Chief Financial Officer (mid-market PE)




5 key objectives
8 position requirements
9 competencies

This scorecard is designed to assist you in the hiring process for a Chief Financial Officer (CFO) adept in the private equity environment. Their role goes beyond traditional financial oversight—it's about driving value, ensuring growth, and managing investor relations effectively.

In the realm of private equity, a CFO is crucial for shaping long-term strategies, making data-driven decisions, and facilitating successful exits. Their skills should encompass rigorous forecasting, operational insights, and the capacity to adapt quickly post-investment.

Use this tool to help guide the right hiring decision for your organisation, ensuring your chosen CFO can meet the unique challenges and seize the opportunities presented by the private equity space.

Key objectives

Key objectives describe the objectives that the new employee has to achieve to be considered successful and help create the context for basic requirements and competencies.

Achieved tangible growth in business valuation by aligning financial and operational strategies with the long-term value-creation plan.

Identified and acted upon key growth opportunities, resulting in measurable expansion within the target market.

Built and led a high-performing financial team, fostering a culture of collaboration, transparency, and proactive problem-solving.

Position requirements

Position requirements include the required experiences, qualifications, and skills needed to achieve the key objectives of the role.

Successful track record in PE
Demonstrated understanding of the private equity landscape with hands-on experience working closely with PE investors. Knowledge of PE financial structures, reporting expectations, and the dynamics of PE-backed businesses.

  • Describe a situation where you navigated the accelerated transformation post-investment in a PE-backed company. How did you ensure consistent performance and timely
    delivery of results?
  • Share an instance when you had to manage the expectations of PE investors, particularly in a challenging financial period. How did you ensure their confidence in the business's financial health and strategic direction?

Look for: Candidates should provide detailed insights into their strategies for managing the rapid changes typical in PE environments. They should demonstrate an understanding of PE
investor expectations, highlighting their ability to manage investor relationships and confidence, especially during challenging times

Exit strategy & valuation mastery
History of enhancing business valuation and executing profitable exit strategies for stakeholders. Involvement in M&A activities, deal structuring, and due diligence is essential.

  • Can you walk me through a successful exit strategy you formulated and executed? What were the key challenges and how did you overcome them?
  • Describe a time when you played a central role in M&A activities. How did you ensure the terms aligned with the company's and investors' expectations?

Look for: Answers should reflect the candidate's strategic thinking and capacity to understand the nuances of the private equity environment. They should be able to detail their involvement in M&A processes, demonstrate their skill in deal valuation, and describe the strategies employed to achieve a successful exit. The candidate's ability to navigate challenges and ensure alignment with investor expectations will be paramount.

Operational efficiency leadership
A history of identifying inefficiencies across various departments in a PE-backed environment and championing transformative solutions that directly impact the bottom line.

  • Describe a time when you identified and addressed inefficiencies in a department outside of finance. How did this lead to improved operational effectiveness and financial performance?
  • How have you ensured alignment between different departments to drive operational efficiency across the board in a PE-backed setting?

Look for: A holistic understanding of operational efficiency across various departments, not just finance. Candidates should be able to break down silos, promote cross-departmental collaboration, and implement changes that have a tangible impact on financial performance.


Competencies are the knowledge, skills, and abilities required to perform a job successfully. They help to distinguish superior performance from the average.

Strategic Thinking

Understands industry trends, develops future-oriented scenarios, articulates a compelling vision, and links strategic goals to daily work.

Ensuring accountability

Provides direction by clearly communicating performance expectations. Holds oneself and others accountable to meet set objectives.

Business Acumen

Understands the business and the competitive situation, evaluates the impact of business decisions, and is quick to take advantage of new business opportunities.

Get the full scorecard

Download the full scorecard with all the key objectives, position requirements, and job-related competencies along with job-based interview questions and more.