An interim FD is very similar to a part-time FD, but there are a few subtle differences.
A part-time FD works with growing businesses on a long-term part-time (a day a week or a day a month, for example) basis. They support companies who need the insight of an FD but cannot justify a full-time resource.
An interim FD is temporarily engaged to deal with a particular situation
- Covering an absence (e.g. long-term illness or maternity leave)
- Covering the unexpected departure of the existing FD
- Leading a turnaround situation
- Preparing a business for sale
- Acquiring a new business
- Launching a new product or division
- Setting up an overseas subsidiary
- Helping a CEO recruit a permanent FD
- Setting up a joint venture
- Mentoring a newly promoted FD
The interim FD relishes a challenge and goal-orientated projects across a diverse range of companies and situations. They can ‘hit the ground running’ and are adept at picking up projects with very little notice or preparation and thrive when under significant pressure to deliver within weeks rather than months.
The big challenge for any business requiring the services of an interim FD or interim CFO is finding ‘the right one.’
Most interim FDs come from two routes:
- A professional interim FD
- An FD who finds themselves unexpectedly out of work and has invoked ‘Plan B’ while they find another permanent position.
The problem for the unutilised interim FD is although they are working with their client, really their heart isn’t in it. Their focus is on finding the next permanent opportunity. This can lead them to leave projects early and unfinished.
Unfortunately, it is too easy for an interim to become a lone wolf. The professional interim does not lay down deep routes and is always ready to move on quickly, painlessly with the least amount of fuss. Dangerously, the lone wolf can build or prolong the project with their client, which often involves creating an empire and moving into areas of finance that they are overqualified to deliver.
FD service providers like Isosceles have a team of career interim FDs
Interim FDs are a vital resource for clients who need short-term help with a particular financial challenge or who are unable to find the right person or cannot yet afford to permanently recruit an FD.
Our FDs avoid the lone wolf syndrome. They are surrounded with other like-minded and capable individuals, knowing that they can put the right resource at the right level when it is required. They also have such an abundant source of future projects in the pipeline that they no longer need to be so protective.
Uniquely, Isosceles’ FDs can be blended with other accounting resources if the project needs this type of expertise.
When looking for an interim FD, the secret is to look for a professional who has built a showcase of skills that meet your specific requirements.
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