The Diocese of Armidale is led by Bishop Michael Kennedy and covers a significant portion of North Western NSW.
The Catholic Schools Office (CSO) in the Diocese of Armidale administers 24 Catholic schools on behalf of the Bishop of Armidale. The Director, Mr Chris Smyth, is directly responsible to the Bishop through the Bishop’s Commission for Catholic Schools.
The CSO has a staff of approx. 50 and provides a range of support to these 24 schools, which comprise 19 primary, two central and three secondary schools. This support includes educational, financial, administrative, ICT, industrial and employment services.
Catholic education in the Diocese of Armidale is going through a period of significant change, as articulated in their Strategic Improvement Plan 2016 – 2018. The CSO is more sharply focussing their efforts to support schools in their planning for school improvement.
Armidale is a city in the Northern Tablelands of NSW. With an estimated population of 25,000 it is the administrative centre for the Northern Tablelands region. It is approximately halfway between Sydney and Brisbane and two hours from the coast.
Armidale has a unique blend of culture, state of the art technology, educational diversity and natural beauty. It enjoys a warm summer, tones of amber during the autumn, a crisp winter and an exhilarating spring.
Additional information, including strategic planning documents, can be viewed by visiting the CSO website located at http://arm.catholic.edu.au
Position Title: Head of Financial Services
Reports to: Director of Schools
The Head of Financial Services role is to assist and support the Director of Catholic Schools and the Leadership Team, by delivering quality financial, ICT and administrative services, which support, enable and enhance Catholic education in the Diocese of Armidale
Key responsibilities include:
- Lead and manage the efficient, effective and accountable use of system funds, including proposing, monitoring and reporting on the annual system budget;
- Lead and direct efficient and effective I.C.T. delivery to the CSO and Diocesan schools;
- The oversight of the delivery of an efficient and effective payroll service to schools and CSO personnel;
- Financial accounting, as well as compliance reporting, to external authorities;
- Development and review of resource distribution models and processes to ensure the equitable needs-based allocation to schools of available resources;
- Annual financial reporting to the Bishop Of Armidale Diocesan Finance Council and quarterly reports to the Bishop’s Commission for Catholic Schools Finance Sub-Committee
- Management accounting that provides analysis of demographic, enrolment and financial data affecting system operations which leads to enhanced, informed strategic decision-making;
- Support to school communities in the areas of budgeting, financial reporting and student management information systems.
Initial Priority Areas
The following priorities will be discussed with people as we move through this process:
- Listening and learning to understand the ethos and strategic priorities of the Diocese and to embrace the concept that this role exists to support learning and teaching in schools
- Developing relationships with the CSO and the wider community
- Review of existing systems and processes
- Working with CEnet and in cooperation with other Diocese, implementation of a new software platform in schools and the CSO.
- Change in payroll system
This position leads a team of 12 people covering the functional areas of finance, ICT and payroll. Direct reports and the Team Leader of ICT; Team Leader of Financial Services; and a Payroll Supervisor.
In addition, leadership of the implementation of the ONCE project (Technology One) will be an aspect of this role, supported by a Project Manager.
Other Relevant Information
- Annual income is approx. $90m
- The financial year follows the calendar year, i.e. 1st January to 31st December
- The current accounting software is Quickbooks but a change is imminent to TechnologyOne
- Payroll is done in-house. Working with two other Diocese, the system will change to Empower in 2018
- This role is a member of the Bishop’s CSO Finance Subcommittee
Reason for Vacancy
Retirement of the long-serving incumbent, John Sheridan.
John Sheridan will finish in this role at the end of this year. It is anticipated the successful applicant will be able to commence in October/November to allow for an induction and handover process to ensure a smooth transition of leadership.
Location and Travel
The Catholic Schools Office is situated at 131 Barney Street Armidale. Normal office hours are 8:30am to 4:30pm. While the role will be primarily based with the CSO Office, there will be some travel required to schools within the Diocese.
Conditions of Employment
- The remuneration package reflects the seniority of this appointment and will be discussed with the successful applicant.
- The initial contract period is for 5 years. Probation period is 6 months.
- In addition to the usual 4 weeks of annual leave, additional ex gratia leave is provided for the period between Christmas and New Year
- Reasonable relocation assistance (if required) will be negotiated with the successful applicant.
- In accordance with Child Protection Legislation, the successful applicant will require a ‘Working With Children’ clearance prior to employment. Please visit kidsguardian.nsw.gov.au to obtain further information on this requirement.
We anticipate that people interested in this role will be able to demonstrate:
- The desire and capability to fit within the ethos & values of a large Catholic employer, combined with a willingness to learn, understand and support the mission of Catholic education;
- A commercially astute, service-focused person, with financial leadership experience in a sizable organisation;
- This experience evidenced by:
- financial partnering with non-financial leaders
- providing strategic financial leadership to support long term objectives
- having led large projects and change management processes
- experience in managing a sizable team
- Highly developed communication and interpersonal skills and capable of building strong relationships;
- Strength, energy & capacity to initiate, drive and evaluate organisational change;
- Membership of a relevant professional body with a record of continuing professional development.
Are You Interested in this Opportunity?
If you are interested in this role, then simply complete the ‘Express Your Interest’ panel on this page; or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org stating your interest and nominating ref number TS1361. Whichever you choose, please provide a brief resume and contact telephone number.
At this stage we do NOT ask you to labour over selection criteria or provide an application document – just complete the panel on this page or send a one-line email to Trak Search to indicate your interest in ‘CSO Head of Finance TS1361’; and providing your brief resume and contact telephone number.
Any questions can be directed to either (a) our Director John Chesher by telephone (0417 068 220) or (b) email our office via email@example.com.
The timeline and details for this project are outlined below. All emails and applications are acknowledged within 48 hours.
The Selection Process
Key dates are as follows:
|Date of project launch/advertising||Fri 4th/Sat 5th August|
|Trak Search discussions commence||From Mon 14th Aug|
|Latest anticipated date for applications||Mon 21st August|
|Initial reference checks by Trak Search||From week commencing Mon 21st Aug|
|Review meeting & short listing||Week commencing Mon 4th Sept|
|Anticipated date for client interviews||Week of Monday 18th Sept|
|Final references; academic documents obtained||Following client interviews|
|Follow up meeting/discussion||Likely within 7 days of client interviews|
Trak Search has been instructed to provide a process that is welcoming for people interested in this role. Significant aspects include:
- Throughout the process, Trak Search is available for confidential discussions and to provide information to allow you to explore this opportunity and determine your interest in the role
- A range of additional information will be provided to you as we progress through this process
- At the outset you will not be required to: complete an application form; provide a lengthy document to address the selection criteria; or supply referee details. However, you will be invited to supply us with additional information (verbally and in writing) as you progress through the process
- A late application could be accepted, providing it does not adversely impact other applications or the schedule. Please be aware however that any application received after close of business on the date noted above is more likely to be returned to you
- At the appropriate time (refer above) we will seek written consent to speak with referees – listing referees on your resume does not signify consent
- We expect to contact one work-related referee prior to shortlisting, with additional references completed later in the process. You should always expect that prior to reaching the final stage of the project, we will ask to speak with at least one person who has: directly managed you; recently; and for a significant time
- All information provided to Trak Search will be made available prior to shortlisting, in confidence, to the Director or nominee unless you instruct Trak Search otherwise.
You are also encouraged to view our Collection Statement which provides details on the manner in which we collect and use information obtained from you during your engagement with Trak Search.