A financial controller is one of the most important positions when leaders start building credible finance teams. Without a financial controller, managing the company’s finances would be much harder.
If you’re a financial controller in a business, then you want to ensure you’re maximising your value. There are so many ways that you can improve your skills as a financial controller. Here are three of the easy ways to fulfil your potential and become invaluable to the business.
1. Choose the Right Software to Help You Manage Your Finances
One of the most common mistakes that inexperienced financial controllers often make is that they choose to use spreadsheets in the consolidation and close related processes. This can sometimes be a legacy from past financial controllers who knew how to use spreadsheets but were reluctant to make a change.
Spreadsheets are powerful. They can build workflows, automate reconciliations, and complete other activities that are important for the company’s successful financial management. However, spreadsheets do have their limits, and there are better software programs available on the market to help financial controllers with their day-to-day activities.
One of the big problems is that there’s a lot of manual entry on spreadsheets. With manual entry there is a higher risk of error.
Instead, use computer programs that can perform the same tasks automatically by integrating ERP systems and financial applications. This can help close books within a week, something that many organisations don’t do. The best software uses automation to help you streamline key close tasks. Often the software is cloud-based, which means that the applications can be deployed from anywhere.
With the use of automation, you can then assign members of your team to more value-building tasks and reduce mundane ones. This has the added benefit of improving team morale.
2. Lead With Data and Analytics
Another key, and easy way, to fulfil your potential is to ensure that you’re using data and analysis to evaluate trends within their domain. Today, financial controllers are being asked to provide much more information than just financial information, including budget and operational data. You could just provide that, or you could use your analytical skills to offer insight and support decision making.
With the help of automation, as previously mentioned, you can spend time actually highlighting key parts of the data. Therefore, you make yourself an invaluable member of the team, and you could be rewarded for your hard work.
3. Financial Controllers Create a Strong Culture of Self-Service and Collaboration
If you really want to make yourself an invaluable part of the team, then you need to be able to provide a culture and environment where leaders can access the information for themselves. By creating a dashboard on the office computer system that allows those who need the information to collect it, you can add value to your presence in the organisation, but also not be taken away from other important tasks within the business. Therefore, you’ve added value without creating more work.
At the same time, you need to ensure that collaboration is high. This can be hard when you have a team or business that is decentralised. There are many communication tools available today that go beyond email that can help your department with communications.
Being a financial controller in today’s busy business environment isn’t easy. There are more demands on your job than ever before. That is why you need to ensure that you’re adding value to your organisation by fulfilling your potential. Use the three easy tips above to add value to your presence without increasing your workload.
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