Director of Finance and Operations

Job Description

Director of Finance and Operations (P/T)

Are you a qualified accountant with experience of managing public sector and charitable funds?  Do you have the knowledge, experience and confidence to be the lead finance professional advising senior management and the Trustees?  Are you seeking a new challenge in an organisation that is financially stable, operationally dynamic and team oriented?  Do you want to make a difference in the lives of those who serve in the Armed Forces and the communities that support them?  If so then we invite you to consider joining our team as the charity’s first Director of Finance and Operations.

The Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust (the Trust) supports the Armed Forces Covenant by delivering grant programmes that create real change to Armed Forces communities across the UK.  It is a charity and is classified as a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB).  The Trust manages the Covenant Fund which has an annual commitment from HM Treasury of £10M, as well as other funds on behalf of government and external organisations.  To find out more about our work please visit our website

The Role

The Director of Finance and Operations will be responsible for oversight of the Trust’s sound financial and operations management, including HR operations, office management and aspects of governance.  The successful candidate will take the lead as the Trust formalises its finance, HR and governance processes.  Also crucial is supporting the Chief Executive to execute her responsibilities as Accounting Officer of the NDPB and to ensure compliance with the HM Treasury (HMT) Managing Public Money handbook.

Reporting to the Chief Executive, the Director will work collaboratively with the Director of Grants and the Director of Policy and Communications as part of the Executive Management Team (EMT).  The EMT in turn work together with Trustees to develop the organisation’s strategic direction, and the full staff team from across the UK to ensure its execution. 

The role has the following key responsibilities:

  • Develop and monitor the Trust’s financial strategy and the associated governance framework 

  • Compliance with all statutory and regulatory requirements, including all requirements related to charity, company and NDPB status and all requirements of a UK employer

  • Financial reporting to MOD and HMT in respect of the Trust’s grant-in-aid, incidental grants and NDPB obligations

  • Champion and ensure compliance with policies and procedures designed to safeguard the Trust’s assets and employees

  • Oversee the overall risk and control environment, including procurement and business continuity

  • Delivery timely and informative analysis of actual results against budget, with specific responsibility for non-grant expenditure

  • Management of HR operations and aspects of governance, including appropriate policies and procedures to safeguard the Trust and its employees 


The Successful Candidate


You will be a fully qualified accountant with experience developing, delivering and monitoring financial strategy in a UK charity or public body, ideally a grant making charity or public body.  You will have experience managing and reporting on the use of public funds, and ideally have experience of compliance with the HMT Managing Public Money handbook and OJEU procurement requirements.  You must be able to demonstrate an ability to manage HR operations, governance and office management, ideally through past experience.  You will have led financial and management account functions, as well as the statutory audit of accounts prepared in compliance with the charity SORP.


You will be a highly organised team player who is able to provide leadership across the organisation.  You will have the ability to manage several priorities and be comfortable representing the organisation at a senior level.  You will be proactive in the execution of your responsibilities, with proven experience to lead others through a process of change.  You will have a professional approach to work and be comfortable being hands-on operationally as needs require.


The Offer:

This part-time position is being offered at 2.5 – 3 days per week, or if additional flexibility is desired this can be worked as 11 – 13 days per month.

The salary is £60,000 – £65,000 on an annualised basis, pro-rata for part-time.  The salary offered will be dependent on experience.

Other benefits include 30 days of leave plus 2.5 hours per week protected time for personal development, both pro-rata for part-time, 8% employer pension contribution and medical insurance.

Applications are welcomed from those who wish to work remotely, with occasional attendance at the Trust office near Victoria Station in London.  Since March 2020 the whole team has been working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The Trust is committed to being an equal opportunities employer and to providing development and training opportunities.

How to apply:

Applications should take the form of a letter (no more than two pages of A4) providing evidence of how you meet the person specification, as well as a CV.  These should both be attached to an email addressed to with ‘Application for Director of Finance and Operations’ in the subject line.

The e-mail should also provide information about your availability/likely notice period.

The deadline for applications is Friday 16 October 2020.


