(Picture) Financial manager/planner/staff jobs and responsibilities
- Forecasting and planning. The financial staff must coordinate the planning process. This means they must interact with people from other departments as they look ahead and lay the plans that will shape the firm’s future.
- Major investment and financing decisions. A successful firm usually has rapid growth in sales, which requires investments in plant, equipment, and inventory. The financial staff must help determine the optimal sales growth rate, help decide what specific assets to acquire, and then choose the best way to finance those assets. For example, should the firm finance with debt, equity, or some combination of the two, and if debt is used, how much should be long term and how much short term?
- Coordination and control. The financial staff must interact with other personnel to ensure that the firm is operated as efficiently as possible. All business decisions have financial implications, and all managers—financial and otherwise—need to take this into account. For example, marketing decisions affect sales growth, which in turn influences investment requirements. Thus, marketing decision makers must take account of how their actions affect and are affected by such factors as the availability of funds, inventory policies, and plant capacity utilization.
- Dealing with the financial markets. The financial staff must deal with the money and capital markets. As we shall see in Chapter 5, each firm af raised, where the firm’s securities are traded, and where investors eitherfects and is affected by the general financial markets where funds are make or lose money.
- Risk management. All businesses face risks, including natural disasters such as fires and floods, uncertainties in commodity and security markets, volatile interest rates, and fluctuating foreign exchange rates. However, many of these risks can be reduced by purchasing insurance or by hedging in the derivatives markets. The financial staff is responsible for the firm’s overall risk management program, including identifying the risks that should be managed and then managing them in the most efficient manner.