How to Assess and Hire A Finance Manager?
Published on January 3rd, 2023
A finance manager is the mainspring of a business that keeps everything in balance. You can have the top product, and the best marketing and sales team; but if you do not have a superstar finance person to manage your cash flow, everything is a moo point.
So it is a necessity for any business to invest in hiring a finance manager who can make smart and effective financial decisions for your organization by collaborating with the accountants, business analysts, and other members of the sphere.
Does it sound complicated? That’s because it is. It is no child’s play to complete the tasks of a finance manager. They need to be highly skilled and have a strong financial background to handle multiple tabs of the finance sector.
With so much at stake, you as a recruiter cannot take a bet on assessing and hiring a finance manager alone. A lot has to be put in to hire a candidate that understands your business needs and maintains a positive cash flow at the end of the year.
Thankfully, there are countless tools nowadays to make recruitment easy and smooth. But..before going into the details of hiring a finance manager, get to know their skills, responsibilities, and salary trends.
So Who are Finance Managers?
A finance manager is someone who maintains the financial health of your business. They create financial reports, oversee investment activities, and create plans and strategies for the organization's long-term financial objectives.
However, a finance manager is more than just a person who can work with numbers. They typically analyze, interpret, and report those figures from the perspective of the company's goals. It is a position that is of utmost importance to fill, in any organization of any size. It thus becomes crucial to find a candidate who fits into your company's culture
What are the Skills of a Finance Manager?
The role of a finance manager has evolved in recent years and has gone beyond calculating numbers. You as a recruiter should look for a whole range of soft and hard skills in a candidate when assessing a finance manager.
The job description of a finance manager is no longer about crunching numbers and developing financial reports. A financial professional should have analytical skills and know how to look at the numbers and interpret what the numbers are really saying.
Thus, having an analytical mindset is a prerequisite for financial management. If you are looking to hire a finance manager for your organization, ask them for examples of how they used their analytical skills in their previous organization.
Your potential hire must be able to locate the source of issues and come up with practical solutions quickly. They must also be able to identify potential financial hazards and advise an organization to avoid making costly financial errors.
Forecasting & Budgeting
Forecasting and budgeting are two of a finance manager's primary responsibilities. Since most financial job responsibilities require this skill, it is probable that your potential candidate already has the expertise. It's still crucial to ask them for examples of how they forecasted and budgeted successfully in their prior organizations.
Finance managers must be able to offer a fair analysis of the present budget and practical recommendations based on the prior success of your company. Based on this information, they should be able to establish whether your firm is moving in the right path and propose alternatives if not.
Strong communication abilities are crucial for a finance manager, whether they are in a client-facing or corporate finance role. Finance managers must establish strong inter-departmental connections in a business environment. They often keep close contact with board members and executives to help them make the best decisions for the company's financial objectives.
For finance managers in the public sector, maintaining client loyalty and trust is essential to the success of their business.
As different clients could prefer different channels like phone calls, emails, instant messaging apps, or the plain old-fashioned face-to-face meeting, finance managers need to be prepared to engage with individuals across all mediums.
A smart finance manager can translate complicated financial jargon into terms that clients may easily comprehend. Finally, it's critical to keep in mind that effective communication requires equal proficiency in listening, understanding, and empathizing.
The financial services sector has evolved as a result of technology, not just for finance managers but also for customers who now have simple access to their income statements, financial statements, balance sheets, and other documents via modern accounting software.
The majority of labor has moved to cloud accounting apps, making data accessible on several platforms. This calls for finance managers to have a firm knowledge of such software and, where necessary, to assist clients in using it.
A financial manager must be comfortable learning new technologies and have some prior experience working with financial applications. To provide quicker and more precise business insights, they must be able to edit, print, and review software-generated reports. They also need to know how the company's other software and finance tools work together.
A Finance Manager is expected to function as a team leader who can motivate the team. When selecting a candidate for the position of finance manager, keep an eye out for someone with good leadership qualities, someone who is at ease in delegating work, and someone who can recognize the essential assets of their team members.
The Manager's ability to oversee, offer helpful feedback, and encourage the finance team members to do their best work is a prerequisite for the financial team at your organization to operate at its greatest capacity.
