Fractional CFOs: What They Do, Why You Might Need an Interim CFO Instead

The chief financial officer is crucial role. But not all businesses can afford – or are ready – for one.

One alternative to committing to a full-time (and expensive) C-suite financial executive is a fractional CFO.

“The biggest role of a fractional CFO is going to be high-level overview. The business is typically not going to be big enough to really justify a full-time CFO,” BluWave Head of Finance Justin Scott says. “But you do need somebody to validate the financial statements and make sure that your cash flow’s in line. Things that the controller or even a super-controller may miss.”

Let’s look at this part-time position in more detail, and explore whether a full-time temporary CFO – an interim – makes more sense.

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What is a Fractional CFO?

A fractional CFO provides high-level financial oversight for businesses that might not be able to justify a full-time CFO.

“The biggest role of a fractional CFO is going to be a high-level overview. You just need that extra set of eyes,” Scott says. “It’s more of a validation role.”

The “fractional” part of the title indicates that the person in this role is working a “fraction” of what would normally be a full work week. In fact, it’s not unusual for someone to serve as a fractional CFO for three or more businesses simultaneously.

A fractional CFO is a great option to help secure funding, and then establish the ongoing reporting process and line of communication with the funding source.

“If you use a fractional CFO because you want to establish a line of credit, that line of credit is going to have regular monthly reporting that has to be provided and you may not want your controller working on it,” Scott says.

While there are other use cases, these are among the more common ones.

How Many Hours Does a Fractional CFO Work?

This will vary, but again, by definition the role is a fraction of full-time.

That could mean as little as 5 hours per month, or as much 10-plus hours per week, which is why people in this role often support multiple businesses at once.

There are, of course, both positives and negatives to having someone work for such a limited amount of time.

Benefits and Drawbacks


1. Cost-Effective

Hiring a fractional CFO is more budget-friendly than bringing on a full-time executive.

Instead of paying a salary plus benefits, you can budget for a set amount of hours each week or month.

Even someone who charges $250 per hour, for example, would only cost $2,500 in a 10-hour month – far below the cost of a full-time chief financial officer.

“I think the larger use case is they just don’t have a need for a full-time one,” Scott says. “They probably have a controller or a super-controller in place that gets them almost everything that they need, and they just want an extra set of eyes for peace of mind. The expense is definitely going to be your primary driver.”

2. Flexibility

A fractional CFO is usually brought in as a specialist in one particular area of the finance function. In fact, CEOs could leverage multiple fractional CFOs at the same time, each focusing on different areas.

Since a part-time hire works so few hours per company, they typically have more flexibility, too.

3. Expertise on Demand

For specific tasks in advanced functionalities, a fractional CFO can be invaluable.

One person can be brought in, laser-focused on a project, and only cost the company the amount of time needed to complete it.

4. Mentoring and Coaching

Whether the person running a company’s finances full-time is an ambitious controller or a green CFO, bringing in a fractional CFO to cover their weaknesses can benefit both the company as well as the permanent hire.

The fractional CFO can not only ensure that the full-time person’s blind spots aren’t a liability, but they can train them along the way so that they’re able to do it on their own in the future.


1. Limited Business Insight

Since a fractional CFO is not fully engaged, they might lack a deep understanding of the company’s needs.

“I use myself as the example here. There’s a lot of things that I catch or help plan for because I’m intimately involved in every step of the business,” Scott says. “If I didn’t understand the complexities of what BluWave does, it would be very easy to give a vanilla, out-of-the-box opinion on something and then it blow up in our face.”

2. Less Commitment

Fractional CFOs might not feel as invested in the team and organization they’re supporting if they’re only involved a few hours a week.

“There’s no long-term commitment,” Scott says.

This means that if things start to go south, they’re not going to feel the pain as much and therefore might not be as motivated as someone whose career is on the line.

3. Lack of Focus

As mentioned, fractional CFOs are likely to be working for multiple companies at the same time.

