ERT Finance Controller

Multiple locations

Background/IRC Summary:

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC works with people forced to flee from war, conflict and disaster and the host communities which support them, as well as those who remain within their homes and communities. At work today in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure. The IRC leads the way from harm to home.


The IRCs Emergency Preparedness and Response Unit (EPRU) leads or oversees IRCs global emergency preparedness and response activities. The mission of the EPRU is to help meet the immediate survival needs and reduce suffering in conflict or disaster affected populations during the acute phase of an emergency. The EPRU also works in protracted emergencies, where the risk to life may be reduced but the population is still subjected to rights abuses and a lack of basic services.

The EPRU is also charged with enhancing the IRCs global and country level emergency preparedness capacity.  We  do this by supporting the development and training of Country Emergency Teams, assisting in the development of emergency focused partnerships with local civil society organizations, maintaining regional and global capacity to rapidly identify and deploy qualified emergency response personnel and supporting country-level contingency planning .

The IRC’s Finance Department

The IRC Finance department seeks to achieve excellence in financial management by providing accurate and timely financial information to IRC management and programs and by adhering to established financial practices and accounting principles. The International Finance Team does this by supporting and training international finance staff in country program offices, by implementing and monitoring the implementation of IRC and donor policies and procedures, and by gathering the necessary financial information in preparation of the organization’s financial statements.

Job Overview/Summary:

The IRC ERT staff is expected to be deployed in the field, either in an emergency or roving capacity, for up to 65% of the time and must be able to deploy to the site of an emergency within 72 hours of notification. 

The ERT Finance Controller is a member of the NY Headquarters global Finance Department and the Emergency Response and Preparedness Unit (EPRU). During emergency deployments ERT staff will work under the direction of IRC’s Emergency Field Director or designated country emergency lead.  During times with no acute emergency deployment the Finance Controller will report to Sr. Regional Controller

Members of the Emergency Response Team are deployed to either support existing country programs in their emergency response, or to initiate a new program in the crisis zone. The overall responsibility of the team is to rapidly and effectively design, develop and manage the IRC’s on-site humanitarian response to meet the immediate needs of the affected population. The ERT is also responsible for supporting the transfer of responsibilities and knowledge to the long-term staff to ensure the continuity of IRC programming and operations. Emergency deployments take precedence over other duties.

During emergencies the ERT Finance Controller has responsibility to lead the implementation and management of the country/emergency finance functions. As a member for the International Finance Team, s/he will provide strong technical support to IRC country offices, field-based Finance Controllers and Finance staff and will take a leadership role in the development and dissemination of financial and accounting policies and procedures for the IRC’s overseas operations.

Major Responsibilities:

