Vice President, Finance

Our Kitchener/Waterloo area customer is a large, award winning, profitable and expanding, Canadian owned processing business. Due to the business growth plans the current VP, Finance is taking on a newly created senior leadership team role within operations. The incoming VP, Finance will be required to lead both the Finance and IT teams, take the lead regarding the bank financing required for the upcoming major expansion and personally perform the Board reporting, the corporate budgeting/planning and the staff management and development required to successfully navigate the upcoming growth. This is not a clean up accounting processes position. This is a next steps for the company financial leadership and management of growth and refinement of already good processes career opportunity.

While maintaining the current efficiency of the four-day-close plus reporting on day five, thePresident is looking to add an experienced financial professional business leader to effectively lead and manage the bank financing (banking syndicate formation and relationship leadership skills required), run the day-to-day accounting and reporting (including budgeting/forecasting, business analysis, costing and internal controls monitoring & development) and effectively guide the structure, focus and planning of both the Finance and IT teams. Successful candidates will have bank financing experience, refined skills at effectively leading, managing, coaching and motivating Finance and some experience leading IT or another non-accounting function. A formal background in IT is not required. Preference will be given to applicants who are experienced in a manufacturing or production environment. 

The VP, Finance position reports directly to the President. The President is a highly experienced executive who has led the company to be recognized as one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies. The company has a dynamic, people-first, family-like, culture.  

The salary range for this VP, Finance position is $185,000 to $225,000 plus comprehensive benefits (including annual CPA and training fees cost reimbursement) and an opportunity to earn a performance based bonus (75% based on company and market performance and 25% based on personal performance). 

If you are or know of a hands-on CPA leader who puts people first, is detailed with numbers and personally good at leading financing projects, doing financial analysis and effectively handling Board level presentations and questions to savvy Board members, please arrange for a resume to be sent to client0601@financialinterviewer.come-mail subject line: VP, Finance by June 28, 2021.   

Please see position details below. No agencies please.

Position Behaviours

*Have drive assertion and the ability to communicate with others in a logical manner. The senior leadership team consistently and regularly communicate effectively as a team and approach challenges collaboratively.
*The business is uniquely structured and the VP, Finance will need to invest time and energy to learn the business, about the other senior leadership team members and the Board members and the Finance and IT staff .
*Work hands-on to ensure the accuracy of the detailed, monthly, Board reporting package. The Board relies on the integrity of the information presented by VP, Finance on behalf of the President to ensure an accurate and full picture of the business and the confidential future business plans.
*Always share information with the President regarding project status, issues that arise and when scheduled and informal banking and other key supplier relationship meetings are scheduled. The VP, Finance position behaves as a trusted advisor to the President.
*Within a fast moving, dynamic and/or entrepreneur-like environment, be prepared to respectfully meet periodic opposition and/or resistance to ideas and pressure others when deadlines have to be met.
*Provide leadership, support and guidance to the Accounting Manager, the Business/Project Analyst and the IT Manager – the direct reports. Be objective and help configure IT and Finance for the next 10-15 years by developing and maintaining the appropriate structure for each department.
*Ask and listen first and have a friendly approach and the ability to influence and persuade others.
*Be a self-starter, competitive, imaginative, enthusiastic, self-confident without being arrogant or overbearing, inspiring, logical, systematic and precise.
*Bring focus and drive to achieve targets, budgets, deadlines and results.
*Set clear objectives, monitor progress, takes corrective action and controls performance levels.
*Make decisions as appropriate to the role while at the same time ensuring others do likewise.
*Focus on results and willingly tackle problems or conflicts which threaten their achievement. 
*Facilitate change gradually in order to help maintain the people-first, family-like, culture. 
*Lead, encourage, train and support others in order for them to meet work objectives.
*Meet people with ease and motivate them to seek opportunities and achieve high standards.
*Personally work to a high specification in order to improve and maintain quality.
*Apply a systematic and logical approach in order to get things right.
*Bring a sense of urgency to situations, demonstrate an active approach and be willing to get involved in order to increase the pace and achieve goals and objectives.
*Bring and maintain impeccable analytical and reporting skills utilizing the ERP, the Dynac report writer software and Microsoft Excel.
*Actively and effectively assess the skills of and manage, supervise, train, encourage, support and lead the Finance and Project Analysis staff and the IT Manager.
*Communicate effectively (oral & written English) and, through example and expertise, help create and/or ensure a participative and involved work and team atmosphere. 
*Act as the primary lender liaison and meet all reporting requirements of lenders under the lending agreement covenant provisions. Maintain timely and accurate ongoing communications and information exchanges with the primary lenders.
*Form and maintain positive business relationships with the President, the Board, staff and suppliers (the banks in particular), always acting as a hard working example for the team. 
*Behave ethically while maintaining the business’ core philosophy. And, work in cooperation with HR and the President to help ensure the continuation of positive employee relations.
*Maintain confidentiality of pertinent data. Always protect operations by keeping financial information and business plans confidential.
*Proactively identify financial risks and opportunities and ensure that internal control mechanisms are in place and reviewed on a regular basis.
*Always be honest, ethical, up-front and respectful during all verbal and written communications with everyone inside and outside the organization.

