A traditional accountant role is usually summarized by "providing services within; bookkeeping, processing transactions with vendors and tax preparation". Over the course of an engagement with an accountant, and especially when a business starts to grow, the duties of an accountant start to evolve rapidly to resemble the role of the Chief Financial Officer (aka CFO). This expanded role now include more complicated tasks, such as budgeting, planning, executing and deploying critical expansion growth strategies (initiatives), all while holding costs at check.
Any well-rounded strategic initiative, whether in marketing, production & operation or even staffing, has to factor or even target at least one financial metric of a kind, and depending on that your accountant or CFO starts to become the catalyst to the success of such transformation related projects - all because of the CFO's and accountant's abilities to tell a story and have a proof of value along the way.
For companies of a bigger size that harbor and implement change and transformation, a CFO and the finance function, perform duties from sourcing activities, negotiation, strategic selection, investor relations- and at the current pace of change in technology, the finance functions are at the forefront of the digitization process.
A CFO also plays a really important role in talent management of the workforce, by doing the following:
1. Making sure that a portion of the finance department's staff are learning new skills.
2. Helping staff with special projects such as pricing, capital expenditures or IT projects implementation.
3. Nurture staff within and beyond the finance department by exposing them to new skills and creating curriculums- which is also driven by the rapid technologies using automation.