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Hiring your First Financial Controller

By Simon Bennett. Simon is a Principal Consultant at Zeren, within the Senior Finance division, operating from our London office.

When to Consider Hiring a Financial Controller for Your Business

Every business decision made has a significant financial impact. While tasks like tracking revenue and managing payroll are crucial, understanding your company’s financial standing is vital for informed decision-making.

As a business grows, managing finances becomes more complex. This complexity can distract owners from revenue-generating activities. So, when is it time to hire a Financial Controller (FC)?

Founders often want to retain control over finances. However, as the business expands, automation and expert oversight become necessary. A Financial Controller provides technical expertise to navigate challenges like raising finance or managing international operations.


Responsibilities of an In-House Financial Controller (FC)

Financial Controllers oversee financial management and regulatory compliance. Their responsibilities extend to accounting operations, IT, HR, and tax reporting. They establish robust financial controls, automate tasks, and provide technical knowledge to guide strategic decisions.

Key responsibilities include:

  • Maintaining accurate financial records
  • Implementing controls and processes for efficiency
  • Understanding cash flow and business KPIs
  • Creating budgets and forecasting accurate results
  • Interpreting financial data to inform strategy
  • Financial Controllers play a crucial role in directing the business towards its goals and act as liaisons with external stakeholders


Qualities to Look for in a Financial Controller’s CV

Identifying the right Financial Controller candidate is essential for business success.

Look for candidates with:

  • Hands-on accounting experience
  • Demonstrated process improvement skills
  • Experience scaling functions with business growth
  • Technical accounting knowledge (GAAP or IFRS)
  • Zeren’s Financial Controller Network

Zeren specialises in recruiting for high-growth and investor-backed businesses. With a focus on technology, we connect with Financial Controllers, globally. Our experience spans businesses from SEED funding to Series A-D, ensuring successful placements in this dynamic space.