Chief Financial Officer - UK (12 month fixed term contract)
We currently have an exciting opportunity for an experienced finance professional to join our London office as Chief Financial Officer - UK on a 12 month fixed term contract.
The purpose of this role is to lead the firm’s UK Finance function. The role carries the overall profit and loss account responsibility for the London and Belfast offices, as well as acting as CFO for our range of fledgling alternative businesses run from the UK (including Peerpoint, aosphere, the LSC, the PMO). The role provides high quality, front-line finance support to the three key groups of stakeholders; the London partners and support function directors; the UK alternative business leaders; and the Belfast Shared Services Centre. The role is also responsible for the firm’s group treasury function, the firm’s global insurance programmes and its relationships with its group of bankers.
- Finance and Operations Director, the Finance Leadership team & Head of Internal Audit
- c180 UK partners and the practice group Chief Operating Officers
- The firm’s auditors, bankers, pension advisers and trustees and insurance brokers
Role and responsibilities
- Leader of the UK Finance team. Direct management responsibility for the three functions making up London Finance (Revenue, Client Money and Procurement) with four direct reports and a team of around 30 staff in London.
- Monitor service from Belfast SSC in relation to credit control, accounts payable, eBilling, billing administration and management / financial accounts to ensure that the London office and its partners (and UK alternative businesses) and clients receive a high quality of service. Accountability to London partners, and CEOs of alternative businesses for service delivered from both Belfast and London teams.
- Work closely with the Head of Finance in Belfast to ensure close, efficient co-operation between Finance teams in London and Belfast offices, and between UK Finance teams and the wider business.
- Member of the Global Finance Leadership Team which sets policies and directs Finance activities worldwide.
- Drive improvements in working capital management performance
- Development and implementation of ideas / initiatives reflecting best practice for UK businesses and the global firm. Ensure that firm-wide initiatives are adopted / implemented effectively and appropriately in all the UK businesses.
- Maintenance of close relationships with practice group heads and global Practice Group COOs on all finance related issues.
- Act as UK CFO responsible for financial reporting and budgeting, as well as providing finance support for the strategic development of all UK businesses.
- Ultimate responsibility for maintenance of complete and accurate accounting records for the UK businesses, in accordance with IFRS, group accounting policies and procedures through the service delivered by the management accounting team in the SSC.
- Responsible for compliance with relevant UK regulations through services delivered to UK businesses both by London and Belfast-based staff.
- Overall responsibility for compliance with UK statutory accounting requirements for c.20 accounting units.
- Supervision and moderation of the budget process for the UK (managed by the management accounting team in the Belfast SSC), ensuring completeness, accuracy and compliance with Board budgeting guidance.
- Monitoring of performance and cost control in the UK businesses.
- Maximisation of client/matter profitability through setting appropriate rates, at office level, facilitating review and analysis of client/matter statistics, etc.
- Participate in the Finance Shared Services Board
- Deliver courses to UK fee earners to enhance financial awareness and business skills.
- Develop and maintain relationships with finance contacts at key clients to ensure prompt and efficient processing of A&O’s bills.
People and performance
- Manage a high performing team with equal focus on technical excellence, professional and timely delivery and being able to adapt to the changing needs of the business and the environment
- Champion excellence for the team and the wider business community
- Create a positive work environment the embraces new ways of working and collaboration
- Engage, develop and motivate individuals to meet their potential and the team goals
- Continually improve the team operational environment and working practices
- Seek opportunities to embed cross-training, succession planning and rounded roles within the team
Competencies for success
- Results driven; having a proactive, goal orientated approach to decision making
- Ability to influence at the highest level as a credible, fast-thinking, collaborative and proactive individual
- Comfortable in a world of ambiguous decision making and consultation, with influencing skills and confidence to advise being critical success factors
- Outstanding interpersonal and management skills including, coaching, development and mentoring
- Demonstrate a hands-on approach and success in working in a team based environment
- Clear written and verbal communications explaining complex issues both to financial and non-financial stakeholders
- Qualified Accountant with significant post qualification experience
- Good accounting, tax and treasury technical skills
- Familiarity with treasury, financing, pensions and insurance