• Director of Finance - Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP)

    Location US-DC
    Job ID
  • Overview

    Director of Finance - IHEP


    As Director of Finance, you will apply your strategic leadership and systems expertise to managing and executing the organization’s finance and accounting functions. Reporting to a senior member of the leadership team, you will rethink structures, simplify workflows, help modernize finance systems and technology, implement best practices, and develop both short and long-term budgets that bring our organization forward and allow us to improve college access and success in higher education for all students. Your ideas will enhance our environment of competence, quality, collegiality, mutual respect, and accountability. Our staff will welcome your assistance in planning and understanding their budgets.


    We are fortunate to work with some very elite, high profile funding partners, many of whom have made long-term commitments. In this role, you will manage all aspects of our grant management process for up to 25 grants, from proposal budget development through expense allocation and reporting. With a $6 million budget and a history of clean audits, our finances are sound and our organization is poised for growth.


    For 25 years, the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) has been a leading voice championing a vision in which all people, regardless of background or circumstance, have the opportunity to reach their full potential by participating and succeeding in higher education. Established in 1993 as a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, IHEP is committed to promoting access to and success in higher education, with a special focus on low-income, minority, and other historically underrepresented populations. We develop innovative policy- and practice-oriented research to guide policymakers and education leaders who develop high-impact policies that will address our nation’s most pressing education challenges. Our staff includes some of the most respected professionals in the fields of public policy and research.

    Key Responsibilities of the Director of Finance


    • Analyze and present financial reports in an accurate and timely manner; clearly communicate monthly and annual financial statements; oversee all financial, project/program, and grants accounting.
    • Lead and manage the annual budgeting and planning process; administer, review, and track all financial plans and budgets; keep staff abreast of the financial status of the various projects, and of the organization as a whole. Work with department leaders, as needed, to forecast upcoming project and staff needs.
    • Manage organizational cash flow and forecasting.
    • Develop, manage and execute a robust grants/contracts and financial management/reporting system; ensure that the contract billing and collection schedule is adhered to, financial reporting data is timely and accurate, and cash flow is steady to support operational requirements.
    • Update and maintain all necessary business policies and accounting practices to ensure compliance; enhance and maintain the finance policies and procedure manual.
    • Manage banking and investment strategies.
    • Effectively communicate and present any critical financial matters to the board of directors; prepare routine financial reports and updates for the board’s finance and audit committee.
    • Provide regular reports to the president on the status of ongoing projects and budgets.
    • Develop a finance training curriculum/protocol for staff, providing training on budgeting, grants management, use of financial systems, compliance, etc.


    • Perform the annual audit process, including developing timelines; preparing schedules; managing financial, analytical, and compliance issues; finalizing the annual audit process; liaising with external auditors and the finance committee of the board of directors; and assessing any necessary changes.
    • Prepare federal and district tax filings, including IRS form 990.
    • Review all vendor/consulting contracts and agreements to ensure minimal liability, positive funding sources, and delivery on other obligations.
    • Ensure compliance with all laws and regulations by managing relationships with outside counsel, including auditors.


    • Oversee the finance-related human resources and operations functions of the organization.
      • Manage the payroll/timecard system and process to ensure that all payroll responsibilities are completed on time, accurately, and in compliance with all laws and regulations.
      • Oversee HR contractor with various finance-related functions, to include policies and procedures and benefits and administration.
    • Review, maintain, and enforce finance-related policies and procedures for the organization. Enhance or develop new finance-focused systems that will improve overall operation and effectiveness.


    Essential Qualifications of the Director of Finance

    • Bachelor’s degree in accounting, finance, operations, or a related field.
    • 5-7 years of professional experience, with 3-5 years in a senior finance role.
    • First-hand knowledge of accounting and reporting software (Great Plains, Concur, Intacct, NetSuite, Bill.com, or other accounting and payable software).
    • Proven experience in foundation grants management, ideally for elite, multi-year foundations.
    • Experience processing payroll.
    • Clear communication skills, including the ability to translate complex financial concepts for colleagues who do not have finance backgrounds.


    Desired Qualifications of the Director of Finance

    • An advanced degree in a business-related field is preferred.
    • 5 years overseeing all aspects of nonprofit finance and accounting, including extensive reporting, budgeting, and forecasting.
    • Technologically savvy with experience selecting and overseeing financial software installations and managing relationships with financial software vendors.
    • Experience monitoring an investment portfolio.
    • Experience in conducting risk assessments and contingency
    • Experience working with a board.


    Attributes for Success

    • Detail-oriented. You set the standard for meeting and exceeding expectations. You are impeccable with your word and you hold others accountable to their commitments.
    • Problem solver. You’re intellectually curious. You see clues in the data, you think about what a process should be, you evaluate the options, and you implement solutions.
    • Proactive. You take initiative, think ahead, anticipate challenges, and skillfully manage numerous commitments and competing priorities to ensure deadlines are met.
    • Resourceful. You have a thoughtful approach to analyzing workflows and simplifying processes, making things faster, more efficient, more seamless, and more reliable.
    • Service-focused. You are committed to providing the highest level of service, both internally and externally. You cooperate easily with staff, vendors, and funders and work as a positive team player. You are approachable, flexible, and responsive.
    • Coach. Your communication skills provide you with the ability to train and mentor others, making information and procedures easy to comprehend.
    • Mission-driven. You care deeply about the underserved and have a desire to use your skills to advance IHEP’s mission.


    What’s Attractive to the Right Director of Finance Candidate?

    • This is an exciting time to join IHEP. As we rethink our systems, you will have the opportunity to make our finance systems your own and simplify processes for staff that are eager for such changes.
    • Managing a broad portfolio of responsibility, you will have the opportunity to make a substantial impact in a core area of the organization.
    • You will be a critical member of a collegial team that holds each other accountable for results. We are forward-thinking and will allow you to do innovative long-term planning.
    • We are financially strong and growing.
    • We are mission-driven. Our higher education reform work significantly impacts issues of college access, success, and equity, particularly for underserved populations.
    • We are dedicated and we work hard, but we also respect each other’s lives outside of work. That is why we offer a comprehensive benefits package, generous leave policies, and opportunities to develop and grow.


    To Apply for the Director of Finance position with IHEP:

    Please share your resume by using the "Apply" button on this page. 


    Alternative Titles:  Director of Accounting, Director of Administration, Senior Accountant, Controller.

    Staffing Advisors has been engaged to find the right candidate and is committed to helping create a diverse work environment for our client. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. This position may require pre-employment screening potentially including a criminal background check, verification of academic credentials, licenses, certifications, and/or verification of work history.




    Sorry the Share function is not working properly at this moment. Please refresh the page and try again later.
    Share on your newsfeed