New International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) initiative highlights the critical role of CFOs and finance functions in enabling an integrated mindset.

Functional and information silos within organizations are barriers to delivering high-quality sustainability-related information, which is necessary for decision making and trustworthy corporate reporting. Boards and CEOs are turning to CFOs and finance functions to break down these silos and to drive connectivity between sustainability and financial information and processes, thereby creating a critically important “integrated mindset“.

At its core, an integrated mindset is about improving the quality of sustainability information and processes and connecting these to financial reporting and the value of the business. This leads to better decision making and communication with stakeholders, and consequently to reduced risk and cost of capital, as well as growth opportunities.

The CFO and finance function are essential facilitators of an integrated mindset given their expertise in connecting and prioritizing information—both financial and sustainability-related—into a more integrated corporate reporting process that provides an accurate picture of performance and value creation to the organization, its investors, and other stakeholders.

Business held its position as the most trusted institution in the 2022 Edelman Trust Barometer, which indicated an enormous need for business to continue delivering tangible action and results on society’s most critical issues. IFAC believes that trustworthy, comprehensive corporate reporting is critical to delivering on this need and driving long term value creation and trust.

“Sustainable value creation will not result from siloed thinking and information. Enabling management and boards to make informed decisions and deliver decision-useful disclosure for investors requires breaking down functional silos and connecting information on sustainability, value creation, and financial performance. Professional accountants are poised to deliver this integrated mindset, and we’re calling on all businesses to take action.”  

Kevin Dancey, IFAC CEO

IFAC’s call-to-action, Championing an Integrated Mindset to Drive Sustainable Value Creation, highlights what it means to adopt an integrated mindset, why it is important and how it is achieved.  

Source: IFAC