Romanian CFO Priorities for 2018: From the battle for talent to automation
Romanian CFO Priorities for 2018
The confidence of Chief Financial Officers in the positive development of companies is supported by technology investments. However the instability of the tax system, the difficulties in attracting and retaining talent and the increasing complexity of the business environment remain their top concerns, reveals the survey of Chief Financial Officers, Trends and Priorities in 2018, conducted by KPMG in Romania.
The survey, conducted by KPMG in Romania among Chief Financial Officers, reveals their priorities and concerns for 2018. Almost three quarters of respondents consider outdated technology as being an obstacle in the way of profitability and, thus, 9 out of 10 Chief Financial Officers estimate, under these circumstances, an increase in technology costs. This seems to be placed at the top of the investment programme of Romanian companies, 25% of respondents having invested between EUR 100,000 and EUR 500,000, and 37% of them over EUR 500,000.
”The increasing complexity of the business environment is a challenge for Chief Financial Officers, whose priorities are stimulating innovation and taking bold decisions on the future. The survey, conducted by KPMG in Romania, shows that the role of Chief Financial Officers is undergoing a period of significant change. Their activity is not only limited to the control of figures, but also involves complex analytical capabilities, operational capabilities and involvement in defining the business strategy of the organisation”, noted Cezar Furtună, Partner, Head of Audit for KPMG in Romania.
The role of integrating new technologies into a company’s strategy is to streamline operational processes, since maintaining profitability represents one of the top priorities of Chief Financial Officers. As indicated by the results of this survey, one of the impediments to the development of a clear business strategy is the tax system, which is characterised by frequent changes, unpredictability and rules which are open to interpretation. Moreover, the survey results also reveal other concerns among Chief Financial Officers, such as the increase in labour costs, difficulties in attracting and retaining talent, as well as the increasing complexity of regulations.
2018 Trends and priorities
- Chief Financial Officers remain optimistic about the development of their business sector and even more optimistic about the development of their own organisation, 89% of them being confident about the prospects for their organisation in 2018.
- 63% of respondents estimate a trend of revenue growth for the next 12 months. The most common growth strategies are aimed at launching new products and services.
- Recruitment and retention of staff represents a high priority in 2018 for 66% of respondents, while 40% of Chief Financial Officers estimate a substantial increase in staff costs over the next 3 years.
- 71% of respondents consider outdated technology as being an obstacle to development and profitability. Almost 9 out of 10 Chief Financial Officers estimate an increase in technology costs.
- 25% of respondents invested between EUR 100,000 and EUR 500,000 in technology last year, and 37% of them invested over EUR 500,000. The main areas envisaged for new technology investments are operations, data management and security and customer experience.
- More than half of respondents consider tax legislation as being arbitrarily interpreted and the procedures as being difficult to apply, while 40% of respondents complain about the lack of dialogue with the authorities on legislation and the unpredictability of the tax environment.
About the report
The information published in the report Trends and priorities in 2018: Romanian CFO Survey are based on a survey conducted among 76 Romanian Chief Financial Officers and chief accountants. The respondents are representatives of companies in various industry sectors, such as production, banking, the automotive industry, technology, consumer goods, and investment management, of which 80% operate in companies with a turnover exceeding RON 35 million.
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