Emergency Response

  • Be prepared to be deployed within 72 hours;
  • Lead the start-up of financial functions and services; including identification of banking or other cash transfer options, start-up of SUN financial ledger system, design of finance structure and recruitment and training of staff, establishment of effective internal control systems.
  • Proactively engage with and as required support HR and Logistics in start-up activities and systems implementation to promote efficient processing of transactions and positive working relationships between the functions
  • Participate in, and contribute to content for EPRU trainings and conferences 
  • Develop and maintain the country/emergency program operating budget and other required expenditure and planning tools; ensure ongoing and timely communications with the CD/Emergency Field Director and senior management team on budget position and areas of financial concern.
  • Represent and coordinate with other agencies, local government , donors on financial issues and regulations as applicable
  • Assess and provide input on post emergency strategies, structures and transition plans and participate in the development of security and contingency planning for the emergency operation.
  • Provide a comprehensive handover to successor, including ensuring transfer of all related documentation, program monitoring data and staff performance information
  • Function as Finance Controller, including execution and oversight of the following functional areas:
  1. Treasury
  • Supervises all country office bank relations and bank account activities including negotiation of fees, interest and currency exchange rates;
  • In compliance with IRC policy establishes country policies regarding cash holding limits, cash movements and foreign currency holdings;
  • Oversees the timely preparation, review and approval of all monthly bank account and cash reconciliation’s; 
  • Establishes country policies on advance payments, credit terms, and use of bank payment instruments;
  • Designs, implements, and monitors systems, procedures and reporting necessary to maintain on current basis accurate forecasts of cash requirements for meeting future spending, including commitments entered into and which obligate IRC to future spending;
  • Supervises the preparation of Cash Transfer Requests to New York and ensures that appropriate balances are maintained to facilitate grant implementation;
  • Ensures the development and implementation of a plan to minimize the country’s foreign exchange exposure to currency gains and losses;
  • Supervises the collection of contractual and other receivables;
  • Maintains current knowledge of local government requirements related to financial matters and ensures compliance with tax regulations and other legal requirements;
  1. Controllership
  • Ensures that all in country finance and supply chain management policies and procedures are in compliance with IRC’ and donors’ requirements and regulations;
  • Develops and reviews in country finance and supply chain policies and procedures annually, or as required; 
  • Ensures IRC and donor financial and supply chain reporting requirements and deadlines are met on a timely and satisfactory manner;
  • In coordination with the Country Director, ensures that balance sheet reconciliations are completed and reviewed monthly; 
  • Closely monitors all financial and supply chain activities, keeping the Country Director up to date on situations affecting financial performance and internal controls;
  • Directs the preparation of all donor financial, procurement and inventory reports in respect to contractual requirements;
  • Ensures risk management field monitoring visits are conducted and documented quarterly;
  • Facilitates and co-ordinates external, internal, donor or government audits as needed, or required;
  • Oversees the protection of the country’s assets (cash, inventory, NEP) through the enforcement of internal control policies and procedures;
  • Is the principal liaison with IRC NY on all finance, accounting, cash management and supply chain matters;

C .  Budget Management Support

  • Assists the country management team with the design and development of new budget proposals;
  • Leads the implementation of the Grant Operating Opening, Interim and Closing meetings;
  • Provides the country management team with monthly budget vs. actual grant specific reports;
  • Assists the country management team in the preparation and maintenance of the country’s Operating Budget and Budget Forecasts;


  • Provide technical support to existing country programs remotely and through in-country visits or short-term deployments following an approved scope of work provided by the Director of International Finance
  • Undertake technical assessments or evaluations of large scale-complex programs
  • Prepare and conduct training at and participate in the International or Regional Finance Conferences and during country visits
  • Contribute to the development of financial and accounting policy including the maintenance of the International Finance Manual, and the continued development of financial accounting systems;
  • Assist in the development and design of standard finance training modules to be implemented by IRC worldwide.
  • Assist in the development and launch of new technical policy, procedures and training materials
  • Provide necessary back-up to the HQ-based Regional Controllers and respond to ad-hoc requests as requested as assigned by supervisor;
  • Lead/participate in  the design and implementation of emergency components of the Finance Unit strategic plan

Job Requirements

  • University degree required, CPA/CA certification preferred;
  • 6+ years progressive experience developing and managing finance functions in the non-profit space,  including 3  years in emergency/conflict areas
  • Previous experience working with a major general ledger software package – experience with SUN (Infor) preferred; accompanied by strong MS Office computer skills
  • Demonstrated ability to identify, recommend and implement best practice approaches to ensure rapid, consistent, high quality financial management and service provision in an emergency environment;
  • Prior experience managing large, complex donor funded programs and grants; including experience with USG, European, DFID and UN funding streams, foreign currency and exchange management,  and budget development and oversight..
  • Demonstrated skills in building strong finance teams and establishing new finance operations, including ability to communicate and work effectively with senior management, operating and program staff and  functions
  • Solid organizational skills with a flexible work attitude.  Able to work productively in a fast-paced team environment, to work independently and the ability to meet changing demands;
  • Must be a patient and good communicator who can function in an organizational environment involving a diversity of cultures, languages, and personal interests and agendas;
  • Good at role of facilitator and team player in solving problems;
  • Bilingual English and French strongly considered;
  • Committed to staff training and development.

IRC leading the way from harm to home.

IRC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
 IRC considers all applicants on the basis of merit without regard to race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status or disability.

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.
  • Organization: IRC - International Rescue Committee
  • Location: Multiple locations
  • Grade: Mid/Senior
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Finance and Banking
    • Finance and Banking
    • Administrative support
  • Closing Date: 2016-04-09

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