What Does a Financial Controller Do?

Controller Finances

What is a Financial Controller?

A Financial Controller is a senior-level executive who is responsible for the financial health of an organization. They serve as a link between accountants and Chief Financial Officers (CFO) who oversee broader financial strategy. In other words, Financial Controllers make sure that the numbers add up and that the business is on track to meet its financial goals.

Financial Controllers are typically detail-oriented with strong understandings of both accounting and finance. While the Financial Controller plays a critical role in any business, they are especially important for small- to medium-sized businesses because they help keep companies organized, accountants on track, and CFOs informed.

A Financial Controller typically reports to the CFO and is responsible for a team of financial professionals. The size of the team they manage will vary depending on the size of the organization. At large companies, the Financial Controller may have several direct reports, including lower-level managers who oversee financial subdivisions, such as investments, treasury, accounting and tax. Smaller companies might only need a single controller who oversees a team of in-house or outsourced financial professionals.

Financial Controllers provide a link between basic accounting and higher-level financial strategy. Bookkeepers don’t necessarily have the knowledge or experience to effectively participate in broad strategy, while CFOs are ideally laser-focused on bigger-picture initiatives that drive company growth. Controllers are the conduit connecting these two crucial parts of the business and making sure the organization is running smoothly.


What Does a Financial Controller do?


1. Bridge financial strategy and accounting functions

Financial Controllers work closely with the accounting and finance departments to develop and implement workflows and strategies that support overall business objectives. They play a key role in developing budgets and forecasting future financial performance, using data provided by their reports. By bridging the gap between financial strategy and accounting, Financial Controllers play a vital role in ensuring that an organization’s finances are managed effectively and that the company is moving towards the C-Suite’s vision of success.

2. Oversee booking and develop analyses

The Financial Controller is responsible for the accuracy and integrity of an organization’s financial statements. They work with accounting staff to ensure that all transactions are properly recorded and reported, essentially serving as editor to their employees’ work. They produce financial reports, direct investment activities, and develop strategies to ensure the long-term financial stability of the company.

3. Suggest best practices

Financial Controllers provide advice and guidance on best practices for maintaining financial records and complying with regulatory requirements. They help make sure that the company maintains financial integrity and introduce mechanisms and technologies that can help the organization follow industry rules and guidelines.

4. Make sense of financial data

Financial Controllers are able to gather the information produced by their accounting teams and translate it into actionable data for the CFO and CEO. By making sense of financial data, they ensure that C-Level executives are making informed decisions about how to grow the business.


How Fractional Controllers Help Small Businesses

Financial Controllers help businesses save money by:

  • Providing advice on how to reduce expenses and improve efficiency
  • Identifying new revenue streams and growth opportunities to boost profitability 
  • Giving business owners peace of mind that all financial reporting is accurate
  • Making sense of data to inform CEO and CFO strategy decisions

When businesses are first starting out, they often don’t have the budget to hire a full-time Financial Controller. However, this doesn’t mean that they can’t benefit from the expertise of this invaluable professional. A fractional Financial Controller can provide the same level of service as a full-time employee, but on a part-time basis. This can be a great solution for businesses that need help with financial planning and management, but can’t afford to hire a full-time staff member with a robust salary and bonus package.

A fractional Financial Controller can be an excellent way for businesses to get the financial advice and support they need without breaking the bank.


The A Team Can Help You Get Started

The A Team provides Financial Controller management services to help clients with a range of financial tasks and obligations. Our financial professionals work dynamically with the companies who hire them to oversee everything from day-to-day financial obligations to broader analyses that directly assist the CFO. They can manage teams of accountants, ensure financial integrity and guide high-level decision making. 

Would you be interested in learning more about how our fractional Financial Controllers can help your company reach new levels of success? Contact us today!