Sydney, Australia-based James Haslam is Chief Financial Officer at business solutions provider ELMO Cloud HR & Payroll. Having studied a BSc in Engineering and Business at the University of Warwick, Haslam joined KPMG UK following his graduation in 2001. After four years at KPMG, Haslam moved over to KPMG Australia mostly focused on Corporate Finance. In 2014, Haslam joined Deloitte as Director of Corporate Finance and credits his experiences at world-leading consultancies for his management skills and style. “Deloitte and KPMG are both great training grounds for analysis, management skills and decision making,” he says. “I was managing people early in my career, and that focused me into getting the best of the people and getting accustomed to making leadership decisions.”
His career across KPMG and Deloitte became a springboard to success with his own business, Financial Agility Consulting (FAC), which Haslam founded in 2017 in response to trends he saw in the Australian mid-market. “I saw a huge opportunity in the market for corporate finance advice to companies in the mid-market who wanted to undertake M&A activity and IPOs.” Two years later, the opportunity to join ELMO, his first customer at FAC, arose and he has since led financial behaviours as CFO.
“I define my role as a CFO as setting the financial strategy, applying the strategy to the operations, overseeing the M&A approach and managing investor relations. Although I oversee the financial function, as well as leading the team that runs the day-to-day financial operations. I really like to empower people, encourage decision making, and cut out the fear of making mistakes. Collaboration and problem-solving skills are huge focuses of mine, as well as passing my knowledge down and encouraging inclusive and collaborative behaviours.”