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Finance Assistant At DEEPEN

Date Posted: 14/Oct/2013
Deadline: Not Specified


We are a £1.1 billion management, engineering and development consultancy with 15,000 staff and a global reach spanning six continents. Our network of 170 principal offices in 140 countries gives us local market insight backed by world class expertise to deliver excellence for every client. 

DEEPEN is a five-year UK government-funded programme designed to improve the quality of education in private schools in Nigeria. The programme will support low-cost schools in particular and is initially focused on the private school market in Lagos. The Finance Assistant will be responsible for the day-to-day support of management of finances for the DEEPEN programme in accordance with Cambridge Education’s systems and procedures and consistent with the client’s requirements. 

Poor performance and overcrowding in Lagos’ public school system have fuelled a vibrant and growing market in private education. Over 1 million children of primary and pre-primary age are now enrolled in 18,000 private schools with equal numbers of girls and boys. However, only a quarter of such schools are formally approved and consequently the quality of education they offer remains unknown and open to doubt. 

The UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) in Nigeria has initiated an innovative programme to use a market-development approach to improve learning outcomes in Lagos’ private schools. Through a Making Markets Work for the Poor (M4P) methodology, the DEEPEN programme will work through tailored interventions to create an enabling environment and improve the conditions for all private schools, with a particular focus on those that cater for girls and low-income families. Specifically, DEEPEN will aim to build capacity and incentives to stimulate wider initiatives and help parents make more informed choices on their children’s education. This will be achieved through interventions designed to address market constraints in four key and interrelated areas: rules and standards; information; pedagogy; and finance.


Job Description

Accountabilities and Responsibilities 
• Support the Finance Officer in preparing monthly and quarterly forecasts, budgets and monthly returns; 

• Support the Finance Officer in maintaining up to date project accounts on the system to ensure that timely, accurate and appropriate information is available to the programme management team; 

• Prepare payment vouchers, journal vouchers and cheques and ensure the timely settlement of all undisputed sub-contractor invoices; 

• Support the programme operations team in ensuring that appropriate account codes are used and expenditure is charged to the correct expenditure budget line; 

• Support workshop activities on the disbursement of funds and timely payment of workshop advances; 

• Maintain the programme petty cash register and manage the office imprest account; 

• Support the Finance Officer and operations staff in ensuring that payment for goods and services is made to suppliers and service providers as and when due; 

• Ensure an efficient tracking process for all documents sent to the finance unit up to the stage of filing and ensure the security of finance documents; 

• Work closely with the admin staff to ensure the proper administration of office consumables; 

• Establish good and considerate working relationships with all staff within the programme, and the finance team in the Education Sector Support Programme in Nigeria (ESSPIN); and 

• Work with the Finance Officer to identify potential cost savings and achieve continuing value for money. 

NOTE: This job description reflects the current requirements of the post. As duties and responsibilities change and develop, the job description will be reviewed and may be amended in consultation with the post holder. 

Extent of Authority 
Reports to the Finance Officer and works closely with the Office and Logistics Manager and programme administration staff. 

Special relationships and contacts 
Establish and maintain good and considerate working relationships with the core DEEPEN programme team and the ESSPIN finance team.


Candidate Specification

Essential Competencies and Skills 
• Excellent financial management/accountancy skills; 
• Good IT skills and confidence/proficiency in all Microsoft packages, and the ability to master the MM in-house financial management system; 
• Attention to detail and accuracy; 
• Proven ability to work as a member of a team; 
• Good English communication skills; 
• Ability to work under pressure; and 
• Excellent time management skills and the ability to multi-task as required. 

Required Academic/Professional Qualifications, Training and Experience 
• Educated to BSc or equivalent with minimum of two years’ working experience; 
• Previous experience in providing administrative support to a programme team; and 
• Previous experience working in a large donor funded programme is an added advantage.

Method of Application

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