Group Financial Controller

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Salary : GBP55000 - GBP65000
Location : Oxford
Post Date :
Employment Type : Permanent
Job Order Number : 473548
Line of Business : Accounting and Finance

Description :


Robert Half International is working in Partnership with Activate Learning to recruit a new Group Financial Controller, based in Oxford.



Activate Learning is a pioneering education group which is growing to meet opportunities in the education market. From a single Further Education college, the organisation has evolved into an international group including secondary, further and higher education, apprenticeship and workforce training, consultancy and commercial business.

We empower people to go further in learning and in life, by recognising their uniqueness and by providing an environment which builds confidence and raises aspirations. We work with learners, experts in learning and business leaders to co-create curricula and build industry-relevant career pathways.

Our focus on enterprise and entrepreneurship means that our students develop real-life business skills that give them the edge in a competitive jobs market.

The Group has a turnover of approximately £65m (including schools) and is focussed on doubling this in the next five years. Growth is targeted through acquisition, organic growth within apprenticeships and higher education, development of International opportunities (focussing on India, China, South East Asia and the Middle East), a growing online capability and leveraging the property assets and 'back office'.

To facilitate achieving such sustainable and rapid growth significant change in business process, skills and behaviours has already been delivered, but the 'journey' has just begun.



Activate Learning are seeking to appoint a new Group Financial Controller who will be a critical contributor to the ongoing success and targeted growth of the organisation.

The role is responsible for leading all aspects of the financial operations of the Group and with that comes all the 'normal' accountabilities for providing sound financial management and appropriate accounting, robust reporting & planning processes, cash forecasting and stakeholder management among others. The breadth of the group's activities adds complexity and challenge to these core responsibilities.

An established team is in place for the Financial Controller to lead on these core activities, together with reasonable existing business processes.

As the organisation develops however, it is imperative that the finance operation develops & evolves to enable and support the business growth agenda. Operational and commercial colleagues already recognise the value that is added by existing 'business partnering', but more is demanded. In the last three or four months alone, opportunities have arisen to consider acquisitions, equity shares in related start-up business, significant commercial tenders, new IT platforms and international joint ventures as well as the integration of successful acquisitions.

The Financial controller will need to provide structural financial support & business partner the Group to help deliver these elements successfully.

Continuous improvement in how we deliver our core service will be important to provide space to be successful in these areas.

Transforming the finance function into an income generating division continues to be an ambition.



The role reports to the Group Finance Director. It is has 7 direct reports. The total Finance team is 15.

The role is rich and diverse and provides an opportunity for a highly motivated and enthusiastic finance professional, with appropriate leadership skills, to be an agent of change within this dynamic and forward thinking organisation.

Whilst an interest in the education sector is imperative, existing experience of it is not essential and the group welcomes applications from high calibre individuals from other sectors.

The successful candidate will be a qualified accountant with experience of managing change in a complex and challenging environment and strong financial management experience.

The salary will be circa up to £65,000 dependent on experience, plus excellent benefits including final salary pension scheme and 30 days holiday plus bank holidays.



Robert Half Ltd acts as an employment business for temporary positions and an employment agency for permanent positions. Robert Half is committed to equal opportunity and diversity. Suitable candidates with equivalent qualifications and more or less experience can apply.

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