Global Survey of CFOs Reveals the Manufacturing Sector Further Along in Business Partnering Than Other Sectors

Rootstock Software sponsors FSN survey, which finds data mastery and integrated ERP systems are key factors in pushing manufacturers ahead of the curve

San Ramon, CA (May 16, 2019)Rootstock Software®, a worldwide provider of cloud ERP solutions, and FSN, a global publisher of thought leadership, today announced the results of a global survey of CFOs titled “Business Partnering and The Manufacturing CFO.” The survey assesses the state of “Business Partnering,” which is defined as the collaborative process between finance executives and operational management that widens the reach of finance’s insights to benefit the whole company.

For some time, progressive companies have encouraged the finance function to exert its influence and spread its insight beyond the four accounting walls. But it is only recently that business partnering has really gone mainstream. This study not only examined the state of business partnering by CFOs across many industries, it also compared how manufacturers rate against their peers in other industries.

“A vast majority of finance professionals remain mired in their traditional roles, but around a quarter of these professionals point the way forward to a new era of business partnering centered on top-line growth, strategic alignment and encouraging change and innovation,” said Gary Simon, CEO of FSN and leader of the Modern Finance Forum on LinkedIn.

CFOs in the study believe business partnering correlates to company growth and success – with 91% of respondents saying business partnering positively impacts profitability, and 88% considering themselves business partners.

“Of all the sectors represented in the survey, one stood out as further along the business partnering journey than all the others – manufacturing,” said Simon. “Where non-manufacturing companies were more finance-centric or applied a light touch to their business partnering, manufacturing companies were more often seen as trusted advisors or change agents.”

The survey identified “data mastery” as a crucial element in enabling effective business partnering. Organizations that have mastered their data have the time and attention to devote to innovation and change. Manufacturers were 30% more likely to be considered data masters and 50% more likely to say business partnering leads to greater profitability.

Manufacturers are currently undergoing extraordinary business model and technology changes, making them ideally suited for effective business partnering and strategic input from CFOs,” said Tom Brennan, CMO of Rootstock Software. “Manufacturers have also long understood the importance of enterprise-wide ERP processes, which gives them an advantage over their peers in other industries when it comes to data mastery. This study illustrates how eliminating data silos and unifying data across an enterprise can liberate finance teams, allowing them to focus more effort on company growth and profitability. This is precisely why Rootstock Cloud ERP was designed to provide manufacturers an end-to-end view of their businesses across CRM and ERP from a single cloud.”

For more information, sign up for Rootstock and FSN’s upcoming webinar, “Can modern ERP support better business partnering?” on Thursday, May 23, 10:00 am Eastern time.

Additional Resources

About Rootstock

Rootstock Software is a worldwide provider of cloud ERP. When combined with CRM, Rootstock Cloud ERP offers manufacturing, distribution, and supply chain organizations a single platform to grow and manage their businesses. Rootstock Cloud ERP is a flexible, modern, and digitally connected system that transforms companies to deliver a more personalized customer experience, efficiently scale operations, and out-service the competition. To learn more, please visit

About FSN

FSN is a global publisher of thought leadership, research and “must-have” content for CFOs and senior finance professionals around the world. FSN’s highly popular and active Modern Finance Forum on LinkedIn has a membership of more than 51,000 readers in more than 23 countries and across every major industry segment. It is also the publisher of the popular website and regularly holds networking dinners and events for its members.

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