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Assistant Director of Finance

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Position Summary

Reporting directly to the Senior Director of Finance of the School of the Arts (SoA), the Assistant Director of Finance assumes primary responsibility for the day-to-day management, review, and approval for purchasing, accounts payable, and cash receipts. Works closely with the Senior Director of Finance on overall budget and financial issues for the school, analyzes financial reports and helps to ensure expenditures are within budget to prevent overdrafts. Works closely with the Senior Director of Finance to create/enter/process all SoA and Lenfest OPTS budgets on a quarterly basis. Assists in the reconciliation of all SoA and Lenfest Center for the Arts budgets administered by the SoA Business Office. Assists the Senior Director of Finance and serves as the finance deputy as needed.

Applications without a cover letter will not be considered.



  • Responsible for day-to-day financial operations of the SoA Business Office, which includes Lenfest Center for the Arts; develop and implement workflow and tracking system for all financial transactions in the Business Office to ensure prompt processing of all items, including rush orders and emergency requests; be able to report at any stage in the payment process on the status of a payment request.
  • Ensure the integrity of all financial transactions including accounts payable, procurement, travel expenditures, petty cash, and reimbursement, and that all financial transactions are compliant with University and SoA policies and business rules
  • Authorize all routine purchases of supplies and equipment for all units. Review and approve payment of invoices, purchase orders, requisitions, expenditure corrections and journal entries for all programs of the School; manage issues to avoid/mitigate delays through Columbia University systems (ARC, FinSys, Concur, Onbase, etc.).
  • Manage SoA and Lenfest Center for the Arts initiation and requisition process for equipment leases and manages all external contract reviews with the central purchasing department for execution; manage payment process of such contracts.
  • Produce and analyze ad hoc ARC financial reports as needed; advise Directors of Academic Administration in four academic programs and other budget managers including financial aid in reconciling ARC projects and operating budgets; train and advise all School staff as necessary on the ARC reporting system.


Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent required, together with at least three years experience in academic financial management.
  • Substantial experience with University financial systems required including ARC, FINSYS, and Concur.
  • Experience with computer accounting and word processing software (Microsoft Excel and Word) is required.
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills with a customer service orientation required.
  • Demonstrated ability to set priorities, handle multiple (often ad hoc) assignments and work with diplomacy and efficiency in a fast-paced and changing environment required.
  • Ability to handle confidential information with exceptional judgment and discretion necessary.
  • Demonstrated ability as a self-starter to work independently with minimal supervision and as a member of a team-based office, as well as analytic and problem-solving ability, required.
  • Must have, or be able to acquire quickly, a detailed knowledge of relevant University policies, procedures, and systems.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Advanced degree desirable.
  • Experience with program administration strongly preferred.

Equal Opportunity Employer / Disability / Veteran

Columbia University is committed to the hiring of qualified local residents.

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