Financial managers oversee all aspects of an organisation's financial activities, including accounting, budgeting and investing. They monitor all financial transactions to assure they comply with legal requirements. Financial managers also compile business and financial reports and create forecast models. They advise management on cost-cutting measures, investment strategies and expansion opportunities.
Duties and responsibilities
- Supervise employees performing accounting, billing, collections, payroll and other financial activities
- Direct the financial planning, budgeting and investment activities of all or a part of the organisation
- Stay current with all organisational policies, accounting standards, federal and state directives
- Prepare or oversee preparation of all financial reports required internally or by regulatory agencies
- Conduct data analysis and create forecast models to advise management on short- and long-term financial objectives
- Analyse market trends for increased profit and expansion opportunities
- Monitor all financial transactions and cashflow activities for accuracy and legal requirements
- Review company budget and financial statements for ways to reduce costs
- Evaluate staff performance and make suggestions for changes in personnel
- Assist management in all financial matters including mergers, insurance and taxes
Skills and knowledge
AVERAGE WORKING HOURS
Overtime work likely
Financial managers work full time in an office environment, often in financial or insurance institutions. A substantial part of the job involves coordinating with other departments as well as top executives. You will have wide-ranging responsibilities that may require putting in overtime.
Annual salary estimates are based on percentile wage data collected through the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey of US workers.
Bachelor's degree in finance or related field
Financial managers advance after five years or more experience in a business or finance-related job such as accountant or financial analyst. Employers typically require a bachelor's degree in finance, accounting, economics or business administration, though some also request an additional master's degree.
You may set yourself apart from other financial manager candidates by obtaining certification in your field. Most certifying agencies have minimum education and service requirements. Options include certification as a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Certified Treasury Professional or Certified Public Accountant (CPA).
Some companies also provide training programmes to allow their current financial staff to obtain the skills necessary for a managerial role.
Financial managers work in a variety of companies and fields, and you have specialty options that include roles as treasurer, controller, risk or insurance manager. Experience in different specialties as well as a master's degree in finance will create a path for advancement to a position as Chief Financial Officer (CFO).