What is controlling?
Controllers design and accompany the management process of defining goals, planning and controlling and thus have a joint responsibility to reach the objectives.
- Controllers ensure the transparency of business results, finance, processes and strategy and thus contribute to higher economic effectiveness.
- Controllers co-ordinate secondary goals and the related plans in a holistic way and organise a reporting-system which is future-oriented and covers the enterprise as a whole.
- Controllers moderate and design the controlling process of defining goals, planning and management control so that every decision maker can act in accordance with agreed objectives.
- Controllers provide managers with all necessary company management data and information
- Controllers develop and maintain controlling systems.
Controller and controlling
Controlling means steering or regulating, i.e. leading to the practical achievement of the agreed objectives.
A controller ensures that everyone has the possibility of controlling themselves within the framework of the elaborated goals and plans.
The figure with intersecting circles illustrates the division of tasks and roles between a manager and a controller in a team.
Managers carry out the task and controllers provide for the transparency of the economic result. Thus it is clear that it is not only controllers who perform the controlling.
Controlling as a process and mental attitude is represented by the intersecting part of the circles. It constitutes the result of the cooperation of a manager and a controller in a team (controlling as applied business management)
An enterprise needs to find its way to the clients all over the world –offering products and services that are in demand.
The parts of the pie chart below represent three sectors.
The letter G stands for growth. Is that what we are doing growing? Does it remain constant, is it dwindling?
D symbolises development. Enterprise as a learning and developing system. Thus the letter D is placed on the very top.
How can we better solve clients’ problems that occur today and will occur in the immediate and distant future? Apart from G and D, also “P” must be included.
P stands for profit and symbolises well-being of the enterprise.
In order to achieve economic success one has to count. The budget structure is generated by the accountancy symbolised by the chart.
On the right track
The GDP abbreviation illustrates the most important aspects of business planning.
"Doing the right thing" is the strategic aspect of planning.
"Doing things right" means the operative efficiency which is reflected in figures.
A person acting as a controller has to show holistic judgement during the process of methodically monitoring the management.
The job of a controller
The job of a controller encompasses methodology and procedures. Methods are derived from accountancy and planning, procedures include leadership and goals. The methodology includes the document management technique. You can only be in the know when you know how to define your vision. With information you will manage!
This means planning in writing in order to:
- analyse better and complete the course of thoughts,
- communicate systematically with other departments and employees to jointly take actions,
- systematically get access to feedback organisation and find a way of learning on the basis of variations,
- commit oneself and be aware of how it works.
It follows from the above that the work of a controller requires the knowledge of certain ways of conduct. How to convince the manager/client of what the aims of controlling as a methodology are?
A controller needs to maintain an interrogative approach initiating a subject-focused interaction in order to ensure that controlling is not perceived as control. The subject would be the problem that has to be solved.
Nevertheless, it should be action-oriented, not aimed at coming to terms with the past and not “internally-oriented” in the meaning of acting together, that is team-based.
Controllers are authorised to provide counselling without being asked to do so. This encompasses home visits and the “bring principle”, even though a reference to the know-how and know-who developed by the Internationaler Controller Verein (ICV) is required.