Depending on the urgency of projects from one situation to the next, the fractional CFO may not be as locked in on your company’s needs as they would be otherwise, despite their best efforts.

4. Risk of Losing Them

Some finance experts are content to keep their hands in multiple pots. Others, however, would be happy to jump to a full-time position if the right opportunity presented itself.

Instead of receiving notice about their departure weeks in advance, they may leave you high and dry for a business that’s willing to pay them more.

“That can almost be even bigger risk because fractional CFO by nature already has less understanding of your business, and now they also have less commitment,” Scott says.

Perhaps your business can’t justify a permanent CFO – or you’re going through a leadership transition or preparing for sale – but you still need the full-time commitment of a finance executive.

An interim chief financial officer, then, may be the perfect solution to strike that balance.

Fractional CFO vs. Interim CFO

An interim CFO includes all the pros of a fractional CFO, but practically none of the cons.

That’s not to say that there aren’t also drawbacks of an interim vs. a permanent CFO, but they tend to be a much more impactful solution than someone who only engages with your business for a few hours per month.

An interim CFO is typically more engaged, provides a deeper understanding and is committed full-time.

This deeper involvement brings with it process improvements, better cash flow management and strategic partnership benefits to CEOs, Scott says.

“The interim CFO is going to be more of a strategic partner.”

Why You Might Hire an Interim CFO Instead

Scott says portfolio companies and private and public companies that are ready to add a full-time CFO for the first time are well-positioned to seek an interim.

Here are some reasons why:

1. Commitment

Interim CFOs offer a higher level of dedication compared to their fractional counterparts.

“Now all of a sudden, this is their game. It’s their full-time focus, so they’re going to be digging through everything,” Scott says. “You’re going to get process improvements. You’re going to get better cash flow. You’re going to get all of the things that a full-time CFO brings to the table.”

2. Strategic Partnership

CEOs can expect more from an interim CFO than a fractional solution.

“They’re more engaged with business,” Scott says. “They have a deeper understanding of the business. They’re just going to get more out of the relationship.”

READ MORE: Interim CFO for a Financial Crisis

3. Cost-Effective in the Long Run

While the initial cost might be higher, the benefit an interim CFO brings in terms of expertise and commitment can significantly outweigh the expenses.

“The interim CFO is going to be more of a value-add,” Scott says.

Their billable hours can also be capped, and they typically don’t take benefits like health or 401ks.

Whether you seek a fractional, interim or full-time CFO, the Business Builders’ Network is loaded with private equity-grade options for all company types and industries.

The resources BluWave provides have been vetted by multiple PE firms before joining its invite-only network. It’s no surprise, then, that interim CFOs are consistently among the most requested connections we make.

When you’re ready to meet your next chief financial officer, our research and operations team will provide a short list of industry-specific candidates within a single business day. Set up a scoping call to get started today.

“It’s a big step to go from a fractional CFO to a full-time role,” Scott says, “but the benefits are undeniable.”

Interim CFO Elevates Real Estate Search Engine’s Financial Strategy

Industry: Technology – Software

Service Area: Human Capital

Client Type: Portfolio Company – Real Estate Search Engine

Service Provider Type: Interim CFO

The Need
Navigating Financial Transitions

A leading online real estate marketplace specializing in age-restricted communities was at a crossroads. With revenue of $15MM and a team of 50 employees and 20 contractors, they were gearing up to revamp their business model and set their annual budget. The challenges brought on by the pandemic had altered their sales funnel dynamics, and their existing financial model was due for an overhaul. Amid these shifts, the need for an interim CFO to steer them through this period became evident.

The Challenge
LeadGen Expert with Industry Experience

Operating as a unique platform in the real estate sector, the ideal candidate would be familiar with online lead generation. Real estate experience would be a significant advantage, too. Furthermore, understanding the intricacies of the company’s in-house developed front and back-end systems was crucial. With an ongoing annual audit and the recent onboarding of a new FP&A manager, the interim CFO’s role was to ensure a seamless transition without any operational disruptions.

