The Ten Pillars of Finance

The supporting areas of responsibilities inherent in the office of the CFO.

A Foundation for Finance Excellence

About the Ten Pillars

The Ten Pillars of Finance is a framework for understanding the role and responsibilities of the Chief Financial Officer. Experienced CFOs from a variety of company backgrounds designed the Ten Pillars framework. Each pillar is further broken down into sub-pillars containing the considerations needed for a successful finance function. The goal of the Ten Pillars is to empower finance leaders to create value within their organizations and broaden their skillset as a professional. The Ten Pillars cover a range of areas, including financial planning and analysis, risk management, and internal controls. By focusing on these key areas, CFOs can ensure that their organizations are financially stable and well-positioned for growth. Additionally, the framework emphasizes the importance of collaboration and communication across departments to ensure financial goals align with overall business objectives.


The Controllership function objectives are to safeguard the organization's assets, track the financial activities of the organization, produce timely and accurate financial statements, and ensure the flow of financial information for management decision-making.

Financial Planning & Analysis

Through analyzing financial data, creating forecasts and budgets, and providing performance analysis, Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A) helps organizations to identify trends, risks, and opportunities. FP&A enables the organization to make informed decisions that drive growth, profitability, and long-term success.

Treasury and Risk

Treasury & Risk manages the organization's financial resources and risks to ensure financial stability and support the organization's growth and strategic objectives. This involves maintaining adequate liquidity to meet financial obligations and managing financial risks, including interest rate, foreign exchange, credit, and operational risks.

Strategic Transactions

Strategic Transactions support the organization's growth and expansion objectives through mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, and other strategic transactions. Strategic Transactions play a critical role in managing the integration of acquired assets or divested businesses, ensuring that the organization can capture synergies and achieve its strategic objectives.

Information Technology

By leveraging technology effectively, the organization can improve operational efficiency, enhance customer experiences, and drive growth and profitability. The IT pillar plays a crucial role in managing cybersecurity risks and ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements related to technology and data management.

Business Model and Industry

By understanding industry trends, competitive landscape, and market positioning, the organization can make informed financial decisions that support its long-term growth and profitability. This includes analyzing the costs associated with the supply chain, managing risks related to supply chain disruptions, and optimizing the supply chain to improve operational efficiency.

Enterprise Management and Optimization

The overall objective of the Enterprise Management & Optimization pillar is to optimize the organization's resources, processes, and systems to drive operational efficiency, minimize risks, and maximize financial performance. The organization can improve its overall performance and competitiveness by identifying opportunities for process improvement, managing projects and initiatives to achieve strategic objectives, and implementing change management strategies.

Cross Functional Engagement

By engaging with stakeholders, communicating financial information effectively, and managing relationships with internal and external partners, the organization can foster a culture of collaboration and alignment. This includes identifying opportunities for collaboration and synergies across departments to optimize the organization's performance and drive long-term success.

Enterprise Governance

Establishing and maintaining effective governance practices and frameworks are a core responsibility of the CFO. Establishing strong governance policies and procedures allows the organization to manage risk effectively, ensure compliance with regulatory requirements, and protect stakeholders' interests. Additionally, the Enterprise Governance pillar promotes a culture of ethics and integrity across the organization, which supports the organization's reputation and long-term success.

Executive Leadership

Executive Leadership focuses on developing and implementing talent management strategies that enable the finance function to attract, develop, and retain top talent. This includes identifying the necessary skills and competencies for success within the finance function, providing training and development opportunities to help employees build these skills, and creating a culture of continuous learning and development.

Our Programs

Our programs incorporate the principles and sub-pillars of the Ten Pillars framework into their curriculum, ensuring that participants gain a deep understanding of the role and responsibilities of the Chief Financial Officer. The Ten Pillars of Finance serve as a framework for building a comprehensive and structured approach to developing the skills and competencies required for success within the finance function. The Leading the Office of the CFO program dives directly into each pillar, taught from the experiential standpoint of proven CFOs.

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