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Head of Strategic Finance Business Partners



Accounting & Finance
Boston, MA, USA
Posted on Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Head of Strategic Finance Business Partners

Boston, Massachusetts Finance & Accounting Job ID R14185


Year after year, MassMutual continues its long history of financial strength. Our goal is to generate competitive long-term results for policyowners while preserving our ability to withstand challenging economic conditions and volatility in the financial markets. MassMutual (consolidated) held $466 billion in assets under management as of year-end 2022, growing moderately versus 2021 despite challenging market conditions. MassMutual's strategy of positioning its insurance operations, asset management businesses and other investments to provide diversified sources of earnings and growth continues to serve the company well. For the year ending on December 31, 2022, MassMutual reported that total sales through its domestic insurance operations were $39.3 billion, up 26% from the prior year. This was led by steady demand for whole life insurance as well as record annuity sales, supported by our acquisition of MassMutual Ascend (rebranded from Great American Life Insurance Company) in 2021 – a leading provider of annuities.  Benefitting from MassMutual’s diversified investment strategy, whole life and annuity sales growth as well as our continued progress to reach more people with broader solutions and better experiences, revenue in 2022 increased to $34.3 billion, up approximately 13% from $30.5 billion the prior year.

The Role

The Head of MassMutual’s Strategic Financial Business Partners (SFBP), a direct report to the Chief Financial Officer, influences strategy development, financial performance, and execution in MassMutual’s various insurance and annuity businesses including product and marketing, Operations, and Enterprise Technology Experience (ETX). By regularly providing the Executive Leadership Team and their management timely insights based on financial analyses to identify opportunities to improve financial performance and strategic goals, the Head of SFBP partners with leaders to make better decisions. Given the highly competitive financial services industry, and MassMutual’s vision to help our customers protect the ones they love, MassMutual has led in forward-thinking to invest and innovate, attract distribution,and manage its portfolio of protection, savings, advisory and wealth accumulation products and services for a broad cross-section of the US population.

The Team

Critical to this success is leadership of a high performingSFBP team to cultivate strong relationships with business partners and serve as a strategic advisor. The Team is comprised of financial and actuarial professionals aligned to our life insurance and annuity business channels, operations,technology,and other organizations. Analyses and information regarding key performance measures and sources and quality in relation to targets and benchmarks at the channel, subchannel and product levels are used in partnership with the client areas to inform decision making and support broad enterprise planning. Key regular topics include competitiveness, sales targets, performance against key metrics, and incentive plan targets.

SFBP team members are motivated by the opportunity to apply their knowledge, experience, and communication skills to influence the strategic direction and performance of their client areas and the enterprise as a whole.

The team shares best practices, approaches, and information weekly, works closely with all areas of Corporate Finance – including FP&A, Actuarial, Strategy, Corporate Development and Controllers – to bring holistic CFO support to clients, influence Corporate Finance priorities and communications, and maximize CFO efficiency and operational performance. Current large scale Corporate Finance initiatives in flight include building out our data management strategy and implementing our new general ledger as part of transforming our financial close process.

The Impact

As the Head of SFBP you will regularly:

·Partner with Executive Leadership Team (ELT) members who lead our insurance, annuity and wealth management business and distribution channels, operations, ETX and other organizations. These interactions cover sales targets and performance, expenses, earnings analyses, storytelling for the Board and other audiences, and special projects.

·Work with your SFBP teams, peers in Corporate Finance, and also with the Senior Leadership Teams of the business and corporate areas to operationalize the CFO mission to be a trusted partner who brings data-informed analyses to influence decisions and strategic direction. In addition to core financial responsibilities noted above, SFBP team members regularly contribute to important strategic special projects. Recent examples include:

  • Modeling potential changes to product mix as part of financial planning and performance target setting,
  • Recommending expense allocation methodologies that accurately capture expense consumption,
  • Analyzing business returns on capital,
  • Evaluating the design and performance of programs designed to cost effectively develop sales and sales management personnel, and
  • Evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of product distribution.

·Work closely with your CFO SLT peers to execute on the CFO mission. This includes jointly working to bring leaders actionable analyses and information which better enable them to manage and monitor performance.

·Evolve and manage the SFBP operating model to meet or beat challenging goals that inspire the team to further inform and improve their partnering with business and financial teams by understanding of the dynamics in each part of the company and industry to achieve MassMutual’s success for its customers and policyowners.

The Incumbent

The Head of Strategic Financial Business Partners will have consulting and financial planning experience as well as a proven track record in timely achievement of financial and efficiency initiatives.  In addition, other relevant qualifications include: 

  • 15+ years of experience in roles of increasing responsibility including financial analysis, forecasting and/or reporting in a sophisticated life insurance environment.Strong knowledge relating to life insurance products and their regulatory and GAAP accounting, as well as efficient financial close and forecasting processes.
  • Sophisticated understanding of financial services industry competitive dynamics, business and talent trends.
  • Highly developed communication and the ability to convey complex information and analysis in clear, understandable terms.Collaboration and partnering skills working with senior leaders to build relationships, identify options, influence decision-making, 
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively manage and oversee numerous deliverables and projects on time and on budget.
  • Demonstrated experience managing a varied team of professionals in a project-based environment and a proven ability to coach and develop the team. 

Leadership and Management Competencies

Communication and Consulting Skills

  • The candidate must have the ability to advise and consultwith skill. This requires a level of executive presence together with the knowledge and stature to deliver advice in a way that will be valued and respected by the business leaders.
  • Candidates must have a proven ability to transform operations, focus on the stakeholders, and manage team health.

Managerial & Partnership Skills

  • Candidates must have a demonstrated ability to motivate employees, build teams and relationships and foster an execution driven culture. Personal and organizational accountability, loyalty, independence and fairness among colleagues and employees, particularly in a multi-cultural environment are also important. A demonstrated ability to develop employees, manage and lead successfully in a matrix environment is critical.  
  • The incumbent will have a proven track record of attracting and developing a diverse talent pool. A deep commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion will be expected.
  • It is vital that the individual has the proven ability to form constructive relationships with executive management and be recognized as a partner and resource by all. The candidate will have a demonstrable record of supporting executive teams while identifying potential issues and proposing solutions.

Personal Characteristics

  • Strong strategic thinker, with the ability to quickly assess complex problems, prioritize key issues, and focus on relevant facts.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, with the ability to build the trust and respect of senior executives.
  • Superior emotional intelligence exhibited in thought, discourse and action.
  • Well-organized in thought, whose work reflects these strong organizational skills.
  • Proven ability to resolve/manage problems and competing priorities.
  • Agility to adapt to changing priorities and multi-task.
  • Bandwidth, energy, and passion to support a 24-hour organization across multiple geographies.
  • Mature and selfless leader, capable of working alongside a top team to help develop a cohesive culture. 
  • Unquestioned integrity.



MassMutual is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer Minority/Female/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity/Individual with Disability/Protected Veteran. We welcome all persons to apply. Note: Veterans are welcome to apply, regardless of their discharge status.

If you need an accommodation to complete the application process, please contact us and share the specifics of the assistance you need.