Job summary and Responsibilities
Please note that this position is being offered on a 12 - 18 month Fixed Term Contract or Secondment basis with interviews being conducted on a virtual basis.
This position will initially, in line with current government guidance be based from home, with an expectation of being home based for the foreseeable future, however if / when government guidelines change the role may then revert to being office based, with Chelmsford as the expected location, whilst retaining some flexible working options.
Part of a Finance Business Partnering Team, you will report to the Financial Controller and will work closely with colleagues to ensure the delivery of a high performing, customer facing finance service which proactively embraces change.
As a Finance Business Partner, you will ensure the provision of high quality advice, information, analysis and interpretation to budget holders to underpin effective decision making, meaningful performance management and meet statutory requirements.
You will achieve high customer satisfaction levels and make a real and demonstrable difference to the delivery of the Directorate’s business.
The Finance Business Partner is responsible for the delivery of all aspects of operational financial management within a directorate area.
The role is expected to operate at a strategic level building strong relationships with internal and external partners and being a key and active member of senior manager forums.
Specifically, the purpose of the role is to :
Lead the management of financial resources, to ensure probity, efficiency, high performance and overall value for money.
Ensure, in all activities, the service make decisions in the knowledge of the impact those decisions will have financially on the Council.
Understand customer needs and provide them with a service they value.
Drive the delivery of productivity and efficiency improvement and cost reduction plans across the Council so that the transformation strategy can be achieved.
Ensure that officers, and members where directed by the lead finance business partner, are provided with high quality strategic advice and direction on financial strategies, policy, standards and practices.
To lead on any project or programme as agreed by the Financial Controller
Co-ordinate the development of financial plans for directorate services ensuring they reflect the directorate’s strategic objectives.
Monitor performance of those budgets and analyse key variances timely, proposing remedial action as required.
Provide timely and accurate information and advice to budget holders to allow effective management of their budgets and assist them in carrying out their financial duties, constructively challenging where appropriate.
Promote a culture which empowers budget holders and supports the delivery of value for money services, including reporting on benchmark information and key cost drivers.
Analyse, interpret and communicate financial and performance data, and provide financial advice in the form of management and board reports.
Complete financial returns and questionnaires as required.
Develop a sound understanding of unit costs, interpreting price / activity variances. Propose and develop appropriate cost drivers for service budgets and ensure accurate preparation, monitoring and control of estimates and forecasts.
Implement and maintain effective financial arrangements and promote the review of financial policy, systems and practice supporting the delivery of a programme of continual improvement.
Produce accurate financial forecasts and plans highlighting potential opportunities and risks. Quantify and grade risks identified and support the formulation and implementation of mitigation plans where these are required.
Undertake financial impact assessments relating to changes in or new legislative and service initiatives.
Support the arrangements in place for financial management of the Capital Programme.
Support the timely preparation of robust business cases from a financial perspective, identifying and quantifying associated costs, benefits, risks and funding solutions.
Contribute to the work involved in achieving the objectives in Financial Professional Services annual plan and ensuring the benefits are realised.
Co-ordinate the delivery of information to support the annual accounts closure programme as requested and in accordance with the agreed timetable.
Ensure compliance with financial regulations and professional accounting standards.
Knowledge, skills and experience
Full CCAB qualification.
Minimum 2 years Post Qualification Experience.
Experience / achievement
Knowledge & understanding of financial management and financial frameworks in a large organisation - preferably public sector.
Service delivery improvements within a finance setting.
Financial planning and management for a group of service areas.
Providing financial advice & support to management teams.
Identifying opportunities to develop financial systems and processes.
Evaluating and supporting innovative and effective means of financing the delivery of large scale services.
Engaging and working with management teams.
Inspiring & motivating colleagues within the finance function to achieve targets and goals.
Working within and influencing multi-disciplinary teams to achieve service outcomes.
Aptitudes / personal qualities
Ability to establish credibility with directors, senior management teams and other stakeholders.
Strong delivery / performance focus.
Ability to contribute effectively in a large complex organisation with plans for radical change and improvement.
Ability to build effective working relationships with finance colleagues, including the commissioning of work and quality assurance.
Highly developed interpersonal and communication skills.