A finance manager organizes and manages an organization's or an individual's financial portfolio. They also prepare financial reports, oversee investments and help with cash management. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly every government agency, business firm and other organizations--such as non-profit organizations--employ at least one financial manager and sometimes more than one. This makes a financial manager a critical member of many organizations.
A finance manager has many important and specific duties. A finance manager sometimes acts as controller. A controller oversees income statements, expense analytics and other financial reports. A finance manager also can act as a treasurer or a finance officer. Treasurers and finance officers manage investments and cash. A finance manager can act as a credit manager--a person who is responsible for an organization's credit and collections, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Other roles of a finance manager include acting as "a cash manager, risk and insurance manager, and manager of international banking," according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Finance managers often work very long hours--sometimes up to 50 or 60 hours a week, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The long work hours are because finance managers often must attend business meetings where the organization's financial matters will be discussed and outside meetings related to finance and economics. Additionally, finance managers sometimes need to travel to meet customers or--in large corporations--to visit other offices or subsidiaries of the company.
To become a finance manager, you will need a bachelor's degree in accounting, economics, finance or business administration. This is the minimum requirement, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Many employers, however, prefer to hire managers with master's degrees. Your master's degree should be in economics, finance or business administration.
Some finance manager careers require a great deal of experience. An example of this is a bank branch manager. Often banks hire branch managers by "promoting experienced loan officers and other professionals who excel at their jobs," according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Ask professionals who have the job to which you aspire about specific requirements for gaining experience within the field.
According to payscale.com, as of April 2010, the average annual salary for financial managers is $45,526 to $86,868. However, salaries can be higher than this depending on geographic location and years of experience.