What Is A Finance Manager, And What Do They Do?

Cash flow management is a business-critical task leadership teams cannot afford to compromise on.

Enter – Finance Managers, the professionals who have made it their life’s work to guarantee fiscal organisation is consistent, legally compliant and sustainably managed.

However, finance workplaces are fast changing, and traditional finance jobs are being subverted and disrupted by the rise of Finance Technologists, AI and automated financial operations.

So what makes a modern Finance Manager, what are their primary roles and why are they now essential, decision-making leadership figures at the c-suite level?

What is a Finance Manager?

In short, Finance Managers look after the financial health of an enterprise.

They may run a finance department with a team, operate as a single financial operator within an organisation, or work as a third-party financial advisor. Whatever format they are engaged in, their job responsibility overview never wavers – they are responsible for everything from financial reporting to investment decisions, mergers and acquisitions, staffing and hiring decisions (including recruitment, salary negotiations and training), preparing costing, investment and debt forecasts, and more.

Because of the role responsibility crossover with niche jobs within finance, Finance Managers are sometimes called Treasurers, Credit Managers, Cash Managers or Financial Controllers. While their purview may be angled towards a certain specific element of financial leadership, the skills needed to do any of the above roles echo that of a more traditional, generalist Finance Manager.

Because financial management is a central, essential, element of running a company wisely and sustainably, Finance Managers are considered c-suite managers and sit alongside a CEO/MD/Founder to advise on financial matters, conclude reports on the financial health of a company, and drive the company forward on sound monetary footing.

Who hires Finance Managers?

Every company has a figure who is responsible for the financial operation of a business, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be called a Finance Manager (as above).

Naturally, a business run and operated by one person will, themselves, be the entire c-suite package. But within large organisations Finance Managers are required to run teams of accountants, investors and business developers, to guide and manage their spending, reporting and forecasting.

What are the main responsibilities of a Finance Manager?

As mentioned above, Finance Managers are responsible for pretty much anything and everything that involves monetary management, investment, spending or saving, such as:

  • Controllership, managing costs and finances of the organisation,
  • Report writing, and conducting analysis of corporate funds,
  • Preparing financial statements and reporting monthly or quarterly to a board,
  • Financial forecasting,
  • Management of legal compliance,
  • The management of business tax affairs,
  • Management of a finance team,
  • Managing and reviewing internal financial audits,
  • Cost reduction, lean management and cash flow management,
  • Recruitment cost management,
  • Analysis of market trends,
  • The leadership of mergers and acquisitions,
  • Financial risk assessment,

What skills are needed to be a Finance Manager?

As we highlight on our Finance Manager Job Description & Profile and Finance Manager Qualifications & Skills resource pages, Finance Managers require a range of certifications and qualifications – alongside ample leadership experience – to be considered a worthy candidate for the role.

These include:

  • Accounting certifications,
  • Risk management certifications,
  • Financial management certifications,
  • Accounting experience
  • A degree in finance, business or accounting

Search other articles to learn about finance management careers or search for Finance Manager jobs here:

How To Become A Finance ManagerFinance Manager CV, Template & ExamplesFinance Manager Qualifications & SkillsFinance Manager Salary & PayFinance Manager Job Description & Profile

See also Operations Manager Job Description & Profile here.


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