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Financial Accountant

Massey University | Posted 8-12-2020

Wanganui (Banking and Insurance)

Job description:

Financial Accountant

Position Purpose The purpose of this position is to contribute towards the financial
accounting systems and external reporting for Massey University
and its controlled entities (the Group) as a part of the Financial
Reporting team:

  • To maintain internal accounting and information systems for the Group
and produce accurate and timely financial reports.

  • To manage the fixed asset register
  • To ensure all the Group’s tax obligations are met in full and on time
  • To assist in the completion of year end processes and the development
of the annual financial statements, including support of external audit
  • To assist in the development and provision of financial literacy training
within the Group
  • To identify and drive continuous improvement and value-added

Department: Financial Reporting, Finance and Technology
Location: Palmerston North Campus

Reports to: Financial Reporting Manager
Responsible for: Nil
Delegations: Nil
Job Title: Accountant - General

Key relationships:

Finance team

Tech one users
Business Managers
Key management staff within Massey University’s controlled entities

Inland Revenue Department
External Auditor
Banks, auditors & financial advisors for assigned controlled entities.

Context: We are a world-leading university in many academic disciplines and fields
of research. Our point of difference is research that is connected to
Massey University community and industry. Our researchers are developing expertise and
skills to advance human knowledge and understanding. Working together
across disciplines and locations, we solve national and global problems
through fundamental, applied and interdisciplinary research, while
culturally and artistically enriching our world.
We are deeply committed to being a Tiriti-led university, demonstrating

authentic leadership in contemporary Aotearoa New Zealand as we


uphold Te Tiriti o Waitangi, the founding document of our nation, and its
principles through our practice. We embrace this not just as an obligation
but as a real opportunity for the nation and its people.
Our educators are preparing a new generation of global leaders. Our

students are diverse and are attracted to Massey because they want to

achieve their personal goals or make their mark in the world. They

experience world-class learning that recognises their intellectual and

cultural strengths, expands their horizons and prepares them to

contribute to a rapidly transforming world with skills, critical and creative

thinking and leadership.

We will be renowned for our passion and caring attitude. All Massey

campuses will be innovation ecosystems, acting as magnets for smart

enterprises. Wherever we are, we will operate in partnerships founded on

respect, trust and mutual benefit. Massey is not only defined by what we

do, but by how we do it.

The Financial Reporting team are responsible for: the management and

About this department operations of the Group’s General Ledger and its subsidiary ledgers,
including project and research accounts; taxation for all entities within the
Group; maintenance of the Fixed Asset Register; preparation of external
financial statements and other external financial returns, liaison with
external audit, and the provision of financial support to the Groups
subsidiaries and other controlled entities.

Massey core capabilities

At Massey we are Tiriti-led, upholding Te Tiriti o Waitangi principles through our practice, We:

  • Demonstrate awareness Of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and its contribution to Aotearoa New Zealand


  • Understand the relevance of Te Tiriti o Waitangi in relation to the work of the University and

the people we serve.

  • Embracing Te Reo in relevant and practical ways in our work place interactions and

engagement with external stakeholders, giving expression to Tikanga Mäori and protocols

that demonstrates that we respect and value Maori conventions in appropriate settings.

At Massey we work together with mutual respect and caring. We:

  • Act with integrity and trustworthiness and give credit to others for the work they do.
  • Work cooperatively and inter-dependently to foster and promote the One University approach
  • Share knowledge and communicate professionally with courtesy and mutual respect.
  • Are ethical in all transactions, working within the parameters of our policies and procedures.
  • Are direct, truthful and maintain confidentiality.
  • Seek to understand and appreciate our differences.
  • Are ethical in all transactions, working within the parameters of our policies and procedures.
  • Are direct, truthful and maintain confidentiality.
  • Seek to understand and appreciate our differences
  • Keep ourselves and others safe; work together to embrace with the University's health, safety

and wellbeing policies, procedures and programmes; display commitment by actively

supporting all safety and wellbeing initiatives: and by actively engaging in health and safety

improvement opportunities.

