How Much Does a Finance Manager Make? (With Steps)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 26 April 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.

A finance manager's job is to oversee the financial health of an organisation. Whether you're highly experienced or newly qualified, it's beneficial to consider the average salary of a finance manager as an industry professional. Knowing the average salary finance managers make can help benchmark career progression and plan for the future. In this article, we answer the question, "How much does a finance manager make?", list the factors influencing a finance manager's salary, discuss their job duties and explain how finance managers can increase their salary.

How much does a finance manager make?

If you're considering a career as a finance manager, you may wonder, "How much does a finance manager make?" The average base salary for a finance manager is $467,820 per year, but this amount can vary depending on several factors, including the following:

Previous work experience

A higher level of industry experience can lead to increased salaries for finance managers. This correlation comes from organisations viewing previous work experience as an assurance of your knowledge of financial management services. Remember that gaining experience takes time, so consider focusing on familiarising yourself with the industry and learning from experienced colleagues or professionals about the best practice for finance managers. You can also use personal development records and progress reports from previous roles to demonstrate your career progression to help secure your next position.

Related: How to Write a CV With No Work Experience (With Tips and Example)

Location

A finance manager's location can also affect their average salary. The salary of a finance manager working in one district may be different from the salary of a finance manager working in another district. For instance, the average base salary of finance managers in Kwun Tong is $763,392 per year, whereas the average base salary of finance managers in Tsim Sha Tsui is $375,696 per year.

Education

Industry-specific certificates and qualifications enable finance managers to apply for positions in higher salary brackets. Many finance managers go to university to study financial services and business management. There are several routes into the industry, including apprenticeships, internships and entry-level positions. All finance managers require a licence as a registered professional with the Financial Planning Standards Board, ensuring compliance with the principles and conduct of the industry.

Sectors

Some sectors may pay more than others. Here are a few sectors where finance managers can make more money:

Investment management companies

Investment management companies often have some of the highest salaries for finance managers, resulting from high-profile clients and opportunities for promotions to senior finance managers. At an investment firm, a finance manager's role centres around investment management and advice. At large companies, finance managers may manage seven-figure portfolios, which means the work comes with high levels of responsibility.

Banking

As a dynamic industry, banking has several opportunities for finance managers. Many banks maintain a finance manager in-branch to help management make financial decisions, analyse market trends and perform forecasting. These roles provide scope for a promotion into a higher-paying finance manager salary, known as a director of finance, earning an average base salary of $679,176 per year. Also, working with an established bank often comes with great benefits to boost employee satisfaction. As many banks move towards online services, the roles of finance managers are changing within this sector, providing exciting opportunities for the future.

Related: 11 Types of Banking Jobs (With Salaries and Responsibilities)

Employment status

The salary of finance managers may also vary depending on whether they're self-employed or work as part of a large business:

Self-employed

A self-employed finance manager has the benefits of flexible work hours and working from home. As an independent contractor, a finance manager can curate their professional portfolios around expertise and personal interests. Although a self-employed finance manager's primary client might revolve around families and individuals looking to manage their finances effectively for the future, there are possibilities for contract work with local businesses to expand your portfolio.

There's no set salary for a self-employed finance manager, as it depends on the size and scope of the business. The average earnings per year may also vary depending on the reputation among potential clients and how much work or business you want to accept. Consider checking your pricing plans as a self-employed finance manager so you can benchmark your average salary. This process can help you market your services appropriately based on your qualifications and compared to other professionals in your sector.

Related: Careers in Finance (With Types, Requirements and Job Roles)

Professional practice

A finance manager often works as part of a larger company in the financial sector, such as an investment or accountancy firm. In operating as part of a larger company, a professional practice can benefit from a regular salary, plus company bonuses and benefits. This aspect is the primary difference between the role of a self-employed and finance manager, along with working alongside fellow professionals in the finance sector and bringing a collaborative approach to your work.

What does a finance manager do?

A financial manager is a professional who oversees how an organisation is faring financially. This involves managing the back-office operations of a company's internal budget and finances. It may also involve finding investment opportunities and developing financial strategies in for-profit organisations. In a large organisation, a finance manager may supervise a team of accounting and payroll professionals. Here are the specific responsibilities of finance managers:

  • monitor and analyse cash flows and predict future trends

  • provide and interpret financial information

  • develop strategic and long-term business plans

  • analyse change and advise accordingly

  • research and report on factors influencing business performance

  • develop financial management mechanisms that minimise financial risk

  • analyse competitors and market trends

  • conduct reviews and assessments for cost-reduction opportunities

  • manage financial accounting, monitoring and reporting systems

  • produce accurate financial reports to specific deadlines

  • develop external relationships with appropriate contacts, such as solicitors, auditors, statutory organisations and bankers

  • manage budgets and supervise staff

  • arrange new sources of finance for an organisation's debt facilities

  • stay updated on changes in financial legislation and regulations

Related: The 6 Main Finance Manager Functions (Plus Skills)

How to increase your salary as a finance manager

Here are the steps you can take to increase your salary as a finance manager:

1. Earn certifications or an advanced degree

If you're looking to earn the most in a finance management career, consider earning additional education beyond your bachelor's degree. You have two options to increase your chances of getting a pay rise in the future:

  • Obtain a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certificate: Getting the CFP certification can increase your chances of getting a promotion, as it can display your commitment to professional development and the diversity of your skills. Getting this certification often requires completion of a 120-hour education programme, passing a three-hour examination and gaining at least one year of professional experience.

  • Earn a master's degree: Companies often promote employees who have obtained an advanced degree, such as a master's degree in business administration, economics or finance.

2. Gain years of experience

Just like many careers, the number of years a finance manager spent in the industry can contribute to their annual salary. The most successful financial managers tend to have several years of experience in the accounting or finance field. Experience can equip you with skills and knowledge that you can't get through training or in school. The starting salary might be low, but as you gain work experience, your average base salary can increase significantly.

Related: Financial Planner vs. Financial Advisor: Responsibilities and Differences

3. Relocate

Your average salary may also vary depending on where you live. If you're in an area that offers lower pay, you can move to a higher-paying district. Be sure to make your decisions while considering factors such as the cost of transportation and living.

4. Negotiate for a higher salary

Having stayed in one organisation or company for a while, you may consider negotiating for a higher salary with your employer. You can present to your manager or supervisor your added experience and qualifications and consider using them as a basis to ask for a pay rise. Remember that your work performance plays a crucial role in getting better pay. Your employer is likely to give you a salary increase if they believe your skills and work performance are invaluable to the company.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location. Please note that none of the companies mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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