The Strategic Controller: Adding Value to Your Organization

American Management Association

How long?

  • 3 days
  • in person, online

What are the topics?

American Management Association


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Who should attend

Corporate controllers, division and plant controllers, and assistant controllers who want to add value to their organization and careers by increasing their effectiveness in the four quadrants of the controller’s job.

About the course

Get skills to effectively meet the increasing demands of the controller’s role

Your immediate takeaway

  • Identify the four quadrants of the controller’s role and their scope
  • Protect your company’s finances in changing financial climates
  • Be a more valued business partner in your company’s future

Not only has the scope of the controller’s role evolved significantly in companies of all sizes—but the demands of the job are constantly changing. To stay effective as a controller and add greater value to the organization, you must be acutely aware of how your job functions are impacted by today’s increasing expectations. That means taking a closer look at the four hats every controller must wear: number cruncher; custodian; analyst; business partner.

This course will help both new and experienced controllers in small, medium, and large organizations recognize these changes in scope. You’ll discover how to improve your effectiveness in the four key areas, or quadrants. As you go through the course, you will also experience a detailed case study in which you’ll work through real-life scenarios that explore the responsibilities of each quadrant. In addition, get the specific tools, knowledge, and hands-on experience you need in order to confidently perform your job in increasingly challenging circumstances.

How You Will Benefit

  • Define the scope and identify the four quadrants of the controller’s job in today’s business environment
  • Controller as number cruncher: Ensure the timeliness and accuracy of financial statements
  • Controller as custodian: Establish enterprise-wide controls to safeguard corporate assets and ensure compliance
  • Controller as analyst: Define budgetary metrics and parameters to evaluate the financial health of the company
  • Controller as business partner: Further the financial goals of the organization
  • Align and apply the functions of the four quadrants of the controller role to a case study

What You Will Cover

The Four Quadrants of the Controller’s Job in Today’s Business Environment

  • Knowing how a controller fits into a business
  • Understanding the controller’s role in management
  • Recognizing goals a corporation must achieve to succeed
  • Exploring high-level controller functions, role quadrants, and organizational relationships
  • Meeting staffing needs and competency levels
  • Identifying basic areas of a controller’s responsibilities

Quadrant 1: Number Cruncher — Ensuring the Timeliness and Accuracy of Financial Statements

  • Assembling a comprehensive chart of accounts
  • Identifying areas of input for financial statements
  • Recognizing the importance of developing internal controls over financial reporting
  • Utilizing analytical tools to verify and reconcile account balances
  • Using standardized entries for preparing timely financial reports

Quadrant 2: Custodian — Establishing Enterprise-Wide Controls to Safeguard Corporate Assets and Ensure Compliance

  • Developing an internal control checklist related to enterprise-wide risk management
  • Establishing effective controls safeguarding corporate assets
  • Identifying compliance requirements for timely submission
  • Recognizing strengths and weaknesses within the control environment

Quadrant 3: Analyst — Defining Budgetary Metrics and Parameters to Evaluate Financial Health

  • Checking financial statements for reasonableness
  • Delineating the informational needs of the users of external financial information
  • Identifying the content of and comparing types of budgets
  • Differentiating between levels of internal reporting needs
  • Identifying measurable units for products, product lines, departments, sectors, and regions
  • Understanding variance analyses for identified measurable units
  • Predicting future activity or budgets using cost-volume profit analysis

Quadrant 4: Business Partner — Furthering the Financial Goals of the Organization

  • Aligning and evaluating an organization’s value proposition, goals, and objectives
  • Recognizing activities that add value to the organization
  • Identifying and evaluating nonfinancial areas for cost control measures
  • Communicating with and building alliances with business partners
  • Applying the functions of the four quadrants to a case study



  • Describe How a Controller Fits into a Business
  • Recognize Goals and Objectives for a Corporation to Succeed
  • Align High-Level Controller Functions, Roles, and Organizational Relationships
  • Define Staffing Needs and Competency Levels
  • Explain the Controller’s Role in Management
  • Identify the Controller’s Basic Areas of Responsibility

Number Cruncher

  • Assemble a Comprehensive Chart of Accounts
  • Identify Areas of Input for Financial Statements
  • Recognize the Importance of Developing Internal Controls Over Financial Reporting
  • Utilize Analytical Tools to Verify and Reconcile Account Balances
  • Describe How Using Standardized Entries Is a Best Practice for Preparing Timely Financial Reports


  • Develop an Internal Control Checklist Related to Enterprise-Wide Risk Management
  • Establish Effective Controls to Safeguard Corporate Assets
  • Identify Compliance Requirements for Timely Submission
  • Recognize Strengths and Weaknesses Within the Control Environment


  • Check Financial Statements for Reasonableness
  • Delineate the Informational Needs of the Users of External Financial Information
  • Identify the Content of and Compare Types of Budgets
  • Recognize and Differentiate Between Levels of Internal Reporting Needs
  • Identify Measurable Units for Products, Product Lines, Departments, Sectors, and Regions
  • Discuss Variance Analyses of Identified Measurable Units
  • Predict Future Activity or Budgets Using Cost-Volume-Profit Analysis

Business Partner

  • Align and Evaluate an Organization’s Value Proposition, Goals, and Objectives from Its Mission Statement
  • Recognize Activities That Add Value to the Organization
  • Identify and Evaluate Nonfinancial Areas for Cost-Control Measures
  • Communicate and Build Alliances with Business Partners

Putting It All Together

  • Align and Apply the Functions of the Four Roles of the Controller

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The Strategic Controller: Adding Value to Your Organization at American Management Association

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

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