8 Controller Resume Skills (And Where to Include Them)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published June 10, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Controllers direct, supervise, and manage a company's accounting or finance department. To secure this type of role, it's important you know how to prepare a compelling resume that highlights your skills and competencies. Understanding controller resume skills can help you prepare better resumes and secure more lucrative opportunities. In this article, we discuss relevant resume skills for controllers, highlight ways to develop them, discuss where to put controller skills on your resume, and provide an example resume to guide you.

What are controller resume skills?

Controller resume skills are job-specific abilities that hiring managers expect to see on your resume. Controllers require these skills to perform their duties effectively. As a result, including these skills on your resume can demonstrate competence to potential employers. It's important to know the right skills to include on your resume as a controller, as that can determine the success of your job search. You can determine relevant controller skills for a role by reviewing its job description.

Related: What Is a Financial Controller?

Skills to include on your controller resume

Here are some skills controllers can include on their resumes:

Effective communication

Effective communication is the ability to exchange information with others accurately. It includes speaking, writing, and non-verbal communication. Controllers require excellent communication skills, as they're usually responsible for a department of employees. As a result, it's crucial that controllers can pass clear instructions and understand feedback from staff. Controllers usually work closely with company executives and stakeholders. They require excellent communication skills to contribute to corporate strategy and give presentations on the company's financial status.

Attention to detail

Attention to detail is the ability to complete work with little to no errors. This skill is vital for controllers dealing with an organization's financial documents. Minor mistakes in financial computation can adversely affect a company's well-being. As a result, it's important an organization's controller has standardized processes to review financial documents and minimize errors. You can develop your attention to detail through experience on the job.

Document management

Controllers are responsible for preparing, reviewing, and compiling various financial documents. They require various spreadsheet, writing, and presentation applications to prepare these documents. As a result, it's crucial the controller has sufficient knowledge of those applications. There are various online and offline resources for improving their document management skills.

Collaboration

Collaboration is the process of working with others to achieve a goal. A controller's role is vast, affecting various aspects of an organization's processes. It's normal for controllers to participate in the activities of various departments, including sales, marketing, and business development. This is because of their financial insight, which relates to all corporate activities. As a result, it's important that the controller is a team player who works well with others. You can develop collaboration skills by involving yourself in more group activities.

Financial reporting

Controllers are responsible for preparing and compiling various financial reports. These reports include budgets, balance sheets, and status reports. It's important that a controller is familiar with these reports' appropriate content and structure so that non-financial employees can understand them. It's also important that they can provide timely and accurate financial reports to inform other business processes.

Related: What Is a Balance Sheet? FAQs, Components, and an Example

Forecasting

Forecasting is predicting an organization's or asset's financial performance over a specific period. It's an important aspect of managing a business, as it allows companies to plan for the future. Controllers play a crucial role in financial forecasts because of their unique insight into a company's finances. It's important they're familiar with the relevant metrics to make accurate financial forecasts. It's also beneficial to deduce insights from their forecasts and use them to make effective financial strategies to maintain corporate health.

Payroll management

Controllers are usually responsible for managing a company's payroll. This involves determining each employee's contract, ensuring their payments details are accurate, and making prompt payment of salaries and other benefits. To do this effectively, controllers require knowledge of relevant labour laws and familiarity with payroll management tools.

Budgeting

Budgeting is the process of creating a financial plan for a specific period. It's at the core of corporate finance, as it determines the company's spending limits and capacity. Controllers are usually responsible for preparing and compiling an organization's budget. Being familiar with effective budgeting practices can help controllers excel in this role.

Ways to develop controller skills

Here's an overview of some ways you can develop relevant controller skills:

Tertiary education

While there are no specific degree requirements for working as a controller, earning a degree in accounting, finance, or business administration can help you develop some relevant controller skills. For example, these degrees teach you relevant skills relating to bookkeeping, budgeting, auditing, and corporate finance. Additionally, obtaining a degree allows you to interact with students from various backgrounds, improving your communication and interpersonal skills.