How BluWave Helped
The Right Solution, Fast

BluWave swiftly grasped the distinct needs of the real estate marketplace. Tapping into its extensive network, BluWave introduced the company to a short list of seasoned interim CFOs. After introductions were made, the portco zeroed in on the candidate that brought to the table a rich experience in online lead generation and a profound understanding of financial modeling and budget building. The temporary executive was not only equipped to oversee the annual audit but also possessed the strategic vision required to reshape the business model in alignment with the company’s objectives.

The Result
Strategic Financial Revamp, Strong Foundation for Future

The interim CFO, integrated effortlessly into the team. In the initial phase, they prioritized ensuring the smooth operation of the company’s financial functions. As the engagement evolved, the CFO transitioned from a full-time role to a part-time strategic advisor, offering the company the flexibility it sought. Under the interim CFO’s guidance, the company successfully overhauled its financial model, laying a robust foundation for stability and growth.

The interim executive you selected for us did great work. We would rate her as great overall.

-CEO of Portfolio Company

A Wave of Deals is Coming: Commercial Due Diligence Webinar

The private equity deal market has been slow in 2023. There are signs, however, that that could change soon.

In fact, BluWave founder and CEO Sean Mooney believes PE is ready to “call a bottom” based on proprietary internal data. That means that firms must have their due diligence resources lined up ahead of the anticipated wave of deals this fall and beyond.

Mooney was recently joined by BluWave Head of Technology Houston Slatton and Hidden Harbor CP Partner Andrew Joy to discuss the intricacies of commercial due diligence on a live webinar.

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Here are some of the top takeaways from their conversation:

Understanding Target Markets

The panel touched on how commercial due diligence is pivotal in assessing market conditions.

“The definition of commercial due diligence in my mind is a synthesis of all factors, both historically and in the future that affect the growth and the competitiveness of the target in that particular model,” Joy said.

This “synthesis” involves myriad factors, from end-market demand drivers to regulatory inputs and global competition. The goal is to understand not just the immediate future but to project growth and trends 10-20 years ahead.

“Commercial due diligence is a term of art for a market study,” Mooney added. “It’s standard operating procedure by the best private equity investors in the world.”

READ MORE: What is Commercial Due Diligence?

The Role of Due Diligence in Bid Strategy

The competitive landscape of private equity demands a unique approach to bid strategies.

Mooney said private equity firms aim to see something unique in their investment targets that others don’t.

“One of the big trends is investment bankers are starting to put sell-side commercial due diligence studies in the data rooms,” Mooney said. “The incentive may be for private equity firms, ‘Oh, this is great, I can rely on the money that they’ve spent and I’ll just take their word for it.’ “But a newsflash is, if you’re buying the market study, you get to pick what it says so you can frame it.”

He added that that’s one of the reasons the private equity industry still uses its “own source of truth.”

Joy elaborated on other challenges PE firms are facing.

“I think as information and data has become more commoditized and more accessible, it’s becoming harder and harder to really find areas where you have a competitive advantage,” he said.

Finding that unique angle in a saturated market can make all the difference for a firm.

READ MORE: Buy-Side Commercial Due Diligence Strategies

Choosing the Right Commercial Due Diligence Provider

The choice of a due diligence provider can make or break a deal.

Mooney emphasized the importance of team experience and relevance.

“When you’re vetting your group, I’ll show exactly how we do it. It’s ‘What is your experience in the defined industry you’re exposing? Which projects have you worked on in this industry?’ When did they work on it? Who is the team that worked on it?”

In the end, he said, it comes down to ensuring that the diligence team has relevant experience with the target, the market and the industry.

“I think it’s really finding the right team that has the most relevant experience and just knows the market cold,” Joy added.

