7 skills you need in a Finance Manager

Your business has evolved over the years. Whether you are in manufacturing, IT or professional services, you do not conduct business the same way you did 10 years ago. Similarly, the role of Finance Managers has evolved.. Gone are the days when they were hidden in a back room crunching numbers and merely expected to provide financial reports, profit/loss & investment statements that define numerical goals for an organization. Today’s most successful Finance Managers are expected to have a strong financial background, thorough understanding of the organization’s overall business and an ability to work in tandem with different team leaders within an organization.

A Finance Manager is not just tasked with ensuring a company’s financial health, but also plays a crucial role in the overall growth and sustainability strategy. Thus, hiring someone with an accounting designation or a degree or even just extensive work experience is the bare minimum.

If you want to make sure your company’ s finance team is in the right hands, there are many additional skills that you need to look for in your future Finance Manager.

Analytical

Having an analytical mindset is extremely important in a managerial finance profession. When hiring a Finance Manager, look for a person who can provide an example of their analytical skills. Your prospective hire must be able to identify root cause of problems and find realistic solutions within reasonable timelines.In addition, they must also be able to spot potential financial risks and counsel an organization from making huge financial mistakes. A balance of creativity and robust financial knowledge helps Financial Managers resolve possible problems.


Leadership

A Finance Manager is expected to function as a team leader who can motivate the team. When hiring someone for a Finance Manager role, look out for a person with strong leadership skills, someone who is comfortable delegating tasks and identifying key strengths of their team members.
Your company’s Finance team can only function to its full potential if the Manager is able to supervise, provide constructive feedback and motive the finance team members to do their best work.


Communication

It is important that your Finance Manager communicates effectively with their team members, cross functional teams and with leadership whether it is explaining various tasks to team members or presenting to senior leaders.
Beyond crunching numbers, they must ideally possess strong written, verbal and presentation skills. Being able to break down complex financial information in simpler and understandable language is a key skill that you should look for in your next Finance Manager.


Forecasting & Budgeting

One of the key job functions of a Finance Manager is forecasting and budgeting. Typically, as this function is a basic of most Financial job roles, it is likely that your potential candidate may already possess the skill. It is still important to have them provide examples of how they forecasted and budgeted in their former roles and how successful were they.
Finance Managers must be able to provide reasonable insights on current budget and workable solutions based on your organization’s past performance. They should be able to determine whether your company is headed in the right direction based on this knowledge and recommend steps if it is not.


Interpersonal Skills

Today’s organizations thrive on teamwork. It is important that your Finance Team leader is able to interact with other employees and cross-functional teams comfortably. They must be polite, empathetic and good listeners, in a supervisory role or when working with other teams in your company.


Project Management

One of the key aspects of a Finance Manager’s job is to be an expert in time and project management. Whether it is managing schedules and deadlines or ensuring their team has everything they need to succeed, Finance Managers must keep everything in order.
When hiring a Finance Manager, look out for an organized and detail-oriented individual. Your future Finance Manager must know how to delegate responsibilities with manageable deadlines to their team.


Technology

The world of Finance is changing and like in every other team in your company, right from Human Resources to Procurement or even Administration, you need someone who is well-versed with using technology. Financial software is the latest way to ensure lean, accurate and quick operations.
A person working in a Financial Manager role must have some experience of working with financial software and must be comfortable learning new technology. They must able be able to customize, print and study software generated reports to give faster and accurate business insights. They must also understand how financial software integrates with other software used within the company.


Finding the right person for a Finance Manager role can be a challenge, especially since it needs a blend of highly specialized knowledge combined with several key managerial skills. Understanding how to assess these skills and aptitudes during the recruiting process is key to your (and their) success. One of the best ways to find your next Finance Manager is partnering with a recruitment expert who will leverage their network and referrals for you.

 

Regional Manager, Agilus Work Solutions