Financial Controller: Overview, Qualification, Role, and Responsibilities


Financial Controller is generally referred to as the high-level executive person who oversees the Finance Department and other senior executives, including Finance Director or sometimes CFO, Finance Manager, and other executives.

There are many roles and responsibilities that the Financial Controller has, but here is the main important task they normally perform:

  • Oversee financial and accounting operations of an entity
  • Managing Clash flow of an entity
  • Preparing and publishing timely monthly financial statements

The main role and responsibilities of Financial Controller are listed down in this article.

This is not the end of the Financial Controller’s role. The finance controller has to interpret the Financial Performance based on his analysis to senior management and sometimes the Board of Directors for review and evaluation. For example,  interpret the actual performance with forecast performance and find out what is the reason cause the change.

Some of the companies require monthly interpretation, but some of the companies might need quarterly but mostly is monthly.

The financial manager might run the Financial Controller role, which includes the following categories like a significant investment, reimbursement expenses, opportunities for profit and loss, service available for marketing, and payment method.

The following summarizes important vital points that the Financial Controller has typically. 


The financial controller is standing among the top management team in the Finance Department, including Finance Directors, Finance Manager, and Chief of Financial Officer. Financial Controllers’ qualification depends on the nature and size of the companies they are working in.

Mostly, in terms of experience, they usually have at least five years of management rule. The main reason is this job require them to manage people sometime in the Financial Department and sometimes both Accounting and Finance Department which probably have 10 to 50 peoples based on the size of the companies.

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That means some leadership skills like management, communication, and motivation are required. Long-time experiences are required, but working in the relevant industry is also very important. This is quite potential if you move from one company to another on the same rule in the same industry.

Professional Qualification:

Recently, ACCA is one of the most well-known financial and Accounting professional qualifications employers mainly accept. ACCA has the strategy to maintain all people who hold the qualifications and ensure that the charter holder has enough capabilities to fulfill their job.

However, based on experience, some of the Financial Controllers I know are just in the process of obtaining ACCA, and they are not qualified yet. CFA is sometimes primarily valuable than ACCA or CA, and yes, it is more challenging to get. Mostly, people hold CFA and work as Finance Analysis and then claim up to Financial Controller.

There is no doubt that most employers do not decide to accept CFA holders.

CIMA and CA are also the most popular qualification, and if you get them, you would get more credit and hold a Master’s Degree in Accounting or Finance.

Role and Responsibilities:

The following are the main Rule and Responsibilities of the Financial Controller:

Accounting Management

Financial Controller is responsible for ensuring that all of the accounting transactions that happen during the months or years are maintained, recorded, and reported. Actually, he/she is not the one who directly prepares or records these things, but he is the one who makes sure that these things are well done.

The ones who work directly on these things are accounting executives, accounting offices, finance officers, cashiers, or things.

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The common transactions that he/she manage include sales, purchase, expenses, assets, inventories, or something like this. Financial Controller also plays as the main contact point with internal audit, external audit, and tax department.

Oversee Internal Control

Making sure internal controls of the company are working properly are the key responsibilities of management. In some countries, management is responsible for annual assessments of the company’s internal control and then report in the annual report; however, in some country is not required.

Whether required or not, management has to make sure that the company’s internal control is working correctly and efficiently. Internal control in the Finance Department is normally responsible by the management team in the Finance Department, including Financial Controller, Chief Financial Officer, Financial Director, and Financial Manager.

Financial Controller might have an indirect influence on the Internal Control in other departments related to Financial Report; for example, warehouse, purchasing, and production departments.

Financial Planning and Reporting

Financial Department is responsible for preparing the annual budget and planning of the company, probably one to five plans. Financial Controller is the one overseas this.

The planning might need to coordinate with many departments and personnel. For example, the sales department forecasted sales data, production, and purchasing department for purchasing raw material. This rule requires excellent communication skills; otherwise, preparing the annual budget will not run well.

Financial Information is very important for management as well as the BOD of the company to control and manage the company. Normally, Financial Reports including the Financial Analysis Reports are required to be prepared and reported Monthly, Quarterly, and Annually. Such reports are controlled by Financial Controller.

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Fund Management:

Managing cash flow requires full skill in Financial Forecasting and deeply Understanding of the company nature of business.

It also requires to know how the cash collection performance is and how the expenses are paid. The financial controller must make sure that all of the Account Receivable outstanding are properly correct and at the correct time and right amount.

It might also be the Financial Controller rule to make sure that the relationship with suppliers and banks is good. For example, negotiate the payment term with suppliers and ensure that all the payment to them is properly; otherwise, suppliers might stop suppliers’ goods to the company.

He/she also has to make sure that the relationship with banks is good; therefore, it might not require overdraft facilities or short-term loans.

Financial Analysis

This might be the most important one in the rule and responsibility of the Financial Controller. They are managing expenses. Financial Analysis is one technique used to identify trends and significant events in the financial mean. This is how the expenses in the company manage and control. Normally, the financial controller needs to explain to the BOD the significant matter at the monthly meeting.


Because the financial controller manages and supervises many people in the finance and accounting department, he has to manage people. This involves making sure that people understand their job and work toward them. The main reports and accounts are prepared and closing on time.


The above is the main important rule, responsibilities, and qualification of the financial controller, and this article might help you run this rule successfully. Leave your common below if you have any good ideas.