Mooney also warned against trying to pull an up-market firm down to your budget. Because of scarcity of resources, this could mean they don’t put their best team members on your project.

As the PE world braces for influx of new deals, having your diligence sources lined up ahead of time is key. To learn more about how to prepare, you can watch the webinar on demand.

If you would like to hear about the commercial due diligence resources in the Business Builders’ Network, contact our research and operations team to scope your need.

Panelist Bios:

Interim CFO with Expertise in Commodities, Hedging, for Manufacturing PortCo

Industry: Manufacturing

Service Area: Human Capital – Interim Leadership

Client Type: Portfolio Company – Food Ingredients Facility

Service Provider Type: Interim CFO

The Need
Expertise in Financial Management and Hedging

The CFO was leaving a B2B food ingredients portfolio company. The business, with significant operations in commodities and hedging, needed an interim CFO who could navigate the complexities of their financial landscape. This included managing large-scale hedging operations, understanding the impact of hedging on P&L and ensuring covenant calculations were accurate.

The Challenge
Hands-On CFO with Industry Expertise

The company’s operations were intricate, with 85 percent of their capacity for 2023 already booked and hedged. This created a significant exposure on their books, making expertise in commodities and hedging non-negotiable. Additionally, the ideal candidate would be someone who had experience in a private equity environment, understood liquidity and 13-week cash flow, and was more finance-oriented than purely accounting-focused.

How BluWave Helped
Short List of Industry Finance Experts

BluWave leveraged its extensive network to identify a short list of interim CFOs who not only had the required expertise in commodities and hedging but also had a track record in PE environments. The portco and its PE firm selected a candidate with more than three decades of experience, including roles in financial leadership and a deep understanding of the agri-commodity space. Their hands-on approach and willingness to be on-site, even if it meant frequent travel, made them an ideal fit.

The Result
Recipe for Sweet Success

With the interim CFO on board, the company maintained seamless financial operations, ensuring that their hedging strategies were effectively managed and that their financial reporting remained accurate. The temporary executive’s expertise allowed the CEO to focus on other critical aspects of the business, confident that their financial operations were in capable hands.

Targeted Market Research for a Software Technology Company

Industry: Technology – Software

Service Area: Voice of the Customer

Client Type: Portfolio Company – B2B Data Management

Service Provider Type: Market Research Firm

The Need
Specialized Market Research for Master Data Management

A B2B data management portfolio company sought a market research firm to conduct an in-depth survey. Their objective was to delve into market awareness, trends in Master Data Management (MDM) and the perception of various brands in the software industry. With MDM being a pivotal enterprise software tool, understanding its market positioning was paramount.

The Challenge
Quality Insights Within Budgetary Limits

Having previously approached another market research firm, the company found their offerings too costly for the intended survey. The challenge lay in identifying a service provider with profound knowledge of MDM and the capability to target specific roles such as IT, Data Architecture Management and Data Cleaning, all while staying within the budget.

How BluWave Helped
Bridging the Gap with Expert Market Research

BluWave swiftly navigated its vast network to pinpoint a market research firm that not only had a deep-rooted understanding of MDM but also boasted expertise in conducting brand-centric surveys. The chosen firm’s proficiency in targeting the desired roles ensured the survey would resonate with the right audience, making them an ideal match for the portfolio company’s requirements.

The Result
‘Good Partner’ for Great Value

With the support of the handpicked service provider, the portfolio company executed a survey that furnished them with invaluable insights into market awareness, MDM trends and brand evaluations. The research was not only enlightening but also adhered to the company’s budgetary constraints, providing optimal value.

The service provider you selected was both affordable and a good partner for our portfolio company.

-Partner at PE Firm

Transforming Big Data into Actionable Insights for Legal Services

Industry: Professional Services

Service Area: Technology

Client Type: Portfolio Company – B2B Legal Services

Service Provider Type: Business Intelligence, Analytics and AI Firm

The Need
Efficient Analytics for Transaction Lode

A portfolio company in the B2B legal services sector reached out with a specific challenge. They had an Excel dataset with three tabs, each containing 1 million rows of transaction data. Their objective was to create cohort analyses and slice and dice this vast amount of information. Given Excel’s limitations, they needed a more robust solution.

