Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Finance Manager - STIR Education (Apply by: 13 Apr 2014)

STIR Education

Job Description: Finance Manager – Delhi, India

About STIR Education

Over the last decade, substantial progress has been made across the developing world in improving access to education. Yet such improvements in access and resources have not been matched with an equivalent increase in education quality and outcomes. Over three hundred million children across the developing world are now in school but simply not learning. Adults are responsible for this crisis, not children. We know that the single biggest determinant of a child’s success in school – and therefore in future life – is the quality and commitment of his or her teacher. And yet one in four of India’s approximately 8 million teachers are absent on any given school day. Even when they are in school, only half of their time is actually spent teaching - and even that is half-hearted and usually of poor quality. Professional morale and motivation could not be much lower.

How can a teacher, who essentially holds a child’s life chances in their hands, abdicate their personal, professional and even moral responsibility in this way? It’s incredibly easy to despair

At STIR, however, we believe there are significant grounds for optimism. We share Jeff Skoll’s adage that people are basically good. And we have been developing a model – which we have successfully piloted, learned from and iterated upon in India – that turns the traditional role of teachers in addressing the learning crisis on its head. Traditional approaches seek to impose even more top-down accountability measures (which teachers learn quickly to game), or start paying teachers financial bonuses (which can be unsustainable and have mixed results), or expect training without genuine teacher commitment to yield results (Indian government teachers now receive more than 20 days of superficial, mandatory ‘training’ each year).

In contrast, we have created a model that empowers teachers to fundamentally re-imagine their role in leading change in their classrooms, schools and the wider education system.

We start with the ‘bright spots’ – identifying teachers who have even a small, initial spark of commitment and innovation – and use recognition, peer pressure, soft incentives, certification, (offline) social networking and cross-sector partnerships to bring about a teacher-led movement for change within the existing system.

Our vision is therefore two-fold:

1. To build a movement of teacher changemakers who develop innovative micro-solutions

(‘micro-innovations’), implement effective practices, and influence peers and policy makers – all to improve children’s learning.

2. To catalyse a surrounding ecosystem of partners – from NGOs, government and the private sector – to support and sustain this movement of teacher changemakers.

Current Status of STIR Education

After a successful pilot in 2012, STIR currently grown into a vibrant team of 21 enthusiasts working in our offices in London, Uganda and New Delhi. At present STIR’s teams in India has three programs

Delhi program, Partners Program and Govt Program.

Delhi Program is STIR’s Lab where we our perfecting our model and working directly with teachers from

Affordable private schools, MCD schools and Govt Sr Secondary Schools. Currently STIR has engaged with 700 schools in Delhi and are running teacher innovation networks across 100 schools directly

Partner Program focuses on scaling STIR’s model outside Delhi by building strong partnerships with reputed and serious NGO organization, where STIR supports the partner NGO to embed the model within their own program. In 2013, STIR has partnered with Bharti Foundation, Akanksha Foundation, Room to Read, NISA, Educate Girls and Kusuma Foundation to pilot STIRs methodology in 7 states outside Delhi. At present this team is supporting 6 teacher innovation networks running within the partner programs.

Govt Program focuses on directly working with the govt set up. STIR has recently signed an MoU with the UP government to work directly with the UP SCERT and train the CRCs in Lucknow to run the STIR program. This team would focus embedding STIR’s methodology directly within the heart of governments infrastructure. This would be STIRs first office outside Delhi and the team would work out of Lucknow.

STIR last year also began its Uganda operations. We currently have three members based out of Kampala.

Our team has a strong mix of education, business and social entrepreneurship experience – from founding Teaching Leaders, an education non-profit that attracted over $25m in scale up capital; to former employees from Teach First, Teach for India, JPAL, Gandhi Fellowship, Institute of Philanthropy, Booz & Co, Citibank, Nomura and Tech Mahindra; in addition to 30 years of collective teaching and school leadership experience.

