Vice President, Program Operations

Job Locations US-DC-Washington
Posted Date 1 month ago(10/27/2021 6:09 PM)
# of Openings
1

Overview

World Wildlife Fund-United States (WWF-US), one of the world’s leading environment organizations, seeks a Vice President, Program Operations to provide strategic and operational leadership to ensure WWF’s conservation program strategically deploys its financial and staffing resources, and that the systems underpinning these efforts are efficient and pragmatic.  Reporting to the Chief Financial Officer, the position also works in close coordination with the Chief Conservation Officer and Chief Operating Officer to oversee WWF’s programmatic budgeting and planning processes and coordinates the financial and operational adaptive management of WWF’s conservation program.

The VP, Program Operations coordinates with the Chief Conservation Officer, the VP, Conservation Program Management, and programmatic Senior Vice Presidents on annual and multi-year budgeting and planning processes.  The VP, Program Operations provides leadership and vision for a team that designs and deploys systems and business processes that support budgeting, management of incoming and outgoing grants and agreements, reporting, compliance, problem solving, and sub-recipient monitoring and the sound programmatic administration of WWF’s projects and program operations. 

As a representative of the organization, the VP, Program Operations builds and maintains effective partnerships with donors, partners, and staff at all levels of the organization.

 

Organizational Background

Founded in 1961, WWF is a network of non-governmental environment organizations, with 6,500 staff operating in more than 100 countries, some 6 million members, and 22 million Facebook and 14 million Twitter followers worldwide. WWF’s efforts are grounded in its work with local communities, businesses and governments and other actors to conserve and restore nature and secure sustainable development for people in priority places around the world. We also work extensively with major private and public institutions to reduce the impacts of climate change, infrastructure projects, unsustainable food production, and consumption on nature and people. In 2016, WWF launched a new global strategy to help the nations, states, and cities of the world achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, Paris Climate Agreement, and Convention on Biological Diversity. WWF works through strong country programs, linked through global practices, to drive local innovation and large-scale solutions that seek to safeguard nature and nature’s contribution to people.

WWF-US, the largest organization within the WWF global network, works with partners across the United States and other countries to advance the WWF mission. WWF-US plays a pivotal role driving conservation and development action in the broader WWF network, collaborating closely with WWF offices around the world. It also hosts the network’s Science and Markets programs and administers field offices in Latin America, Nepal, Bhutan, and Namibia. WWF-US has just over 1,000 staff located throughout its domestic and international offices, with 2021 total revenues and support of over $450 million. President and CEO Carter Roberts leads the Senior Management Team out of the WWF-US Washington, DC headquarters.

Responsibilities

Strategic Leadership 

  • Contribute to organizational strategy, driving growth and continuous improvement and innovation in the organization's systems and processes
  • Strive to create a best-in-class program budgeting, planning, and financial management operation, with strong grants management
  • Stay abreast and interpret evolving needs of the growing organization and act as a strategic partner to senior leadership in developing and implementing new approaches to large project management, including budgeting, execution and monitoring, and increased emphasis on subgrant management strategies
  • Develop and lead the execution of a long-term vision and strategy for resource allocation and grants management for the organization
  • Lead and mentor an experienced Program Operations team
  • Advise senior leadership on organizational development issues related to effective administration and operation of WWF-US managed programs and financial management

 

Conservation Program Budgeting and Financial Management

  • Hold responsibility for budgeting, financial management and oversight of the conservation program portfolio in excess of $180M
  • Direct annual and multi-year planning and budgeting in coordination with Chief Conservation Officer, Chief Financial Officer, VP of Conservation Program Management, VP Finance and, program SVPs to ensure appropriate allocation of resources to achieve program objectives
  • Oversee sound financial management of the programs through direct supervision and coordination of Program Administration team
  • Review budget performance and identifies and addresses emerging issues and risks
  • Direct formal periodic review process for all programs, including for WWF-US managed Country Offices
  • Together with the Chief Conservation Officer and the VP of Conservation Program Management, develop appropriate institutional procedures for managing the planning implementation and staff resourcing of complex conservation projects
  • Ensure coordination and flow of financial information between Program Operations, Finance and Conservation Program teams
  • Provide guidance and technical oversight to Senior Director Operations and Finance of US managed country offices regarding budgeting and financial reporting

