A Part-Time CFO’s Role When Hiring a Management Consultant
It’s not uncommon for mid-sized businesses to hire management consultants to help meet particular challenges. For example, a management consultant could help analyze new markets, opportunities, products and services, and acquisition targets.
Management consultants can even help develop core strategy, mission and values. But before hiring one, it’s important to realize the introduction of a management consultant into your company may require a significant change in strategic direction.
Challenges & Negative Impacts
You could face various challenges when hiring a management consultant, including the following:
- Achieving the desired change in your company’s strategic direction may require time and resources that you don’t currently have.
- Your accounting system may need to be structured to meet the strategic needs and do the necessary functional reporting.
- You must make sure that the anticipated ROI in a management consultant justifies the time and resources required.
Failure to meet these challenges could result in a wide range of negative impacts, including the following:
- Disruptions caused by changes in the way you do business could be costly, from both time and financial standpoints.
- The management consultant’s message must be effectively communicated throughout your company to support widespread acceptance.
- You must ensure the core mission, values and strategy developed with the consultant mesh with your short- and long-term financial goals.
Also, there must be a continuous check on actions needed to meet strategic plans so that your company isn’t put in financial jeopardy. Your philosophy can’t be to meet the strategic goals no matter what, without consideration to the financial costs involved.
The Benefits of Bringing in a Part-Time CFO
A way to meet these challenges is to engage a part-time CFO to help you integrate a management consultant into your corporate structure. This high-level financial professional will be able to understand the financial requirements related to the introduction of a new strategy while adjusting and highlighting financial risks accordingly.
A part-time CFO will also provide continuous feedback to management with qualitative data showing progress toward goals. In addition, he or she will develop reporting to grade the success of the new strategic message while helping ensure strategic values, plans and directives truly do add value.
Your company could realize many benefits by hiring a part-time CFO to help integrate a management consultant, including the following:
- Your core strategy, mission and values will be perfectly aligned with the company’s financial position.
- You’ll receive the necessary reporting to provide input into how the company is faring in the measurement of financial objectives.
- Your strategic plan and values will be synced with the operational and tactical plan. Your one-, three- and 10-year financial objectives will be met.
- You’ll realize a positive return on investment, which serves as validation of the added value of the management consultant to the company.
It’s not uncommon for mid-sized businesses to hire management consultants to help meet particular challenges. However, the introduction of a strategic management consultant into your corporate structure could lead to a number of different challenges. One way to meet these challenges is to hire a part-time CFO to help you integrate a management consultant. This high-level financial professional will be able to understand the financial requirements of a new strategy and adjust risks accordingly.
Mark S. Becker, Partner, CFO Edge, LLC