Chief Financial Officer

Oxford, Oxfordshire
£45,000 to £55,000 per annum, depending on experience
13 Oct 2016
14 Nov 2016
Full Time
Contract Type


Global Canopy Programme is an agile and entrepreneurial charity with an outsized impact. Our aim is to end large-scale deforestation, a global problem with huge hidden costs for people and prosperity.

We work smart, by focusing on the big market levers driving deforestation at regional, national and international levels. And we bring a fresh approach to identifying, targeting, and mobilising action among the key powerbrokers - the governments, businesses and financial institutions worldwide - with the power to end this global ‘deforestation economy’.  Increasingly, we also address related environmental and social impacts caused by the same market dynamics that are converting the world’s rainforests into land for agricultural commodities: our systemic failure to account for the vital benefits we receive from nature.

Over the last 16 years we have built up a strong track record and an international reputation for innovation and effectiveness. For more on our work see: and


We are at a very exciting time in the development of the organisation, and are seeking an experienced finance professional who shares our conviction that tropical forests are vital natural capital that the world cannot afford to destroy. The successful candidate will be highly motivated and committed to helping us achieve our mission.

You will lead the financial management of the charity, reporting to the Executive Director and periodically to the Treasurer and Trustees.  As a member of the senior management team you will provide advice and support in the strategic development and day-to-day running of the organisation.  You will lead the accounts department (currently comprising a Finance Officer and a part-time Grants Finance Officer) in managing and forecasting the charity’s finances, supporting decision-making and reporting to all relevant stakeholders.


GCP’s Finance Officer is responsible for maintaining the Sales Ledger, Purchase Ledger and Fixed Assets register and for reconciling all bank accounts.  She also posts monthly journals for accruals, prepayments, depreciation, staff costs and overhead allocations. You will support and review her work and be responsible for chasing aged debtors, monitoring grant balances and ensuring relevant systems are updated.

GCP’s Grants Finance Officer is responsible for supporting project managers on 2 of GCP’s 3 programmes to develop new budgets for project proposals and manage existing project budgets.  You will support and review her work and be responsible for approving new proposal budgets and consolidating the GCP budget and funds forecast periodically.


Lead and develop GCP’s strategic financial management

  • Develop the financing strategy which demonstrates how GCP will finance its strategic plan and monitor performance against the strategy.
  • Lead risk management processes within GCP and support both managers and trustees to understand and fulfil their responsibilities for risk management
  • Develop and prepare GCP’s organisational dashboard of KPIs including financial and non-financial indicators
  • Produce regular reports for management and the trustees which communicates and analyses performance
  • Support the strategic development of the organisation, in particular providing analysis and advice related to proposed development of trading activities that generate unrestricted income for GCP
  • Lead on and develop GCP’s operational financial management processes
  • Controls: Ensure that GCP has appropriate policies, processes and systems for its financial management and that these are implemented to a consistently high standard
  • Planning: Lead and oversee forecasting and budgeting processes for both internal and donor purposes
  • Reporting: Prepare the following reports in a timely manner, supported by the accounts team:
  1. Management Accounts: Monthly Management Accounts for GCP’s senior management team and Trustees.
  2. Year-end Accounts: Oversee the year-end processes including preparation of the finance statements for the annual report. Liaise with our external auditors and ensure the annual audit and particular grant audits run smoothly.
  3. Donor Reports: Ensure reports to donors are prepared on time and that expenditure meets any restrictions applied.
  4. VAT Returns: prepare and submit quarterly returns to HMRC, investigating the VAT treatment of new types of income or expenditure as necessary
  • Cash management: Ensure day-to-day cash needs are met and be responsible for ensuring all payments in the UK and overseas are made securely Oversee the year-end processes and annual audit, including preparation of the finance statements for the annual report.
  • Payroll and pensions: Manage GCP’s payroll and pensions processes, including our childcare voucher scheme and any other benefits GCP provides.  Payroll production and pension administration are outsourced to a local accountancy firm
  • Agreements: support Directors and Project Managers in the preparation and execution of agreements between GCP, project service providers and collaborators, ensuring accurate budgeting and compliance with policy.


  • Lead the accounts team
  1. Manage the finance team and carry out regular one-to-ones with the staff to support the implementation of their key responsibility areas.
  2. Manage the accounts department budget and set the annual operational plan.


  • Participate as an active member of the management team
  1. Prepare for and participate actively in management team meetings, trustee meetings and other GCP team meetings.
  2. Contribute to the development of GCP wide strategic plans, initiatives and activities as appropriate.
  3. Take joint responsibility with the management team for operational decisions including the development of organisational policies and procedures.
  4. Act as Company Secretary to GCP and the charity’s two subsidiary companies (both currently dormant) maintaining the Company Records and filing Annual Returns to the Charity Commission
  5. Take strategic oversight for IT, HR and office management, supporting the operations manager.
  6. Other duties commensurate with the post and as required.


You will have good communication skills at board level, and have proven abilities in communicating complex financial information in a simple and clear way. You will be clear and assertive but also a team player, being willing to undertake varied work, encompassing operational accounting activities as well as high level strategy.


  • Qualified accountant with several years’ experience and a proven track record of leading an accounts team.
  • Proven ability in preparing a financing strategy
  • Proven ability in designing and implementing risk management processes.

  • Proven ability to manage organisational forecasting and budgeting processes and in supporting managers to monitor against budgets.

  • Proven ability to prepare and design management accounts and financial reports for external stakeholders.

  • Good working knowledge of VAT, preferably with prior experience of partial exemption and international VAT issues.

  • High standards of professionalism, integrity and objectivity, including a strong eye for detail and a drive to support GCP’s activities as efficiently as possible.

  • A confident and dynamic self-starter, with the enthusiasm to support trustees and all levels of staff throughout the organisation sympathetically.

  • Well-organised and flexible, with the ability to manage several tasks simultaneously and work to tight deadlines.

  • Adept at communication and use of IT.


  • Experience of senior financial responsibility in the charity sector.
  • Practical application of the Charity SORP.
  • Experience of commercial financial management.

Please send your CV and a cover letter to The cover letter should include the relevant experience and qualifications which best show your competencies.