At Massey we are future-focused, results- oriented and strive for excellence. We:


  • Take ownership and responsibility for delivering results to support achievement of
  • University objectives.
  • Provide the best quality services to our customers (internal and external) ensuring our

students/ stakeholders are at the heart of everything we do.

  • Deliver or support world-class research, teaching and learning and citizenship.
  • Take personal responsibility for our performance, take pride in doing our job well, and commit

to ongoing personal and professional development

  • Are motivated and create a positive working environment where our values are reinforced.
  • Anticipate and respond with agility and resilience to the changing needs of the University and

the communities we serve.

  • Seek ways to improve our services to deliver in an efficient and effective way.
  • Embrace technology and apply this innovatively to better meet the needs of those we serve.
  • Challenge ourselves to reach our potential and help bring out the best in others.
  • Understand how what we do contributes to the objectives of the University.


Maintenance and • Ensure completion of general ledger month end processes within
control of the agreed timelines.
Group’s general and • Maintain the asset register for the University, including capitalisation
subsidiary ledgers. and disposal of assets on a timely basis. This will include periodic

reviews, audits, and stocktakes of the asset register.
  • Prepare regular, and year end, reconciliations of fixed asset accounts,

including depreciation, between the GL and the fixed asset register.

  • Update the fixed asset register with the latest valuations and assist
the insurance officer with valuations for insurance purpose.

Provide technical • Research and answer technical accounting queries when required.
support within area • Assist with the preparation and delivery of finance training sessions
of responsibility for University staff.

  • Provide backup support to the financial reporting team as and when
  • Identify areas of improvement to business processes and practices.
  • Train and supervise other staff members as required.
  • Other duties as required by the Financial Reporting Manager.

Provision of financial • Manage financial records of the Group’s controlled entities, including:
accounting support o processing of transactions;
to Massey o preparation of monthly financials, forecasts, and board reports;
Universities o completion of all tax returns as required;
controlled entities. o preparation of annual budgets and statement of corporate intent;

o preparation of annual reports, and external returns;
o ad-hoc support to management teams.

Taxation Support • Ensure all Group taxation obligations are met in full on time.

  • Provide cover for all taxation related tasks within the financial
reporting team.

Preparation of • Assist in the completion of the annual financial statements, including
external reports. notes to the accounts and statement of service performance where

  • Oversee completion of all annual reconciliations, schedules and

working papers

  • Provide support to external audit with year-end queries.


Qualifications and Experience

Qualifications: A tertiary qualification in Accounting or Finance

Experience: • 3-5 years’ experience in financial accounting in a large organisation,
including accounting for subsidiaries and consolidation.

  • Technology One experience would be an advantage.
  • Experience in fixed asset accounting and taxation is highly desired.

Professional • Membership of a recognised accounting body is highly desired.

Capabilities: Behavioural

Accuracy and Attention to • Processes large amounts of detailed information with good
Detail accuracy.

  • Utilises specific approaches and tools for checking and cross-

checking outputs.

  • Develops and uses checklists to insure that information goes
out error-free.
  • Accurately gauges the impact and cost of errors, omissions,
and oversights.
  • Learns from mistakes and applies lessons learned.
Communication • Written and oral communications that produces clear and

complete communication for stakeholders

  • Analyses audiences to understand their composition and
  • Recognises which communications need to be formalised to
provide clarity, including when escalation is required.
  • Confirms understanding by restating others' positions.
  • Adapts listening and facilitation styles to others'

communication styles.
Continuous Transformation

  • Implements new systems, procedures and tools efficiently
Essential when changes occur in the work environment.
  • Adjusts current working processes or adopts new approaches
in response to changes in the business environment.
  • Seeks challenging opportunities or assignments to grow and
develop one's own knowledge, skills and abilities.
  • Explains lessons or experiences learned from mistakes and
failures as well as successes.
  • Communicates and analyses assumptions about a particular
issue with colleagues to gain new perspectives or more
effective solutions.


Interpersonal Relationships • Works with key stakeholders internally and externally. Applies

Essential confidentiality when required.

