Business

Only 14% of CFOs confident in finance and accounting skills, survey finds

BlackLine Inc. has commissioned a global survey of 1,150 C-suite executives and finance professionals, revealing that 31% of global CFOs don’t have enough people with software and technology experience within the finance function.

Research from BlackLine reveals that only 14% of CFOs are confident that their finance function has the skills required to help their organisation grow and adapt over the next five years. 

It revealed that 35% of C-suite respondents believe their finance and accounting (F&A) is struggling to keep up with the pace of digital transformation across the wider business.

The research was conducted by independent research agency Censuswide and it looks at professionals across the UK, US, Germany, France, Singapore and Australia.

It identifies a major skills gap that “threatens” F&A’s ability to provide the consultancy, analysis, planning and due diligence required to support broader business goals, as only 20% of respondents express confidence that F&A currently has the right skillset.

Some 31% of global CFOs said they currently don’t have enough people with software and technology experience within the finance function, and 36% of overall respondents said it is difficult to find candidates with both technology and F&A skills.

In addition, 25% of respondents said legacy technology and processes at their organisation make it difficult to attract candidates due to “outdated perceptions of F&A roles that make it challenging to recruit good candidates”. 

The most pressing business concern for 32% of CFOs for the next five years is maintaining a robust balance sheet, and 30% said the same of acquiring new talent.  

Marc Huffman, BlackLine CEO, said: “Finding people with the right technology and F&A skills seems to be at the heart of the issue. To attract the best and the brightest finance talent moving forward, we must reevaluate tools, training and development, in addition to the perceived role that F&A plays within the business.  

“Delivery of business growth as opposed to purely survival will be dependent upon building a finance function that is as technology literate as it is financially literate. People need to be freed from the mundane and given the space to focus on strategic business insight and value.”

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