CFO = Least Secure Job in Corporate America

by Erin McCune on December 3, 2008

in Careers, Current Events, Finance

According to Gordon Grand, head of CFO recruiting at search firm Russell Reynolds Associates CFO is "the least secure job in corporate America" as reported in the WSJ.

Recruiters and finance chiefs say CFOs are quitting or being ousted because the demands of the job are growing. CFOs were handed new responsibilities in 2002 by the Sarbanes-Oxley corporate-reform law. This year, many had to scramble to keep their companies afloat when credit markets dried up.

CFOs also handle outreach to investors and serve as strategic advisers to CEOs, but close ties to a CEO can make finance chiefs vulnerable when the top job changes hands. Some companies are eliminating the role of chief operating officer and giving CFOs more operational responsibilities.

The CFO "gets asked all of the hard questions," Mr. Grand says. "When the numbers don't work, the accountability is enormous."

Demand (and pay) for CFOs is on the rise. Median income is up 5.2% – significantly greater than the 1.3% increase in CEO pay over the same time frame – not that there is much room for CEO pay to increase!

Read more at the WSJ.

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