  • Adapts interaction style appropriate to different situations and
  • Identifies roles and responsibilities for self and others.
  • Demonstrates an understanding of alternative points of view.
  • Explains impact of interactions with individuals and groups.
Results Orientation • Maintains focus on critical work standards and expectations.
  • Able to track and complete agreed work in planned


  • Takes responsibility for escalating issues that impact on
planned work and outcomes.
  • Documents how results were obtained to support knowledge
transfer and best practices.
  • Helps others drive tasks to completion as appropriate.
Service Excellence • Provides direct service to internal or external stakeholders
  • Provides a quality of service that stakeholders describe as


  • Able to respond to common stakeholder queries and
problems or escalate if required.
  • Responds to unexpected stakeholder requests with a sense
of urgency and positive action.
  • Provides a level of customer centric service excellence that
contributes to the departments objectives.

Capabilities: Technical

Priority Setting • Performs at least 2-3 concurrent activities without reducing

• Completes current work according to assigned priorities.

  • Recognises changing demands and priorities; validates
changes with management.
  • Responds to day-to-day operational priorities while still
making progress on project work.
  • Obtains information about how current assignments contribute
to organisational goals.

Problem Solving • Uses fact-finding techniques and diagnostic tools to identify

• Identifies and documents specific problems and resolution


  • Uses initiative to develop alternative techniques for assessing
accuracy and relevance of information.
  • Helps to analyse risks and benefits of alternative approaches
and obtain decision on resolution.
  • Examines a specific problem and understands the perspective
of each involved stakeholder.

Information Capture • Fulfils routine information capture needs in own area with
accuracy, efficiency and attention to detail.

• Follows defined procedures to document all routine


  • Identifies relevant established standards, policies and
  • Cites examples of different types of relevant information that
need to be captured.


  • Uses automated tools to capture, organise and archive
relevant information

Finance and Accounting • Uses finance and accounting systems, procedures and

• Resolves questions about finance and accounting policies

and practices.

  • Works with general ledger accounts.
  • Differentiates between capital investments and expenses.
Interprets profit and loss statements, balance sheets and
financial forecasts.

Customer Service • Ensures identification of customer needs and priorities.
Management • Able to advise of issue escalation process for unresolved


  • Facilitates the resolution of customer queries, issues, or
  • Updates appropriate database with information required to
provide best ongoing service

Data Administration • Identifies and updates processes / systems with data required
for the department

• Assists in the design and construction of data resources

within the department.

  • Performs basic tasks applying data administration tools and
  • Examines the quality, compatibility and stability of the
department's data resources.

Document Management • Checks documents thoroughly according to standard
processes and procedures.

• Follows security and version management guidelines and


  • Creates, stores, retrieves and archives electronic documents
and information.
  • Uses software tools and technologies for document
  • Tracks document management's existing issues and best

Financial Analysis • Works with a specific financial analysis tool set.

  • Utilises basic qualitative and quantitative tools and techniques
Essential with proficiency.
  • Provides valid financial analysis aligned with key criteria.
  • Prepares and interprets financial statements / reports for key
  • Works with stakeholders as a finance processes and
administration resource, providing information and advice.

Financial Reporting • Able to build reports providing a financial overview of the
applicable area.

• Implements organisational methods and procedures for

financial report writing.

  • Monitors compliance with organisational standards for
financial report writing.
  • Analyses errors or inaccuracies in financial reports.


General Computer Proficiency • Ability to learn and use core Massey University systems

  • Technology/Digital Literacy • Proficient in the use of Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook and


  • Developing proficiency in the use of SharePoint (Create new,
open, edit, save)
  • Performs file management tasks such as folder management
and controlled document administration.

Pre-employment checks

checks: • Requirement to pass a Criminal and Traffic Convictions (Security)

Check performed by the Ministry of Justice.


  • Requirement to pass a Credit History Check performed by Veda
Advantage Personal Information Services Requirement to pass a
No Asset Procedure.
  • (NAP) Credit History Check performed through the Insolvency
and Trustee Service, Ministry of Business Innovation and