Becoming FC of an SME (Part 1)

 In Accountancy, Employees, Featured, Jobs

Becoming FC of an SME (Part 1)
There seems to have been a gentle but constant year on year shift over the last decade – more and more accountants cite ‘number 1 in finance for an ambitious SME’ as their ideal long term role. There are seemingly a range of contributing factors that we hear that lie behind the decision to find a happy home as Head of Finance / FC / FD within an SME.
Rightly or wrongly one of the main factors being a sense that key decision makers and stakeholders within SMEs have a better awareness of the need for work life balance within their employee base (including the senior management / board team). We believe it is also fair to say that moving to a smaller business from a corporate PLC is no longer always accompanied by a salary dive – business owners are willing to invest heavily in and reward their finance leads.
Many finance professionals feel that they can offer a more significant overall contribution within a smaller growing business – a contribution that will count and that will be recognised.

The feeling of being a big cog. SMEs are deemed to be able to offer exposure to a wider remit ‘outside’ of core finance. This article is not aimed at supporting or questioning any of the above but more-so an exploration of considerations that should be made by individuals looking to secure this first ‘head of finance’ role within a smaller business (in this case for the sake of argument a business of less than £50m turnover).
There are a broad range of career avenues into the head of finance role within an SME and CVs can take interesting twists and turns on the way but there are 4 most ‘typical’ routes:
1) A 1st step from a chartered practice environment.
2) A step up the rungs of the SME ladder – staying within the same business and stepping into the shoes of your former boss.
3) A step up the rungs of the SME ladder with the final step out into a new business as ‘number 1’ from number 2 in another.
4) A step from a larger PLC into a smaller organisation.

Over the next 4 weeks we will look at each in isolation however many of the considerations will overlap fully / to some degree…

Starting with:
Situation 1; you are working within a chartered environment and seek a step to Commerce and Industry as head of finance within an SME…. article to follow…..

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