WNS (Holdings) Limited, a leading provider of global Business Process Management (BPM) announced the release of the Global CFO Survey report by Everest Group, a leading consulting and research firm. The survey polled 300 CFOs and their direct reports from large enterprises across 20 different industries globally to better understand how they are navigating uncertainty associated with a global pandemic and changing their longer-term strategic business imperatives.
As per the survey findings, CFOs see lower customer demand and working capital challenges as top short-term concerns across all industries. In addition, CFOs of manufacturing and life sciences organizations are facing supply chain issues, while pricing pressure was reported as a top concern in the hi-tech, telecom, travel and logistics sectors. Key short-term priorities to address these concerns include implementing successful work from home models, boosting liquidity and increasing digital adoption.
In the long-term, CFOs are also expecting their businesses to face significant challenges. Over half of the surveyed CFOs worry about ensuring their organizations viability through an economic downturn and about increasing liability and risk exposure resulting from new modes of working. In addition, the relevance of existing business models and the need for operational preparedness are also top-of-mind.
To deal with long-term concerns, over 50% of the survey respondents see speed, agility and digital enablement as the key characteristics of a future-ready organization. They believe that their roles will evolve to being business partners and orchestrators of increased collaboration among company functions while contributing to making companies resilient, especially in the wake of the global pandemic.
“As we move closer to the end of 2020, lower sales and supply chain disruptions continue to negatively impact revenues in the majority of organizations. More than 55% of CFOs believe their 2020 revenues would be at least 3% lower than their 2019 revenues. With 47% of CFOs saying they are not very confident committing to investments in the next 6 to 12 months, there are key areas they can address to recover and rebound. We are at a critical juncture where Digital F&A leaders like WNS are in a unique position to help CFOs and organizations transform the future of finance as indicated by the Global CFO Survey,” said Keshav R. Murugesh, Group CEO, WNS.
According to the study, CFOs are expecting their Finance and Accounting (F&A) service providers to offer support in strategic tasks such as designing transformation road maps, incorporating actionable insights, and driving process excellence for finance functions across client companies. Interestingly, there is significant openness among organizations that are not currently leveraging third-party or in-house shared services support for F&A about considering these models in the future.
The CFO Research study by Everest Group, supported by WNS, aimed to understand the impact of COVID-19 in the current business environment, how CFOs are perceiving their roles to evolve in the new normal, and the key building blocks that they must build to ensure a future-ready organization. Over 300 CFOs and their direct reports across North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and the Middle East and Africa – and from more than 20 industry sectors – participated in the survey.