CFO vs Controller vs Accountant

Last month I published a newsletter titled “What Should a CEO Do?  After thinking a while, the same question can be asked about the CFO.  I run into business owners all the time that tell me they “have a CFO”  or they “have a Controller.”  Then I asked them what this person does.

I find out that the CFO or Controller is keying in Accounts Payable Invoices, entering in Payroll hours each week, sending out invoices to customer, and if he / she is really good even calling to collect past due invoices. 

I then ask the business owner if this person produces monthly financial statements.  I usually get the reponse that they try, but they either don’t have time or eventually get the numbers out 60 -90 days after month end.  Oh yeah, since the business owners’ bank is now asking for numbers, the owner works nights and weekends assisting the accounting person with the 90 day old financial statements.

I ask the business owner is they have monthly budget to actual variance analysis, future income and cash flow projections, breakeven analysis, profitability by product and customer.  I get a “no” answer to all of the above. 

Does this company really have a CFO or Controller?  Attached below is a matrix of what your accounting staff should be doing.  All companies need that CFO and Controller level analysis, but a lot of companies can’t pay the market salary rate for the position.  B2B CFO® can provide this analysis for your business at a fraction of the cost of a full time salary

CFO vs Controller and Accountant

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