The Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) is a membership-based organisation with Sections and Groups in over 40 countries and partners around the world, with an International Secretariat (IS) based in Geneva, and a New York office focused on the work of the United Nations (UN). Since our establishment in 1915, we have brought together women from around the world who are united in working for peace by non-violent means and promoting political, economic and social justice for all.
We are seeking to hire a full-time Head of Finance, who is aligned with our mission, to implement the financial strategy of the International Secretariat (IS) based on our International Programme 2022-2025. WILPF’s International Secretariat has an annual budget of approx. CHF 7 million. The current Finance Team is composed of 6 Finance staff and long-term consultants based in Geneva and worldwide.
The successful candidate will be a visionary with strong financial technical abilities and proven experience developing and managing an organisational financial strategy. The successful candidate will be able to communicate and convey complex finance and operational concepts in an accessible and user-friendly way. They will also be a hands-on leader who is excited to build the capacity of our growing Finance Team and foster a culture that prioritises operational effectiveness, flexibility, and accountability across the organisation and with our partners. They will also be committed to feminist, anti-racist, and inclusive ways of working and they will thrive in a collaborative working environment.
The Head of Finance (HoF) has the overall responsibility of developing and implementing the financial strategy of the International Secretariat (IS). The HoF is the highest compliance authority at the International Secretariat in terms of financial regulations. The HoF manages the organisational budget, including reporting against the budget for the International Board (IB). The HoF manages accounting and audits, oversees grants management and reporting, and supervises the Finance Team.
- Financial Strategy and Management
- Maintain the financial health of the organisation and ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
- Oversee the implementation of WILPF’s Financial Manual, policies and systems.
- Oversee the management of online budget and accounting systems. Provide adequate training to budget managers to enable them to use the system confidently.
- Develop the annual organisational budget review in consultation with the Secretary General (SG), Deputy Secretary General (DSG), Programme Directors, and WILPF’s NY (UNO) office.
- Communicate financial plans regularly to SG and DSG.
- Produce accurate and timely financial reports for internal and external audiences.
- Grants Financial Management
- Provide senior-level technical support for grants and contracts administration office-wide. Oversee the administration of monitoring and reporting to donors.
- Provide fundraising support to programmes, specifically for grant proposal submissions. Review proposal budgets to ensure organisational consistency.
- Internal Controls/Auditing
- Maintain an internal control environment. Build WILPF’s capacity to manage overall financial policies and procedures for adequate financial controls to mitigate organisational risks.
- Oversee risk mitigation efforts with donors in terms of safeguarding and anti-corruption capacity building.
- Coordinate and lead the annual audit processes in Geneva.
- Provide strategic management and support to the Finance Team with an array of financial administrative work critical to WILPF’s operational success.
- Work with the Audit Committee of the International Board (representing the SG) as needed. Serve as a member of the Standing Committee on Risk Management and provide technical finance expertise as situations arise.
Interdependencies and Reporting
- HoF supervises the Finance Team, which currently includes: 1 Finance Associate (based in Geneva), 1 Human Resources and Operations Associate (based in Geneva, split with HR), 1 Grants Coordinator (based in Geneva), and 3 Grants and Finance Coordinators (2 based in Geneva, and 1 based in Tunis).
- HoF reports to the Secretary General (SG).
- The HoF and DSG work together to ensure that the operational frameworks of the IS are functional and fit for purpose.
- HoF works closely with the International Treasurer, the HR Manager, budget managers, programme staff, and the UNO Office Manager.
Knowledge, Skills and Competencies:
- Fluency in written and spoken English, working knowledge of French desirable.
- Keen interest in WILPF’s work, aims and principles.
- Demonstrated financial management and planning skills. Demonstrated knowledge of budgeting and forecasting. Proven ability to draft financial reports.
- Demonstrated knowledge of Swiss GAAP accounting principles and international accounting standards.
- Demonstrated working knowledge of Swiss legislation and regulations, and knowledge of US financial legislation and regulations is a plus.
- Demonstrated ability to interpret financial information to non-finance colleagues.
- Proven project management skills. Ability to establish priorities and to maintain a variety of projects and activities simultaneously, while meeting quick deadlines during busy times.
- Excellent organisational skills with the ability to prioritise work and take initiative. Ability to quickly pivot to evolving organisational priorities, based on fluid programmatic contexts in complex environments. Detail oriented.
- Demonstrated analytical skills, with the ability to communicate arguments clearly, logically and effectively.
- Excellent feminist management skills, which include coaching and developing teams, mentoring staff, delivering timely feedback, and encouraging professional development opportunities.
- Excellent interpersonal skills. Experience working with global, diverse teams across time zones and locations, both co-located and remote. Ability to collaborate and work well in a team setting.
- Ability to build strong and genuine interpersonal relationships. Ability to organise work across programmes and teams to achieve common objectives.
Education and Experience:
- University degree in a relevant field.
- Minimum of 7 years of experience in a similar position.
- Experience in applying and improving internal controls and financial processes.
- Experience in ERP implementation, ideally with Microsoft Dynamics.
- Previous relevant experience in NGOs or international organisations is a plus.
- Experience in committee work (preferably as a member of an oversight committee) is a plus.
Approach and Values
- A strong commitment to WILPF’s feminist values and engaging staff and partners based on collaboration and trust.
- Demonstrated self-awareness and ability to self-reflect. Commitment to learning, creativity, and innovation. Upholds and values transparency, commitment, accountability, and integrity.
This position is based in Geneva, with the option to telework.
WILPF will provide the Head of Finance (HoF) with compensation commensurate with experience. The starting salary in Geneva is 97’000- CHF, plus 3’000 CHF/year for healthcare and well-being.
Please send a resumé or CV and a cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Head of Finance (HoF)” in the subject line by 28 May, 2023. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
WILPF thanks all applicants for your interest; however, only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.
We are hoping for candidates to start ASAP.
WILPF is an Equal Opportunity Employer
As an equal opportunity employer, WILPF welcomes applications from all suitably qualified candidates, irrespective of sex, gender, sexual orientation, marital or parental status, ethnic or social origin, disability, religion, or belief. During the different stages of the recruitment process, specific measures may be taken to ensure equal opportunities for candidates with disabilities.