What is a Fractional CFO? Does My Business Need One?

what is a fractional cfo

The CFO can solve many financial and business problems in short order, due to having had experience in such matters and the ability to quickly identify and address issues and employ best practices and techniques. By utilizing a fractional CFO, support levels can be varied and customized to the evolving needs of the organization with the CFO’s work schedule tailored as such. Increased support can be provided at critical times reverting to a more consistent level when appropriate. When you want to scale your business, fractional CFOs can help you achieve profitable growth, especially as your business becomes more complex.

The Rise of the Fractional CFO – FEI – FEI Daily

The Rise of the Fractional CFO – FEI.

Posted: Thu, 02 Sep 2021 07:00:00 GMT [source]

Check over your current financial systems for low gross margins and high expenses. Making those recommendations can be difficult for managers who want to protect their staff and their “turf”. A fractional CFO can provide objective analyses of trade-offs among alternatives and help to implement whatever is best for the company. After interviewing internal people and an outside accountant who reviewed the books every six months, we recommended that they terminate the current controller and we helped to hire the new one. Fractional CFOs can provide skills that complement whatever financial team you have in place.

Role of a Fractional CFO

A fractional Chief Financial Officer is a part-time resource with extensive industry experience that is contracted or retained for strategic financial services. Leveraging a fractional CFO allows growing businesses to tap into C-level financial expertise without incurring the cost of a full-time CFO’s salary, benefits and bonuses. A fractional chief financial officer is a senior financial professional who offers high-level financial analysis and advice.

  • When in doubt, use Shiny as a supplement to your other efforts in finding your startup’s CFO.
  • A controller may also carry less weight with stakeholders and potential investors than a CFO.
  • Increased support can be provided at critical times reverting to a more consistent level when appropriate.
  • A finance professional is one of the most important people to have in your corner as you expand.
  • With a fractional CFO, you can get the guidance you need to confidently make decisions regarding scaling your business up or down, improving your profitability, or restructuring to meet the needs of your customers.

Our US-based account management team is staffed by CPAs and accountants who have, on average, 11 years of experience. https://www.bookstime.com/ You need someone who can provide the right amount of attention to your company for the foreseeable future.


In other cases, the fractional CFO service provider may also offer accounting services and fulfill both the strategic financial and accounting functions. You also likely need to create different processes, tools, and business relationships to deliver high value to your customers without declining margins. Many small businesses bookkeeping and financial systems get off the ground and often struggle with growth. As a small business, you might not have the accounting staff or the financial expertise you need for particular economic challenges. Even if your company already has a full-time CFO or someone managing the entire accounting department, a fractional CFO many times can offer advice or guidance in a different area than the current staff in place. Sometimes Fractional CFOs work with companies or businesses on a project basis; other times, they serve as a permanent fixture for the growth and stability of the financial sector of a company.

  • However, your company’s needs will change as it grows, and there comes a point when you’ll want to hire dedicated experts and leaders.
  • ”—let us explore six reasons why your company might be ready to hire a financial expert.
  • If you run a small or medium-sized business, you are likely no stranger to outsourcing.
  • In these cases, a fractional CFO can be parachuted in as an interim board member to oversee the event, free of any conflicts.
  • You gain access to the extensive knowledge and skills of a senior level financial professional without the hefty cost.

It’s vital to consider the knowledge transfer opportunities provided by an experienced professional for building skills and culture within a financial function. Additional regulation, such as reporting, compliance, and disclosure obligations, requires specific and professional skills. The ramifications of under-reporting or misinterpreting rules can be financially and reputationally disastrous, so it’s always best to over-prepare. A fractional CFO can unburden the CEO and senior management of these requirements while assuring external stakeholders that the task is being handled appropriately. A modern CFO’s responsibilities are varied and complex; thus, each company’s role requirements will vary depending on their situation.


For companies not mature enough to warrant a full-time CFO position, they can bring in specific expertise to help on varied projects covering the financial and strategy spectrum. When different CFO role elements are required on an intermittent basis, it’s time to bring in fractional talent. The fractional CFO must be able to perform at that level with CEO team partnership. Fractional CFOs must contribute to the financial strategy what is a fractional cfo and business profitability, think strategically, and provide decision-making support based on financial analysis. Much like a CPA, a fractional CFO must have accurate and up-to-date financial records in order to make fully informed recommendations. Many small businesses discover, therefore, that it’s best to take a coordinated approach. A fractional CFO agreement can look very different based on the business need.

what is a fractional cfo

But some businesses owners could also use input from a fractional CFO to guide their business in the right direction. “While Bill’s focus is finance, the monthly reviews of my numbers, focus of KPI’s and planning process are invaluable; he is also a great help and asset in making strategic and operating decisions in my business.” For example, you can bring in a financial expert to help you raise capital, prepare for a sale, or acquire another business. If you run a small or medium-sized business, you are likely no stranger to outsourcing. You’ve probably worked with a marketing consultant, freelance graphic designer, or a contract web developer over the years. Did you know that you can also hire a consultant to advise on your business’s financial decisions?

In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about a fractional CFO and if it’s right for your business. During the no-commitment consultation, you’ll have the opportunity to ask more questions about how fractional CFO services work and meet one of our CFOs. Some worry that these professionals are not as loyal or committed as full-time employees. Others wonder if they are good at what they do because they work part-time. On average, an ongoing relationship with a fractional CFO will cost between $6,000 and $12,000 a month. Agreements with small to mid-sized companies typically fall between $5,000 and $7,000 a month. Below is an infographic that sums up the responsibilities a fractional CFO might assume.

When should you hire a fractional CFO?

As revenues grow, companies begin to find that more proactivity is required within strategic financial decision-making. With intermittent needs arising across a range of finance-related areas, it can be cost-effective and flexible to bring in a fractional CFO to help build processes for long-lasting stability.

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