Content thumbnail Partnering for Performance Part 5

Driving and enabling the shift to digital • CFOs in low-tech industries should reevaluate the organization’s corporate portfolio, and consider acquiring startups or high-tech organizations to fill Digital is headline news for CNBC’s CFO gaps in the organization’s capabilities. For Harry Bains, CFO at CNBC, the business news and information • CFOs should ensure that their finance team includes “digital natives,” who provider, there is no question about the priority attached to digital. have a detailed understanding of digital’s potential. “For us, digital really means our revenue,” he explains. “What gets tricky • CFOs can use divergent sets of internal and external historic data to inform in the digital space is monetization. You’re competing with the scale of business strategy decisions, allocate capital for investments and improve the Yahoos, Googles and Facebooks of the world, which get massive page accuracy of financial forecasts. views. That’s really put the content providers under pressure. We know that’s both a threat but also an opportunity, so it’s an area where we’re • CFOs should work closely with other leaders across the business to ensure spending a lot of time ramping up our digital capabilities. I get involved that digital investments are coordinated to support the organization’s with our strategic plan and with ensuring we have the right approach to strategy, and do not expose the organization to unmanaged risk. get better data. The accessibility and speed of getting data offers a lot of • CFOs need to keep a close eye on the changing tax, legal and regulatory opportunity to identify cost efficiencies.” landscapes as they evolve to catch up with the digital world. • CFOs need to identify and consolidate siloed and fragmented digital spend Digital nation: a country perspective on the importance across the organization along with digital agency and cloud computing of digital contracts and compliance. • CFOs need to work with their board to develop a cybersecurity strategy, Finance leaders in Brazil and the US put the highest priority on digital. which is consistent with the organization’s overall risk tolerance and Thirty-three percent of finance leaders in Brazil make it a “very high protects the most valuable assets. priority” and 29% in the US. This reflects both countries’ high number of internet users — Brazil and the US both sit in the top four countries 7 worldwide in terms of internet users. It also reflects the strong part played by digital transformation in the US business environment and surrounding markets. Many of the leading companies that have driven digital technology forward, including new consumer applications, are US giants, such as Google, Amazon and Facebook. 7. “Internet to Hit 3 Billion Users in 2015,” eMarketer.com, 20 November 2014. Partnering for performance Part 5: the CFO and the chief executive officer 13

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