Fractional CFOs are a powerful way to access informed, cost-efficient financial support for a growing church, ministry, or business.

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How a Fractional CFO Can Help Your Non-Profit or Business

A Chief Financial Officer (CFO) can play a key role in a growing organization. They can help with risk management, cost optimization, performance analysis, and other elements of strategic financial planning.

However, hiring a full-time CFO is often overkill. Small or medium-sized churches, businesses, and other organizations don’t have the resources or capacity to work with such an expensive member of the C-suite. 

Nevertheless, as startups establish themselves and smaller organizations scale, having access to and insights from a big-picture financial professional can be instrumental in streamlining and accelerating success. 

That’s where a fractional CFO comes into the picture. Regardless of whether you’re an ambitious growing company, a scaling non-profit, or something in between, here are a few reasons you should consider a fractional CFO as part of your organization’s long-term growth plans.

1. Fractional CFOs Are Cost Effective

One of the biggest benefits of a fractional CFO is the cost. Salary.com puts the median CFO salary at $432,917 per year. The top end is over $650,000. That means you have to pay between $1,000 and $2,000 per day to retain a full-time CFO on staff.

Fractional CFOs typically come on a retainer contract, and you have access to their services for a certain amount of time each week or month. For most small and mid-size organizations, this part-time access to the same knowledge, expertise, and insights is more than enough—and it comes at a fraction of the full-time cost. 

2. Fractional CFOs Are Up to Date

Fractional CFOs do more than infuse your operation with economic wisdom. You can also trust them to bring up-to-date information as a necessary part of their job.

CFOs are trained to handle complex financial activities, such as forecasting, raising capital, and business model validation. To do this effectively, they must be able to apply current and knowledgeable information and methods to your business’s finances. This is the kind of up-to-date expertise that fills a glaring skill gap in most organizations.

3. Fractional CFOs Are Hands-On

The “fractional” part of the term fractional CFO is important to consider. Often, fractional C-suite professionals are viewed as consultants, but there is a distinct difference between the two.

At Chaney & Associates, for instance, we do offer financial consulting, but that is just one facet of our accounting services. Consulting tends to be more hands-off and informative, whereas a fractional CFO’s job is to get into the trenches with you. They may not be a full-time staffer, but when they’re on the clock, they’re not afraid to get hands-on with their work.

4. Fractional CFOs Bring a National Perspective

Along with the up-to-date element, fractional CFOs tend to bring a broad and diverse knowledge base to the job. They often work with clients across a region, state, and country. Some of these clients are larger than you, and others will be smaller. 

Each has unique needs that a fractional CFO can fill. For instance, a fractional CFO might simultaneously oversee the financials for a megachurch in Atlanta, strategize with a non-profit food shelter in Portland, and help a missions organization in Tampa forecast for the upcoming year.

This national perspective gives a fractional CFO a more comprehensive view of market conditions. It helps them identify wider industry trends and provide more informed strategic advice.

5. Fractional CFOs Are Specialized

It’s relatively easy to grasp fundamental financial concepts. When you reach the level of a CFO, though, you’re entering uniquely nuanced territory. A CFO can be the difference between adequate accounting and truly positive financial growth.

Consider a famous athlete. Great athletes are already incredible performers. Yet many will hire specialized coaches to improve their fundamentals and get knowledgeable third-party opinions on their strengths and shortcomings. A fractional CFO does the same for your organization. They expose blind spots and help leaders stay informed and focused.

Utilizing Fractional CFOs in Your Organization

It doesn’t matter if you’re the pastor of a church, the CEO of a nonprofit, or an entrepreneur overseeing an exciting new startup. If you’re too small to hire a CFO but you’re ready to benefit from a larger strategic vision for your finances, consider a fractional CFO.

Contact our team at Chaney & Associates. Our CPAs and financial consultants specialize in high-level financial services, especially in the faith-based and non-profit arenas. We can help you understand where your organization’s financial strengths and weaknesses are and what strategies can help you achieve your current goals and vision.

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