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What Is a Controller and How to Become One

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What Is a Controller Job Description?

A controller is high-level accounting position in a firm or company. They often report directly to the CFO (Chief Financial Officer) and are responsible for budgets, audits, and financial reports, as well as ensuring the company complies with all tax codes and regulations.

What Does a Financial Controller Do?

A financial controller is an upper management accounting professional who plays an integral role in ensuring the financial well being of the company they serve. Financial controllers monitor budgets and set new financial goals, conduct audits, and file reports with the Chief Financial Officer.

What Is a Document Controller Job?

A document controller reviews all company documents to ensure accuracy, compliance with regulations and policies, and overall quality. Document controllers may review old documents, digitize them, and track data. As policies and procedures change, document controllers may generate new data collection templates.

What Is a Controller Career Path?

Your career as a controller can be very profitable. To become a controller, you need a degree in finance or accounting, and many employers also require a master’s degree as well (MBA). Usually, controllers are also certified public accountants (CPAs).

What Skills Does a Controller Have?

Controllers are highly analytical thinkers who are great with numbers. They can aggregate and analyze data to make sound recommendations to the board. They have both strong business and accounting skills.

Controller Job Description Sample

With this Controller job description sample, you can get a good idea of what employers are looking for when hiring for this position. Remember though, every employer is different and each will have unique qualifications when they hire for their Controller position.

Job Summary

The controller will handle high-level accounting, managerial accounting, and oversee the financial activities of the company. As head of the accounting department, the controller will manage and supervise all aspects of accounting from payroll to tax compliance. Will report to the chief financial officer, and will assist with the development of internal control policies, procedures, and financial planning as needed.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Manage all aspects of accounting; billing, financial statements, general ledger, cost accounting, payroll, accounts payable, accounts receivable, budgeting, tax compliance, inventory accounting, cost accounting, revenue recognition, and various special analyses
  • Maintain documented system of accounting policies and operations
  • Oversee payments of all accounts; ensuring all accounts are paid on time
  • Process accounts and collecting payments
  • Oversee all payments made for debts, bank loans, and other large quantities of money
  • Monitor cash and funding balances
  • Keep an organized filing system of all accounts, statements, transactions, payments, and debts
  • Prepare and organize financial statements for record and review
  • Prepare quarterly/annual financial reports
  • Manage the quarterly/annual budgets and forecasts
  • Advise on financial analyses and decision-making regarding capital investments, pricing, contract negotiations, significant costs, benchmarks, and other matters with management and chief financial officer
  • Organize information and statements for audits and both internal and external auditors
  • Define, benchmark and implement operational best practices
  • Complying with all local, state, and federal laws regarding finances, tax filings, and reporting
  • Ensuring company complies with all additional legal and regulatory requirements
  • Additional\xa0controller duties as needed

Requirements and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, business administration with an emphasis in Accounting, or a related field
  • Ideal candidate has 5 to 10 years of experience in field
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or Certified Management Accountant (CMA) license required
  • Previous experience as an accountant, accounting supervisor, or manager
  • Excellent computer skills; experience in accounting software and Microsoft Office Suite; Access, database, or other system knowledge
  • Proficiency with accounting software and experience with a software system implementation
  • Exceptional knowledge of finance, accounting, budgeting, cost accounting and cost control principles, and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP)
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Advanced knowledge of bookkeeping and accounting best practices, laws, standards, and state/national regulations
  • Analytical ability to develop and implement improvements or recommendations
  • Attention to detail
  • Able to work well with senior executives and team, as well as mentor/lead other team members

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