Chief Financial Officer
Chief financial officers (CFOs) and financial managers are responsible for the financial health of an organisation.
What does a Chief Financial Officer do?
Chief financial officers (CFOs) and financial managers are responsible for the financial wellbeing of an organisation. They are responsible for financial reports, lead investment activities, and create long-term financial strategies for their organisation.
As a chief financial officer, you would:
- direct or coordinate an organisation's financial or budget activities to fund operations, increase investments, or maximise efficiency
- hire and manage department heads, and delegate appropriate responsibilities to them
- Evaluate performance or efficiency of a company or its staff in meeting objectives or to determine where potential cost reductions and improvements can be made
- direct, plan, or implement policies, objectives, or activities of organisations or businesses to ensure continuing operations, to maximise returns on investments, or to increase productivity
- prepare budgets for approval, including those for funding or implementation of programs
- confer with board members, organisation officials, or staff members to discuss issues, coordinate activities, or resolve problems.
Key skills and interests
To become a chief financial officer, you would need:
- good oral and written communication skills
- good organisational and time management skills
- the ability to work under pressure
- leadership skills
- the ability to analyse and solve problems
- a good understanding of how businesses should function
- strong understanding of financial management, investments and other areas of finance.
Working hours and conditions
Most financial managers work full time, and many work long hours.
Financial managers work in many industries, including banks and insurance companies.
How to become an Chief Financial Officer?
Entry Level Education
A degree in an area such as finance, accounting, economics, or business administration is generally the minimum education needed for chief financial officer roles. Often employers now look for candidates with a master’s degree, preferably in business administration, finance, or economics.
Employment of financial managers is projected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations.
Services provided by financial managers, such as planning, directing, and coordinating investments, will continue to be in demand as the economy grows.