The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is a top executive position among all businesses in which the position is incorporated. CFOs are the head in almost all financial decisions within a business and they only report to CEOs of the company. A company's success relies heavily on the wherewithal and business savvy of the CFO.
The primary duty of a CFO is in making the decisions as to what financial risks a company will pursue. These types of risks include reaching out to new markets, development of new products, discontinuance of current products, and every other major financial decision that may be made within a company. Chief Financial Officers tend to work indoors in a very nice office and they usually have a secretary. They work primarily with a telephone and computer. Their boss is the top executive of the company, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). They may sometimes work along with another CFO but the only other position at the same level is the Chief Operating Officer. CFO's work regular business hours, Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 4 PM, or 9 AM to 5 PM. However, due to their high position in the company they have more freedom in deciding when they work. A Master of Business Administration (MBA) is the typical degree required for becoming a CFO. If not an MBA, a CFO usually has a degree in accounting.
Without a CFO, many businesses would have a hard time managing their finances and making appropriate financial decisions for the company. As a result, the CFO is held in high esteem. Their abilities and foresight can make or break a company. Today their role is even changing to become even more important than it had been prior. Many CFOs are now also appointed as advisers to CEOs.
Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Tasks
- Provide leadership and coordination in the administrative, business planning, accounting and budgeting efforts of the company.
- Prepare or direct preparation of financial statements, business activity reports, financial position forecasts, annual budgets, and/or reports required by regulatory agencies.
- Develop internal control policies, guidelines, and procedures for activities such as budget administration, cash and credit management, and accounting.