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Outsourced CFO Rates: How Much Does a Part-Time CFO Cost [2023]

Frank Mastronuzzi
6 min readMay 18, 2023


Many small business owners would love to have an in-house Chief Financial Officer. A full-time CFO can bring a number of benefits to a small business, handling a lot of the decision-making when it comes to the company’s financial strategy.

However, what many small business owners quickly find out is that hiring a full-time CFO can be quite expensive, especially if it’s an experienced CFO. Enter the part-time CFO.

Small businesses can benefit greatly from cost-effective outsourced CFO services. Outsourced CFO rates are a fraction of the cost of hiring an on-staff CFO to be one of your team members.

Outsourcing CFO services to a company like Punch Financial can be one of the best business decisions you make. It can take your business to the next level by providing exceptional CPA, bookkeeping, and financial reporting services without breaking the bank.

Here’s what outsourced CFO services are and how they work.

What is an Outsourced CFO Service?

An outside company with CFO consultants that have years of experience in all areas of business financial management.

You will be working with this company remotely, and connecting with them through shared access to accounting software. Outsourced CFO rates are so much more affordable than other options because they can achieve greater efficiency by not having to worry about traveling to and from their client’s offices.

This is a huge budgeting benefit for small business owners that otherwise couldn’t afford even part-time CFO services.

Why Are Outsourced CFO Services Useful To Your Business?

Both small and mid-sized businesses can benefit from outsourced CFO services. Whether you’re a brand new startup company or a seasoned company that needs help to grow, having an outsourced CFO can help take your business to the next level.

At the most basic level, outsourced CFO services can help anything from a small business to a venture capital firm achieve extra profitability. Their firms can handle the simplest bookkeeper tasks such as building a balance sheet and running basic financial statements and financial reports.

But an outsourced CFO’s true value is in helping to stimulate business growth through more in-depth tasks. A virtual CFO can provide financial advice through financial modeling, cash flow analysis, and full-blown strategic planning. They can help you set up KPIs and key metrics to track as you’re working to execute your business plans.

There are a number of ways that this can benefit your small business. First and foremost, the basic financial reporting tasks are essential to any business, but they take a lot of time and effort away from growing revenue. Freeing you up by taking this off your plate can be a huge advantage.

Integrating tasks such as cash flow management can help take your business to the next level by ensuring you never fall behind on bills and make the right investments at the right time.

Finally, outsourced CFO services can help you improve the standing of your business in the eyes of lenders if you’re looking to obtain outside funding to invest in your business. It can also help you improve the valuation of your business as you’re making smart business decisions based on real data.

How Long Does a Fractional and Outsourced CFO Agreement Last?

Whenever you are hiring a company to handle your fractional CFO services, you are doing so for an ongoing period of time. Outsourced CFO services are not something that is a one-and-done type of arrangement.

The things they will be handling for small businesses take some time to accomplish. They are also much more effective if they are handled on an ongoing basis. That’s why the typical agreement with an outsourced CFO service will typically be at least six months.

Some small businesses will approach outsourced CFO services as a short-term arrangement. And that’s just fine when you’re starting out. An outsourced CFO may be able to accomplish everything your business needs in only six months.

Most of the time, though, a starting engagement with these fractional CFOs will last anywhere from one to two years. That’s because this is the amount of time that’s typically needed to enact real change at your small business. It’s hard for any outsourced CFO to truly help you through all the accounting issues you may need help with if they aren’t with you for at least a year.

Chances are, as you see the immense benefits they can provide, you’ll be more interested in keeping your outsourced CFO services on hand for much longer.

What Factors Influence How Much an Outsourced CFO Will Cost?

There are a number of things that could affect the pricing of outsourced CFO services for your small business. Let’s take a look at some of these items that could influence your outsourced CFO rates.

1. The State of Your Accounting

Do you already have a solid accounting backbone in place? Or are you starting completely from scratch? If your outsourced CFO services will be setting up a brand new iteration of Quickbooks for you, for example, then that could increase the cost of doing so.

2. The Integration of Your Systems

Will the outsourced CFO be handling just your general ledger and day-to-day financials? Or, do you desire them to handle your payroll, bill pay, and other services? The more in-depth you get, the more expensive it will be.

3. The Complexity of Your Company

The cost of a Fractional CFO can be influenced greatly by the size of your small business, the industry you’re in, and what your current and future needs are. The larger your business is and the faster you’re growing, the more complex your business’ financials will be. This, then, can influence the hourly rate of your CFO services.

4. The Hands-On Nature of the Relationship

Some small businesses need a more hands-on arrangement with their outsourced CFO role. Others need less hand-holding. Either way is completely acceptable, but the more hands-on approach is often more expensive. That’s because it takes more time and support staff members to help.

5. The Services You Need

This works hand-in-hand with the complexity of your arrangement. If you need only basic outsourced CFO services, then your cost will be less expensive. If you require more in-depth reporting, planning, and strategy, then it will be more expensive.

Outsourced CFO Rates in 2023

Again, outsourced CFO rates can vary greatly depending on the needs of the small businesses out there. The average rate for an outsourced CFO in 2023 typically ranges between $6,000 to $8,000 per month.

This range in rate is what most small- to mid-sized businesses will typically pay for outsourced CFO rates in 2020. The specific rate you get will again depend on the details of your business as well as what services you will be getting in return.

Full-Time Outsourced CFO VS. Part-Time CFO: What is the cost?

One of the easiest ways to see the benefits of hiring outsourced CFO services rather than a full-time, on-staff CFO is to analyze the differences in pricing. The typical full-time CFO will make much more than $200,000 a year in salary. In fact, the average CFO salary as of April 2019 was $371,548, according to Salary.com.

That’s quite an immense expense for any business, let alone a small business. Part-time in-house CFOs can be quite expensive, too. They will often charge a very high hourly route that can add up very quickly. They also sometimes will charge flat rates for certain tasks, such as a $300-per-session fee for basic financial reporting or a $1,000 fee each time they run month-end financials.

Conversely, outsourced CFO rates are much more affordable for small-to-medium-sized businesses. The most common rates come in between $6,000 and $8,000 per month. Averaged out over a year, that would come to between $72,000 and $96,000 per year. That’s a significant cost saving when compared to either a full-time or even part-time in-house CFO.

The other great thing about outsourced CFO services is they provide a high level of flexibility. You can hire them on a per-hour basis or a contractual basis by the day, month, or year.

Let Punch Financial Be Your Trusted Financial Partner

Outsourced CFO services can be hugely beneficial to your small business. Outsourced CFO rates are much lower than hiring a full or part-time CFO on staff to handle your financial needs. Plus, you can gain a level of flexibility in the services you receive.

Contact Punch Financial today to find out how our team of experienced accountants and CFOs can provide you with the financial guidance, planning, and strategy you need to take your business to the next level.



Frank Mastronuzzi

Founding Partner @punchfinancial, VP Business Development @GreenoughGroup, CFO, MBA, SF-Based, consummate optimist, proud zio, proud daddy of Luca, the Wheaten