When the Head of FP&A first arrived at an air navigation services company, he was tasked with re-energizing an FP&A function that had diminishing influence. By taking a proactive approach to demonstrating FP&A’s capabilities and raising the financial acumen of non-finance teams, he restored FP&A’s role as a business partner.
The surge of “green investing” in capital markets reflects increased demand among professional and household investors to put their money into climate-friendly products and low-emission production. A common objective of green investors is to stimulate the future investments and growth of “green companies.” For green investing to succeed in this endeavor, two conditions need to hold.
Integrating ESG into an organization’s enterprise risk management (ERM) program is emerging as a key theme, as organizations seek to avoid the pitfalls of more siloed approaches to ESG. Not only is such integration considered a best practice, but regulators are also increasingly requiring companies to disclose how they integrate climate risks and opportunities into their governance and corporate strategy.
When AFP’s Middle East and Africa (MEA) Treasury Advisory Council recently met, there was one thing on their minds: the financial uncertainty that threatens their region. Between the uncertainty in the region, the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, and rising inflation and interest rates, it is “chaotic.”
Over the past few years, digital payments have become more popular and better utilized by companies all over the world, due to faster processing and convenience. While many businesses were and are concerned about privacy and security, their concerns have been allayed by significant advances in online security and privacy.
Reda Shousha, FPAC, is a finance professional who is a member of the AFP Middle East and Africa FP&A Advisory Council. Originally from Egypt, Reda has been in Saudi Arabia since 2007. After working in accounting for four or five years, Reda felt it was time for a career change.
Being Treasurer of Pulse Secure (acquired by Ivanti, Inc.), a company that provides software-driven Secure Access solutions, obviously wasn’t the first stop for Manish Sethia, CTP, but when he arrived, he was ready. “I firmly believe that a Treasurer should be knowledgeable of all aspects of finance as it makes you that much more effective as a treasury manager,” he said.
From the time Nikunj N. Sinha, CTP, entered the finance sector, banking has been his calling. It was while completing his B-school studies as a finance major that Nikunj first became interested in derivatives and FX markets. One of the leading private-sector banks offered him a treasury profile (i.e., internship), and his 17-year career in financial markets began.
What do you suppose the odds are of meeting a treasurer with a degree in Oriental Studies? That is how Dorella Montanari’s journey began. “My education and professional journey are a bit unconventional,” she said.
Warren Hatch, CEO of Good Judgment Inc, shares five forecasting tips to help you improve your process for filling out your March Madness bracket.
For Thong Nguyen, the move to treasury came from what had previously been an unrecognized need in his company. Thong was working for an international finance company (Home Credit Vietnam) that had been running well without a department dedicated to managing liquidity and market risk. Early on in 2018, the financial crisis many countries were facing caused them to rethink this.
Treasurers play an important role in supporting the organization in achieving its business objectives and strategy. One of the main goals of treasury is to manage an organization’s cash and related financial assets (and liabilities) effectively and efficiently. As such, treasury has a responsibility to ensure that the company has access to sufficient cash and liquidity at all times, regardless of the current state of the economy.
Just like financial debt, technical debt can build up over time, with the costs of repayment compounding the longer time passes. As technical debt grows it becomes a huge obstacle to achieving agility within finance: The cost to maintain the old legacy systems and workarounds grow, yet automation and transformation become increasingly difficult, risky and expensive to implement.
Trade finance has a long-established set of highly manual processes, in which all participants have clearly defined roles. At the heart of most of the processes is the application of a strict rule: If a participant receives a compliant document, it is processed; if a document is not compliant, it is rejected.
Puneeta Kapoor, FPAC, made the transition from accounting to finance when she realized that she wanted to have a more proactive role. Having learned about the interplay of different financial operations, she is now focused on ways FP&A can add value to the business.
The finance department plays a critical role in any organization. It oversees the financial health (i.e., profitability) by tracking cash flow into and through the organization — in other words, where money is coming from, where money is going, how much the organization needs to pay back, how the organization is going to make a profit, and whether the organization is in compliance with state and federal laws and regulations.
What does it mean for a company to be agile? Agility in a company means flexibility in its operations, a mindset open to change, and the capability to take action when advantageous, especially under changing circumstances.
Making sure your organization has enough cash to meet its obligations over a set time period is the goal of cash forecasting. It’s a pretty important goal, and one that carries with it a few fundamentals in practice — and a whole lot of variables.
In March 2022, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published proposed rule changes that would require public companies to include certain climate-related disclosures in their registration statements and periodic reports. Since publication, the proposed rule changes have been open to public comment, and the comments have been voluminous.
Core treasury knowledge and training are key to success for Stephen Poon, CTP, who leads the head office treasury function of HUTCHMED, a biopharmaceutical company based in China.