The Challenge
Large Datasets and Tight Deadlines

The company, which offers online legal services to SMB customers, had recently accessed a large transaction database that was cumbersome to manage in Excel. They needed to make use of the new data trove for an upcoming project on a short timeframe. Their previous go-to firm, which used Tableau for data visualization, was unavailable for immediate assistance.

How BluWave Helped
The Right Big Data Connections, Fast

Understanding the urgency and the scale of the data challenge, BluWave tapped into its network to identify a boutique business intelligence, analytics and AI firm with the expertise to handle large datasets efficiently. The selected firm was lauded for its ability to work at “deal speed,” ensuring that projects were completed promptly without compromising on quality.

The Result
Seamless Integration, Insightful Analysis

With the expertise of the selected service provider, the portfolio company successfully integrated their vast transaction data into a more manageable and analyzable format. The firm not only set up the database for easy manipulation but also provided rigorous analysis, offering valuable insights that were highly appreciated by the company’s management team during diligence. The entire process, from initial setup to detailed analysis, was completed within the tight deadlines, ensuring the company was equipped for its key upcoming project deadline.

Their analysis was rigorous, and a company’s management team found their work to be insightful during diligence. They operate at deal speed and frequently work late at night and over weekends to ensure clients receive quality work product on time. I’d highly recommend their services.

-Vice President at PE Firm

Matt Cole’s Route to SBJ Capital ‘A Bit Circuitous’

Matt Cole recently joined the Karma School of Business podcast to talk private equity. The managing director at SBJ Capital spoke with host Sean Mooney about data-based decisions, how he got his start in PE and much more.

Here are some of the top takeaways from their conversation.

3 Takeaways from Matt

1. An Unconventional Route to PE

When asked about his path to the world of private equity, Cole said his journey was atypical.

“Mine is a bit circuitous,” he said. “I feel like it’s a more well-trodden path now and people have to take certain steps and so forth and that was definitely not the case for me.”

Starting in investment banking, Cole transitioned into operations, focusing on understanding the intricacies of making a company successful. His entry into private equity was more opportunistic, stemming from a relationship with a colleague.

He emphasized the importance of his diverse experiences: “It was the right combination of experience that I had to bring banking and operating set of experiences to PE.”

2. Value Creation with a Human Touch

Value creation is at the heart of SBJ Capital’s approach. Matt emphasizes the importance of working closely with family and founder-owned businesses and understanding their unique challenges and opportunities.

“These are family- and founder-owned businesses. They are not looking for someone with necessarily the shiny bulge bracket Wall Street resume to come in and tell them what the next opportunity is with their company,” Cole said. “I think it makes a big difference both in actual experience to be able to say we’ve walked in your shoes and in demeanor and approach for how we present ourselves to these companies and we call them partner companies for a reason.”

For SBJ, value creation revolves around professionalization and accelerating growth. Cole, however, is quick to point out that they approach this with respect and understanding.

“We’ll never come in pretending to know more about that business after a few-month diligence period than the people that have been there for extended periods of time or started that business themselves.”

3. Data and Decision-Making

Cole also stressed the importance of being prepared and adaptable. He highlighted the significance of data in driving business decisions and the potential of emerging technologies like AI.

“Part of the value creation story that I didn’t touch on as much before is the use of data and how are you using data? How are you implementing systems?”

Mooney added the importance of sharing information within a company, especially in founder-owned businesses.

“A lot of times the senior member of the teams don’t even know the revenue of the business or certainly don’t know the full P&L or the balance sheet or the income statement,” he said.

Cole’s transition from investment banking to operations and his adeptness at navigating the complex terrains of the business world make his episode well worth a listen.

