The Senior Financial Administrator supports the National Science Foundation Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (NSF-MRSEC) program administered by the Northwestern Materials Research Center (MRC). Manages financial operations &/or analysis in support of MRC’s mission & in coordination with central offices such as HR, Budget, Financial Aid, Facilities, Purchasing, IT, Provost, etc. Implements existing policy & ensures the effective, compliant, & efficient completion of daily financial activities. Applies industry and professional standards, interprets university policy and procedure, federal and state laws, granting agency guidelines, and other regulations (as applicable). Represents &/or guides business area on internal &/or external financial affairs by exchanging information. Performs all aspects of post-award financial management for sponsored projects.
Please note: This position requires working special hours during Center Site Visits and submission of Center annual reports to sponsoring agencies, etc.
Participates in determination of budget including fiscal resource allocation of appropriated, discretionary, endowment &/or gift revenues.
Prepares analysis & reports.
Provides account research.
Assists with budget projects.
Updates budget estimates & provides commitment tracking support for all financial activity.
Ensures lead schedules are prepared.
Coordinates &/or provides information for the annual salary review process.
Reviews & reconciles actual expenses to budget per NU Audit guidelines.
Approves funds reallocation within budget as necessary & appropriate.
Analysis, Statements & Reporting
Creates daily, monthly, annual, &/or project end analysis & reports regarding area/unit, grants &/or awards, accounts, funds, payroll, expense &/or revenue allocation, customer service activity, etc.
Prepares financial analysis and lead schedules for supplies, equipment, &/or personnel decisions.
Records journal entries and creates reports.
Performs financial account reconciliations, statement analysis, and transaction research.
Provides support for annual audit work papers and quarterly financial statement work papers.
Provides review and oversight of all types of financial transactions some of which may be complex in regard to size or duration of account.
Enters individual &/or summary of transactions into journals &/or general ledger or other NU enterprise system.
Reviews; ensures approval based on alternatives regarding practice & policy; analyzes and classifies transactions in accordance with established chart or coding of accounts; creates new accounts; prepares, processes, reconciles & provides receipts (as appropriate) for transactions.
Processes transfer &/or appropriation charges & may balance &/or close accounts.
Troubleshoots problems; performs vendor/account research as needed; obtains additional information from or provides instruction & guidance for customers/vendors; corrects or escalates.
Maintains Chart of Account lists.
Prepares & delivers bank deposits
Accesses multiple banking systems to process transactions, retrieve information, &/or initiate wire transfers.
Provides financial policy interpretation to determine the validity of customer requests & ensure compliance.
Contacts outside agencies, banks &/or banking systems to obtain clarification of rules &/or regulations.
Controls account availability for all chart strings.
Provides support for internal &/or granting agency audit requests.
Reviews status of related university accounts, transactions and processes; troubleshoots issues as needed.
Grants &/or Awards
Reviews PI funding status on a monthly basis.
Works with Dept &/or Research Administrator regarding financial grants management issues.
Provides data for grant proposals; submits proposals
Interacts with faculty, staff &/or funders to build relationships, transfer knowledge, &/or advise on research policies & procedures.
Monitors commitments and expenditures to ensure compliance with granting agency guidelines.
Verifies accurate set up of sponsored project accounts.
Processes & presents data & information through the application of database, graphic & spreadsheet software.
Obtains data by downloading from enterprise systems; develops and runs queries.
Identifies sources for data & information to be used & completes special financial projects such as (enter in explanation of special projects):
Performs general office support activities
Manages operation of or interaction with a computer system or system processes that support the area or program.
Ensures that area service level goals are met.
Provides training and support to related university units or program participants; maintains website and training materials
Supervises temporary, part-time or work-study students
Provides work direction to others
Supervises other employees
Assists with hiring employees
Performs other duties as assigned.
Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, Business Administration, Finance or related field; OR 2 years of work experience in financial administration; OR equivalent combination of education and experience where similar knowledge, skills, and abilities may be acquired.
3 years financial, budgeting &/or preparing account reconciliations or financial statements along with financial analysis experience.
Minimum Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities.)
Excellent computer skills including proficiency in the use of spreadsheet, database and word processing software.
Understanding financial reporting.
Master’s Degree in Accounting, Business Administration, Finance or related field or 5 years of work experience in financial administration, financial, budgeting &/or preparing account reconciliations or financial statements along with financial analysis experience.
Preferred Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities)
Advanced skills in Microsoft Excel and Access, familiarity with core NU systems (NUFinancials, InfoEd, Cognos, etc.) and federal funding agencies.
As per Northwestern University policy, this position requires a criminal background check. Successful applicants will need to submit to a criminal background check prior to employment.
Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States.
Northwestern University is a major private research university with 12 academic divisions located on three campuses in Evanston, Chicago, and Education City in Doha, Qatar. We have approximately 2,500 full-time faculty members, 17,000 graduate and undergraduate students, and over 5,700 full and part-time staff. Northwestern University combines innovative teaching and pioneering research in a highl...y collaborative environment. It provides students and faculty exceptional opportunities for intellectual, personal and professional growth.