December 15, 2023

Finance Team Leader

  • Deadline: 21/01/2024
  • Location: Suva, Fiji
  • Organization: Pacific Community (SPC)
  • Salary: FJD $ $109,416 - $136,764
Full Time

The Pacific Community (SPC) is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 27 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our organisation works across more than 25 sectors. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The Land Resources Division provides effective expert scientific advice, capacity building and services on conservation, development and utilization of plant genetic resources, forest and landscape management, resilient agricultural systems, diversification of livelihood strategies and access to markets to maintain ecosystem services and improve land productivity and the food, nutrition security and resilience of Pacific communities. LRD has expertise in genetic resource conservation, resilient agriculture, biosecurity, pest and disease management, agricultural extension, plant pathology, entomology, and animal health. It collaborates with governments, regional organisations, civil society and other SPC divisions to pinpoint the needs and priorities of Pacific countries and communities and provide technical expertise to address them. This mission is realized through four main thematic work areas, or pillars, and a progressively integrated approach to programming that works towards achieving SPC’s development goals.

The role – Finance Team Leader is overall responsible for the provision of financial services to the Division’s programmes and projects. Additionally, the role supports the implementation of the shared services vision in the division: by working through collaboration between central finance and across divisions. The role is responsible for complex financial monitoring with multiple donor partners, with staff working across multiple locations.

The key responsibilities of the role include:

Shared Services in the division
• Lead the SPC Finance and Procurement shared services agenda within the division in close collaboration with the central finance team. Be responsible for the division’s uptake of the shared services work. This includes:
• Work-planning and deployment.
• Knowledge sharing, process refinements / reviews and increasing collaboration.
• Time-charging.
• Conflict resolution and relationships.
• Work closely with finance team leaders in other divisions, and in collaboration with the finance managers, to:
• Understand the capabilities of existing corporate systems and exploit these to meet the requirements of Shared Services
in divisions. Lead or co-lead in designing systems requirements and support corporate development efforts.
• Propose and design a data system and metrics for the collection, collation, reporting and interpretation of shared services
data. This includes reporting tools that measure KPIs and SLAs, capture and encourage sharing, collaboration,
knowledge gathering and learning, manage and forecast workforce needs.

Financial planning, monitoring and reporting
• Lead by overseeing the role of finance officers in all aspects of financial management in the division, including budgeting and forecasting, monitoring of project executions, pipeline projects, financial analysis, and reporting. The budgeting process might include the development of costed workplans and contain integrated programming considerations. Reporting would include monthly budget versus actuals for the division management team and reporting to donors. Use Power BI in an effective way for high level financial reporting.
• Support audit exercises or due diligence probes led by finance in central, donors, partner organizations or internal auditors where required ensuring maximum level of compliance. Have document management systems and processes are in place to always ensure audit readiness.
• Provide high quality technical financial advice to management to facilitate decision-making and planning through regular financial progress reporting.

Divisional, project and programme financial administration support
• Provide appropriate coordinated support to divisional staff, working across programme areas on donor requirements in programme planning, delivery, and financial administration of all donor-funded projects. Support technical staff with financial and economic modelling for projects (e.g., cost-benefit analysis and forecasting) where possible and appropriate. This includes in-country staff.
• Liaise with development and implementing partners at planning stage on financial agreements to ensure they meet all SPC financial requirements with supporting documentation. This includes country stakeholders and the drafting of MOUs and LOUs.
• Liaise with internal units or programmes with specific donor responsibilities on areas such as compliance requirements, reporting responsibilities, training and capacity building and audits. Take a proactive approach in managing compliance and audit requirements.

Compliance, risk management and business processes
• Oversee and ensure appropriate systems and internal controls are implemented. Collaborate with internal stakeholders where instances of internal control weaknesses are found to strengthen these. Lead in coordinating action on audit issues pertaining to the division.
• Lead finance’s input to the division’s risk management processes, including in the work-planning process, as it pertains to financial and compliance risk, identifying potential risks, such as, irregular expenditures not approved in work plan. Recommend mitigation strategies to the director as maybe be required relating to identified risks.
• Lead in the division’s review and implementation of applicable SPC finance policies, as required, including ensuring compliance of the requirements of the policies in the division.