When you’re done checking out his episode, head to the main BluWave podcast page for more conversations with business leaders.

What is Commercial Due Diligence?

Private equity firms perform commercial due diligence (CDD) to evaluate the growth and profitability of a potential target acquisition.

A process that was once reserved for large cap funds with extra capital to spend on evaluating the soundness of the investment, CDD is quickly becoming a necessary standard operating procedure for all proactive PE funds.

“Each deal’s different and may require a different slate of providers to get the most out of each diligence phase or diligence stream,” says Keenan Kolinsky, Director and Co-Head of Research and Operations at BluWave.

Private equity firms have discovered that in order to drive alpha in a sea of beta, smaller, more specialized commercial due diligence providers can provide them with more unique insights quicker. 

What is Commercial Due Diligence?

Commercial due diligence is a systematic evaluation of a target company’s commercial viability before making an investment decision. It’s an extremely thorough process that, when done well, leave no stone unturned before papers are signed.

It comes as no surprise, then, that for the third straight year, CDD was the No. 1 due diligence category in the BluWave Activity Index.

That’s why the invite-only network of third-party resources is loaded with world-class diligence providers, such as Don Jenkins* of TechDil Inc.

“When you think about commercial due diligence, there’s often a fairly typical set of objectives,” Jenkins says. “Those will include understanding the market size, how big is the market, how is it segmented, what are the key segmentations or different types of businesses that constitute that market.”

From start to finish, it usually takes weeks, if not several months, depending on the target’s size and complexity.

According to KPMG, there are four types of commercial due diligence.

Here’s a high-level view of what the process entails:

Specialized Due Diligence

Any consultant can provide intelligence on a target’s total addressable market, prospects for growth, competitors, risks and other vital information through initial industry research. But specialized consultants with pre-existing industry knowledge don’t have to waste their time to gain a sense for the industry.

Instead, they can provide a heightened sense of value by using their base knowledge to dig deeper and therefore provide more in-depth insights in the same amount of time.

READ MORE: What is Buy-Side Commercial Due Diligence?

These steps give investors a deeper understanding of the target company’s business model, financial performance, competitive landscape, and operational and legal risks.

A benefit of specialized commercial due diligence providers during is their additional bandwidth. Because they aren’t being run to with projects across 8 different industries, they have the capacity to take on the projects that fall directly within their sweet spot.

Even when service provider constraints have strapped the market, BluWave has maintained a 100 percent fill rate with commercial due diligence requests. 

How is CDD Performed?

Kolinsky says there are several variable diligence factors to consider, “such as the target’s industry, the deal size, target technology or operational nuances, timing and more.”

BluWave supports private equity clients by connecting them with the diligence providers whose functional capabilities, expertise and experience account for these different factors.

Here are some steps the service providers in the BluWave-grade network take when performing commercial due diligence:

Comprehensive Market Analysis

This is where the target company’s market position, industry trends and competitive landscape are analyzed. This helps investors understand the target company’s growth potential and market opportunities.

“We’ll be doing market forecasting, understanding the headwinds and tailwinds that affect growth,” Jenkins says. “We’re looking at trends that exist out there, whether it’s technology trends, regulatory trends, just other emerging competition. And then there’s usually, I’d say, a voice-of-the-customer piece”

Competitive Analysis

“Typically we’re looking at understanding the competitive landscape that the target company is competing against, and how they’re positioned in terms of share and their offering, and how they position themselves in the marketplace,” Jenkins says.

Financial Analysis

This important step includes a review of financial statements, balance sheets, income statements and cash flow statements. Doing so sheds light on profitability and liquidity.

Many firms seek outside help at this stage from a finance professional who’s gone through multiple commercial due diligence evaluations. In particular, an interim CFO may be a good resource in this situation.

Read More: Hire the Right Temporary CFO

Operations Analysis

This involves reviewing processes, systems and procedures to better understand efficiency, scalability and potential risks.

