Operations Assistant, Financial and Grant Services

Apr 12, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
About The Unit: Since the founding of the University of Chicago in 1892, the departments of the Division of the Humanities at Chicago have set an international standard for humanistic inquiry. The Division's faculty consistently produces pioneering research in the study of language, literature, and culture. The Division of the Humanities comprises seventeen degreed programs, with about 800 students from around the world enrolled in our PhD, MFA, and MA programs. Our interdisciplinary centers and programs support faculty and student research interests that range from the civilization of the ancient Near East to the philosophy of mind, from computational linguistics to poetics, from film music to East Asian visual culture. The office of Financial and Grants Services within Humanities Administration specializes in providing consummate grants administration, payroll, procurement, and account management services.

Unit Job Summary: The Operations Assistant supports procurement, account administration, and the core administration for the Office of Financial and Grant Services and its team members within the Division of the Humanities. Processes various business expense requests (GEMS, BuySite, E-payments, Travel) including judging governing policies (divisional, University, IRS, and others), categorizing expenses, etc. Apply appropriate expense categorization and consider consequences of each categorization. Assists employees with reconciling expenses, determines overdue and/or charges not yet reconciled; serves as a delegate on faculty corporate cards; troubleshoots problems. Pays invoices using university systems . Trains and advises department staff on all procurement process systems and develops necessary documentation. Reviews documentation for compliance and troubleshoots as needed. Reviews account balances and confirms funding sources; completes security access forms. Keeps appropriate Wiki pages updated. Is the front face of the Office of Financial and Grant Services; oversees maintenance of office machines; orders office supplies; serves as an administrative back up to FGS team including providing transactional support as needed. Performs data analysis to reconcile charges on accounts and central reports; investigates transaction errors and takes necessary steps to make corrections. Solicits feedback from constituents and keeps Sr. Director informed. Works with Sr. Director to improve customer service and efficiency; conducts research related to procurement whether self-initiated or from Sr. Director; performs other duties as assigned. This is a 20-hour-per-week position with benefits and is off annually in November and December.

Unit Education: Bachelor's degree with at least two years of progressively responsible administrative and financial experience, or four years of progressively responsible administrative and financial experience required.

Unit Experience: Required: Experience working in an office environment, preferably in higher education or an enterprise associated with higher education. Experience working in office administration. Experience working with Microsoft Word, intermediate Microsoft Excel, relational databases, Microsoft Outlook, and Internet applications required Experience managing financial accounts Experience researching information. Experience procuring goods and services Experience working directly with faculty or high-level managers or executives providing exceptional customer service Preferred: Experience interpreting contract commitments accurately, concisely, and comprehensively strongly preferred Experience working in a higher education support capacity, particularly with faculty and students Experience working in a procurement capacity and knowledge of University of Chicago procurement systems Experience training others coupled with presentation skills

Unit Job Function Competencies: Required: Ability to learn new software programs or the University's financial programs such as Business Objects or FAS within a 30-day interval. Ability to compose original communications in English that are accurate and concise Ability to communicate knowledge of procurement practices / compliance clearly and succinctly with tact and courtesy to the constituents of the Division Ability to train others and conduct presentations Ability to be accurate, attentive to detail, and meet deadlines Ability to stay organized with a high-volume of paperwork, including filing with accuracy and efficiency, maintaining a clean office space and monitoring pending transactions Ability to work effectively with constant interruptions Ability to set goals and meet and/or exceed them, self-motivate, and take initiative Ability to recognize problems, effectively analyze and find solutions which bests resolves them Ability to work towards the success of the team, to cross-train, and to take on duties outside of his or her purview during peak times or times of transition. Ability to demonstrate a constant willingness to learn within a small office that covers a wide knowledge base and serves the entire Humanities Division. Ability to work flexible hours during high-volume periods Proficiency with Microsoft Word, intermediate Excel, standard email, and a capacity to learn new database/reporting software Ability to project a friendly and pleasant demeanor regardless of workload or other contingent circumstances to visitors. Ability to travel around campus. Ability to work pleasantly and skillfully with a diverse population such as with faculty, students, staff, and visitors who may be from other countries. Ability to understand the various roles of the position while performing all responsibilities with equal care and accuracy. Attention to detail; ability to recognize when to re-prioritize. Ability to work independently while also taking direction. Ability to be friendly, professional, helpful, attentive, tactful, and maintain poise. Ability to handle sensitive/confidential situations with absolute discretion. Preferred: Working knowledge of bookkeeping practices Working Knowledge of Business Objects and FileMaker Pro Ability to use PowerPoint Familiarity with the University of Chicago

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