 

Compliance & Risk Management

  • Ensure implementation of appropriate internal controls and financial procedures that effectively minimize risk to WWF
  • Identify, manage and monitor grant financial risks and develop appropriate mitigation strategies
  • Ensure compliance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), internal controls, established policies and procedures

 

Grant Management & International Accounting

  • Develop, manage, and oversee the full range of incoming grants management activities and practices across the organization to best support the program team, grantees, and overall WWF’s operations. This includes grant processing, compliance and risk management, data management, and ownership of the organizations' technology/systems tools
  • Oversee all aspects of pre-and post-award grant activities, including supervising and mentoring staff responsible for these activities
  • Direct government (e.g., US Government, Sweden, UK, multi-lateral donors, etc.) and Network contractual and financial compliance (pre-and post-award), including timely donor report submission
  • Support compliance with grantmaking policies and procedures for the organization to ensure adherence to all donor requirements and alignment with the organization's best interests
  • Continually improve and streamline grantmaking procedures and lead on the provision of training to staff and support of grantees as required, striving to reduce grant processing time
  • Ensure all US government reporting, including Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards (SEFA), is complete, accurate and prepared in a timely manner
  • Stay informed of trends, best practices, and activities in the philanthropic sector and among peer funders
  • Ensure grant management systems (Smart Simple and Adaptive Insights) are effectively utilized and staff are equipped to maximize the potential of the systems
  • Ensure monthly financial exports (Sage) from country offices are consolidated in the HQ system (Workday) in a timely and consistent basis. Ensure all country office ledgers and inter-company accounts are reconciled and up to date
  • Promote a culture of high performance, continuous improvement, and exceptional customer support
  • Perform other duties as assigned to contribute to the successful achievement of WWF’s activities, programs, and mission

Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, Finance or equivalent experience; CPA preferred
  • 15 years of senior level accounting/financial experience with non-profit organizations
  • Experience with Government grant and contract management, including Single Audit
  • Knowledge of GAAP accounting rules, nonprofit accounting, including fund and grant accounting, donor compliance, and reporting strongly desired
  • Experience using accounting and financial software applications, databases, and expertise in Excel
  • Outstanding quantitative and analytical skills
  • Proven experience in strategic planning, budgeting, priority setting, resource allocation, facilitation of meetings, and execution of projects and systems within a complex organization
  • Reliability and excellent organization skills
  • Demonstrated leadership and managerial competencies and a proven track record in managing large, complex programs and long-term efforts ideally within a philanthropic organization
  • Passionate about systems and process improvement, customer service, data analytics, process documentation, and training
  • The ability to implement strategic vision and manage change.
  • Demonstrated success as an inspirational manager who has successfully motivated staff to achieve and sustain excellence and supported institutional priorities and vision
  • Team player who is energetic, forward thinking, and a creative problem solver
  • Ability to work under pressure, manage team workload, prioritize projects, meet deadlines, and maintain a sense of humor within a changing fast-paced environment
  • Exceptional interpersonal and relationship-building competencies coupled with strong written and verbal communication skills
  • Oral and written English fluency is required. Proficiency in Spanish desired
  • Committed to building and strengthening a culture of inclusion within and across teams
  • Identifies and aligns with WWF’s core values: Courage, Integrity, Respect, and Collaboration:
    • Demonstrates courage by speaking up even when it is difficult, or unpopular
    • Builds trust with colleagues by acting with integrity, owning mistakes, and holding oneself accountable
    • Welcomes other points of view and ideas, recognizing and embracing different and contrary perspectives with kindness, curiosity, and encouragement
    • Makes conscious efforts to promote cooperative practices, behaviors, and ways of working across many groups and individuals

 

Location

The position will be located at WWF’s US headquarters in Washington, DC.

 

WWF-US is partnering with the executive search firm Perrett Laver on this appointment. To apply, please submit a CV and covering letter, detailing how you fulfil the role description and personal specification to https://candidates.perrettlaver.com/vacancies/ quoting reference 5472. The deadline for applications is November 29, 2021.

 

As an EOE/AA employer, WWF will not discriminate in its employment practices due to an applicant’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, disability, or protected Veteran status. WWF values diversity and inclusion and welcomes diverse candidates to apply.

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