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Collaborative working: why relationships between finance, marketing and operations matter now more than ever post-Covid

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Covid has impacted every department in every company, but finance teams have faced particularly tough times. Finance specialists are seen as trusted advisors when businesses are recovering from a crisis. They are viewed as those who are best suited to advise on profit and loss activities in business recovery plans. Finance may even be viewed as the face of an organisation.

But achieving financial success should not be down to your finance leaders alone. In this period of recovery collaboration between your different business areas has never been more important.

For instance, as those normally responsible for creating and cultivating a mission and vision that drives your business forward, your marketing team should be joining forces with finance on a campaign plan with your financial targets at its core.

Similarly, in the wake of Covid-19 workplace morale is a top priority for HR and through collaboration with finance, activities designed to motivate and inspire greater job satisfaction, should in turn lead to increased profitability.

Relationships between finance and other operational departments are vital for reviving your company. Here, we explain why…

1. A common goal

A collective vision and mission are essential for a workforce at any stage of a business’ progression. But when in recovery mode, the need for employees to pull together and input their individual assets is especially crucial.

Central to understanding and believing in a shared goal is collaboration and departments from across an organisation need to come together regularly to reiterate objectives, monitor progress and measure results.

Business leaders should promote headway meetings between finance and other departments and ensure there are plenty of opportunities for these collaborations.

2. Streamlining and time saving

Accounting professionals must have a strong understanding of the various departments they manage finances for. But when striving to get back on track following the pandemic, the saying ‘time is money’ has never been more accurate.

A finance department that works closely with other parts of a business develops a greater appreciation for how other departmental processes work. It also means these processes can be reviewed alongside financial procedures, eliminating duplicate or lengthy methods in handling financial matters. In most cases, establishing effective financial processes that support the needs of other teams is more likely for a finance team that is deeply integrated into sales, marketing, HR, operations, and IT.

From purchase ledger to remittance or invoicing practices, all can be made more efficient for aiding recovery through cross-departmental cooperation.

3. Knowledge sharing

Knowledge is power and never more so when a business is looking to improve. Break down silos by encouraging job shadowing or mentoring - but not only within one specialism. Allow your finance team the opportunity to shadow colleagues from different departments. This kind of teamwork will promote empathy for one another’s roles and provide insight into some of the issues (financial or otherwise) that departments may not ordinarily have exposure to.

Not only will this enhance relationships and compassion between employees, but it will also allow finance to recognise areas for cost savings and efficiencies or gain a greater awareness of why certain costs are essential.

4. Growth

Strong alliances between departments are further critical for growth. In-depth knowledge of how different teams work will help finance experts to report and offer advice based on specifics and real-life functions rather than generic theory. Accurate reporting will lead to sounder advice, which will lead to better planning and commercial growth.

Additionally, this contributes to the personal growth of your finance team, since the career development of a financial specialist, especially if they aspire to be a CFO, depends on a holistic view of a companies operations. Teams will be able to better relate to one another, your finance team will gain credibility and likeability, which will ultimately help them advance

The secret to success when it comes to collaboration is, well…no secret. Teams that are interconnected, cohesive and share an understanding of their individual and collective purposes, prove time and time again that cross-departmental relationships are truly effective. Moreover, it is essential to steer our businesses down the path to recovery after a couple of the most unpredictable years to date.

If you are interested in hiring a finance leader with key business recovery skills and acumen, who also recognise the value of collaboration, start a conversation with us today.


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