5 Ways CFOs can Improve their Reporting to the Board

August 24, 2023

As a Chief Financial Officer (CFO), your primary responsibility is to oversee the financial well-being of your organization. A crucial part of this role is providing regular reporting to the Board of Directors, keeping them informed of the company's financial performance and potential risks. However, creating clear, accurate, and insightful reports can be a daunting task. In this blog, we will discuss five recommendations that CFOs can use to improve their reporting to the Board of Directors.

  1. Develop a Reporting Framework
    The first step is to establish a reporting framework. A reporting framework is a structured approach to gathering and presenting data. It should define the purpose of the report, what data to include, and how to present that information. The framework should align with the company's strategic goals and provide relevant information to the Board. By establishing a framework, CFOs can ensure that their reports are aligned with the Board's expectations and priorities.
  2. Make the Report Concise and Comprehensive
    CFOs should strive to make their reports both concise and comprehensive. The goal is to provide comprehensive information clearly and concisely. This means that they should only include relevant and essential information and avoid using technical jargon. It's also essential to include qualitative data that provides the context for the figures included in the report. This will help the Board of Directors better understand the financial performance of the company.
  3. Set Up a Regular Reporting Cadence
    To ensure that the Board is well-informed, CFOs should establish a regular reporting cadence. This means setting up a schedule for when reports will be shared with the Board. Regular reporting helps maintain transparency and keeps the Board up to date on the company's financial performance. CFOs can also use this cadence to solicit feedback from the Board, allowing them to make future reports even more valuable.
  4. Use Visualization Techniques
    CFOs should use visualization techniques to make data more accessible and understandable. This may include charts, graphs, dashboards, and other visualizations. By presenting key information visually, it becomes easier for the Board to digest and interpret the data. It can also help CFOs identify trends and patterns that may not be visible in tables and spreadsheets.
  5. Emphasize Key Drivers of Performance
    Lastly, CFOs should emphasize the key drivers of performance in their reports. This means identifying the factors that are most critical to the company's success and highlighting them in the report. By doing so, CFOs can provide insight into what is driving the company's financial performance.