Eric Sheldon CPA, PC

When Hiring a Virtual CFO Makes Sense

Businesswoman using laptop for video conferencing

You may wonder when to hire a virtual chief financial officer (CFO). This post covers four things to consider, the benefits, costs, and expectations you should have of a virtual CFO. We’ll also talk about the types of work that virtual CFOs can perform.

4 Things to Consider

When hiring a virtual CFO, there are four key factors to consider. One of the most important is their experience and background. A virtual CFO has probably worked with dozens of different personalities and types of businesses, and understands how to integrate their financial expertise into an existing team without creating friction in the organization. This experience is invaluable, so make sure to choose one that is experienced in your specific industry and region.

Benefits of Hiring a Virtual CFO

The benefits of hiring a virtual CFO go beyond the financials. The services of a virtual CFO typically provide one point of contact for financial matters. Because the virtual CFO is part of a team, they are more likely to be familiar with the intricacies of the business and follow widely accepted accounting best practices. A virtual CFO also benefits from an outside perspective. He or she can bring new ideas to the table and avoid the common pitfalls that plague in-house CFOs.

Costs of Hiring a Virtual CFO

Hiring a virtual CFO can save your company significant costs. Because they work remotely and work part-time, virtual CFOs don’t require office space or benefits. They also have the advantage of a wide range of experience across multiple industries, and can offer valuable financial management advice. Before hiring a virtual CFO, consider the type of business you’re in. For example, an ecommerce apparel company may have a different set of financial processes and needs than a divorce lawyer.

Expectations From a Virtual CFO

There are certain expectations you should have when you are choosing a virtual CFO. Here are a few of the most important things to keep in mind. You’ll want your virtual CFO to:

  • Have a deep understanding of your industry;
  • Serve as strategists, risk mitigators, and reality checkers;
  • Identify key metrics, goals, and accounting targets, and set up secure online stages for the sharing of important documents;
  • Establish a regular communication schedule, whether it be through phone calls, email, chat, or text messages, and;
  • Determine the frequency of communication as part of their monthly fee.

Onboarding a Virtual CFO

Onboarding a virtual CFO requires extra effort from the organization. Your virtual CFO should understand the entire financial condition of your business, so plan to meet with your new CFO multiple times per year. You may also need or want to change your document gathering process to help make the virtual CFO’s report sharing as convenient as possible.

Working with a virtual CFO should not be a challenge nor an additional headache for small business owners. Here are some interview questions from Indeed to help you choose the right person to be on your team. We might be the right fit for your company. Give us a call.

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About the Author

Eric Sheldon

Eric Sheldon

Eric Sheldon is a certified public accountant with more than 25 years of experience in a wide variety of industries. He's the owner/operator of Eric Sheldon CPA, PC, an accounting firm that specializes in providing tax strategy and preparation, accounting, and bookkeeping services to individuals and small business owners.

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