The Changing Profile of Management Accountants

Posted: June 25th, 2021

Imagine that you are human resource manager asked to review a job description for a Chief Financial Officer opening at your company. The finance department mentioned that they have had a lot of difficulty retaining talent because of long hours, outdated technology, and isolation from the operational departments so they need positive change from their new leader.
You know it will be critical to get the right person in the role to improve business processes which should in turn increase the company’s financial performance. However, you also realize that the pool of candidates with the requisite amount of work experience would likely have graduated from college 10 or more years ago.
Using what you learned in the required reading article “Adapting for Digital Survival,” ( how would you modify the existing job description to target the desired pool of candidates to meet the company’s growth needs? Specifically address the following:

Do you believe the wording is strong enough to communicate “required,” as opposed to “desired” or “preferred” skills in the candidates?
What certifications are generally pursued by management accountants, and why would having those certifications make a candidate more desirable than one that did not have the certifications?
Are there skills missing that should be listed, and listed skills that could be removed because they are not as critical as others?
This position is clearly looking for someone with a significant base of experience. However, they also desire someone who can break the cycle of high turnover. Is an employer able to pass on hiring a candidate solely because of their age (e.g. someone close to retirement)?

Job description
Company is a global manufacturing firm headquartered in Nebraska. The Chief Financial Officer will be responsible for hands-on oversight of all finance, accounting, and reporting activities.

Key Responsibilities

Oversees and manages all accounting operations including Billing, A/R, A/P, Payroll, GL, Cost Accounting, and Inventory Accounting;
Coordinates and directs the preparation of budgets for the overall company and for each department;
Prepares and publishes timely monthly financial statements;
Support month-end and year-end close process;
Develops and documents business processes and accounting policies to maintain and strengthen internal controls;
Manages and complies with local, state, and federal government reporting requirements and tax filings;
Provides financial analysis tools to evaluate company ventures, capital expenditures, programs, and products costing;
Manages commercial banking relationships; and
Interacts with outside audit firms and casualty/liability insurance firms.

Job Requirements

Proven working experience as a CFO, Controller, or Senior Finance person in the manufacturing industry;
7+ years of overall combined accounting and finance experience;
Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting or Finance;
Must have excellent computer skills and experience with MRP software;
Thorough knowledge of accounting principles and procedures;
Experience with creating financial statements; and
Experience with general ledger functions and the month-end/year-end close process.

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