While finance managers typically have the same overall responsibilities regardless of their chosen fields, there are differences in their specific duties. There are several types of finance manager jobs, including auto finance manager, project finance manager, controller and senior finance manager. Most finance manager jobs require an advanced understanding of accounting procedures, managerial skills and a college education.
Finance managers are responsible for supervising the cash flow of a business. They prepare financial forecasts, prepare financial statements and reports and produce annual budgets. They are also generally included in the overall planning of expansions and downsizing, as finances are intricately involved in such projects.
A finance controller provides regular analysis of the company's budget along with suggestions for the future based on that analysis. In addition, he or she is expected to prepare financial reports and balance sheets detailing where the company funds are spent. Income statements are also the responsibility of the controller. Government regulations, including tax payment and deduction requirements, often are met by the company controller.
The controller usually is expected to give a studied opinion with regard to proposed mergers and acquisitions as well. This can include preparation of reports detailing the pros and cons of such a venture. Credit-ratings of the company are also the controller's responsibility to maintain and continue to improve when possible.
Cash finance managers deal strictly with the company's accounts payable and receivables in a business. Loan payments, invoices for supplies and travel expenses are examples of things a cash finance manager would be expected to oversee. In addition, many finance managers, including a cash finance manager, oversee accounting clerks and other finance department employees.
Chief financial officers (CFOs) are among the highest ranking of finance manager jobs. These professionals shoulder the responsibility of a business's accounting methods. In many cases, they determine the ethics of the company's accounting practices and are thereby held accountable if questions arise. Many CFOs have different types of finance managers working under them.
Auto finance managers oversee the financial aspects of vehicle sales at car dealerships. As salespeople close a sale, they bring the contracts to the auto finance manager to approve. The contract details the vehicle's purchase price, the interest rate on the loan and other elements about the deal. The auto finance manager approves or declines the application. If a customer wants to offer less than the vehicle's sticker price or wants to have extras included for free, the auto finance manager makes the final decision whether to agree to the request.
Education to become a finance manager varies. Chief financial officers are typically required to have advanced college degrees in finance. Auto finance managers and bank finance managers can often secure positions through their past work experience in the field. In most cases, however, a bachelor's degree in a finance-related field is the minimum job requirement.