Responding to COVID-19: insight, support and guidance

Head of Strategic Finance (Chief Accountant)

London Borough of Tower Hamlets; c.£80,000 per annum

The Best of London in One Borough

London has been moving east, and Tower Hamlets is now at its heart. We are the new East End that epitomises both the capital’s past and its future. With one of the fastest-growing populations in the UK, our economy has the third largest output in the UK with 291,000 employees. This, alongside our award-winning parks, international cultural destinations and world-class learning institutions makes Tower Hamlets one of the most popular places to live, work, study and play. We’re continuing to grow, and we want to improve our services and meet the current and future demands of the borough.

We have come a long way over the past few years. We are already winning awards, but our ambition is much greater than being good – we want to become a recognised leader in excellent public service and help improve more lives at a faster rate than ever before. It’s safe to say we’ve got masses of ambition, especially for our finance team.

We aim to create a brand new culture, improve our processes and inspire new and existing talent – that’s why we’ve recently restructured our finance function. We’re now looking for someone to lead and develop our financial accounting service and shape the department; a hugely exciting chance to breathe new life into the services and team. We’re looking for a highly resilient and ambitious individual to make a lasting difference.

This is an opportunity to join a well-resourced finance function and a successful local authority. Tower Hamlets has sizeable balances and reserves, plus an exciting capital programme that includes major plans for housebuilding. However, we need to strengthen our team to enable the successful delivery of our new strategic plan. Your expertise will be essential as the council undergoes large-scale transformation and responds to the challenges and opportunities post-COVID. As chief accountant, you and your team will have a critical role to play in our future.

We seek an experienced chief accountant with significant prior experience of closing the accounts and managing budgets of a local authority. You will have expert technical knowledge and will be able to tackle strategic financial management challenges as well as understand regulatory frameworks, capital strategy management and the collection fund; these will all be part of your expertise.

A CIPFA-qualified accountant with a proven track record, you will ensure that our accounts are closed accurately and efficiently. With the help of a sector-leading finance team, you’ll oversee the annual closure of accounts, consolidate regular reporting of financial performance and lead our capital accounting function. As well as being a source of motivation for your staff, you’ll be key to our capital strategy and the main contact for external audits. In short, you’ll be vital to our finance department and to the wider council, upholding the highest professional standards.   

We offer good rewards and a vibrant working environment in which to advance your skills and career and to expand your learning and development. From 2022, our team will be based in Whitechapel in smart, modern offices.

Join us and help make our borough a safer, cleaner and fairer place to live.

For further information and to apply please visit the Tower Hamlets website, where you will also find contact details of our retained consultants at Penna who are available for a confidential discussion.

Closing date: 9am on Monday 27 July 2020.