February 2020 – From Chair of the Group of 100, Janelle Hopkins

From Chair of the Group of 100, Janelle Hopkins


At the end of last year, the Board of the Group of 100 (G100) invited me to become the Chair of the organisation. The G100 has gained significant traction across a number of areas, most capably led by Andrew Porter and a very fine Board, so I was delighted to accept.

I would like to take this opportunity to reflect on some of the achievements of 2019 and to outline some of the opportunities we will be tackling this year.

 

2019 Achievements

One of the great successes of 2019 was turning the G100’s Biennial Congress into an annual event and running it in association with the Australian Financial Review newspaper. I am delighted that we were able to raise and debate issues of concern to members in a very public forum and have them covered in the newspaper the following day. The feedback we have received from the 200 delegates has ensured that this event will continue for some time to come.

Apart from the very successful networking dinners and luncheons that were held, another highlight of the year was the political engagement day held in Parliament House. Members had the opportunity to meet and discuss issues with senior Cabinet and Shadow Cabinet Ministers including the Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, the Shadow Treasurer and Shadow Assistant Treasurer.

In order that we are as accessible as possible to members, we have created regional bodies of the G100 in Western Australia and South Australia, and we will shortly have one in Queensland. The regional bodies are designed to ensure that those CFOs and senior finance executives not able to fly regularly, are able to access the information and networks they need closer to home.

 

2020 Focus Areas

Supporting our vision of “Todays leading CFOs creating better businesses for tomorrow”, in 2020 we will continue to focus on 3 strategic themes:

  • Building a vibrant CFO network
  • Shaping business outcomes
  • Fostering the CFOs of tomorrow

We will position the organisation so governments, regulators, CFOs, and other key stakeholders across the country, not only understand our position on key issues but we become trusted advisers as our counsel is regularly sought. I will be assisting the Board and the Secretariat to focus on the issues that matter most to CFOs.

To shape business outcomes, the G100 will continue to play a key advocacy role, particularly in such areas as external reporting, cutting red tape, cross border harmonisation, class actions resulting from continuous disclosure, cutting the cost of D&O insurance, sustainability and taxation reform. We have enjoyed considerable success with several of these issues working with key politicians and regulators.

We will also continue to advocate for the future of the profession. The G100 has commenced a journey to ensure that young graduates are better positioned to work in the finance industry and we are continuing to offer support to new CFOs with initiatives such as the G100 EY First 100 Day Program. We are also looking at training options and specific communication channels so existing CFOs have access to the latest regulatory changes and learning from Australia and overseas.

Of course, in order to undertake the work on issues impacting the work of CFOs, their teams and companies; to ensure we provide you and your teams with current information; and, access to peer support and networking, we need subscriptions to be paid at the beginning of each calendar year. I have taken the liberty of attaching this year’s subscription renewal form. You will notice that there is a slight increase of $500 this year, this is the first increase in over 10 years.

I would ask for your continuing support to ensure we are able to undertake the work we are doing and are positioned to take on other important issues as they arise. Subscriptions are due by Friday 28 February 2020 please.

Finally, I look forward to meeting with you in the not too distant future. I wish you and your organisation every success in 2020.

 

Janelle Hopkins

Chair of the Group of 100