The Differences Between Full-Time, Part-Time & Fractional CFOs

what does fractional cfo mean

A fractional CFO can do financial modeling for startups to assess the feasibility of new projects, investments, or business strategies. This can help you avoid costly mistakes because financial models like the Sensitivity Analysis predict what would happen to your financials in certain situations. For example, how your financials would be affected after increasing your prices. Fractional CFOs can also provide guidance and support on using their financial models effectively and making the most of the insights they provide. So much so that managing this growth can be overwhelming and may lead to financial mistakes. A fractional CFO can help a startup plan for growth by developing detailed budgeting plans, projections, and reports.

what does fractional cfo mean

Having a finance expert on the team from the start helps in ways that founders typically don’t realize until they hire a fractional CFO. A Fractional Executive is an experienced leader who works on your team for a fraction of their time helping them achieve their goals and achieve law firm bookkeeping success without the c-level costs or pushing limits on workloads. CFO’s also advise key stakeholders on critical company decisions, financial reporting and financial operations. A lot of times, a good CFO will take the lead in finding creative ways to fund key business operations.

Steps to Prepare for Raising Capital

Full-time CFOs are also paid an annual salary for their services and are eligible for company benefits. However, a full-time CFO salary averages $300,000 – $500,000 per year, which most early-stage startups can’t afford. Startups can get overwhelmed with managing their finances on top of other responsibilities. Accurate, real-time financial data and strategic financial insights can mean the difference between make-or-break decisions. But, an in-house finance team with a CFO comes with a price tag of hundreds of thousands of dollars in salaries and benefits. A fractional CFO is a financial expert who can bring the right level of financial knowledge to your business.

  • The bottom line is a well experienced CFO will be a valuable asset to your team.
  • In these days of economic challenges and changes, many companies struggle with uncertainty about the future, seeking tools and resources to best position their businesses for financial success.
  • However, keeping track of these metrics can be challenging for startups without a full-time CFO.
  • Our experienced personnel will provide the guidance you need to align your goals and elevate your business.
  • Consider gaining experience in different sectors to broaden your skills and expertise.
  • Founders should take their time to find the right fractional CFO for their startup.

An interim CFO is someone who steps in on a temporary basis, typically if there is a gap between one CFO leaving and a new one being hired. On the surface, these may simply seem like different titles for the same role, as there is a lot of crossover between definitions. Understanding your needs and goals will help you ask the right questions so you can make the most valuable hiring decision. Keep in mind that you may set out thinking you need one type of engagement when, in reality, you need another.

Interview three fractional CFOs.

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Investment advisory services and fee-based planning offered through BerganKDV Wealth Management, LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. A fractional CFO can charge on an hourly basis or a monthly retainer (which typically ranges between $5,000 and $7,500 per month). The wise business owner will “know what they don’t know,” and will seek the appropriate experts such as financial advisors to fill those gaps. A fractional CFO is also often brought into an organization to help achieve a particular goal, such as raising capital or preparing for a sale, merger, or acquisition.

The cost of Fractional CFO services for startups can be anywhere from Free to $10k per month, but the average is around $3k to $5k per month. As you might expect, the monthly cost depends on a number of factors, such as hourly rate, complexity of tasks, and breadth of responsibilities you assign your Fractional CFO. Fractional CFOs are finance experts, strategists, and operationally minded. Many fractional CFOs do part-time CFO work for a living, while others are employed full time and freelance with startups because it is interesting and fun to work with startups and help them grow from the early stages.

What is a Fractional CFO and Why Might You Need One?

With a “forward-looking” financial strategy, we help organizations implement a higher level of forecasting, budgeting, cash management, and financial strategy. Our goal is to help companies move the needle by scaling and accelerating growth, optimizing resources, overcoming obstacles, and maximizing shareholder value. Depending on which growth stage your business is at, a fractional CFO can provide a range of services, including debt negotiations, building cash-flow models, and advising on capital-market investments.

It may be an opportunity to become more strategic instead of just crunching numbers. Companies need to create financial plans for their business that offer direction and growth for the business. A CFO is well qualified in high level financial scenario analysis and can provide with diversified growth plans that will help you make smart business decisions. As a comparison, A full-time CFO’s salary will vary depending on the industry and location but averages at a base of $200,000-$250,000 per year.

When a business sale, acquisition, or major investment is contemplated, one important step in the due diligence process is the generation of a Quality of Earnings report, sometimes abbreviated as QOE. Simply put, fractional, part-time, and interim CFOs all perform the duties of traditional CFOs. However, fractional and part-time CFOs work part-time for a company on an ongoing basis whereas interim CFOs are full-time for a short time. Lastly, there are some instances where a company will hire a fractional CFO to fulfill a particular need or to address a specific challenge or goal within a business.

To make the most of your budget, you need to consider key financial tasks that will support your growth. With fractional CFO services, you can take care of those key tasks without overspending. These are some of the best outsourced CFO services you should consider to boost your startup’s growth. However, one of the main benefits of a fractional CFO for startups is cost savings.


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