What is CFO?

“CFO (m/f/d) wanted as soon as possible” – We encounter such or similar formulations all the time. We also keep coming across the CFO when scrolling through profiles on job networks. What is the matter with it?

What is a CFO?

According to abbreviationfinder, the term Chief Financial Officer spilled over to us in Germany in the course of internationalization. Today it roughly corresponds to the role of the commercial director of a GmbH or the CFO of a stock corporation. Typically, the CFO reports directly to senior management.

However, CFO is only to be regarded as an additional designation, it has no meaning under company or commercial law.

Responsibilities of the CFO – What does the Chief Financial Officer do?

The Chief Financial Officer belongs to the senior management of a corporation and is responsible for financial and strategic tasks. After all, as CFO, he/she is one of the main players in corporate management.

Whoever holds the role of CFO leads internal and external development, oversees all reorganizations and often directs financial communications for all company events. The duties of the CFO are as follows:


In his/her role as Chief Financial Officer, the CFO is responsible – in accordance with the title – for the accounting of the group or company. These tasks include, for example:

  • preparing individual and consolidated financial statements and ensuring their reliability and correctness;
  • Depending on the size of the group: guarantee of supervision of the CFO of subsidiaries/divisions, of the heads of accounting, heads of consolidation, heads of controlling and possible shared service centers.

Financial data and banking relationships

These activities also fall within his/her area:

  • Managing off-balance sheet transactions (sales, acquisitions, mergers),
  • Funding management and cash management, maintenance of possible third-party relationships with bankers, auditors, etc.,
  • Monitoring and validation of controlling in the group: planning, budget, reporting,
  • Participation in the improvement or implementation of management information systems,
  • Preparing studies on financial and industrial investments.

Manager and decision maker

Depending on the company, these responsibilities are also part of the Chief Financial Officer’s area of ​​responsibility:

  • overseeing the internal control team,
  • Participation in the implementation of new standards and regulations on competences,
  • Participation in the development of a corporate strategy (this also includes operational implementation),
  • managing financial communications,
  • Maintaining relationships with shareholders and investors,
  • Monitoring the internal audit (together with the management),
  • dealing with tax and legal matters,
  • human resource management,
  • general Services.


What requirements must be met to become a CFO? If you want to fill the role of CFO of a company or group, you should ideally have the following qualifications:

  • Completed studies in business administration with a focus on finance and controlling or
  • comparable education;
  • in the best case, several years of professional experience and management experience;
  • very good analytical and conceptual skills,
  • a lot of experience with the development and expansion of finance, controlling and reporting processes,
  • high level of initiative
  • positive thinking,
  • action and goal orientation,
  • implementation strength.

What is CFO