Also known as...
The role in brief...
The Finance Assistant supports the Finance Manager (or other) in maintaining and delivering accurate and timely financial information, following internal controls and processes to help the finance team meet reporting deadlines. The Finance Assistant provides transactional support to the Accounts Receivable and Accounts Payable functions and performs ad hoc requests from the finance team.
- Internal: Agency Managers, Heads of Department, client facing people and staff; Finance/accounts.
- External: Client and Supplier Finance Departments
- The Finance Assistant will typically report to senior finance management: Billing and Purchases Manager; Finance Manager, Finance Director, depending on the size of the team.
- Supporting the Finance Manager with month end financial reporting; preparing account reconciliations, accruals and pre- payment analysis.
- Supporting the team with the weekly commercial analysis and reporting
- Performing routine calculations to produce analyses and reports as requested.
- Assisting with overseeing and managing individual accounts.
- Reviewing and auditing financial statements and reports, ensuring all calculations and data entries are correct.
- Reconciling any discrepancies or errors identified by resolving these with staff and/or client finance departments.
- Reporting any improper or suspected wrongdoing to the Finance Director
- Assisting the team in creating regular financial reports adhere to the company’s financial policies and procedures.
- Depending on the payroll process the role may be involved with aspects of payroll. Reviewing and adhering to department budgets.
- Managing the Purchase Order process and set up all new suppliers.
- Creating, sending, checking and following up on supplier invoices and respond to supplier queries promptly and professionally.
- Uploading all approved supplier invoices to accounting software and arrange for accurate and timely processing of supplier invoices with the supporting documentation for payment.
- Managing the supplier statement reconciliation.
- Managing the new client set-up process to on board new clients and supports client teams with required finance documents for project set-up.
- Drafting client invoices on accounting software
- Maintaining accurate client contact database / portal information
- Managing the client statement reconciliation
Those who succeed are...
- Able to provide quality and detailed financial information to the Finance Team within tight reporting deadlines. They work in a fast- paced environment to meet client demands as a member of the team.
- Appreciative of the importance of the “internal” client and participation in the agency’s cultural activities.
- Results orientated and excellent problem solver with accurate processing of financial data with strong attention to detail.
Where they come from, and where they go...
Finance teams require people with a numerical interest and ability. Ideally, they will have previous experience of working in an office environment with a basic understanding of accountancy and the finance function. They will be confident working with MS Office and MS Excel. They may have their Association of Accounting (AAT) qualifications. Any degree may be acceptable although mathematical, management or business studies may allow exemptions from some professional bodies’ exams. The Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA) is a popular choice.
Apprenticeships can offer another route into this area of work.
With a desire to have a career in finance they will pursue their professional accounting studies as they progress into Management Accountant, Finance Manager, Head of Finance, Financial Controller and Chief Financial Officer. Qualified finance professionals can move across a variety of businesses and sectors as they apply their commercial acumen and experience.