CFO 3.0 — The Digital Transformation Trends tomorrow’s CFO needs to know (and follow)

The role of CFOs and other finance leaders is changing — and changing quickly. While you used to report on the financial status of your organization by looking at past performance, you’re now expected to also forecast and help guide future performance. There are other changes, too — and most fall into the trending subhead of “digital transformation.” What are these digital transformation trends?

How can you prepare your organization’s finance function for what comes next? What are other CFOs doing? Sage Intacct once again conducted an extensive survey to find those answers. They gathered feedback from 500 CFOs and senior accountants across a variety of industries. The results are fascinating and insightful — we invite you to review the full report, CFO 3.0 – Digital transformation beyond financial management. In the meantime, check out a few of the survey’s most relevant takeaways.

The job is no longer about number crunching

  • 95% say that their role has significantly changed over the last five years.
  • 55% are now responsible for data privacy, digitalization and technology investment.
  • 70% of CFOs have full responsibility for digital transformation.

CFOs are in a pressure cooker

  • 70% still make decisions based on gut feelings rather than data.
  • 51% say thinking of new ways to help the business with financial matters is the most challenging aspect of their job.
  • 31% are concerned about their lack of digital skills.
  • 70% agree that administration has a significant negative impact on team productivity.

Financial management technology is essential

  • 77% will be unable to provide insights if they do not invest in financial management technology.
  • 94% agree that it will play a crucial role in tomorrow’s finance function.
  • 53% say the lack of real-time financial insights and data is one of their biggest challenges.
  • 41% cite integrating financial and operational information as a major challenge.

Emerging tech will have a big impact

  • 50% agree that emerging technologies will positively impact efficiency and accuracy.
  • 78% say that if emerging technology is going to be transformational, they need the knowledge and resources for a successful deployment.

93% believe the introduction of new technology needs a detailed implementation and roll-out plan to ensure it carefully aligns with the organization’s culture.


Automation is the lever — but there’s a catch

  • 87% are comfortable with using automation for daily accounting tasks.
  • 63% believe their businesses are not yet culturally ready for more automation.
  • 61% worry automation may replace their jobs.

The move is on

  • 75% of businesses are already in the transformation of automating most of their processes.
  • 86% claim automation has already improved business productivity, illustrating the demand for streamlined processes.
  • 65% say e-commerce is the only way to maintain commercial control in the face of digitization.


The role of the finance department is rapidly transitioning from transactional to strategic, and technologies including financial management systems are crucial to a successful transition. Learn more about the topic of digital transformation trends in the eBook, CFO 3.0 – Digital transformation beyond financial management or by contacting a member of our consulting team.