Internships

Internships are programs where trainees can work under the supervision of industry experts. It's a great way to get practical experience in the role. You can find an internship by applying to companies with your resume and cover letter during or after your undergraduate degree.

Certifications

Certifications are formal documents that training institutes, government agencies, and other bodies grant to attest to someone's competence in a specific field. They're great for developing relevant skills and demonstrating competence to potential employers. There are various certifications to choose from, depending on your career goals. You can research popular finance certifications, apply for them, and complete them.

Related: What to Include in a Finance Resume (With a Template)

Where to include controller skills on your resume

Here's an overview of the different parts of your resume you can use to highlight your controller skills:

Professional summary

The professional summary section is a brief part at the top of your resume, highlighting your most relevant qualifications and achievements. It usually comes immediately after the resume header and your contact information. This section is a great place to include your most impressive controller skills. Ensure you provide some context by highlighting how you can apply the skills to help a potential employer.

Work experience

The work experience section provides a summary of all relevant industry experience that you have. It comes immediately after the professional summary section and is one of the most important parts of your resume. You can include your skills in the job description section of your work experience. You can use action words when listing your skills to describe your achievements. For example, you may write, collaborated with the legal team to prepare 10 lease agreements, to highlight your collaboration skills.

Skills section

This is the main section for highlighting your skills. It usually comes after the education section, though you may put it before depending on the situation. Under this section, you can list relevant skills as bullet points. If possible, consider including brief explanations on how you've used the skill and your recorded results.

Related: 10 Financial Positions You May Want to Consider Pursuing

Controller resume example

Here's an example of a controller resume that you can use to guide your efforts:

Bethany Monroe
Toronto, Ontario
333-456-7655
bethanymonroe@email.com

Professional summary

Certified business controller with over a decade of experience managing businesses' finances in the finance and entertainment industries. Adept at creating comprehensive financial reports and making accurate forecasts on corporate finances. 2-time winner of the Delite Magazine's Finance Professional of the Year" award. Highly skilled in payroll management, risk management, and developing financing strategies for various business processes.

Work experience

Controller
GTOT Financial Services Ltd. Toronto, Ontario, 2018—present

  • Effectively oversaw the financial operations of the organization's 20 departments, resulting in a $360 million turnover.

  • Managed the payroll of the organization's 800+ employees, ensuring accurate calculation and prompt payment of benefits.

  • reconciled banking transactions across the organization's 25 accounts, including traditional and digital currency accounts

  • Directed and supervised the implementation of finance technologies at the organization's 30 branches, leading to a 5% decrease in errors.

Controller
Increvest Financial Services Ltd, Toronto, Ontario, 2016—2018

  • Oversaw the preparation and compilation of various financial reports for the organization's 15 branches, including financial forecasts, budgets, and balance sheets.

  • Collaborated with company executives and stakeholders to devise effective finance strategies, leading to a 6% reduction in operational cost.

  • Collaborated with the legal department to draft proposals and contracts for 40+ lease contracts, recording a 0% default rate.

  • Trained and supervised five interns looking to start their careers as business controllers.

Controller
Mowly Entertainment Company Ltd, Toronto, Ontario, 2012—2016

  • Developed and implemented training for staff according to industry standards, leading to a 15% increase in customer satisfaction ratings.

  • Handled correspondence and banking processes to secure bank loans with competitive interest rates, saving up to $2 million in interest.

  • Collaborated with the marketing and sales departments to develop and finance market expansion strategies, leading to a 15% increase in total revenue.

  • Prepared and combined budgets for 20+ theatre productions and the renovation of two movie theatres.

Education
Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Gellers Business School, Toronto, Ontario, 2017

  • Distinction

  • Relevant courses include marketing, corporate governance, and macroeconomics.

Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Accounting
Willow University, Toronto, Ontario, 2012

Relevant skills

  • payroll management

  • budgeting

  • real estate lease management

  • risk management

  • attention to detail

  • collaboration

Certifications

  • Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), 2018

  • Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA), 2017


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