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  • Posted by: Dante Odoni
What Does a CFO Do? - Odoni Partners LLC - Certified Public Accountants

What Does a CFO Do?

If you’re looking up the career ladder and considering future options, it’s good to have a detailed idea of manager-level and C-level jobs.  What is the Chief Operating Officer’s primary function? What are the Marketing Managers’ top responsibilities? What does a Chief Financial Officer, or CFO, do all day?  Today, we’ll take a brief look at the role of a CFO and discuss the ins and outs of this high-powered company position.

What Are the Three Main Responsibilities for a CFO?

While a company’s CFO has a wide variety of tasks and responsibilities, their workload usually falls into one of three categories: Controller, Treasury, and Financial Planning and Analysis.  Here are a CFO’s primary responsibilities for each category.

1. Controller

The controller function of a CFO encompasses a wide variety of duties related to the financial decisions of a company.  In this role, the CFO will be creating reports and documents that give the financial status of a company. Responsibilities include:

– Creating financial reports for shareholders, employees, lenders, and the government.

– Analyzing finances for prior and current fiscal years.

– Managing daily financial decisions and operations.

2. Treasury

When a CFO engages in responsibilities that fit in the treasury category, they will be dealing directly with budgets, investors, debt, assets, and accounting.  These responsibilities include:

– Ensuring financial commitments will be met with investors

– Managing all cash flow, including capital gains and losses, accounts payable and receivable, and inventory.

– Managing the company’s debt, investments, and liquidity-related decisions.

– Ensuring the company’s financial stability.

3. Forecasting

One of a CFO’s most valued abilities falls under this category.  Every company wants a CFO who can accurately analyze financial data and ensure an accurate fiscal forecast.  If they can accurately predict a company’s financial wellbeing, that company will be able to minimize losses, capitalize on gains, and remain financially sound.  Tasks in this category include:

– Analyzing ROI (Return on Investment), including all company-held assets and capital.

– Analyzing annual budget projection and compare it to actual results.

– Forecasting future cashflow and draw up company budget based on the analysis.

4. Other Tasks

If the above tasks and responsibilities weren’t enough, CFOs are also involved in C-level jobs throughout each workday.  These include but aren’t limited to:

– Leadership meetings, board meetings, and presentations.

– Supplier and vendor negotiation.

– Team management.

– Supervision of team members that report directly to the CFO.

Final Word

When it comes right down to it, a CFO participates in the above roles and functions to ensure his or her company is running at optimal financial performance.  They are involved in risk management, auditing and reporting, business planning, tax accounting, company budgeting, and investor communication. They are responsible for the financial viability of their company and ensure proper financial performance.  The CFO carries some of the highest responsibility a company can place on an employee. CFOs are one of the most valued players in a company because they are the ones to ensure a company’s financial success and well being.