7 Tips to Improve Finance Collaboration - Finance Silos

7 Tips to Improve Finance Collaboration

7 Tips to Improve Finance Collaboration

Finance and accounting fall under the same category, but they often have different viewpoints. Accounting focuses on the past, while finance looks to the future. For Chief Financial Officers (CFOs), it’s crucial to encourage teamwork between these departments.

Companies call this approach a team sport culture. In theory, it’s simple: make sure the teams communicate about their processes. However, in reality, creating finance collaboration faces challenges. To address this, we identified seven tips to foster a team-oriented culture between finance and accounting.

1 – Establish Shared Goals and Performance Metrics

Creating shared goals and key performance indicators (KPIs) is crucial for your business’s success. It’s not just something helpful; it’s necessary. When everyone in your team understands and works towards a common purpose, it motivates them to act and be accountable.

To make this happen, bring your finance and accounting teams together. Instead of changing how you set goals and measure performance, find ways for these teams to collaborate effectively. Start by organizing a joint meeting where both departments can discuss their needs. Identify overlapping areas, such as deadlines and reporting schedules, where communication is vital. In these common areas, encourage team members from both departments to work together, sharing responsibilities and building a cooperative atmosphere.

Once you’ve established the goals and KPIs, use a project management tool to document them. Assign tasks related to these goals to team members from each department. Regular check-ins will help ensure everyone stays on course.

2 – Upgrade Your Financial Management with Modern Tech

In today’s business world, it’s essential to use up-to-date tools for managing finances. While traditional methods like spreadsheets and emails have their merits, they lack collaboration features, leading to communication problems and errors.

Instead, invest in cloud-based technology such as FP&A software. This brings finance and accounting teams together on one platform, enhancing collaboration and communication as well as automating many of the time consuming tasks from both departments.

3 – Invest in Employee Training

In 2023, fewer people are quitting their jobs compared to the previous year, but turnover is still a concern due to uncertainties like remote work, cost cutting, and inflation. To retain skilled finance and accounting staff, it’s essential for smart leaders to invest in cross-functional training. This means training employees in different areas of the company, which not only improves their skills but also shows them that they are valued.

Here are some easy and cost-effective ideas to implement this training:

  • Organize networking events for finance and accounting teams.
  • Pair finance and accounting colleagues in mentorship programs.
  • Hold monthly skill-sharing sessions focusing on topics both departments are interested in.

To assess the effectiveness of these initiatives, conduct surveys every quarter. This feedback can help improve the programs and allow teams to share insights about each other’s roles.

4 – Collaborate Effectively Across Departments

Cross-functional collaboration means people from different teams working together toward a common goal. This not only motivates everyone but also highlights the importance of setting shared goals. Since no team can function alone, solving problems with colleagues from other departments helps the whole workplace function better. It also makes both departments more efficient when they understand each other’s tasks.

For example, a finance professional finds it useful to understand some accounting concepts when dealing with complex financial situations. This knowledge helps their accounting colleagues and speeds up finding solutions.”

5 – Focus on Soft Skills

Modern finance and accounting professionals excel at technical tasks like managing balance sheets and cash flows. But now, having strong soft skills such as decision-making and teamwork is equally crucial. Relying solely on one person can lead to mistakes, so teamwork is vital.

Encourage your team to learn from one another by promoting cross-functional training. This breaks down departmental barriers and helps colleagues build relationships across the organization. Foster continuous learning through collaboration. Here’s how:

  • Create a discussion forum for finance and accounting teams to ask questions and gain insights beyond their expertise.
  • Offer judgment-free office hours where team members can ask any questions, no matter how small.
  • Organize lunch-and-learn sessions focusing on soft skills like communication, conflict resolution, and networking.

By nurturing these skills, your team will thrive in the collaborative and ever-changing world of finance and accounting.

6 – Emphasize the Importance of Data

It’s crucial for the entire team to focus on using reliable data for analysis. Automation is essential in today’s tech-driven world. Automating tasks saves time and lowers mistakes. Utilize technology to handle tasks like calculations, updates, and financial processes efficiently.

By letting your financial management platform handle these tasks, you can speed up processes and reduce the need for auditors to travel. Sharing information electronically can even lower audit fees. This approach makes finance and accounting teams more efficient, allowing them to handle more tasks. This efficiency can lead to better scenario planning. When routine tasks are done faster, your team has more time to think creatively about the future. Use this extra time to develop detailed scenario forecasts.

7 – Stay Open and Clear

When working remotely, it’s easy to create barriers between team members. To prevent this, be proactive about sharing information. Technology can be a big help. Use tools that let you work together on documents and reports. This way, you won’t have to switch between different apps, reducing the chances of missing important messages.

Also, find tools that work seamlessly with your existing communication apps like Teams or Slack. This allows you to collaborate with colleagues worldwide and leave notes for them, ensuring smooth communication regardless of time zone.


Fostering collaboration between finance and accounting departments is essential for organizational success. Effective cross-functional collaboration and a focus on soft skills, such as communication and teamwork, are vital for efficient problem-solving and relationship-building. Emphasizing the use of reliable data, leveraging automation, and staying open and clear through seamless communication tools are also key strategies. By implementing these seven tips, organizations can bridge the gap between finance and accounting, promoting collaboration, efficiency, and innovation within the workplace.

Recent Posts

What is the Role of an FP&A Analyst?

Comments are closed.