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Accounting Director

Mission of the role: The Accounting Director supports GSL by bringing a deep understanding of nonprofit, US-based accounting to the team. They are responsible for GSL’s day-to-day financial transactions, as well as developing, implementing, and ensuring compliance with financial policies and procedures consistent with generally accepted accounting principles. The Accounting Director is responsible for maintaining and continuously improving systems for financial controls and efficiency, including fund accounting, financial reporting, fiscal grant management, tax compliance, banking, payroll, and benefits.

This role will be a critical member of the Strategy and Operations team. The part-time Accounting Director reports to the Chief of Strategy and Operations. This team is responsible for establishing the conditions needed for the strategy of GSL to be carried out by developing systems, structures, and processes for the organization. The Strategy and Operations team ensures that work can be performed smoothly and successfully, providing as-needed, project-based support to other team members.

We are looking for an individual skilled in cross-functional financial leadership in the nonprofit sector to join our team as a part-time accounting director. In this role, you will:

  • Provide accounting and financial leadership: oversee accounts and lead on all aspects of the monthly financial close process, ensuring accuracy and timeliness in reporting to support effective program implementation
  • Contribute to the successful implementation of accounting and reporting systems across a global organization: streamline financial and operational processes in partnership with the Special Projects Manager to enhance and better integrate Finance, HR, IT, and Contracting functions
  • Ensure GSL is meeting statutory and regulatory requirements: lead GSL’s annual audit, funder audits, and filing of the IRS Form 990, with flawless results
  • Own the funder financial reporting cycle: manage deadlines, tracking and reporting requirements from the proposal process to report submission

The position is remote and can be based anywhere, but the employee must have experience with US nonprofit accounting. This is a part-time, contract position. We expect this role to require 15-20 hours/week.

Your first year will be a success if you: 

Accounting and Financial Leadership

  • Lead and manage the financial close process (monthly, quarterly, and year-end), and maintain accurate and up-to-date financial records for all transactions, receipts, disbursements, journal entries, accruals, and completion of account reconciliations in compliance with GAAP. This includes collaborating with the rest of the team to review and reconcile the budget to actual activity, addressing variances, and creating opportunities for efficiencies. 
  • Prepare financial reports and analyses on a monthly basis providing comprehensive insights into the organization’s financial operations for internal and external stakeholders, including but not limited to the leadership team, funders, and Board of Directors

Accounting Systems Management

  • Lead and manage the organization's internal financial systems, ensuring their efficiency, accuracy, and compliance with accounting standards. 
  • Manage fiscal cross-functional business processes including payroll processing (JustWorks and Remofirst), customer invoicing (Bill.com), vendor payments (Quickbooks Online), and employee expense reimbursements (Bill.com). This includes generating detailed custom reports in Quickbooks and Google Sheets for team leads, offering valuable financial awareness and training  to support informed decision-making across the organization
  • Oversee the global credit card program (Divvy), including monitoring budgets and transactions, reconciling expenses, and enforcing policy adherence in partnership with the COO.

Compliance & Taxes

  • Organize and oversee the organization's annual audit, ensuring a smooth process, addressing any queries or issues that may arise and ultimately achieving a successful and clean audit outcome
  • Manage the preparation and timely filing of the annual IRS Tax Form 990 and the timely dissemination of 1099 forms, ensuring accuracy and completeness of financial information presented 

Grant Management

  • Serve as the main contact for grant-based audits requested by funders and regulatory bodies; work closely with relevant stakeholders to gather financial data and supporting documents as required
  • Lead and coordinate all financial aspects of grant management for the organization, ensuring adherence to funder requirements, timelines, and deliverables
  • Provide financial analysis and updates to program managers and the leadership team, ensuring effective communication and decision-making as related to grant-funded initiatives

In addition, we are looking for candidates to have the following qualifications

Required Qualifications (we will use these in our screening process)

  • Certified Public Accountant (US CPA license)
  • Comprehensive knowledge of US nonprofit accounting principles (US GAAP), regulations, reporting requirements, and the ability to implement and maintain effective internal controls
  • 11+ years of progressive experience in accounting and financial management 
  • Experience working within a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, managing grants, and fulfilling funder reporting guidelines and audit requirements
  • Experience in managing an organization's annual audit and IRS Tax Form 990 process
  • Fluency in written and spoken English

Preferred Qualifications (these will not be used for screening purposes; if you feel you have some but not all of these, you are still encouraged to apply)

  • Bachelor's Degree in Accounting, Business Administration, or other related education
  • Experience working with organizations with an annual budget of $2-3 million
  • Proficiency in managing internal accounting systems and processes, including managing the monthly close process, building comprehensive financial reports, and preparing accurate financial statements
  • Strong communicator and presenter with both internal and external stakeholders
  • Proficiency in the use of Quickbooks Online and other cloud-based platforms
  • Ability to demonstrate experience with small, scaling teams, thriving in dynamic remote environments
  • Proficient in handling the financial complexities of global organizations

The Life of an Accounting Manager

What your day looks like

  • You’ll coordinate with the other members of the Strategy and Operations team to implement GSL policies.
  • Teamwide meetings generally occur between 11 am UTC and 2 pm UTC, with individual or small group meetings occurring before or after depending on time zones.
  • Apart from meetings, you can work whenever is best for you (early morning, late evening, weekends). You will work around 15–20 hours each week.
  • You will work with your manager to determine priorities each week, but no one will be regularly checking on you. You will need to manage your time and balance multiple priorities on your own.
  • You will work with the bookkeeper and the COO to develop a monthly calendar for all financial transactions, with attention to important funder deadlines and reporting deadlines, including the audit.
  • You will have regular meetings with the bookkeeper and COO, monthly meetings with the CEO, and will join team meetings as necessary. 

Who your manager is

  • Avni Gupta-Kagan, interim Chief of Strategy and Operations
  • Avni has been at GSL since 2020 and has a background in school leadership, curriculum and program development, and has been focused on building out GSL’s systems for rapid growth.
  • As a manager, Avni balances providing support and stepping back to allow for autonomy, working to make sure her direct reports have what they need to be successful, and then letting them carry out their work creatively and using their expertise. 

What is rewarding about the role

  • You will work alongside a kind, compassionate, and hardworking team.
  • Your voice will matter — you will have opportunities to lead and take part in decisions.
  • You will make sure that we are in good financial standing so that GSL can continue building knowledge around issues like gender-inclusive education and education in emergencies, improving conditions for students who are most marginalized.
  • You will have lots of flexibility in how, when, and where you work.

What is challenging about the role

  • This is not a 9–5 job. Based in the US, you will likely have early morning calls (5 am is the earliest).
  • It can be lonely working in a remote space across many time zones. 
  • The work is fast-paced and requires juggling many projects at the same time.

Work Location and Remuneration

The candidate can be based in any country but must have experience in US nonprofit work. The candidate must have work authorization in their place of residence as GSL is not able to sponsor employment visas. Salary and title are commensurate with experience and competitive with the nonprofit education sector in the country in which candidates are based. Given the part-time nature of this work, we will work with you to determine whether a monthly pay structure or an hourly structure would be preferable. The budget for this work is between $35K-$45K USD. You will be hired as a long-term contractor for GSL. 

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