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Hire Here. Hire There. Hire Everywhere. Hire Nowhere. What's a CFO to do?

By Nick Araco posted 03-21-2022 02:03 PM

Ok....Here is a March, 2022 CFO ALLIANCE REAL-TIME CASE STUDY for you to consider and offer your advice --REPLY/COMMENT HERE WITH YOUR ADVICE:

The Person:  
  • He is a new CFO Alliance Member
  • He will be a 1st-time CFO
  • He is trained in Finance (Undergraduate BS, Finance and Economics) - Not Accounting
  • Grew up in Financial Analysis, Strategy, Corporate Development
  • Current Role is Business Unit CFO in large enterprise in a Unit with 800 FTEs
  • Lives in Philadelphia, PA
The Enterprise:
  • A  NEWCO, created and owned by a Private Equity Fund.
  • This NEWCO is a 'CRO':  The Contract Research Organizations industry provides several services for clients in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device sectors. Contract research organizations (CROs) conduct clinical trials and research, manage data results, provide regulation adherence services and help develop and formulate new products. CROs provide clients with cost savings, accelerated development timelines and reduced risk through their service offerings.
  • NEWCO will be formed by combining 3 existing CRO companies and simultaneously merging them together.
  • These 3 companies are actually 5 companies, in that 2 of these companies made recent acquisitions that are not fully integrated
  • NEWCO has physical locations in MA, MI, SC, and CA.
  • The Executive Leadership Team (ELT) will consist of a number of new C-Suite leaders, including:  CEO (who will be based in FL), CFO (who will be based in Philadelphia, PA) and CHRO who will be based in Los Angeles, CA.
The Opportunities/Issues and Questions for The CFO Alliance RT Participants to tackle:
  • The existing companies' collective talent mix in Finance/Accounting is average at best at the lower levels and weak at the higher levels.  Therefore, the CFO has to immediately hire and create a high performing Finance and Accounting team, beginning with a strong Corporate Controller and finance/accoutning team  -- Positions in high demand and limited supply.  Where would you hire a Corporate Controller and accompanying team, and why?
  • NEWCO and its ELT will be operating in disparate locations.  What specific mechanisms, tools, tactics should the CFO and the ELT put in place to define and drive culture during this period of Great Resignation to ensure that they can retain and hire top talent as one best-in-class enterprise?