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Surveys Find Key Changes in the Role of the Pharmaceutical CFO

, the CFO and the finance function are also critical to a company's ability to achieve the right balance of risk and opportunity, and optimize risk as a key driver of value. In fact, the survey reported that the top three drivers that are transforming the role of CFO are increased regulatory and compliance requirements (46%), increased corporate governance obligations (36%) and increasing risk management responsibilities (32%).

"The risk profile is critical because the external environment is growing more risk averse while the changing nature of the business requires the industry to, in fact, take on a lot more strategic and operating risk to drive value," added Buck Luce.

Other key findings include:

-- Understanding wider issues: 32% of respondents feel that the CFO of

their organization does not have enough understanding of the wider

issues their business faces.

-- Cost reduction: More pharmaceutical respondents are considering

outsourcing and shared service models for certain internal functions

than those in other industries; 64% of respondents are currently

considering outsourcing certain internal functions as part of a

cost-reduction measure versus 46% of respondents from a cross-industry


- Respondents were least comfortable in outsourcing clinical trials

(36%), followed by sales and marketing (33%).

India's perspective on pharmaceutical finance

Similar to the changes on a global level, a survey of pharmaceutical CFOs in India, conducted by Ernst & Young, found that they foresee a change in their roles.

Within the survey, however, there were distinct differences in the responses from CFOs of India-based subsidiaries of major multinational pharmaceutical companies (MNC) compared to those from CFOs of India-headquartered pharmaceutical companies (IPC). Most notably, human resource challenges are more acute for MNC

SOURCE Ernst & Young
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