 Job Description and Person Specification

 Job Title:               Director of Finance and Operations

 Reports To:           Chief Executive

 AXC     Responsible For:   Finance and Operations Manager

Purpose of the Role:

Develop and execute the Trust’s financial strategy, ensuring safeguarding of public funds and regularity in the handling of those funds in accordance with the principles of the Managing Public Money handbook.

Ensure a close working relationship and compliance with all reporting requirements of the Trust’s funders, including the Ministry of Defence and HM Treasury.

Support the Trust’s Accounting Officer in the discharge of all responsibilities.

Oversee efficient and effective finance and operations functions that reflect best-practice in the industry and support the organisation to achieve its strategic goals.

Champion and ensure compliance with policies and procedures designed to safeguard the Trust’s assets and employees, and to manage risk.

As part of the Executive Management Team, play a full and active role in the development and implementation of organisational strategy.


Key Responsibilities:


Financial Management and Compliance


  • Ensure sound financial management of the charity’s resources to support the long-term viability of the Trust

  • Ensure that processes are in place and systematically evaluated to provide confidence by the Trust’s funders and regulators in its sustainability, effectiveness, prudence, quality and good value

  • Develop and implement a best-practice control environment

  • Lead the Trust’s budgeting ensuring that a robust framework is in place for resource allocation, specifically of non-grant expenditure

  • Lead the Trust’s procurement processes, including compliance with OJEU requirements

  • Provide regular financial analysis and reporting to support management and the Trustee Board in the execution of their responsibilities

  • Manage the relationship with the Trust’s auditors and Audit Committee

  • Manage the preparation and audit of the statutory accounts

  • Lead the finance team and overall responsibility for all elements of financial management and reporting

  • Ensure that restricted income is identified and correctly recorded and that it is used as intended by the donor

  • Oversee of treasury management and cash flow


HR Operations and Office Management:


  • Lead and motivate all direct reports

  • Ensure the payroll, pension and annual leave processes are operated executed accurately, efficiently and in a timely manner and in line with all statutory and regulatory requirements, including auto-enrolment legislation and the Trust’s responsibilities in relation to the Civil Service pension

  • Develop and maintain a suitable business continuity plan

  • Responsible for all aspects of office maintenance, security and health and safety

  • Responsible for compliance with the lease and maintaining a relationship with the landlord and managing agents


Governance and Risk:


  • Ensure the Trust manages risk and opportunity appropriately and operates within the risk framework agreed by the Audit Committee and Trust Board

  • Maintain the risk register and ensure appropriate risk management reports, techniques and financial controls are embedded throughout the Trust at strategic and operational levels

  • Manage insurance arrangements, ensuring suitable insurances are in place and that these are managed efficiently

  • Ensure regulatory and statutory compliance with the requirements of all regulators, for example as a charity, company, NDPB and employer


General Duties:

  • In conjunction with the Chief Executive and other Directors, to play a full and active role in the development and implementation of organisational strategy

  • Keep abreast of financial developments across the public and charity sectors

  • To work in accordance with the Trust’s policies and procedures

  • Undertake any other reasonable duties as agreed with the Chief Executive


Person specification:


Experience and qualifications:

  • Developing, delivering and monitoring financial strategy in a UK charity or public body, ideally grant making

  • Managing and reporting on the use of public funds at a senior level, ideally experience of compliance with the HMT Managing Public Money handbook and OJEU procurement requirements

  • Oversight of at least one full audit process with statutory accounts prepared in compliance with charity SORP

  • Oversight of a best-practice financial control environment and the production of financial and management accounts

  • Analysis of financial results to aid in the achievement of strategic goals

  • Initiating and implementing change, including improving and developing financial systems

  • Demonstrable understanding of charity finance, regulatory environment and governance

  • Oversight of the operational aspects of HR and office management

  • Fully qualified accountant (CCAB/CIMA)


Skills and abilities:

  • Proactive and motivated to drive real change, ability to take initiative and make decisions

  • Ability to provide professional advice confidentially, tactfully express a viewpoint and provide financial direction clearly

  • Ability to communicate effectively in English, both in writing and orally and confident in making formal and informal presentations

  • Values each member of the team and provides leadership across the organisation

  • A commitment to personal development and learning

  • Evidence of interest in and commitment to the work of the Trust



The Trust Team: