More than ever, CFOs (Chief Financial Officers) are facing a constantly evolving professional environment, marked by considerable instability since the onset of COVID.
It’s not easy to manage short-term cash needs in such conditions.
According to a 2022 study by PwC that analyzed the challenges faced by CFOs and financial departments:
- 93% of financial departments are considering digitalizing the finance function in the short term.
- 82% of CFOs also intend to strengthen their budgetary approach to address the uncertainty of the current context.
In this article, we’ll examine the current challenges facing CFOs and explore solutions for improved cash management through technology, particularly regarding payment methods.
Navigating a Challenging Business Landscape
First and foremost, let’s delve into the overall context that has placed CFOs and their roles in profound uncertainty.
The year 2023 presents an economic and geopolitical landscape that is particularly uncertain, characterized by geopolitical tensions, unpredictable macroeconomic trends, and inflation reaching record levels – a situation unprecedented in nearly 40 years. This worrying scenario weighs heavily on growth prospects for the upcoming year, sparking growing concerns among financial departments.
The increase in production costs, largely due to surging energy prices, also exerts significant pressure on business activities, necessitating adjustments to financial strategies to maintain profitability.
In this complex environment, the priorities of CFOs currently revolve around:
- Managing performance effectively,
- Exercising prudent liquidity management, and
- Strategically developing their organizations.
Furthermore, talent management becomes crucial, especially for mid-sized companies and SMEs, which face intense competition in recruiting profiles with skills in data, IT, and corporate social responsibility (CSR).
In this context, 82% of CFOs are considering evolving their budgeting methods through the use of technology to enhance the responsiveness of their forecasting processes and better anticipate uncertainties.
To address these complex challenges, financial departments are contemplating significant investments in digital transformation, with a focus on digitization and process automation.
However, they must also confront the challenge of recruiting and developing new profiles, distinct yet complementary to traditional finance professionals, to successfully carry out this transformation.
Current Challenges for CFOs
The current challenges facing CFOs are evolving rapidly, and technology plays a pivotal role in helping them tackle these issues and thrive in an ever-changing environment.
Assisted by technology and a shift in mindset, here are the four main directions in which CFOs are transforming themselves to address the challenges of the current changes:
- CFOs must master data.
In addition to their initial skills, CFOs must acquire data scientist skills because their challenge is no longer just collecting data but using it strategically to improve processes, ensure compliance, and enhance customer satisfaction.
👉 To achieve this, they must acquire or integrate skills or tools into their teams that enable them to harness data in real time and at scale.
- CFOs must prioritize data security.
CFOs must now manage data security to maintain digital trust among both customers and investors and strengthen compliance with data protection regulations.
👉 To do this, they should turn to data technologies, AI, and machine learning to establish new processes and detect emerging security risks.
- CFOs must turn finance into a technological testing ground.
CFOs must experiment with new technological tools like RPA for repetitive tasks or AI for predictive scenarios.
👉 Using SaaS tools and new technologies, they will solve their financial challenges and become initiators of new ways of working for the rest of the organization.
- CFOs need an excellent transformation team.
As CFOs develop their own skills and those of their teams, they also need to build a multidisciplinary team comprising data specialists, automation experts, and process professionals to solve increasingly complex problems.
How SlimPay Can Help Optimize Short-Term Cash Management?
SlimPay is a Compte-à-Compte payment solution that automates recurring withdrawals between you, the merchant, and your end customers.
Our business is designed to simplify and expedite the payment collection process by direct debit. Unlike other players in the market, you receive funds 24 hours after payment execution through our platform.
Our technology is innovative by design, enabling you to achieve the following benefits:
- We automatically reconcile your payments.
- We transfer funds to you on the next business day (J+1).
- We assist you in understanding your bank rejects.
- We automate the entire payment chain.
Furthermore, we offer payment journeys based on Open Banking with SlimCollect.
Imagine your customers settling their subscriptions without manually entering any of their banking details, simply by following the frictionless steps of our purchase process in a few clicks.
No room for errors and reduced fraud.
Automatic debit through Open Banking will change subscription enrollment processes, starting with your customers, gradually improving your conversion rates.
But at the end of the day, what real advantages do you gain by outsourcing your payments to SlimPay for your short-term cash management?
- You save personnel resources: On average, we save you between 0.5 to 4 full-time equivalent positions depending on the transaction volumes you handle, which directly impacts your profitability.
- Digitalization and secure retention of your customer direct debit mandates: No additional cost for collecting, maintaining, and securing this highly sensitive customer data.
- We guarantee the execution of your debits on time, while offering great flexibility (we accept payment orders until the day before execution), eliminating payment delays and contributing to more efficient cash management.
With our technology, we transfer funds on the next business day following the order’s submission to the bank: choose payment excellence that provides you with full visibility to manage your short-term cash flow effectively.
Can technology help you better manage your short-term cash flow? YES!
By having the shortest payment timelines, the most agile payment system, and an evolving approach to your own growth, you’ll find that we grow alongside you and help you provide the best customer experience for optimized client transformation.