Financial Controller for a Multi Academy Trust

The Howard Academy Trust
Gillingham, Kent
17 Jul 2017
15 Aug 2017
Contract Type
Full Time

The Howard Academy Trust seeks to appoint a Financial Controller to oversee the Central Finance Team at the Trust Head Office.

The Trust currently consists of five academies and is in a period of continuous growth. Our current family of schools consists of one secondary and four primary academies.

The successful applicant should have significant experience of working in the academies' sector or be a Qualified or Part Qualified Accountant. They should be a team player, able to work using their own initiative and have strong leadership skills.


  • Maintain accounts in accordance with sound financial practices and the Trust’s Financial Procedures Manual ensuring the requirements of the Trust’s Internal and External Audit Teams are met.
  • Ensure that the academy’s accounts are up to date and maintained accurately to allow the Finance & HR Director to use the accounts to inform decision making.
  • Assist in the preparation of monthly management accounts for distribution to key stakeholders within the Trust Management Team
  • Process accruals and prepayments as necessary to ensure income/expenditure is accounted for in the correct period.
  • Prepare financial reports as necessary for the Finance & HR Director and other parties as necessary.
  • Process payroll reports for each academy, checking for accuracy and ensuring that changes advised by each academy has been acted upon.
  • Review the completed monthly bank reconciliation for each academy, bringing any discrepancies to the attention of the Finance & HR Director.
  • Ensure all tasks on the Trust’s Month End Procedures checklist are completed for each academy by the required deadline.
  • Complete month end schedules and balance sheet reconciliations for each academy including preparation of year end schedules and audit files for Auditors.
  • Maintain the Fixed Asset Ledger on PSF for each academy, ensuring items that meet the Trust’s capitalisation policy are added and depreciated in accordance with the Trust’s depreciation policy.
  • Manage and oversee the income collection and banking process for each academy, ensuring rigorous control measures.
  • Check VAT returns processed by the Central Team for each academy for accuracy and completeness.
  • Ensure that information relating to salaries is kept up to date on HCSS Budgeting Software / SBS for all Academies, ensuring changes are processed in a timely manner.
  • Oversee the setting of budgets for each academy within the Trust to deliver effective Teaching & Learning in the academy and are delivered balanced.
  • Prepare a rolling 12-month cash flow forecast for each academy, identifying any concerns and ensuring they are raised with the Finance & HR Director at the earliest opportunity
  • Attend Governing Body and Board of Directors meetings when required.

System accountant

  • Be the System Administrator for the Trust’s finance system; managing user access, security permissions, nominal code management and centrally managed processes e.g. Period/Year End closedown, posting depreciation etc.
  • Be the primary link between the Trust’s finance software provider and Trust users.
  • Provide direct support to all users of the Trust’s finance software.
  • Monitor and review the work of the Central Finance Team to ensure that all income and expenditure is accounted for and is recorded in the appropriate codes/funds and that all financial processes are in accordance with agreed procedures.
  • Review each academy’s trial balance at least monthly to ensure the funds are being used correctly and any miscodings are dealt with.

Fund accounting

  • Review transactions and postings across the Trust to ensure correct fund accounting.
  • Ensure that Finance Staff are aware how to carry out fund accounting to ensure that balances are accurate.
  • Liaise with auditors to aid in appropriate fund use.

Other Duties

  • Play an active role in the management of the Trust’s Capital Funding received from the Department for Education to establish a process for academies to bid for projects.
  • Work in conjunction with the Trust Facilities Manager to ensure that project management plans are in place for any site improvement works in each academy.
  • Line Manage the Fundraising, Grants and Lettings Manager to develop innovative ways that the Trust can generate additional income.

The post will be based at The Howard School. Working hours are 8.00am - 4.30pm Monday - Friday.

The Howard Academy Trust is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. We will ensure that all our recruitment and selection practices reflect this commitment.

References will be taken up for those candidates short-listed for interview (unless otherwise requested). The successful candidate will be subject to Disclosure and Barring Service checks along with other relevant employment checks.