Additionally, leaders and executives now have to manage teams virtually due to the COVID-19 epidemic, which presents a new difficulty.
Day-to-Day Responsibilities of Finance Manager
- Find new measures that will improve corporate performance while also lowering risk.
- Drive value inside the company through increasing margins, cutting expenses, and improving operational efficiencies.
- Implement accurate reporting to evaluate possibilities and provide financial assistance.
- Describe how your company is performing in comparison to its competitors and market trends.
- Maintain communication with the bank, the auditor, and the tax authorities.
- Maintain adherence to federal and local financial regulations by researching new and existing laws.
Qualifications of a Financial Manager
While you may assess all the skills and employ special tips to hire your finance manager, there are some basic qualifications and certifications that a prospective candidate must have before you shortlist them for an interview or assessment.
- Master’s degree in finance or accounting
- Certifications such as CFP, CMA, CFA
- FINRA Series 65 or Series 66 license
- Experience with financial planning software
- One or two years of professional experience in finance or accounting
- Knowledge of the securities, insurance, and mutual fund industries
Salary Trends of a Financial ManagerAccording to Glassdoor’s 2023 [report](https://www.glassdoor.co.in/Salaries/us-finance-manager-salary-SRCH_IL.0,2_IN1_KO3,18.htm), the average salary for a finance manager is $1,12,257 in the United States. Entry-level positions start at $79,895 per year while most experienced workers make up to $150,000 per year.
Employment of financial managers is projected to grow (https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/financial-managers.htm) percent from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations.
About 71,300 openings for financial managers are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as retiring.
Tips to Hire a Superstar Financial Manager for your Organization
Chalk out the skills you are looking for
As already talked about, there is a range of skills that is a prerequisite for recruiting a finance manager. Chalk out the soft skills and hard skills that you want in your finance manager beforehand to skip the end-moment hassle.
Starting with hard skills, look if the candidate has all qualifications and certificates, has excellent financial analysis skills, and has a strong knowledge of accounting principles.
When jotting down soft skills, mention attributes such as empathy, honesty, precision, and ethical values.
A ready-made list of these skills will come in handy when you sit down to shortlist candidates for your job role.
Do not forget behavioral traits
Make sure you're going beyond the briefcase as you focus on the qualities that are most appropriate for the position. A bachelor's degree in finance or a related field can be helpful, as can the number of years of experience. However, focusing only on technical abilities may stifle your hiring efforts and perhaps exclude you from some excellent applicants.
Focus on a person's heart and mind instead. What character attributes do you look for in a successful finance manager? What cultural characteristics do you want they would bring to your company? By addressing these questions, you can be confident that you're taking into account the "whole" applicant and all the skills they may have to offer for the position.
You probably want to hire a financial manager who will handle the business's finances with the care and precision it requires. Look for a candidate who will carefully approach all important decisions with caution or even cynicism.
Employ smart hiring practices
Applying for a job has become very easy these days, all thanks to online job posting websites and easy access to the internet. In such cases, recruiters get drowned in hundreds or even thousands of resumes for a single job role.
You can imagine the dilemma of a recruiter who has to go through those resumes and shortlist the best ones. Enter recruitment automation tools. Automation tools have flipped the scenario of recruitment today and have made hiring possible in the blink of an eye.
You can also make use of pre-employment assessments to assess your candidate effectively and efficiently. These assessments are designed with job-specific questions which can help you to gauge your candidate smoothly.
Important Interview Questions to Ask
Here is a list of some important questions that you can ask your candidates during the interview.
- What does a good finance manager look like to you?
- How do you keep up with the latest industry trends in finance and banking?
- Which financial software are you familiar with and which do you prefer?
- Tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult client or manager. What did you do to preserve the relationship and stay on task?
- What steps do you take to ensure your work is consistently detailed, accurate, and insightful?
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.
Radhika Sarraf is a content specialist and a woman of many passions who currently works at HireQuotient, a leading recruitment SaaS company. She is a versatile writer with experience in creating compelling articles, blogs, social media posts, and marketing collaterals.
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