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Career Profile: Finance Director

Why Is Finance Management a Job of Tomorrow?
Finance managers are needed to handle financial reports and to advise organizations on the best investments to make. Because business is becoming increasingly interconnected, especially with the rapid rate of globalization, competent finance managers have become a valuable asset. Employment opportunities for finance managers are expected to increase 13 percent by 2016, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Finance managers make an average salary of $90,970 annually.

What Does a Finance Manager Do?
Finance managers are responsible for preparing financial reports, managing investments and handling other financial duties that most businesses must tackle. Specific duties of finance managers vary with their titles. For example, controllers work primarily with financial reports and prepare income statements, balance sheets and summaries of the organization’s past activity as well as a projection of its future activities and trends. Finance officers handle the organization’s budget, ensuring that it does not overspend to reach its goals. Credit managers establish credit ceilings and supervise past-due account statuses. In any field, finance managers can be entrusted with lending, trusts, mortgages and investments, all of which must be handled with the client in mind and under strict federal and state guidelines. Those who work in a financial institution, such as a bank, are also responsible for approving loans, hiring personnel, helping customers with account problems and attracting business by networking.

What Kind of Training Do I Need to Become a Finance Manager?
Finance managers must have at least a bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting, economics or business administration, though many employers are now seeking those with a master’s degree or certification in addition to a bachelor’s degree. A bachelor’s degree takes four years to earn, and a master’s degree takes an additional two to three years to earn after obtaining a bachelor’s degree. Courses include economics and risk management. Managers may also seek certification to improve their marketability. Some certification prerequisites include a minimum of two years of professional working experience, but the requirements depend on the specific type of certification sought.

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