Assistant Financial Controller Operation Management, Business Partnering, Financial Reporting

Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)


About IRRI
The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) is dedicated to reducing poverty and hunger through rice science; improving the health and welfare of rice farmers and consumers; and protecting the rice-growing environment for future generations. IRRI is an independent, nonprofit, research and educational institute, founded in 1960 by the Ford and Rockefeller foundations with support from the Philippine government. The institute, headquartered in Los Baños, Philippines, has offices in 17 rice-growing countries in Asia and Africa, and over 1,000 staff.

Working with in-country partners, IRRI develops advanced rice varieties that yield more grain and better withstand pests and disease as well as flooding, drought, and other harmful effects of climate change.

Job Purpose

Under the direct line management of the Financial Controller / Head of Finance, and in coordination with the finance functional team managers, the Assistant Financial Controller is responsible for the establishment and oversight of the end-to-end financial operations of all IRRI regional and country offices. This role will directly manage the finance staff based in the regional and country offices, as well as the Senior Finance Business Partner based in the HQ. This role will ensure that new and existing regional and country office financial operations are consistent with IRRI global finance policies and SOPs, while also ensuring that country-specific requirements are met. This role will proactively engage with senior leaders in the country and regional offices to ensure that finance operations are supportive of IRRI research and business development strategies. This role will engage with the finance functional team managers at HQ to manage the implementation of process improvements, standardizations, and change processes in the regional and country offices. This role is also expected to liaise closely with other corporate services department heads in IRRI, both in the HQ and in the RCOs to ensure that a joint-up and efficient approach to service delivery is done. Since this position will oversee end-to-end financial operations in the regions, an expert level of knowledge and skills in end-to-end accounting, advanced level of business partnering and communication, and practical experience in leading teams across cultures and multiple locations are required. The ideal candidate possesses a recognized professional accounting and/or finance qualification, an ability to influence positive change across different levels of the organization, and a high degree of comfort in using automation and other tools to create process efficiencies.

This position will be based at the IRRI Headquarters, Los Baños, Philippines and may only be filled by permanent citizens of the Philippines.

Roles and Responsibilities
  • Directly responsible for the oversight of the end-to-end finance and accounting operations in the regional and country offices, under the overall leadership of the Head of Finance / Financial Controller and the Finance Director
  • Direct line management of the finance staff in the regions
  • Collaboration with the finance functional team managers (Asset Management, Corporate Finance, Finance Business Partnering, General Ledger, and Strategic Finance teams) to ensure that finance and accounting processes in the RCOs are consistent with institutional financial policies, standards, and strategies, both in existing processes and activities and in process improvement initiatives
  • Collaboration with other corporate services staff and teams in HQ and in the RCOs to ensure joint-up, effective, and fit-for-purpose delivery of services supportive of the IRRI research and strategic engagement strategies and activities
  • Coordinate and collaborate with RCO budget owners regarding the overall financial management of the grants/projects/ budgets under their leadership and/or responsibility, and proactively identify issues pertaining to their funds and recommend timely solutions
  • Manage and implement contracts with hosted organizations; Oversee IRRI financial operations in hosting organizations
  • Coordinate and collaborate with other Finance Teams, Legal Services, Portfolio Management Office and other offices in reviewing contracts to ensure that all provisions are compliant to Institute policies and procedures, and feasible within the context of the Institute’s operations
  • Coordinate with external and internal auditors during project audit and ensure prompt response to queries for a smooth and timely audit field work. Manage implementation of audit recommendations
  • Coordinate and collaborate with the MIS team, through the Finance Transformation Team, for system improvements and functionality testing
  • Work collaboratively with other Finance Teams during month-end and year-end closing of books to ensure that all legitimate transactions are properly recorded and that all financial reports are accurately prepared and submitted to stakeholders and donors on time
  • Develop and deliver training programs to RCO staff and stakeholders for enhanced understanding of grants requirements and Institute policies and procedures from a financial perspective
  • Ensure alignment between Finance Headquarters and RCO Finance guidelines, policies and procedures through regular reviews vis-à-vis compliance with requirements
  • Provide business partnering for Regional and Country Representatives and Senior Research Leaders to provide support in the financial management aspects of the budgets and activities they are responsible for
  • Ensure that the Regional and Country Offices recruit finance staff of the right caliber and character; Ensure that finance staff in the RCOs are properly oriented, continuously trained, and managed well
  • Review and approve transactions for the timely preparation and submission of quality financial reports to hosted CGIAR Organizations, RCOs, and hosting government institutions as applicable; Initiate necessary actions / engagement with the same on financial aspects of new/existing hosting agreements
  • Proactively work with other corporate services staff both in the RCOs and IRRI HQ to deliver joint-up and fit-for-purpose corporate services support to the IRRI Research and Strategic Engagement agenda
  • Proactively work with Regional and Country Representatives and other IRRI HQ functions to ensure that Regional and Country Offices’ host country agreements, other legal agreements, and labour practices are up-to-date and compliant to local laws and regulations and IRRI’s privileges and immunities per the host country agreements
  • Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, CPA preferred, with at least 12 years working experience in all aspects of accounting and finance, experienced in working with and/or managing teams across different locations and cultures
Skills Required


  • Has extensive, knowledge of accounting systems, bookkeeping, internal controls, and financial reporting
  • Must be highly analytical and stakeholder service-focused with exceptional problem solving and organizational skills
  • Ability to communicate professionally, positively, and effectively with a variety of individuals integral to the position
  • Ability to quickly learn and grasp the implications of the financial terms and conditions for each managed project
  • Can work with minimal supervision
  • Proficient in using MS Office and has relevant experience in computerized financial systems and flexibility to adapt a new software applications


  • CPA or recognized accounting/finance certification/designation; with deep knowledge and understanding of grants budgets, donor regulations and requirements; track record of effectively working with cross cultural and multi locational teams

IRRI offers a highly extensive employee benefits package inclusive of globally-covered medical insurance, retirement plan, life and accident insurance and other allowances.

Join our team and be part of our story!

Please note only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.
This position will remain open until filled.

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