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Have you ever been involved in managing the budget for a family trip? Well, you can think of a finance director as assuming that role, except on a larger scale. Instead of a family trip, they are tasked with overseeing the financial operations of a company.

Daily, a finance director is tasked with developing financial plans, preparing financial forecasts, assessing budgets of departments, and developing accounting policies. Besides that, they facilitate tax and audit activities, as well as assisting in developing a training program for accounting staff.

A finance director is required to have a bachelor's degree that is business-related, as well as at least 4-5 years of experience in a senior finance executive role. This role earns, on average, $60 per hour and offers flexibility to work in any industry they are interested in.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a finance director. For example, did you know that they make an average of $67.07 an hour? That's $139,501 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 16% and produce 104,700 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Finance Director Do

There are certain skills that many finance directors have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, detail oriented and math skills.

Learn more about what a Finance Director does

How To Become a Finance Director

If you're interested in becoming a finance director, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 71.2% of finance directors have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 20.1% of finance directors have master's degrees. Even though most finance directors have a college degree, it's impossible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a finance director. When we researched the most common majors for a finance director, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on finance director resumes include associate degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a finance director. In fact, many finance director jobs require experience in a role such as controller. Meanwhile, many finance directors also have previous career experience in roles such as finance manager or senior finance analyst.

Finance Director Career Paths

Average Salary for a Finance Director

Finance Directors in America make an average salary of $139,501 per year or $67 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $206,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $94,000 per year.
Average Finance Director Salary
$139,501 Yearly
$67.07 hourly
$94,000
10 %
$139,000
Median
$206,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Finance Director Education

Finance Director Majors

28.1 %
15.5 %

Finance Director Degrees

Bachelors

71.2 %

Masters

20.1 %

Associate

5.5 %

Top Colleges for Finance Directors

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. SUNY at Binghamton

Vestal, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,808
Enrollment
13,990

5. Villanova University

Villanova, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,308
Enrollment
6,819

6. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

7. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,880
Enrollment
4,177

8. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

9. SUNY Stony Brook

Stony Brook, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,625
Enrollment
17,407

10. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

Top Skills For a Finance Director

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 14.6% of finance directors listed financial statements on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and detail oriented are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Finance Director Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Finance Director templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Finance Director resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Finance Director Demographics

Finance Director Gender Distribution

Male
Male
65%
Female
Female
35%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among finance directors, 34.9% of them are women, while 65.1% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among finance directors is White, which makes up 68.0% of all finance directors.

  • The most common foreign language among finance directors is Spanish at 45.5%.

Online Courses For Finance Director That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
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Payroll calculations - federal income tax, social security, Medicare - Payroll journal entries posted to ledger accounts...

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Adjusting entry creation, posting adjusting entries to a worksheet, creating financial statements from the trial balance...

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Excel tips & tricks for Accounting, Finance and Financial Analysis. Learn from the Bestselling Accounting Instructor...

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Best States For a Finance Director

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a finance director. The best states for people in this position are Connecticut, New York, California, and Washington. Finance directors make the most in Connecticut with an average salary of $154,551. Whereas in New York and California, they would average $154,506 and $151,951, respectively. While finance directors would only make an average of $148,336 in Washington, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New York

Total Finance Director Jobs:
2,636
Highest 10% Earn:
$225,000
Location Quotient:
1.39 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Connecticut

Total Finance Director Jobs:
560
Highest 10% Earn:
$224,000
Location Quotient:
1.14 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Washington

Total Finance Director Jobs:
1,258
Highest 10% Earn:
$211,000
Location Quotient:
1.17 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Finance Directors

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Top Finance Director Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ finance directors and discovered their number of finance director opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Robert Half was the best, especially with an average salary of $148,364. American Express follows up with an average salary of $158,867, and then comes CBRE Group with an average of $149,663. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a finance director. The employers include HSBC Bank, Genworth, and BAE Systems

Most Common Employers For Finance Director

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Microsoft$225,797$108.5639
2Fidelity Investments$176,047$84.6439
3Nike$174,794$84.0434
4American Express$158,867$76.3887
5Thomson Reuters$158,481$76.1931
6Sears Holdings$155,958$74.9835
7Aramark$155,615$74.8144
8Thermo Fisher Scientific$154,249$74.1639
9Icma-rc$152,547$73.3445
10PepsiCo$151,626$72.9032

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Becoming a Finance Director FAQs

How long does it take to become a Finance Director?

It takes 10 years of professional experience to become a finance director. That is the time it takes to learn specific finance director skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 13 to 15 years years to become a finance director.

How much does a financial vice president make?

A financial vice president makes around $150,000 a year, on average. As an experienced and critical member of the executive team, a VP of Finance can expect to make between $90,000 and $200,000 per year. In addition, the compensation package will often include bonuses or profit-sharing as a perk of the executive position.

Is being a finance director a good job?

Yes, being a finance director is a good job. Being a finance director is a good job if a person wants to work in a role that requires a lot of attention to detail and directly impacts the company's financial health.

Is it hard to become a finance director?

Yes, it is hard to become a finance director. This is a senior executive-level position that requires a significant amount of education and experience to achieve.

A finance director's primary responsibilities are to assess the financial needs of a company and direct funds appropriately. This position will build a financial foundation that allows the organization to grow. Finance directors manage all aspects of a company's financial health and long-term growth.

What is the difference between CFO and finance director?

The difference between a chief financial officer (CFO) and a finance director is that a CFO is a higher-level position than the finance director. The finance director reports to the CFO and acts as their primary accountant providing financial information needed to make executive-level decisions about the company's finances.

What is the difference between a CFO and a VP of Finance?

The difference between a CFO and a VP of finance is that VPs often have a hands-on role in managing a company's finances, while CFOs are more involved in the strategic financial future of a firm. These roles are fairly similar but have different day-to-day tasks and levels of strategic involvement.

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