Just because a company isn’t operationally sound doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad acquisition target. A PE firm, however, will want to have a clear picture of its new asset before moving forward.

Legal and Regulatory Compliance

Evaluating the target company’s compliance with relevant laws and regulations helps minimize risks. Some examples include data privacy, product safety and environmental regulations.

Management Assessment

That is, looking at the management team, its experience, track record and alignment with the private equity firm’s strategy.

Preparing for Growth

The average holding period for PE assets is five years, which is a sound reminder that funds are often interested in forging long-term relationships with the companies in their portfolio. This is why it’s essential for the commercial due diligence process to be more than a routine vetting exercise and a perfunctory look at a company’s market.

It should help funds explore opportunities for growth and methods of adding value that can turn a company into something its leaders never imagined. 

We have recently seen many firms resort to a smaller, more specialized provider. They are permanently switching their processes to always using a specialized provider due to the valuable insights gained.

In times where other PE firms are struggling to get the right information on the timeline they need, equipping yourself with unique data quickly will provide you with competitive edge. 

The expertly vetted service providers in the BluWave network have performed countless commercial due diligence analyses for hundreds of PE firms.

“In private equity, one size does not fit all,” Kolinsky says.

We vet each resource before they’re admitted into the network, and again before connecting them to you. After your initial scoping call with our research and operations team, you’ll meet the two or three “best fits” within a single business day.

Tell us about your project now, and we’ll get started with selecting your tailor-made solution.

*Privacy is important to us. While the source and company name have been changed, these are real quotations from a real service provider in the BluWave Business Builders’ Network.

Chief Medical Officer Search for a Healthcare Services Firm

Industry: Healthcare Services

Service Area: Human Capital

Client Type: Private Equity Firm – Large Capital

Service Provider Type: Executive Search Firm

The Need
Chief Medical Officer with Data Expertise

A large capital private equity firm reached out to BluWave in need of a chief medical officer (CMO) for one of iits portfolio companies in the healthcare services sector. The ideal candidate would not only possess the typical expertise of a CMO in healthcare practice and management but also have a deep understanding of population health and clinical data analytics.

The Challenge
Niche Expert in a Broad Healthcare Landscape

The portfolio company provided primary care and mental health services to community-based clinics, specifically serving veterans. These clinics were contracted by the VA and were spread out nationally.

The company was in a unique position. Their previous chief medical officer had recently left, and they were looking to fill the position with a candidate possessing a slightly different skill set. The new CMO would be responsible for managing and leading the clinical outcomes and metrics. A key part of their role would be to improve the analysis of clinical data sets and apply population health theory.

How BluWave Helped
Specialized Search for a Unique Requirement

BluWave’s leveraged its extensive network and industry knowledge to immediately identify executive search firms with the niche expertise required for this role. By understanding the client’s unique situation and the intricacies of the healthcare sector, the firm facilitated a tailored search process, ensuring that the client was introduced to the most suitable options.

The Result
Tailored Match for Continued Success

The client was introduced to a short list of candidates that perfectly fit their requirements. The search was not only efficient but also aligned with the client’s unique needs, ensuring that the portfolio company was well-positioned for future success with the right leadership at the helm.

Great job searching for an industry-specific provider and very responsive. Appreciated the ability to work on a contingency basis and flexibility in scoping given the unique nature of the search.

-Associate VP of PE Firm

Maintaining Rapid Healthcare Services Growth with Specialized CFO

Service Area: Human Capital

Client Type: Private Equity Firm

Service Provider Type: Executive Recruiting Firm – CFOs

Industry: Healthcare Services

The Need
Finance Leader for Rapidly Growing Healthcare Portco

A private equity firm specializing in mid-market investments and family office collaboration approached BluWave with a unique requirement. They were searching for a chief financial officer (CFO) for one of their portfolio companies in the healthcare services sector. This healthcare firm had experienced substantial growth in recent years, nearly quadrupling its already-substantial annual revenue.

