Senior Specialist, Humanitarian Finance & Compliance

  • Posted on 21 August 2019

Job Description


The Senior Specialist, Humanitarian Finance and Compliance will serve as the primary focal point for the Response Teams and will provide leadership and active engagement on awards. This role will manage the life cycle of awards, overseeing the financial management of the Department of Humanitarian Responses’ (DHR) key institutional donors in coordination with the humanitarian program unit. This role will report into the Director, Humanitarian Finance and Compliance and will be responsible for award compliance with Save the Children’s accounting policies and donor requirements. This role will ensure accurate, complete and reliable financial information is maintained in both award and financial systems.

This role will be instrumental in assessing cost proposals related to awards that are high risk. They will be liaising with relevant stakeholders, particularly with the Humanitarian Program unit and finance (headquarters), and country office award and finance teams. This role will problem-solve to instill overall health of awards and escalate issues to leadership as needed. This person’s contribution to continuous improvement will be key in determining and implementing process improvements.

In coordination with the Director, Finance and Compliance, the Senior Specialist will play a role in representing the unit at internal meetings, providing financial analysis and will lead initiatives for internal financial information sharing and financial management and good practices and challenges.

What You’ll Be Doing (Essential Duties)

Financial Leadership for Prioritized Responses and Key Institutional Account (50%)

  • Lead on review of monthly budget versus actuals and life of award reports. Monitor burn rates and determine any risk management actions needed. Coordinate with program team as needed.
  • Manage financial resource through planning and guidance in accordance with Save the Children donor rules and regulations.
  • Serve as humanitarian finance point person for Cost Allocation Methodology. Grow capacity by maintaining and sharing standardized guidelines with humanitarian team.
  • Oversee partner financial reports to ensure donor compliance.
  • Oversee the review of budget forecasting by Save the Children International and re-forecasting efforts circulated bi-annually.
  • Produce monthly level of effort report and facilitate spending follow up. Monitor cost center spending.
  • Award close our responsibilities include: closing our any sub awards issued by DHR including financial reconciliation; monitor Award Management System (AMS) close-out status and on-time close out key performance indicators. Determine shifts in strategy as needed to award close out metrics.
  • Review proposed financial coding structures for award budget set up. Engage in start-up and closing of projects by providing financial information, guidance and assistance as needed.
  • Collaborate across department and with technical staff in International Programs Division to ensure that awards budgeted Level of Effort (LOE) are appropriately utilized on a timely basis for technical support.
  • Play a key role in continuous improvement efforts including Response Award Management project solutions, taking the lead on specific improvements.
  • Serve as the financial focal point person for one or more of DHR’s key institutional donors; responsibilities as the focal point include:
    1. Develop tools and systems for training Country Offices on institutional donor financial compliance
    2. Lead on quarterly reviews for the assigned institutional donor;
    3. Identify trends, best practices and challenges of financial compliances with this donor;
    4. Propose solutions and ways forward to advance engagement with this donor on financial compliances
  • Represent the Save the Children US response team in country or portfolio calls and meeting to understand financial issues from programs and provide recommendations and assistance on project financial management as needed.

Management of Financial Compliance (30%)

  • Identify compliance risks and issues through award lifecycle. Determine mitigation plans to program focal points and other staff as relevant. Escalate issues to Director, Finance and Compliance on high-risk issues exposing Save the Children compliance risks.
  • Oversee issues as needed and as appropriate to financial compliance including collaborating with humanitarian management team, legal team, or grants and contracts support.
  • Oversee effective compliance with systems and procedures for sub-grant financial management and financial reporting.
  • Serve as point person for invoices and humanitarian financial reporting. Monitor financial reporting key performance indicators. Oversee accuracy and compliance with donor requirements and internal organization policy. Maintain knowledge management of donor rules and regulations including attending needed trainings in order to accurately monitor and review compliance. Support department to maintain knowledge management systems around financial compliance.

