Overcoming the Challenge of Financial Department Head Resignations and Absences

November 5, 2021 ROARK

It’s the end of the day on Friday and your CFO/Controller just let you know about an upcoming leave or gave notice. What now? Whether it be for medical leave, parental leave, or a resignation, you’re going to have to figure out how to cover this high-level position. It’s never easy to fill an employee absence, but it’s a must if you want to continue the success of your business.

Yes, you really do need an interim CFO/Controller

It’s not enough for your business to simply survive—you want it to thrive—and you need to maintain the confidence of investors or your board. This is especially important if you’re in the middle of an IPO or acquisition. By engaging with an interim finance or accounting leader to cover employee absences you make sure that there is someone skilled leading the finance & accounting department to help your company meet deadlines, reporting requirements, and meet strategic objectives and benchmarks.

Don’t let work pile up during an absence

If the reason you need coverage is due to medical or parental leave, your Finance/Accounting Department Head will eventually be returning to the office. Having someone cover the absence assures that work hasn’t piled up presenting them with an insurmountable task of simply catching up. Not only does covering the employee absence with a skilled professional help your business, but it helps your employee return to an organized and manageable workload.

Give yourself time after a resignation

If the employee absence is due to notice given, not only does covering the employee absence help with the day-to-day operations of your business, but it allows you to take the time to hire the right fit. Your interim CFO/Controller could also be useful to the hiring process, as they could potentially best describe the position and requirements to a recruiter as well as review resumes or develop interview questions.

Be slow to hire

Turnover and training and recruiting costs can pile up, so it’s imperative that your new hire be the right choice both in skillset and company culture. You could choose to cover the gap between permanent hires with an interim employee, or even do temp-to-hire and ask for an associate that’s open to a full-time position and try them out before offering a role.

An interim financial leader will make your life easier

By covering an employee absence with interim finance/accounting leadership, you’ll make life so much easier for yourself, your team, and the employee on leave. You’ll be less stressed about trying to manage your own role leading the company while covering an accounting role and you’ll ensure that your business runs smoothly during the absence, with external and internal relationships well maintained.

If you need to hire a new person, you’ll have the time and resources to select the best new hire. Also, because an interim employee will be a new set of eyes, they may find new opportunities or strategies for improving your daily processes. At the end of the day, you’ll have strengthened your team, and since you took the time to find the right fit you won’t have to do this again for a long time.

If you need help finding an interim financial leader, we’re here to help.

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