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Assistant Vice Chancellor and Controller

Employer
University of California, Merced
Location
California, United States
Salary
Salary Commensurate with experience
Posted date
Jul 29, 2021

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Position Type
Administrative, Business & Administrative Affairs, Financial Affairs
Employment Level
Administrative
Employment Type
Full Time
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ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA

The University of California (UC) is a premier institution of higher education and is recognized nationally and internationally for excellence in teaching, research, and public service. The UC system serves more than 280,000 students, employs about 227,000 faculty and staff, and includes 2 million alumni living and working around the world. The University of California system

UC's Mission

"The distinctive mission of the University is to serve society as a center of higher learning, providing long-term societal benefits through transmitting advanced knowledge, discovering new knowledge, and functioning as an active working repository of organized knowledge. That obligation, more specifically, includes undergraduate education, graduate and professional education, research, and other kinds of public service, which are shaped and bounded by the central pervasive mission of discovering and advancing knowledge."

- Mission statement from the University of California Academic Plan, 1974-1978

UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, MERCED

UC Merced opened in 2005, as the newest campus in the University of California system and the first American research university of the 21st century. Situated near Yosemite National Park, the campus significantly expands access to the UC system for students throughout the state, with a special mission to increase college-going rates among students in the San Joaquin Valley. It also serves as a major base of advanced research, a model of sustainable design and construction, and a stimulus to economic growth and diversification throughout the region.

UC Merced offers a growing list of majors and minors, and graduate programs taught by more than 250 tenure-track faculty members, visiting professors and lecturers, who have come to us from some of the world's top-ranked universities.

As of the 2020-21 academic year, UC Merced has more than 9,000 undergraduate and graduate students making up the Bobcat community. They are some of the best and brightest students from around the country, and they are integral to the university’s mission of education, research and public service.

In addition, UC Merced’s graduate and undergraduate students are conducting some of the most cutting-edge research of our time, including stem cells, artificial intelligence and renewable energy.

 

POSITION OVERVIEW

The Assistant Vice Chancellor and Controller (“Controller”) is expected to provide joint oversight and leadership to the campus community for the functional areas under their management.  

The Controller will manage a team of over 120 employees responsible for the following functional areas: General Accounting, Treasury, Banking and Cashiering Services, Travel and Expense Management, Student Business Services, Tax Services, Payroll Services, Financial System Support, Project Portfolio Financial Management, Supply Chain and Shared Services.

The position provides leadership and operational support to these key campus business operations.  The Controller is responsible for making final decisions on administrative or operational matters and ensuring operational effectiveness achieves the objectives of the division.  The Controller is also responsible for reviewing and approving recommendations for operational planning and control through subordinate managers.  This is a critical role that advises the Chief Financial Officer and UC Merced senior management regarding the applicability and implementation of changes in accounting and financial practices, policies and procedures as required.

The Controller represents the campus as the system owner of the Campus Financial System, which includes the General Ledger, Travel Reimbursement System, CashNet and, to the extent used by Student Business Services, the Banner system for student billing.

The Controller is also expected to provide technical knowledge and skills to the campus in the areas of financial management and controls, compliance with policies, procedures and regulatory requirements, anti-fraud programs, financial reporting, tax regulations, maintaining cost accounting standards and related cost policies, generally accepted accounting principles. 

Overall, the Controller position guides financial decisions by establishing, monitoring, enforcing policies and procedures, and developing organizational policies and authorizes their implementation.  Provides advice, guidance and assistance to the senior leadership of the organization. Represents the organization.  Represents the organization in organization-wide and system-wide meetings and discussions.  Protects assets by establishing, monitoring and enforcing internal controls. Monitors and confirms financial condition by collecting, interpreting, and reporting financial data; providing information to external auditors.  The Controller is also expected to maintain professional and technical knowledge by attending education workshops, reviewing professional publications, establishing personal networks, and participating in professional societies.

 

KEY RESPONSIBILITIES

Specifically, the Controller will have the following responsibilities:

  • 50%: Management/Supervision – Direct and manage through subordinate manager level direct reports and extended team, multiple and complex programs impacting broad constituencies and diverse stakeholders across the campus. Leads a significant proportion of organization staff with a wide range of specialized responsibilities including accounting, treasury, cashiering, tax reporting, student business services, project portfolio financial management, financial system support, fraud monitoring, cost accounting standards, and financial reporting in accordance with generally accepted accounting rules, regulations and compliance standards.
  • 10%: Develop and maintain an effective organizational structure for units under management and foster productive working relationship with campus leadership for functional responsibilities carried out by campus personnel under the decentralized campus support services operating model. Represent campus to system-wide forums and committees.
  • 10%: Training – Establish, maintain, and enhance a staff and faculty training program regarding financial (and related areas) policies and procedures. Through subordinate directors and manager level direct reports, lead the development and delivery of campus training programs and other staff development initiatives by close collaboration with other business and finance managers, campus leadership and human resources/staff development unit.
  • 10%: Recruit and develop direct and indirect staff within the wide range of organization-wide programs with the assistance from and direction to subordinate directors and manager level direct reports. Responsibilities include maintaining financial and business services staff by recruiting, selecting, orienting, and training employees.  Also responsible for maintaining staff job results by coaching, counseling, and disciplining employees; planning, monitoring, and appraising job results of the team.
  • 10%: Special Projects and Duties as assigned such as the annual financial audit of the campus, annual financial audit of the Foundation, special organization wide studies such as moving our campus to a supply chain model, developing organization wide Centers of Excellence for specialized functions, etc.
  • 5%: Complies with federal, state, and local legal requirements by studying existing and new legislation; anticipating future legislation; enforcing adherence to requirements; filing financial reports; advising management on needed actions.
  • 5%: Directly manage or manage through subordinate managers, all personnel, budgetary and operational matters in areas of responsibility.

 

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE and QUALIFICATIONS

UC Merced seeks a committed and experienced professional with proven leadership skills, a deep understanding of the academic mission of the University and demonstrated success and relevant experience in financial reporting, technical accounting, and broad financial leadership.

Qualified candidates must have an open and collaborative style of leadership that encourages teamwork and cooperation, be a strong role model, manager and coach, with the ability to provide a positive working and learning environment for staff, as well as to develop a first-class service organization that responds effectively to inquiries and engenders trust from the University community.

A strong systems orientation with the demonstrated ability to apply technology in improving organizational effectiveness and enhancing productivity, including the technical competency to design, select, implement, and manage technology solutions is also required.

Additional qualifications include:

  • A minimum of 10 years of progressive accounting leadership experience, ideally with a combination of public accounting and industry experience.
  • Experience within higher education is an asset. Candidates with experience in other organizations of similar size and complexity will also be considered.
  • In-depth knowledge of matters related to university budgeting, accounting and finance including governmental regulations, and accepted internal financial control practices.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of how to apply accounting and fiscal management leadership in a complex decentralized organization.
  • Ability to foster a control environment that encourages the highest level of integrity and professional standards. Demonstrated working knowledge of internal control concepts and techniques. Working knowledge of external and internal audit practices and expectations.
  • Technical experience will cover the range of financial reporting, accounting policy, controls, financial systems, audit, and tax.
  • A proven track record of instilling core finance processes and controls and leading process improvements to accounting and close processes.
  • Demonstrated ability to stay current with emerging trends and relevant accounting pronouncements that impact accounting and financial reporting.
  • Demonstrated leadership and expert interpersonal and people management skills necessary to work effectively across the campus both horizontally and vertically.
  • Ability to lead workgroups and cross-functional teams and to motivate stakeholders, focus on results and construct action plans with achievable goals, results and deadlines.
  • Ability and competence in implementing and managing automated financial systems including those involving electronic commerce.
  • Ability to monitor budgetary activities and work proactively and effectively with internal constituencies and external entities.
  • Able to work with great autonomy and exercise independent judgement in the discharge of duties.
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written that are effective, professional, and appropriate for the audience. Ability to convey complex and technical material to varying audiences, develop and deliver presentations and training, and produce clear and concise correspondence, reports and procedural manuals.
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively interface, negotiate and exchange ideas, information and opinions with a variety of campus units and stakeholders in order to gather information, assess situations, build consensus, reduce resistance to change and resolve conflicts.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and communicate effectively with peers, subordinates and management at all levels so that short-term and long-term goals are achieved for operational results, customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction.
  • Strong sense of service orientation with a proven ability to balance customer service, controls and compliance. Ability to develop creative solutions in situations where many variables are constrained, while continuously improving the department.
  • Demonstrated ability to analyze complex information and formulate logical and objective conclusions and action plans. Ability to articulate analysis, options and conclusions orally and in writing. Demonstrated ability to be innovative, applying experience, knowledge and judgment to situations.
  • Demonstrated strong personnel leadership, creating and maintaining teams and harmonious working relationships among staff and subordinates. Ability to maintain good morale, motivate employees and stimulate productivity. Coach and provide timely feedback, including progressive discipline when necessary, to employees.
  • Excellent project management skills demonstrated by the successful implementation of a project at a large and complex organization.
  • Excellent relationship management abilities; the ability to manage through influence and persuasion at all levels of an organization. Ability to lead a team and to influence and effect change.
  • High level of professionalism and integrity with a demonstrated ability to work proactively with and gain the confidence of all levels of an organization. Ability to maintain focus and successfully execute against plans and bring closure to activities, tasks and projects. Strong organizational skills with the ability to manage a range of projects simultaneously. Proven track record of getting things done.
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