The Challenge
Operational Disparities Across Locations

The portfolio company had pursued growth through acquisitions and de novo ventures. It operated more than 10 branches, some branded and others unbranded, leading to technological disparities among locations. The main challenge lay in finding a CFO experienced in multi-site healthcare operations, proficient in managing finances in a cash-only environment and skilled at consolidating diverse operations under a unified tech stack.

How BluWave Helped
Specialized Firm To Streamline Search

BluWave quickly grasped the client’s unique requirements and the urgency of their need for a specialized CFO. They leveraged their extensive network and industry knowledge to identify potential executive search firms with expertise in healthcare recruitment. By providing a shortlist of specialized partners capable of addressing the client’s specific needs, BluWave facilitated a streamlined search process.

The Result
Finance Leader with Perfect-Match Skillset

The search firm BluWave placed successfully identified a CFO candidate with the relevant skills and experience. This CFO not only had expertise in multi-site healthcare but also had a track record of managing cash transactions and technology integration. This strategic recruitment met the client’s immediate needs and positioned the portfolio company for continued growth and operational efficiency.

They have done a nice job for us. They have sent us good candidates, been responsive to our questions and requests and helped drive the discussion.

-PE Firm Founder and Partner

Executive Search Firm Needed To Hire Technical Head of BD

Service Area: Human Capital

Client Type: PE Firm

Service Provider Type: Business Development and Sales Executive Recruiting Firm

Industry: Manufacturing

The Need
Sales Executive for Unique Challenge

A private equity firm contacted BluWave in need for an executive search firm to hire a head of business development for one of its portfolio companies. This, however, wasn’t your typical sales role. The company had an exceptionally long sales cycle, sometimes exceeding a year, with numerous stakeholders involved, including engineering and buyers. This role demanded a technical acumen, making it distinct from conventional sales positions. While contingent recruitment was preferred, retained services weren’t out of the question.

The Challenge
Filling Big Shoes of Outgoing Executive

The portfolio company, an investment made in 2017, was a century-old firm operating in the metal stamping industry. It had an engineering-centric approach and had previously relied on a sales individual with a customer service and account management background. This person worked alongside two manufacturing representatives, but three of them had not been productive for years.

In a strategic shift, the company transitioned to collaborating with multiple rep groups and a third-party agency to generate leads. The retiring sales individual had been the key point of contact, handling opportunities from RFQ to closing. As this crucial team member was about to retire, the challenge was to find a replacement capable of understanding the technical aspects, navigating a long sales cycle typical in their industry and building relationships with customers rather than just selling from a catalog.

Reporting directly to the President, this would be the sole sales role in the company. The individual would work as an individual contributor, and there was no immediate need for building a larger sales team.

How BluWave Helped
Knowing the Right Firm To Identify Ideal Candidate

BluWave quickly grasped the client’s requirements and preferences: a versatile candidate who could be a strong utility player in a specialized sales role. Industry-specific experience was also a requirement, as was the ability to work on the road for extended periods.

Understanding the nuanced demands of this role, BluWave identified potential recruitment partners who excelled in placing sales leaders within extended sales cycles in the manufacturing domain. Within a short timeframe, a list of suitable executive search firms was provided, aligning perfectly with the client’s expectations.

The Result
PE Firm, Specialized Recruiter a Perfect Fit

This partnership led to a seamless collaboration between the client and the chosen executive search firm. They were able to select a candidate who not only possessed the technical skills required but also demonstrated a profound understanding of the unique challenges posed by the lengthy sales cycle. This strategic recruitment ensured that the portfolio company had the right leader to navigate this phase effectively.

Overall, I think they had the best understanding of what was needed in a somewhat specialized sales role. Typically, in a process, we will get some amount of odd-ball candidates from a fit perspective, but I thought everyone that they brought us was reasonable. We will very likely use them again.

-Managing Director at PE Firm