As vice president, finance transformation at Singapore Post Limited, Jason Ang has an ambitious mandate: to transform the culture, skills, technologies and processes of the organization.
By any measure, 2023 is shaping up to be a challenging year for businesses both in the U.S. and across the world. Markets remain volatile. Interest rates are expected to continue to increase, although the timing and level of the final increases remain uncertain. FX rates and commodity prices continue to experience heightened volatility, driven by the threat of recession and ongoing supply chain problems.
Dr. Simone Ahuja is a global innovation expert, keynote speaker, and bestselling author of Jugaad Innovation and Disrupt It Yourself. Her keynote address at AFP 2022 challenged financial professionals at all levels to innovate within their roles, using resources they already have.
Effective business partnering begins with trust. It is the foundation on which everything else is built, including the ability to develop strong business relationships and drive the business forward.
Developing budgets and targets is a messy process. Top-down expectations collide with bottom-up estimations, compensation is on the line, and everyone sees something different. Communication is compromised as corporations grow larger; regions are far from headquarters, some businesses get less attention, and owners have different goals than managers. This case study explores these challenges.
Forecasting remains one of the key areas treasurers continue to evolve and refine. But what are the characteristics of a successful cash flow forecast? AFP’s Tom Hunt, CTP, director of treasury services and payments and Mina Nasif, CTP, managing director, partnerships and MEA, Beacon FinTrain with AFP, recently met with a group of treasury professionals from the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region to get their take on it.
The problem with a “well-run” business is the false sense of security that takes hold and leaves a company unprepared to handle volatility. In this example of an extended planning and analysis (xP&A) challenge, the vagaries of operational forecasting challenge a manufacturing company to define “normal capacity” for production, as the basis for calculating standard rates, booking charges and creating a forecast.
Members of AFP’s 2023 North America FP&A Advisory Council represent a broad cross-section of industries, organizational sizes and ownership structures, and were selected based on their contributions to the FP&A practice, expertise in specific areas, and desire to contribute to the advancement of their peers.
The economic outlook for 2023 is less than rosy, steering the focus of most companies’ leadership toward preparation and planning. Treasurers are helping to develop strategic plans and update the various liquidity and risk management policies and procedures.
How does an international professional services firm, positioned in a highly regulated environment such as the Asia-Pacific Region, go from a manual process of centralizing its funds to an automated solution where it can access its liquidity daily? In the following case study, we’ll reveal the approach they took, challenges they faced, and the benefits of their automated solution once implemented.
As treasury evolves from an operational department to a strategic business partner, automation is playing an increasingly important role. With the expanded use of real-time payments, we are moving ever nearer to a world of real-time finance, an environment of constantly changing data. Without more automation, treasury practitioners will simply not be able to make decisions quickly enough.
Treasury’s role is to protect corporate assets, even during the most uncertain times. And, as we look forward to 2023, there is plenty to be uncertain about. Interest rates are on the rise, the foreign exchange and commodity markets remain volatile, and economic forecasters are predicting a recession.
The current business environment is fraught with uncertainty. The global economy is challenged with record-high inflation coupled with the threat of a recession and a very tense situation in Eastern Europe due to the war in Ukraine. Still, financial professionals are cautiously optimistic about their organization’s financial performance in 2023, according to findings from the 2022 AFP Annual Conference Survey.
Building a network is important for your career for numerous reasons: excellence in your current role, identifying future roles, attaining those opportunities, and identifying talent. It can help you to be visible in multiple places while simultaneously receiving inputs from many sources.
Want to know which topics were the most popular among treasury and finance professionals in 2022? We’ve compiled a list of the top research and guides, articles, training and podcasts, as well as conversations on AFP Collaborate with the most activity.
The Treasury and Finance Marketplace, created in partnership with MediaBrains, is an online directory where you can identify service providers, read peer reviews and make critical purchase decisions — all in one place.
As we head into the new year, we asked finance professionals on AFP’s North America Emeritus and Asia-Pacific Advisory Councils to share some of their goals for 2023.
As we head into the new year, we asked finance professionals on AFP’s North America and Middle East and Africa FP&A Advisory Councils to share what they learned in 2022. The lessons that they have learned reveal trends and challenges for the entire finance community to keep in mind.
This is part two of a two-part article about getting your data right. In part one, we covered the importance of shared organizational goals and how to work with “imperfect” data with the help of Najeeb Uddin, senior vice president and CIO at AARP. In part two, we talk about change management with the help of Ed Cook, president of The Change Decision and consultant with the Association for Change Management Professionals.
We are continuing our effort to help the finance community get their data right. We began in June with the first FP&A Series, continued with a guide in September, and now, with a recent webinar, we present points of view from outside finance on this important topic. To help us do that, we enlisted the help of Najeeb Uddin, senior vice president and CIO at AARP, and Ed Cook, president of The Change Decision and consultant with the Association for Change Management Professionals.