A Group Financial Controller

Group financial controller roles can be extremely interesting and offer great career development potential - finance controllers can progress into finance directors, CFOs,COOs.

We take an in-depth look at what the role involves and the skills you’ll need to succeed.

What does a Financial Controller do?

The Group Financial Controller ensures strong accounting and reporting throughout the group, including overseeing and monitoring an effective control environment and providing strategic information and advice to the management team.

The position is process driven, particularly for tasks such as preparing financial statements, budget reports, forecasts, cost analysis reports, profit or loss statements, as well as making recommendations for spending or cost cuts.

However, reporting is just a small part of the role. The finance controller in an organisation will also provide financial analysis and advice to the chief executive officer (CEO) of the company at any time it is involved in business transactions or acquisitions. In some cases, controllers may also provide legal advice, be responsible for treasury, tax and financial planning to name a few.

What skills do I need?

Employers look at experienced professionals in a senior position within a finance team, and you will also have to be technically astute with sound knowledge of financial fundamentals. Below is a general overview of the key skills required:

  • A bachelor’s degree
    · CPA (K), CIMA, ACCA, or ACA
    · 5+ years' post qualification experience in a senior accounting role
    · Strong financial, accounting and managerial skills
    · Strong ability to implement and monitor internal controls
    · Creative reporting capability
    · Team manager and player
    · Good communicator, planner and organiser
    · Effective project management skills
    · Strategic finance and tax planning
    · Sage Evolution ERP
    · Quickbooks, Pastel and other accounting tools and systems
    · Powerpoint & Excel

A classic accounting background with one of the the 'Big 4' and commercial finance experience are highly regarded and preferred by most employers. Three to four years of auditing experience with the 'Big 4' will get you ahead of the competition and fast tracked into a financial reporting role, and eventually, a financial controller role.

Great future prospects

Finance controllers often move on to become finance directors, CFOs, or even a COO position. In Kenya, talented financial controllers are highly sought-after.

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For more career advice please contact:

Samantha Gravett, Manager
+27 (0) 11 881 2471

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