic skills that technology cannot replace will be more in-demand than ever,” he says.

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