What is a Financial Controller (FC)?

Definition: A Financial controller (FC) is a management executive who oversees the preparation of financial statements and ensures insightful data from the reports. Moreover, this officer is tasked with the authenticity of financial reports, regulatory compliance and analysis of financial data.

What Does Financial Controller Mean?

What is the definition of financial controller? A FC reports directly to the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and is often responsible for communication of business performance and facts within the intended audience.

What does a financial controller do?

Business budgeting, accounts, auditing, and payroll are key work areas of a controller. He/ She also acts the Finance Head for smaller organizations who do not have CFOs. Since most of the reporting and financial optimization are headed by an FC, it is expected out of the FC to be updated with latest business trends and events through seminars and discussions. Essentially, a majority of business advancement of a company depends on the expertise of its FC.

Let’s look at an example.


A finance controller can be seen around spending time with employees of almost all verticals and looking for ground level details of processes, which would help understand and optimize the business. Being a very critical role, the eligibility standards for being an FC are pretty high. An ideal candidate would have at least 8-10 years of experience and sound financial qualification. Since it’s a cross functional role, an FC is not only concerned with the financials but also has to ensure that the processes that have a direct linkage with costs or revenues are carried out in line with the latest regulatory standards and are efficient.

A majority of business structuring, optimization, internal payroll/incentive policies, financial forecasting etc. come from the desk of the controller.

Examples in the News

“Controllers keep the company’s financial planning, debt financing and budget management organized.” – Forbes

Summary Definition

Define Financial Controllers: Financial controller means an officer in a corporation who is charged with overseeing the bookkeeping and reporting processes of a company.