For many years, financial business partnering has existed in some shape or another. But in recent years, there has been an increase in the need for efficient financial business partners with businesses of all kinds.
Therefore, the finance department must adapt as the business climate gets more complicated.
Additionally, businesses understand that in order to be more responsive – constantly reassessing both long- and short-term goals and strategies – finance and accounting experts must play a business advising function inside an organization by assuming a value-added, “business partnering” position.
Also, this will assist other areas of the business in enhancing its decision-making role and analysis.
Definition of Financial Business Partnering
Business departments are keen to have the assistance of financial experts who are aware of the company’s goals and are capable of analyzing real-time data to aid in decision-making.
In other words, organizations require a culture of governance, accountability, and inspection, where both strategic and tactical choices are supported by data and forecasted results.
Financial business partnering entails finance executives collaborating with other business units to provide executives with financial information, resources, analysis, and insight, push their thinking, assist them in making better-informed decisions, and direct company strategy.
Ten Qualities of Solid Financial Business Partners
Here are the ten qualities of solid financial business partners.
- They are aware of business issues, comprehend them, and foresee operational and managerial requirements.
- Actively shape daily choices, strategy, and the course of the company.
- They serve as the intermediary or “translator” between operations and finance.
- Problem-solving is at the core of an approach to thinking that leads to successful financial business partnerships.
- They possess good fundamental business abilities, such as the ability to persuade, manage stakeholders, and make presentations.
- They can use both huge as well as little data, using the right tools to alter, analyze, and explain it in different manners for the right audience.
- They analyze data, organize it, determine its worth, and then clearly and succinctly deliver the conclusions to the pertinent parties.
- They must be capable of forming and upholding their own beliefs. As well as having a strong sense of ethics and being willing to defend these values.
- They must feel at ease dealing with uncertainty and danger.
- They focus on the future while taking lessons from the past.
Why Is A Financial Business Partner Necessary for A Company?
A finance business partner is knowledgeable in accounting and financial analysis. Therefore, they aid in bridging the gap between raw data and insight. By frequently communicating the most important results to operational employees in a manner that is simple to comprehend.
Moreover, they use their expertise to provide other decision-makers with information on the business environment. Also, on rival and company progress and market trends.
Depending on the size of the firm, finance business partners may not always work with senior management. But, the top management may assign them to certain departments where, in meetings with non-executive level workers, they explain their findings.
Examples of How Business Partnerships Work
- To assist business unit leaders in understanding how specific key performance indicators (KPIs) are computed or how exchange rates are maintained, the finance business partner may collaborate with them.
- By using comparable data and accounting for inflation, the finance business partner may assist HR in determining pay packages throughout the organization. To make sure that no significant risk variables are neglected and that the projections are reasonable, they could analyze them.
- A sales team may receive financial effect explanations from the finance business associate on certain assurances that are part of a sales campaign.
- In order to ensure that competing research initiatives are judged fairly, the finance business partner may collaborate with the R&D department or determine the criteria. Such as quick returns, degree of risk, or strategic interest.
How to Find Employment as A Financial Business Partner?
Most finance company partners have undergraduate or graduate degrees in accounting, financial planning, or data analysis.
Anyone who has an interest in this as a profession must have a sharp eye for understanding data. And also conveying it in understandable ways.
Financial business partners often have 5–10 years of industry expertise. However, advisers to executives and C-suite employees frequently have 20–plus years of experience in a particular sector.
The Bottom Line
CFOs and finance executives need to act right now to make sure they and their teams can successfully fill the position of a strategic financial business partner and serve as a change agent.
However, becoming a good finance business partner requires ongoing development and learning. Here are several practical steps that may help steer this path in the correct direction.
- Be extremely explicit about how finance may benefit the company.
- Maintain progress by focusing on the essential financial competence enablers.
- Eliminate the obstacles to value addition, then show the outcomes — step by step, sector by sector.
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