Procurement and Grant Services
• Ensure all procurement and grant processes undertaken by the division are in line with SPC and donor policies and procedures. Work closely with the grant or procurement officer to ensure this occurs.
• Work with the procurement team to facilitate the preparation and monitoring of the Division’s annual procurement plan. Support the corporate SPC annual procurement planning process as required.
• Work with the procurement office to monitor key databases and workflows for all procurement and grant activities to ensure efficiency, completeness, availability of up-to-date information, and to allow effective follow-up action.

People Management
• Creating a team environment that fosters and develops effective working relationships and high performance.
• Manage staff members responsible for the administration, operations, and logistics of the Division. This includes internal deployments / movements to ensure effective programme delivery, technical advice, and training to member countries.
• Manage staff performance and support training and development.

For a more detailed account of the key responsibilities, please refer to the online job description.

Key selection criteria

• Degree in accounting, finance, or business administration.

Technical expertise
• At least 10 years of experience and demonstrated competence in same field with 5 years in leadership role. This includes project management or administration experience with major donors.
• Sound collaboration and team working skills.
• Strong analytical ability and demonstrated ability to achieve efficiencies.
• Demonstrated competency with business and data analysis design and reporting.

Language skills
• Excellent English communication skills (oral and written).

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness
• Ability to work in a multicultural, inclusive and equitable environment.

Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration – until 31 December 2026– subject to renewal depending on funding and performance

Remuneration – The Finance Team Leader is a band 11 position in SPC’s 2023 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 3,091‒3,864 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately FJD 9,118–11,397 (USD 4,142–5,177; EUR 3,923–4,904). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale will be based on annual performance reviews. Remuneration of expatriate SPC staff members is not subject to income tax in Fiji; Fiji nationals employed by SPC in Fiji will be subject to income tax.

Benefits for international employees based in Fiji – SPC provides a housing allowance of FJD 1,350–3,000 per month. Establishment and repatriation grant, removal expenses, airfares, home leave travel, health and life and disability insurances and education allowances are available for eligible employees and their eligible dependents. Employees are entitled to 25 working days of annual leave per annum and other types of leave, and access to SPC’s Provident Fund (contributing 8% of salary, to which SPC adds a matching contribution).

Languages – SPC’s working languages are English and French.

Recruitment principles – SPC’s recruitment is based on merit and fairness, and candidates are competing in a selection process that is fair, transparent and non-discriminatory. SPC is an equal-opportunity employer, and is committed to cultural and gender diversity, including bilingualism, and will seek to attract and appoint candidates who respect these values. Due attention is given to gender equity and the maintenance of strong representation from Pacific Island professionals. If two interviewed candidates are ranked equal by the selection panel, preference will be given to the Pacific Islander. Applicants will be assured of complete confidentiality in line with SPC’s Privacy Policy.

How to apply:

Application procedure

Closing Date: 21 January 2024 at 11:59pm (Fiji time)
Job Reference: JM000511

Applicants must apply online at
Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.
For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:
• an updated resume with contact details for three professional referees
• a cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this position
• responses to all screening questions

Your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage if all the above documents are not provided. Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference. Please ensure your documents are in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

For international staff in Fiji, only one foreign national per family can be employed with an entity operating in Fiji at any one given time. SPC may assist on a case-by-case basis with submissions to Fiji Ministry of Foreign Affairs for their consideration and final approval. SPC cannot and does not make any guarantee whatsoever of approval for such applications to Fiji Ministry of Foreign Affairs and where an application is approved, the spouse or partner will subject to such terms and conditions as may be set from time to time by the Ministry.

SPC does not charge a fee to consider your application and will never ask for your banking or financial information during the recruitment process.

Screening Questions (maximum of 2,000 characters per question):
1. Based on your experience with donor-funded, complex multi-country projects, identify and explain three key financial management lessons learnt that would assist you in this role.
2. In your view, what role do finance and procurement play in the management of an organisation or division and why is this important to the organisation or division?
3. Based on your experience, what particular challenges do you foresee in reshaping existing financial and business process procedures and implementing change successfully? And how would you address those challenges?