Finance controller job description

The world of finance can get into serious trouble if the accounts aren't looked after properly. 

So if you find numbers so easy you crunch them in your sleep and you're looking to step up in the financial sector, then a career as a financial controller awaits you... 




So, what will I actually be doing?

The role of a financial controller involves overseeing the accounts department and making sure everything runs smoothly.

While you’ll have a team of accountants to carry out the more administrative tasks, you’ll be ensuring smooth running of the company’s financial department and your daily to-do list will feature some or all of the following:

Search for jobs like this

Find financial controller jobs now

See all of our current financial controller vacancies or sign up to have new financial controller jobs emailed directly to you.

The finer details...

You’ll be expected to work 9-5, Monday to Friday – plus extra hours when the big deadlines are looming. While the role is office based, controllers will spend plenty of time in meetings or visiting other departments so you won't always be stuck behind your desk.

Many financial controllers have their eye on the top job of financial director but this role can open doors in a variety of managerial positions, including chief executive.

Money, money, money

Starting salaries for qualified financial controllers are healthy for your wallet, at around £28k to £45k. With several years experience you can expect to be bringing in as much as £50k to £100k.

See what people are earning in this job

The good points...

Do this job well and you’ll have lots of responsibility, plenty of respect and a very healthy annual income.

...and the bad

If the business takes a downturn, you may find yourself in the position of making some difficult financial decisions.

It's also not a great career if you're looking for flexible working, financial controllers are expected to take on a considerable amount of responsibility, so part-time roles are unusual.

Is there study involved?

As a senior-level role with bags of responsibility, financial controllers usually have plenty of experience in finance and management. You will need a degree in a related subject such as maths, economics or business, plus applicants will need to have completed their accountancy qualifications from one of the following bodies:

  • Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)

The Institute of Financial Accountants (IFA) also run training for qualified accountants looking to move into more managerial roles.

Need additional qualifications? Find a course at our Learning Zone

OK, I'm interested... But is it really the job for me?

You'll need to be comfortable balancing hands-on financial management with making senior-level decisions as part of this job.

Acting as the link between the finance department and senior management, you need to be a good communicator, and it also helps if you have:

  • Lots of energy and motivation
  • Multitasking skills
  • Good understanding of business and financial issues
  • The ability to work to tight deadlines

This is a position for an ambitious number cruncher and is just one step away from the ultimate position of financial director.


Related articles:

Looking to hire new candidates?

Advertise a job

Advertise your job for £175 on

 Advertise a job

Apply for credit controller jobs

 Upload your CV

Interested in this job? Apply for the latest finance controller vacancies.

Get jobs by email

 apply for even more jobs

Only want to hear about roles that suit you? Get the latest matching jobs sent straight to your inbox

Get expert CV help

The Fuller CV

Struggling to turn your experience into a great CV? Our friends at CV KnowHow can help you - their team of expert CV writers are ready to talk to you today and help you create the perfect CV.

Get your CV rewritten by an expert