Modern CFOs drive cross-functional collaboration

John Ggolooba Ngobi, the chief financial officer at UAP Old Mutual Uganda. 

What you need to know:

As the custodian of the organisations’ security and risk, Chief Financial Officers (CFO) should balance the interplay of collaboration and automation. In an interview with Prosper magazine, John Ggolooba Ngobi, the CFO at UAP Old Mutual Uganda, shares trends shaping this industry.

Given the complexity of the non-financial metrics in the value chain, such as the focus on ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) reporting, to what extent have today’s roles of a CFO changed from the traditional roles focused on finances only? 
The role of a Chief Financial Officer (CFO) has evolved significantly over the years, moving beyond traditional financial responsibilities to incorporate a broader set of non-financial metrics, including Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) considerations. 

We are increasingly involved in assessing and reporting on the environmental impact of the organisations. This involves tracking and managing carbon footprints, energy consumption, and sustainable practices.

In summary, the modern CFO is not only responsible for financial stewardship but also plays a critical role in ensuring the overall sustainability, ethical conduct, and positive societal impact of the organisation.

So, integration of ESG considerations into financial decision-making reflects a broader understanding of business success that goes beyond traditional financial metrics.

The traditional boundaries between departments are increasingly being blurred. In what ways can the modern CFO impact the company culture?
The modern CFO can impact company culture by fostering collaboration, communication, and a holistic approach to business.

Cross functional collaborations through breaking silos, strategic alignment by communicating financial strategy, data driven decision making by promoting a data culture, risk management and many other ways.

In essence, the modern CFO can promote collaboration, transparency, ethical behaviour, innovation, and a holistic approach to business that goes beyond traditional financial metrics. This approach helps create a positive workplace environment that attracts and retains talent while fostering long-term success.

How do you balance all the emerging roles that considers non-financial aspects and the traditional role? 
Balancing the emerging roles that consider non-financial aspects with the traditional role strictly focused on finances requires strategic thinking, effective communication, and a holistic approach through interdepartmental collaboration, training and development.

Balancing financial and non-financial aspects requires a holistic approach to leadership and decision-making. 

By integrating these dimensions, organisations can create value, manage risks, and build a sustainable and responsible business model. 

It is essential to view financial and non-financial aspects as interconnected components of a comprehensive strategy rather than isolated elements.

Digital platforms are increasingly opening up unlimited possibilities in terms of revenue streams in the financial sector. How are you adjusting to this development?
Using robust online and mobile banking solutions helps to provide customers with convenient and secure access to banking services, including account management, transactions, and financial planning.

Implementing a comprehensive digital transformation strategy is important to enhance operational efficiency, customer experience, and overall agility in adapting to changing market dynamics.

Collaboration with fintech companies helps to leverage innovative technologies and solutions. This may involve partnerships for digital payment services or other fintech-driven financial products.

Utilising data analytics to gain insights into client behaviour and preferences. This information can be used to offer personalised financial products and services, enhancing customer engagement and satisfaction.

Strengthening cyber-security measures to ensure the protection of customer data and financial transactions in the digital space. 
Building trust with customers is crucial in the digital era.

Any words to fellow CFOs in the execution of their day to day duties?
CFOs (Chief Financial Officers) play a critical role in shaping the financial health and strategic direction of their organisations. 

So, I would advise them to develop a deep understanding of the overall business operations. This knowledge is crucial for aligning financial strategies with broader organisational goals and contributing to informed decision-making.

Stay abreast of technological advancements, especially those related to finance and data analytics. Embracing technology can enhance efficiency, provide better insights, and support strategic decision-making.