Job Search

Corporate Controller vs. Controller: What Are the Differences?

Learn about the two careers and review some of the similarities and differences between them.

A corporate controller is responsible for the financial statements of a company, while a controller is responsible for the financial activities of a specific department within a company. Both positions are important in ensuring the financial stability of an organization. In this article, we compare and contrast the duties of a corporate controller and a controller, and we provide information on the education and skills required for each position.

What is a Corporate Controller?

A Corporate Controller is a senior-level executive who is responsible for the financial management of a company. They oversee the accounting department and produce financial reports. They develop and implement financial policies and procedures. They also work with the company’s auditors to ensure that the financial statements are accurate. The Corporate Controller is responsible for the accuracy of the financial statements and for ensuring that the company complies with all financial regulations.

What is a Controller?

Controllers are responsible for the financial planning and management of an organization. They produce financial reports, direct investment activities and develop strategies to ensure the financial health of their company. Controllers also oversee the accounting department to ensure that all financial reporting is accurate and in compliance with regulatory guidelines. In larger organizations, Controllers may report to the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) or another senior executive. In smaller organizations, they may be the CFO.

Corporate Controller vs. Controller

Here are the main differences between a corporate controller and a controller.

Job Duties

Corporate controllers have a wider variety of job duties than internal controllers. As corporate controllers manage the accounting departments for entire corporations, their job duties often include evaluating and advising these departments on financial matters. Internal controllers handle all aspects of an organization’s accounting functions, including budgeting, forecasting, reporting and maintaining financial records. Corporate controllers may also perform some of these same duties as well, depending on the needs of the corporation. For example, if a corporation is considering a large investment, the corporate controller may work with the investor relations department to prepare financial projections and analysis.

Job Requirements

To become a corporate controller or controller, you need at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance or a related field. You may also need to have a few years of experience working in an accounting or finance role before being considered for a controller position. Some controllers also pursue certifications through organizations like the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) or the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). These certifications can help controllers stand out to potential employers and show that they have the skills and knowledge necessary to excel in their roles.

Work Environment

Corporate controllers work in an office environment, often spending their days at a desk or computer. They may travel to different locations within the company to meet with employees and observe operations. Corporate controllers also spend time communicating with other departments, such as finance and human resources, to ensure that they have all of the information needed for financial decisions.

Controllers typically work in an office environment, but they may also visit different locations throughout the day to monitor operations. They may also travel to attend meetings with clients or vendors. Controllers may also need to communicate with other departments, such as sales and marketing, to understand how changes affect the business.


Both corporate controllers and controllers use accounting skills to perform their jobs. This includes bookkeeping, auditing and tax preparation. They also both develop financial reports and forecast future earnings.

However, a corporate controller typically has more responsibilities than a controller. A corporate controller is responsible for the entire accounting and finance department in a company, while a controller usually oversees a smaller team within the department. Because of this, corporate controllers need to have excellent management and leadership skills to oversee their employees and ensure that the department is running smoothly. They also need to be able to work well under pressure and handle multiple tasks at one time.

Controllers also need to have strong accounting skills, but they may not need to have as much experience as a corporate controller. They also benefit from having good interpersonal skills to interact with other members of the accounting and finance department, as well as other departments in the company.


The average salary for a corporate controller is $142,597 per year, while the average salary for a controller is $127,160 per year. The salary for both positions may vary depending on the size of the company, the location of the job and the level of experience the employee has.


Radiation Therapist vs. Registered Nurse: What Are the Differences?

Back to Job Search

Neuroradiologist vs. Neurologist: What Are the Differences?