Bite-sized Takeaways from FP&A Week 2023, Day 4

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Your cheat sheet to FP&A Week with key insights from “Figma’s Strategic Finance Team Playbook to Support the Scaling of the Business”.

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Priyaanka Arora
April 3, 2023

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Bite-sized Takeaways from FP&A Week 2023, Day 4


FYI: Watch the full session recording.

Grab those golden nuggets of wisdom from FP&A Week Day 4, in 500 words or less.

Let’s go!

Focus on values and a robust hiring process to attract top talent

Attracting top talent in finance can be difficult, making it one of the most important tasks to scale your team. Having technical skills is simply a given; focus on values alignment and build consistency within your interview and hiring process to secure long-term employees.

"Values alignment will lead to longevity on the team. This phase of the interview is a nice opportunity to get to know people both personally and professionally.” - Nicole Wittlin, VP, Strategic Finance at Figma

Think one step beyond traditional finance team structures

Setting up infrastructure, reporting and leveraging existing work streams is essential for financial priorities. Moreover, having a wider team than just a financial strategy team as well as a centralized data science team can help refine forecast inputs and improve data infrastructure.

"So much of the work we've been striving towards is just setting up basic infrastructure systems and reporting. The boundaries and scope of what we're trying to do is wider than the traditional strategic finance team." - Nicole Wittlin, VP, Strategic Finance at Figma

Blend growth opportunities and down time to motivate your team

To motivate an FP&A team, it is important to identify the motivations of each person and provide them with growth opportunities. Recognition and empowerment are key for high-performing self-starters, while down time should be built into the team's schedule to ensure sustainability.

"My guiding principle is to get to know people on an individual level — what motivates people, what frustrates them, and what additional support they may need." - Nicole Wittlin, VP, Strategic Finance at Figma

Establishing a single source of truth is a key FP&A process challenge

To improve strategic finance processes, it is important to establish a single source of truth for reporting and target setting, recruit efficiently to keep up with business needs, and ensure that all teams have a consistent understanding of key metrics such as annual recurring revenue.

"We were lacking a single source of truth for reporting and target-setting. We were not able to easily share those numbers with business partners. Over the last year, we've made strides to improve our underlying queries and we've since centralized all our reporting with Pigment." - Nicole Wittlin, VP, Strategic Finance at Figma

Identify the best way to communicate your value to the business

Finance leaders: invest in data infrastructure for real-time transparency.

Make sure to establish key KPIs to track performance, democratize insights with self-service dashboards, invest in automation to streamline processes, and ensure everyone understands the importance of efficient business decisions.

"Demonstrate your value by speaking in a language your business partners can understand, and use data to identify opportunities for growth. Also be willing to roll up your sleeves and help execute on what you're seeing." - Nicole Wittlin, VP, Strategic Finance at Figma

Want more? Watch the full session recording.

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