Programs Finance Manager


WaterAid’s vision is of a world where everyone has access to safe water and sanitation. Our mission is to transform lives by improving access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) in the world’s poorest communities. WaterAid works with partners to maximise its impacts for policy change/influence.              

WaterAid works through supporting local organisations and government authorities to design and demonstrate appropriate and sustainable WASH programs. WaterAid also seeks to influence policy change through government and other key sector actors to secure and protect the right of poor people to safe, affordable water and sanitation services.

Everything we do is shaped by our six values:

  • Integrity
  • Respect
  • Collaboration
  • Courage
  • Accountability
  • Innovation

WaterAid is a child safe organisation. We recognise that we must meet community expectations and the trust placed in our personnel to maintain the highest standards of conduct with children. Therefore, all positions within WaterAid are required to comply with our Child Safeguarding Policy and Code of Conduct.

WaterAid is committed to protection from sexual exploitation and abuse in everything we do. The values and standards we uphold are highlighted in our Global Code of Conduct. All positions within WaterAid are required to comply with our Global Code of Conduct.

WaterAid passionately believes everyone in the organisation has a role to play in innovation, encourages curiosity about the world and empowering everyone to take action. We recognise that both big and small changes can have positive impacts on our roles, our team and our mission.

Position Summary

The Programs Finance Manager will be responsible for managing Policy and Programs financial systems and reporting under the direction of the Director of Finance & IT and with an informal reporting line to the Director of Policy & Programs.

The Programs Finance Manager will manage the Melbourne based Programs Finance Team and work closely with the Head of Program Operations.

The Country Programs Operations Managers/Directors will have an informal reporting line to the Programs Finance Manager. This means that the Country Directors will coordinate with the Programs Finance Manager to conduct the performance review of the Country Programs Operation Managers/Directors when performing appraisals.

Key Performance Areas/Accountabilities

Leadership and Management

  • Contribute to OSS’s business plans and objectives.
  • Lead the program finance reporting and budgeting process (including month-end, quarterly and year-end processes, budgeting and reforecasting) for programs and country programs and ensure the OSS team meets agreed deadlines and deliverables
  • Represent WA Australia on international finance forums and issues
  • Lead the WA Australia internal audit program
  • Lead the WA Country programs in monitoring the audit findings of external audit and internal audit
  • Coordinate and support finance planning and strategy across Country Programs.
  • Mentor Operation Managers/Directors in country programs on operational team strategy, planning and structure.

Staff Supervision and Training

  • Manage, train and supervise the Programs Accountant and Finance Officer, to ensure the Programs Finance team performs all necessary duties
  • Ensure Programs Accountant and Finance Officer perform all duties to comply with the Finance Policy, the role’s Position Description and Duty Statement
  • Guide and support the professional development of the Programs Accountant and Finance Officer
  • Support with recruitment of finance staff in country programs
  • Together with Country Director, conduct  performance reviews for Operation Managers/Directors.
  • Advise and support Country Director on country program financial position and issues, operational team structure and performance, quarterly assurance on fraud cases and audit recommendations.
  • Build WaterAid staff and WaterAid partners’ financial management capacity in Australia and Country Programs via training and mentoring

Financial Accounting

  • Ensure the accuracy, timeliness and completeness of program financial accounting, essential to the preparation of reports for decision making.
  • Ensure completion of monthly program financial accounting within agreed deadlines, (up to and including general ledger reconciliations)
  • Ensure completion of budgeting and quarterly forecasting for the Policy and Programs team and Country Program teamswithin agreed deadlines.
  • Ensure best-practice budgeting and forecasting techniques are implemented in accordance with parameters
  • Ensure that all processes outlined in the Finance Policy are followed accurately and bring any discrepancies to the attention of the Director of Finance & IT
  • Manage the cost recovery policies, processes and reporting