Our Board of Directors includes the Founding Trustee of Teach First; the former UK Schools Minister; the

Chair of OFSTED, the UK’s schools regulator; a former 10 Downing Street advisor; and Directors from ARK and the British Council.

Our Global Advisory Board includes the World Bank’s Chief Education Economist; chief advisor to UN

Education special education envoy Gordon Brown; Professors James Tooley and Eric Hanushek; a global Director at Pearson; the co-founder of Teach for All; and the former Permanent Secretary for Education for Uganda.

Our India Advisory Board includes the CEOs and Directors of some of India’s most progressive education reform organisations – Central Square Foundation, Bharti Foundation, JPAL, Pratham and Akanksha.

The Position

The Finance Manager, based in New Delhi will carry out all duties related to Financial Operations for the programme. She / he will report to the Delhi Director in India.

The Candidate

The ideal candidate will have at least five years experience of independently handling the operations of a Finance department, they will have at minimum an Accountancy Degree. Previous work experience in the development sector or with donor agencies is desirable, as is work with a UK parent. The candidate should possess the following skills and qualifications:

• Certified accountant (preferred) with proficiency in Finance and Accounting related work within India with a sound understanding of Indian legal requirements.

• Relevant expertise and ability to manage the Finance department independently with minimal support

• Financial and accounting acumen to deal with diverse situations as they arise in the course of the business.

• Proficiency in using the MS Office suite including advanced MS Excel skills such as usage of pivot tables or data table analysis. In addition, proficiency in using an integrated accounting package would be of benefit

• Highly numerate and analytical

• Excellent writing and oral communication, presentation

• Fluent in English

• Takes initiative and demonstrates ability to work independently and under direction

• Able to generate practical approaches to challenging situations

• Ability to work within a start-up environment

• Is aligned with the vision, mission, values of STIR.

Duties and responsibilities

• Facilitation of annual and periodic business and operational planning processes

• Management of ongoing budgeting and forecasting processes.

• Working closely with the programme teams/budget holders to ensure their understanding and adherence to the budget.

• Owning financial processes of STIR globally – donations in US and UK and expenses of employees in India, Uganda and UK.

• Setting up strong financial processes and tracking donor funds programme wise.

• Reporting to funders on funds spent and judiciously tracking expenses monthly and flagging any concerns.

• Maintenance of the books of accounts i.e., Cash Book, Petty Cash, inter-company, including recording of transactions

• Timely payments to suppliers and other parties

• Effective management of Cash Flow to ensure adequate liquidity to make payments

• Timely reporting of the monthly and yearly financial statements as required by the Management in India and the parent body in UK, including variance analysis versus budget to explain the content of the reports

• Drawing up of the final accounts as required by Indian laws and as required by the UK parent company

• Apply for FCRA prior permission for STIR India and obtain approval through timely and appropriate follow up and liaising.

• Act as the link between the lawyers, tax consultants, FCRA (Foreign contribution Regulations Act) advisors to ensure compliance with FCRA, Taxation and other charity related laws.

• Custodian of the assets (money and others) within the Organization.

• Line management of office support staff (1-2) and oversight of their logistical and administrative activities

Other Personal Characteristics

• Professional and with ethics and integrity of the highest order.
• Passion, insight or at minimum awareness around the education space in India.
• Excellent analytical and negotiation skills.
• Ability to discern key details, to multitask and meet deadlines.
• Energetic, service-oriented, easy to approach and enjoyable to deal with.
• Ability to work effectively with colleagues based in different geographies and time zones
• Willingness to travel regularly

Salary will be commensurate with experience and will match industry

If interested, please send CVs along with a cover letter on why you are the most suitable candidate for this position with your updated CVs, your current CTC and details of two references to:

Email : nkhosla@stireducation.org

Apply by: 13 Apr 2014

Subject Line – Application for the position of Finance Manager

STIR is an equal opportunity employer and encourages all qualified persons to apply. Only shortlisted applicants will be informed and called for an interview and assignment.

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