What Makes the Best Healthcare CFO

by: Kaylee Gordon Riddle

Excellent Communication Skills – Most workdays a CFO’s week include multiple meetings. Because of this, a great chief financial officer must have the proper communication skills to delineate new financial plans and to debate opposing ideas respectfully. CFOs are generally type A personalities meaning that conversing multiple times a day is not out of one’s comfort zone. A large part of a CFO’s responsibilities is to come to agreements with other business executives over large pecuniary decisions. Good communication skills like active listening, and respecting others’ views make financial decisions more quickly and prevent hurt feelings and executive schisms.  

Understanding Financial Forecasting Financial planning is the main responsibility of a Chief Financial Officer. Without expert knowledge of finances and possible mergers and acquisitions, the job of a CFO would not be completed. Understanding finances and being able to forecast the market and make the right decisions is the top qualification for the job. In fact,  according to Becker’s Hospital Review over 50% of CFO stated financial planning as a “top initiative.” Another point the article makes, the three most attention demanding parts of the job for a chief financial officer all coincide with finances: Cost reduction initiatives, financial planning, and budget processes. 

Strong Decision-Making Skills Decisions, decisions, decisions. Everyone’s day is full of them, especially when you are a CFO. CFO’s decisions don’t only affect themselves and their families, like most people. CFOs make choices that effect entire companies, patients, employees and even the families of the employees. Without strong decision-making skills, a CFO would not be doing his/ her job. Choices cannot be rushed or take too long to be made. Weighing pros and cons, as wells as determining how options effect the entire health center need to be addressed with every choice a CFO makes for the company.  

Easily Adjusts to Change Leadership in healthcare changed ever 5-10 years. This causes healthcare administrators to be forced to deal with changes in opinion. Witt Kieffer’s CFO podcast states, “Healthcare CFOs must adjust to industry change, and to their CFOS.”  Change in management isn’t the only reason CFOs need to adjust quickly. Healthcare laws and regulations and constantly changing, meaning CFOs need to keep up with trends and shift, or an entire health center can lose patients, profits, or funding.  

Knowing When to Outsource. – Outsourcing is a big decision for CFOs of health centers. The right outsourcing can make or break the finances of a health clinic. Businessknowhow.com stated, “Outsourcing can be a strategic tool for making your business more productive and profitable – if you know when to take advantage of it “. Depending on what company a health clinic uses to outsource, prices for services can harm a clinic’s finances. But, if the right outsourced company is chosen, millions of dollars can be gained. For example, Emerald AR Systems has worked with many CFO’s and has been successful in saving millions of dollars that healthcare facilities would spend internally on technology, staffing, training and other material assets.   

If you’re interested in a quick win try implementing a solution today, that will give your facility quick revenue with no implementation. With our Claim Miner product, we recently found over 3.4 million dollars in missed Medicaid billing opportunities for one hospital. Visit us today at Emeraldar.com 

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