Financial Review

  • Supervise the monthly/quarterly/year-end reporting process to monitor and provide guidance to Program Finance teams and Operation Managers/Director to ensure finance data are consolidated correct and accurate
  • Lead the quarterly report review and analysis process for the Policy and Programs team and Country Program teamson finance reporting and grant reporting
  • Review of consolidated management reports
  • Coordinate with Program Operations Team to ensure  WaterAid grant cost recovery is up to date and maximised

Management Accounting

  • Compile donor reporting and acquittals for Australian managed projects
  • Consolidate financial reporting of Policy and Program team and Country Programs teams
  • Coordinate and support Country Programs on quarterly assurance activities on fraud cases, audit findings and OH&S register.
  • Prepare FARM reports to update on fraud cases, implementation of audit recommendations and Country Program assurance program.
  • Prepare FARM reports on Country Program financial performance (with on going innovation in method of reporting that ensures its effectiveness and efficiency).
  • Review balance sheet accounts and process month-end journals for grant matching and grant reconciliation activities

Audit & Compliance

  • Ensure that Country Programs’ financial systems are compliant with the ACFID Code of Conduct and DFAT Accreditation requirements
  • Lead the programs finance segments for all DFAT, ACFID, WaterAid accreditation and other membership and external audits
  • Conduct internal audits for WA Australian managed Country Programs with WaterAid Internal Audit Department and coordinate the external audit in Country Programs and grants audit when it’s required by donors.
  • Coordinate and provide support to the focal point in Country Programs to ensure  anti-terrorism controls and fraud control processes are monitored and followed.
  • Coordinate the WaterAid Australia management of fraud incidents and liaise with relevant staff, donors and WAi Audit team.
  • Lead preparation, review and implementation of WaterAid program finance and admininstration policies and procedures

Systems Improvement

  • Work closely with and support the Country Finance Managers to ensure that Country Programs’ financial systems, controls and reporting are robust and fit for purpose
  • Coordinate with Global finance team to explore new systems and process improvements. Lead the implementation of new business systems or improvements, reporting and processes in Country Programs.

Other responsibilities

  • Assist with OSS ongoing projects
  • Provide finance system training to Melbourne staff and finance staff in-country
  • Other duties as required.


Qualification, Skills & Attributes (Key Capabilities/Selection Criteria)



  • Minimum 7 years’ experience in accounting/finance
  • Staff supervision experience


  • Degree in commerce (accounting) or equivalent
  • CA or CPA qualified or equivalent post graduate studies

Knowledge and Skills

  • Excellent communication skills (written and verbal)
  • Strong analytical problem-solving skills
  • Strong approach to internal controls and systems improvement
  • Advanced Microsoft Office skills – especially Excel
  • Knowledge or experience of business information and reporting systems
  • Strong working knowledge of ACFID Code of Conduct and DFAT Accreditation standards
  • Strong Understanding of finances systems in Country Program contexts

Personal qualities

  • Self-motivated, ability to work autonomously and to organise workload to meet demands
  • Reliable, with a strong sense of responsibility and work ethic
  • Attention to detail
  • A team player with the ability to build strong relationships with colleagues
  • Strong commitment to human development and poverty reduction and inclusive development
  • Working style that reflects WaterAid’s values of Respect, Accountability, Courage, Collaboration, Integrity and Innovation
  • Commitment to WaterAid’ values and standards of safety of children and protection from sexual exploitation and abuse in all our activities
  • Demonstrated understanding of gender equality and women’s empowerment including ethnic diversity and cultural sensitivity
  • Commitment to innovation, continuous improvement and openness to new ideas and growth.



  • Internal Auditor qualifications

Knowledge and skills

  • Experience with Sun Systems, Reckon Online, XERO Accounting Software and Power BI
  • Experience working with international teams
  • Experience working in the INGO sector

Physical Environment and Demands

Ergonomic work stations within an open plan office, standing desks, recreational area and flexible work environment, overseas travel.

Level of contact with children

During Country Program visits and volunteering activities.