As Island businesses look to navigate the post coronavirus economic landscape many will regard a full-time finance director as an expensive luxury for better times. The irony is that perhaps now more than ever a finance director proves his worth by providing real time financial analysis necessary to balance financial risk with opportunity and manage recovery plans.
Around the world, more and more companies are employing finance directors on a part-time basis, saving on the considerable expense of their full-time counterpart. PwT Consulting has commenced business to provide cost-effective part-time finance director services to Island businesses with access to strategic financial expertise in a bespoke package at a cost that balances with the business’ requirements.
MD Paul W. Turner, told B365: “A part-time finance director addresses the catch 22 situation facing many businesses that cannot afford to employ a full-time finance director to help them grow their business, but without the expert guidance of one, they find it difficult to scale up their company or to recover from a crisis.”
The part-time finance director’s dedication and focus is often dependent on a company’s position in its growth cycle. ‘Cash is king’ especially in the case of start-ups when obtaining financing and/or putting it to best use when making initial investment in operations, marketing and staff. The finance director can provide financial credibility to loan requests with detailed cash flow and profit and loss forecasts backed up with assumptions that can be flexed to immediately answer the ‘what if?’ questions.
A growing business might need to focus on controlling working capital to ensure orders trigger sales and generate cash to be reinvested as fast as possible. More mature businesses find ‘revenue is vanity, profit is sanity’ and may look at which products sell best, which have the best margins and why in order to appropriately channel growth investment or broaden the offer to additional products and markets.
Of-course much of the value a finance director can add is dependent on the quality of a business’ financial data. This in turn is dependent on the efficiency of its basic finance function, accounting, and business systems. A part-time finance director can implement efficient streamlined processes, identify, and lead the implementation of online, remotely accessed accounting software interfacing with tailored business information tools to quickly identify key performance indicators and measure them against agreed targets. The finance director will ensure the accounts department prepares quality management information in an optimum format for interpretation.
If the basic finance function is efficient and information quality good, the finance director can do their job very quickly.
Mr Paul W. Turner can be contacted at PwTConsulting@manx.net.