Insight

CAO journey: The road ahead after 2020

COVID-19 and the economy forced Chief Accounting Officers to refocus on traditional duties, but they can still eye a bigger future role

Dean Bell

Dean Bell

Transaction Services Service Line Leader , KPMG US

+1 212-872-5527

Joseph Dineen

Joseph Dineen

Managing Director, Accounting Advisory Services, KPMG US

+1 313-230-3259

Deon Minnaar

Deon Minnaar

Partner, Internal Audit & Enterprise Risk, KPMG US

+1 212-872-5634

Ron Walker

Ron Walker

Finance Transformation Service Network Lead, KPMG US

+1 858-750-7057

Kevin Voigt

Kevin Voigt

Partner, National Service Line Leader, Economic & Valuation Services, KPMG US

+1 313-230-3359

CAOs hit a bump in the road in 2020. The urgency of dealing with impacts on the business from the COVID-19 outbreak has meant doubling down on governance and compliance duties, what we see as a temporary break from their progression to becoming a strategic business partner. Indeed, other company leaders also see the CAO’s traditional responsibilities as paramount at this time.

Based on our second annual CAO survey which included CEOs and CFOs, peers and CAO direct reports, a new KPMG paper, CAO journey: 2020 was a bump in the road, maps out where CAOs stand in their efforts to make a bigger contribution in the C-suite. Although the current business environment has interrupted that process, we found that CAOs are still in the driver’s seat in their evolution toward an expanded role, especially when it comes to leading their companies’ data analytics strategy.


CAO journey: 2020 was a bump in the road
COVID-19 and the economy forced the Chief Accounting Officer to shift focus from expanding the CAO role