This month, we marked the start of the third quarter of what will surely be remembered as the year of COVID-19, a year no one could have predicted. This is especially true for finance teams, many of whom have been recasting financials on a weekly basis.
As our CFO COVID-19 Economic Impact Survey revealed last month, many SoCal businesses were hit hard by the economic slowdown and expect that blow to be felt well into 2021. We received another setback yesterday when Governor Newsom, citing recent statewide spikes in COVID-19 cases, called for most non-essential businesses to once again close their offices.
Uncertainty continues to be the rule of the day. As finance leaders, however, it’s our job to help our businesses navigate through the ambiguity, working with our CEOs and fellow C-Suite leaders to anticipate multiple financial scenarios and plan accordingly.
As we enter Q3 of this unprecedented year, here are five questions to ask as you begin to plan for 2021.
- With so much unknown, what are the two (or more) most likely paths for your company for Q3 and into Q4?
- What is your best case/worst case financial scenario for closing the books on 2020?
- What unexpected costs and savings have this new normal brought? What considerations need to be made for headcount, office footprint and policy updates related to COVID-19?
- Did your company pivot during COVID-19? If so, how can you continue to capitalize on them? We’ve heard so many great stories of how companies have reinvented themselves during the pandemic. What does this mean for 2021 and beyond?
- Do you have the right team in place to set you up for a rebound? If you had a reduction, do you plan to rebuild the team? What does your ideal finance and accounting team look like? What skills will you need to successfully navigate through this period of uncertainty and to capitalize on the eventual rebound? In this new normal, what role will part-time or fractional employees play?
We’re asking ourselves all of these questions. It’s not an easy feat, but important as all keep our eye on the horizon.
Need help with any of the above? Our ARG team and expert consultants are here to assist and advise in any way we can.
How CFOs Can Push Past Fear to Resilience (CFO Magazine)
Finance Team Optimization (Gartner)
Innovation in a Downturn (Gallop)