What is a CFO?

Financial manager jobs

Accounting and finance are very important roles in any company. In fact, managerial jobs in accounting at large companies in Canada can be compensated anywhere between $77,000 and $101,500 annually, according to a 2013 survey by Robert Half International. While the average yearly salary for a Finance Manager is $76,205, senior managers in Finance and Communications may earn up to $160,000 annually, and are on the list of top 10 best paying jobs in Canada.

It’s not all easy money. The Chief Financial Officer (sometimes referred to as a Chief Financial and Operating Officer,) one of the most important jobs in accounting and finance, has a lot of responsibility, too. The Chief Financial Officer is responsible for overseeing all financial operations for the corporation. The Chief Financial Officer’s responsibilities also include financial planning, record-keeping, managing financial risk, and reporting to higher management.

This may sound simple, but according to “Hiring for Attitude” author Mark Murphy, almost 46% of new employees fail within their first 18 months. The financial standing of a corporation rests on the shoulders of the Chief Financial Officer, and his or her ability to produce accurate reports, make responsible investments, and execute plans to meet the long-term financial goals of the organization.

In order to do all of these things effectively, the Chief Financial Officer needs to have three crucial skills to keep their company running smoothly. First, he or she must be able to analyze financial information and clearly communicate the data to the executive team, so that they understand the financial impact of any decisions they make. Second, the Chief Financial Officer needs to ensure that there is adequate capital available to properly finance operations. Lastly, the Chief Financial Officer serves as an adviser to the Chief Executive Officer, to assist in strategic planning.


As with most jobs in accounting, the Chief Financial Officer must be skilled with numbers, but he or she must also be an effective communicator. Creating and keeping track of a budget and making proper forecasts are impossible without accurate and timely reports from the Chief Financial Officer. Reports between departments allow more effective communication and information sharing to coordinate business activities at every level of the organization.

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