What does a Controller do?
Controllers typically work for corporations to ensure they keep updated, accurate financial records for future reference. They work closely with upper management to identify areas to reduce costs and liabilities they need to pay off by the end of the year. Their job is to ensure that their company complies with financial regulations. They also review financial statements to determine their corporation’s financial health and take action accordingly. They may also be responsible for monitoring payroll documents to ensure employees receive the correct amount per pay period.
Controller skills and qualifications
There are certain skills that a potential candidate should have to be successful as a controller, such as those that allow them to coordinate with others and multitask effectively. Some of these qualifications include:
- The ability to communicate effectively with co-workers and management about the finances of the business and justify certain financial recommendations
- Attention to detail
- Basic math skills to make accurate calculations and estimates
- Good understanding of international finance
- Organization and project management
Controller salary expectations
A Controller makes an average of $86,545 per year. Salary may depend on level of experience, education and the geographical location.
Controller education and training requirements
A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in economics, business administration, accounting or finance is needed as an education requirement for this position. Some Controllers may also have a master’s degree in a related field which helps them further develop analytical skills. A Controller candidate who has degrees in the financial area meets the education requirements.
There is also a Chartered Financial Analyst certification for professionals who have a bachelor’s degree, four years of work experience, and pass exams. For those with two years of work experience, the Certified Treasury Professional accreditation is available once an exam is passed. Certified public accountants are licensed by the state’s board and have to pass the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants exam.
Controller experience requirements
Financial controllers usually already have some years of experience in a business or financial setting. Various positions can contribute to experience requirements of a controller such as an accountant, financial analyst or loan officer. Some companies do have management training programs for highly motivated individuals who want to become a Controller. Those who have already been Financial Controllers can advance to chief financial officers who are responsible for the company’s overall finances.
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