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Head of Client Accounting, Savills

Full Time, Flexi Time

Role Overview 

The business is seeking a Head of Client Accounting to fulfil a key role leading the client accounting service and team which provides a comprehensive client accounting service covering all payments and receipts relating to letting and property management.

The position would primarily be based in Richmond but would also require travel throughout the UK to our various lettings’ branches.

Following continued and significant growth in recent years (including through acquisition) the business is seeking an experienced individual with the appropriate financial/accounting skills who can lead the overall service and drive results.  The ideal candidate will be a multi-faceted individual who is able to offer expertise in the areas of customer service and operational excellence with a particular focus on compliance matters.

Team Overview

Savills culture is one of trust and respect, teamwork, and collaboration. Our teams and our clients benefit when we work together, listening to and learning from each other.  Above all, we value the motivation of our people. This is evidenced by our wellbeing offer, our capability to facilitate flexible working and our support to enjoy a healthy work life balance.

Key Responsibilities of the Role

a)    Managing, developing and leading the client accounting function.
b)    Work with the divisional board to develop a strategy for the ongoing progression and development of the client accounting service.
c)    Assess and report risk, compliance, key performance and management information.
d)    Manage the allocation of resources of the client accounting team.
e)    Manage and review service delivery and performance ensuring best practice is applied, implementing new policies and procedures as necessary.
f)    Assist in the prioritisation and management of key development projects.
g)    Review the ‘added value’ to clients by developing other service lines within the client accounting business.
h)    Ensure accurate and timely financial reporting across all clients and to the business.
i)    Act as the key point of contact for internal and external audit reviews of the client accounting service.
j)    Act as a signatory on multiple client bank accounts.
k)    Ensure all controls and transactions are in line with statute and relevant standards in addition to that of the client money policy of Savills, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), ARLA Propertymark and where applicable the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Below is a more detailed list of tasks but this is not exhaustive and there will be other tasks/areas of responsibility that come up in relation to the role.

Risk & Compliance
a)    Assess/report risk and compliance issues maintaining a risk register of control areas highlighted.
b)    Ensure that operating procedures are clearly defined and communicated.
c)    Ensure effective implementation of policies.
d)    Ensure appropriate levels of authority are delegated to each Manager/team leader.
e)    Ensure that the procedures for each process and client service team are adequate for the purpose (and consistent across the Lettings business).

Team Management
f)    Track and review financial costs of team under remit.
g)    Ensure the correct interaction is in place with the client accounting teams in order to carry out the relevant service.
h)    Implement high people management standards to allow team members to develop and grow and build a diverse team to compliment skills and experiences.
i)    Ensure that the teams are resourced appropriately, dealing with recruitment and staff performance as required.

j)    Agree and deliver objectives for client accounting in the Lettings division.
k)    Maintain a development plan detailing the initiatives to enhance the function.
l)    Monitor, review and update processes to drive greater efficiency of operation.
m)    Adopt technology to enhance reporting, both internally and externally to our client base.
n)    Identify enhancement of processes/systems/procedures and deliver change management.
o)    Maintain an enhancement/initiative project list for process change.
p)    Liaise with the IT Business Manager in order to develop and enhance systems.
q)    Manage, control and enhance performance of the Client Accounting KPI’s.

Skills, Knowledge and Experience 

People management and leadership experience, able to evidence:-
•    Responsibility for strategic growth of team
•    Proven ability to develop skills and enable personal and professional growth of individuals
•    Coaching approach to management and leadership
•    Regular communications and meetings with team members
•    Effective delegation for maximum results
•    That they are a people motivator, able to create successful team working and individual performance and engagement
•    Experience of successful conflict management and performance management

Technical experience:-
•    An appropriate financial/accounting qualification and/or experience.
•    Prior client accounting experience preferably within the residential lettings sector, but not essential.
•    Strong IT/technical skills with good understanding of shared accounting and management IT platforms.

Skills and Knowledge

•    Deep understanding of accounting compliance and best practice
•    Possesses vision and is able to develop complex strategies and solutions
•    Excellent relationship builder to generate business
•    Focussed: commits to challenging goals and delivers consistently against these
•    Continuous improvement: delivers efficiency in addition to effectiveness
•    Self-starter, who relishes challenges and strives for the best
•    Strong team player: builds relationships and consults with others, quickly establishes trust and credibility
•    Robust and prepared to lead from the front
•    Diplomatic and challenging with the ability to influence others
•    Confident with a positive outlook
•    Strong decision maker who gives assurance
•    Ethical with strong integrity
•    Someone who has innate curiosity and is eager to experiment and push the boundaries of what is possible

Assessment applicants can expect during selection

•    3 stage interview
•    Personality Profile
•    Leadership Profile
•    A short presentation to demonstrate their experience and skills

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