In brief

In brief

  • Accenture research reveals how the CFO is positioned side-by-side with the CEO, turning finance into an engine that can power the entire enterprise.
  • The CFO has an expanded remit to create more revenue streams, manage down costs, share insights across functions and undertake other new initiatives.
  • CFOs are embracing 3 key priorities: drive new richness from data, rebalance the traditional skills profile and adopt a new wave of efficiencies.

Key takeaways

Providing advanced insight to the organization means CFOs should take greater ownership over data, across the entire enterprise. More than eight in 10 oil and gas CFOs (84 percent) agree that the CFO should be the ultimate authority on an organization’s data.

In the immediate future, the priority will be to bolster the established skills base with talent that can help the business understand and accept a bold new narrative. In our survey, the clear majority (86 percent) believe that data storytelling is an essential attribute for today’s finance professionals.

Our research suggests that finance teams in oil and gas are using technology to drive even greater efficiencies, allowing their people to create additional value. The overwhelming majority (91 percent) say digital technologies will lead to more self-service reporting, eliminating the need for much traditional finance.

To navigate an uncertain environment, oil and gas businesses need advanced insight into the risks and opportunities on the horizon.
Accenture CFO Survey Oil and Gas insights

Taking action

As oil and gas CFOs look to the future, our findings suggest there are three priorities to bear in mind:

  1. Help the business embrace uncertainty—by adopting new analytics technologies and enabling the finance team to derive insights from enterprise and external data, the CFO can play a pivotal role in leading the business to future growth, despite ongoing global challenges.
  2. Streamline and hone with care—enhancing efficiency through digital is crucial, but caution and tact is essential when identifying which tasks to streamline and which to retain.
  3. Empower talent with culture—finding and retaining the right skills is only half of the challenge. CFOs also need to ensure a culture is in place that encourages collaborative working and new value-adding tasks.

The oil and gas industry is entering a period of unprecedented volatility and change. This new research helps CFOs and finance teams ask the right questions and lead the way in providing needed vision, guidance and insight.

The research


Accenture carried out a quantitative survey of more than 700 CFOs and senior finance executives, including 69 from energy businesses, as well as a separate survey of 200 up-and-coming finance professionals.


We also conducted almost 50 qualitative interviews with CFOs, CEOs and CDOs.

Peggy Krendl

Senior Management Consulting Executive – North America


Think bold to lead: Digital finance enables the leap
CFO reimagined: Driving value & building the digital enterprise

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