Position Responsibilities

Upon arrival, analyze and evaluate existing financial reporting, product costing/cost accounting, Metric/K.P.I. reporting and internal control processes and begin to assume autonomous responsibility and accountability for the financial functions and the detailed, monthly, reporting for the Board. The Board is accustomed to receiving a very detailed reporting package and the VP, Finance answers their questions during the monthly Board meetings.

Work with HR to complete the process of hiring new Finance staff and then assist the Accounting Manager to bring the new staff up-to-speed within approximately 60-90 days of their start dates. The training goal is to have each new hire hit their stride by approximately the six months mark.

Meet with the former VP, Finance, discuss the successes and opportunities for greater efficiencies for IT and Finance and then do the same with the IT Manager and the Accounting Manager. Listen, learn, think things through and involve the direct reports and their staff in establishing any change plans. The VP, Finance has overall responsible for a total of approximately 15 people. That number shall grow as the business expansion plan is prepared for and realized. 

Meet regularly with direct reports and provide coaching and feedback and facilitate personal development and training plans for them. 

Within 30-60 days, learn the fundamentals of the company’s ERP system and the Dynac report writing software, conclude the diagnosis of current financial structures and procedures and make a concise, prioritized, report which explains any improvement plans. Discuss findings with the President and simultaneously gain his perspective regarding how best to implement any agreed upon changes within the people-first culture. An immediate goal is to establish and maintain a relationship and credibility with the Board.

Become an active participate in the IT leadership and management process by helping the IT Manager to guide, prioritize and monitor the IT functions as per the IT Service Delivery Plan. Collaborate with the senior leadership team and refine the IT Service Delivery Plan and guide the IT Manager so his team’s focus is prioritized according to the long-term business and growth needs of the business. IT knows the technical side and the VP, Finance’s leadership role is to help bridge the gap between the IT risks to the business and relaying the senior leadership team’s long term plans so direction, prioritization and effective personnel plans can be executed by the IT Manager. 

Under the supervision of the President, while working cooperatively with the Accounting Manager and the outside foreign exchange service provider, perform US currency exchange analysis and actions – always working in the best interests of the business. Euro currency exchange activities will also likely be required when new production equipment is purchased from Europe.

With 60-90 days, define and establish a Project Analysis & Planning position to actively analyze new projects and build proper cost/benefit business cases to assist the VP, Finance in prioritizing and focusing the IT team’s efforts. This new, direct report, position will also help all members of the senior leadership team to produce the analytical, factual, backup information for their new project business decisions. The purpose is to help ensure fiscal responsibility for all new projects – companywide. 

Within 90 days, be well integrated within the senior leadership team, become an integral part of the business expansion project and start to contribute to the larger strategic planning.

Work in cooperation with the former VP, Finance and build upon the existing project planning to refine and formalize the banking and/or banking syndicate options for the future expansion project.

Listen to and communicate with the other members of the senior leadership team to effectively budget out all of their project’s costs associated with the major expansion and present the detailed, consolidated, plan to President for discussion purposes. Once that plan is approved by the President, present the fully budgeted plan to the Board’s Financing Committee for discussion purposes and eventually present it to the entire Board. 

After 90 days, start to form positive business relationships with the current lenders and begin to bring new financing (banking syndicate) relationship options to the table. 

Proactively maintain effective, ongoing, communication and information exchanges with the primary lenders and meet their reporting requirements under the lending agreement covenant provisions. 

Despite their long list of current projects, system upgrades and program modifications, continue to motivate IT to look for innovative technologies and next step solutions.

At approximately 120 days, start developing and/or refining the KPI and related to operations reporting so the newly implemented production module not only captures quality data but makes for even more excellent reporting.

Within approximate 150 days, while continuing to learn about the business, become a trusted right-hand to the President regarding strategy development – from the financial perspective.

After approximately 180 days, utilizing a shepherding leadership style, prioritize the completion of the new production module’s staff training prior to moving IT’s focus onto the next-in-priority project(s).  

Actively and effectively lead and supervise the production of the quarterly forecasts and, on an annual basis, lead the budget process. (The business is, and wishes to remain, more R.O.I. than budget driven).

In cooperation with staff, regularly monitor risk management policies and procedures to ensure that risks are minimized and external auditor recommendations are implemented. 

Oversee the management of all leases, contracts and other financial commitments.

By approximately 210 – 240 days, utilizing existing and new banking relationships, obtain funding to cover the initial portion of the costs associated with the major business expansion project.

Prior to 365 days, present the fully budgeted bank financing plan options to the entire Board for approval to proceed with their preferred direction. Engage with the bank(s) and lawyers to formally facilitate the process. 

Within, or soon after, approximately 365 days, keep learning more about the business and contributing during senior leadership team discussions regarding the overall business strategy and tactics. 

In cooperation with, and under the guidance of, the President, begin challenging all areas of the business to meet their commitments and find greater efficiency.

Act as the most senior financial professional contact for the outside accounting firm during their annual audit and corporate tax reporting procedures. (April year-end with full audit) 

Ensure that the fully implemented production module of the ERP system is fully running and providing the quality information required by the senior leadership team and the Board. 

Other tasks and projects required of an energetic VP, Finance consistently looking to add value while working cooperatively and collaboratively within a positive, people-first, team environment.