Systems and Capacity Building (20%)

  • Develop and implement training for first time sub-recipients in order to ensure accurate reporting, fund requests, and sub-sub recipients monitoring.
  • Maintain deep expertise of Save the Children policies, donor rules and regulations and procedures.
  • Support alignment of award management and financial systems (AMS and Agresso, respectively).
  • Oversee roll-out of High Performing Organization initiatives within DHR and support roll-out in country offices.
  • Develop and maintain the appropriate capacity building tools to make knowledge available to program staff, including at minimum an up-to-date soft and hard library, briefing notes on each grant and memos on key/recurrent compliance issues.
  • Engages with the program unit to develop improved LOE budgeting guidelines and propose/roll out improved processes for inter-departmental collaboration and information sharing around award budget utilization and compliance issues

Travel: Up to 10%

  • Travel to Save the Children country offices to conduct award reviews, provide financial management support and build CO capacity on donor requirements.

Required Qualifications

  • You have a minimum 5-7 years’ experience in area of expertise including field-level experience in chronic or acute humanitarian crises
  • Bachelor degree or equivalent relevant experience required, preferred concentration in accounting.
  • Professional level of technical or managerial knowledge, skills, and experience to manage the operational activities of a unit or team, or provide the technical and management support related to various size programs, grants or projects.
  • Excellent customer service skill
  • Ability to work with non-financial stakeholders and communicate effectively and help them understand financial processes and procedures
  • Ability to multi-task and work well under pressure, many times with competing priorities and deadlines
  • Demonstrated experience working across the full cycle of grant/award management from proposal and budget development through to reporting and close-out
  • Ability to think and act strategically including the ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing
  • Ability to manage by influence internally and to work in a federated structure. Experience with Save the Children preferred
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively collaborate across teams to deliver results
  • Excellent analytical, organization, communication and management skills. Must have attention to detail, ability to multi-task and able to make independent decisions
  • Demonstrated success working across the full cycle of project/award management and implementation; experience implementing high value, high risk USG and UN projects strongly preferred
  • Ability to lead portfolio financial review and analysis processes to ensure oversight and management of risk for awards in portfolio
  • Ability to travel up to 10% of time, as required to support high priority humanitarian responses, strategic initiatives and project implementation

Preferred Qualifications

  • Master’s Degree in Accounting or related field
  • Experience working with general ledger and financial systems
  • Experience providing training to both finance and non-finance staff
  • International Experience Minimum 5 years of related work experience
  • Experience in humanitarian settings in the field

What’s In It for You

Aetna Medical and Dental insurance with a concierge service

  • Health Care and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account
  • Vision Insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Commuter Benefit Program
  • Vacation and Sick leave
  • Paid holidays

What makes us special!

  • Generous Retirement Savings with matching company contributions of up to 8%
  • Family Leave – 10 additional days of paid time off for you to use to care for your family members
  • Additional Maternity and Paternity Leave – 30 days where parents can take additional paid leave (beyond short-term disability and FMLA) at the birth or adoption of a child during that critical first year!
  • Critical Child Illness Leave – We hope you never have to use it, but we will provide an additional 30 days of paid leave per year should your dependent child be faced with a critical illness.
  • Pet Insurance, Critical Illness Insurance, Identity Protection, Home, Auto and additional Life insurances
  • Summer Fun Fridays – During the summer months, early release at 1:30 pm every other Friday!
  • Volunteer Day – One paid day a year to support the causes that matter to you!
  • Ergonomic Options – Every employee at our HQ offices has the option of a sitting/standing desk
  • Leadership and Employee Development Training, including:
    • Our remarkable in-house CORE, Senior Management Development, and Leadership Development Programs
    • Language learning opportunities
    • Continuous Improvement skill development programs
    • Lunch & Learn information sharing sessions
  • Work hard/Play hard! We make sure there’s ample opportunity for fun, engagement, and celebration while you work, such as networking events, March Madness, World Cup, Dodgeball Tournaments, Take Your Child to Work Day, Founder’s Day, and our annual Day of Service

About the Organization

Save the Children believes every child deserves a future. In the United States and around the world, we give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share.

Save the Children is committed to conducting its programs and operations in a manner that is safe for the children it serves and helping protect the children with whom Save the Children is in contact. All Save the Children representatives are explicitly prohibited from engaging in any activity that may result in any kind of child abuse. In addition, it is Save the Children’s policy to create and proactively maintain an environment that aims to prevent and deter any actions and omissions, whether deliberate or inadvertent, that place children at the risk of any kind of child abuse. All our representatives are expected to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with this commitment and obligation. Any violations of this policy will be treated as a serious issue.

We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, ancestry, sexual orientation, national origin, age, handicap, disability, marital status, or status as a veteran. Save the Children complies with all applicable laws.

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