Global Finance Trends 2022 – A UK Perspective
Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) and their colleagues are operating in one of the most complex business environments they have ever experienced. According to our 2022 Finance Trends Survey, multiple challenges are occurring together, creating a long list of priorities for finance teams to tackle.
For finance leaders in the UK, the security and privacy of data (81%) remains the most important issue, followed by enhanced data analytics (76%), financial planning and analysis (76%), cloud-based applications (72%) and strategic planning (72%).
“UK businesses are operating in a challenging environment,” says Varun Dewan, Director at Protiviti. “On one hand they are faced with keeping operations profitable during a time when UK inflation jumped to a 40-year high; on the other, they are dealing with the long-term importance of environmental, social and governance issues (ESG), for example.”
“With several competing challenges continuing into next year and early 2024, finance leaders need to take a longer-term view in their planning and decision making.”
Top overall priorities (UK)
Security and privacy of data
Enhanced data analytics
Financial planning and analysis
Impact of inflation
Changing demands and expectations of internal customers
Leadership (within your organisation)
Profitability reporting and analysis
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Protiviti’s 2022 Finance Trends Survey alludes to a growing trend: the financial health of a business cannot be seen in isolation from the rest of the business, and the risks and challenges it faces. ESG, risk planning, inflation, and skills are all linked together in the stability of operations and the myriad priorities for CFOs and their colleagues.
Technology is replacing some jobs in finance; specialist skills are needed to tackle ESG effectively; and the immediate concerns of inflation and profitability call on the best leadership skills that CFOs possess. There are many competing factors which CFOs and finance leaders need to prepare and plan for over the next 18 to 24 months.
In the future, the trends suggest that finance teams will be populated by specialists, complemented by hard-to-find skills, and advisers who can draw on industry experience to help CFOs navigate this complex path. One thing is certain, the role of the CFO continues to evolve.