3 Things to move from Audit to Finance Business Partner
The 3 key things you need to move from Audit to be a Finance Business Partner:
If you come from a technical / audit background, it may seem that moving into a commercial finance business partnering role is a pipe dream. How can you prove you've got the business acumen and influencing skills if you're stuck in the back office and not given the opportunity?!
1. You'll need to prove you can communicate effectively with a whole variety of stakeholders. What differentiates you from everyone else at your level? Think of real life achievements where you've made a tangible difference - probably from your professional life but also think outside work to any extra-curricular activities which show your strengths.
2. Understand the bigger picture. Whilst much of your early career may have been in the detail - right down to transactional level - you'll need to show that you are capable of understanding the macro: why does the business do what it does? What is its strategy? What are its goals? How does it track and monitor progress? What value do you think you could add towards achieving the strategy? Use all available resources - Investor Relations webpages and Press Releases to make sure you're on the same page.
3. Get a trusted recruitment partner. Someone who understands your long term career plan and what you'll need to achieve en-route to that goal. Make sure you can work with your recruiter and that you trust them to bring you the right opportunities in the right businesses. That doesn't mean to say they won't push back and challenge your thinking; the best ones will. They'll advise and work with you for the long term - often a relationship spanning many years. If they're really good you'll use them to recruit for your own team in the future too!
It's absolutely possible to move from audit straight into commercial finance and business partnering. If you're driven enough and good enough to do so. Take advice from your recruiter - if you don't trust them to be working in your best interests then find one who will. Know yourself and know your achievements - know the business and be able to articulate how you can add value, and how you've done it before, albeit in a different setting.
And Good Luck. It always helps!
We've just had a role called in that seeks someone from Audit to move into a Finance Manager role - with a view to becoming Finance Business Partner in less than 12 months! This is what you've been waiting for!!