Research Finance Accountant

Job Information
Author ahnationtalk
Date January 16, 2018
Type Full Time
Company Wilfrid Laurier University
Location Waterloo, ON
Category Accounting / Finance
Client Wilfrid Laurier University
Contact Information
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Posting ID : 8624
Apply By : 1/26/2018
Position Title : Research Finance Accountant
Department : Financial Resources, Research Finance
Job Type : Full-time, Continuing
Campus : Waterloo
Reports To : Manager, Research Finance
Position Summary : At Laurier, we are a community. It’s what brings our students here and what keeps our people here.

As an educational institution, we inspire lives of leadership and purpose in our student community. As an employer, we seek, foster and value the same qualities of leadership and purpose in our employee community.

We currently have an opportunity to join the Laurier community as a Research Finance Accountant.

The Research Finance Accountant contributes to the efficient and effective management of research funds by reviewing grant payroll expenditure requests for eligibility and available funds, as well as monitoring, tracking and preparing/reviewing/signing financial reports on these funds, reducing the risk and liability to the university by proactive financial management of external research funding. The incumbent will provide functional guidance to staff members and will assist in monitoring and reviewing their work. The incumbent liaises with university staff, faculty and external agencies for the purpose of exchanging financial data, and provides accounting procedure direction. The incumbent works regularly with highly sensitive and confidential information from internal and external sources.

This position has a university-wide mandate and is based at the Waterloo campus. The incumbent provides subject matter expertise to all campuses, requiring regular interpersonal interactions and collaboration with departments at the Waterloo Campus, the Brantford Campus, and external partners. Special attention is given to ensure equitable service delivery across all locations.

The normal hours of work are 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday. Flexibility in hours will be required, including evening and/or weekend work due to the Tri Agency financial reporting deadline each Spring. When possible, the manager will adjust the work schedule so that no more than 35 hours are worked in a week.

Accountabilities : Reporting
  • Prepare, review and sign financial reports, inter-institutional agreements and invoices
  • Prepare grants and contracts financial reports for funding agencies in a timely manner
  • Prepare custom financial reports based on researcher needs
  • Prepare budget to actual and variance analysis reports
  • Update Millennium Research Finance module for research grant details and schedule/delegate monthly reporting tasks
  • Prepare inter-institutional transfer agreements for researchers wishing to transfer research funds to other institutions
  • Schedule reporting deadlines, as required


  • Review research grant payroll requests for eligibility and available funds
  • Provide backup compliance review for research Purchase Card transactions, online procurement system transactions and out of pocket expense claims, as required
  • Exercise judgement in deciding whether an expenditure is allowable based on an understanding of the funding agreement


  • Respond to a variety of queries from researchers, including but not limited to, transactions and balances in research grants, access to funds, eligibility of expenditures
  • Advise researchers on financial matters, funding agencies’ guidelines, financial terminology and standard accounting practices


  • Analyze details of budgets, actual expenditures and encumbrances
  • Prepare and process journal vouchers to transfer expenditures between research grants
  • Review new research grants and contracts, as requested
  • Monitor research grants for deficits, end dates and issues on a monthly basis


  • Provide functional guidance to staff members
  • Collaborate with other departments, particularly Financial Resources and Faculties, regarding issues encountered during compliance reviews, financial reporting etc
  • Special project analysis and reporting
Qualifications :
  • University degree (4 year), majoring in an accounting program
  • Professional accounting designation (CPA)
  • Research Finance experience in a post-secondary institution an asset
  • Three years of related experience
  • Relevant public accounting and auditing experience an asset
  • Advanced Excel skills (Pivot tables, VLOOKUP, macros) and knowledge of other MS Office products (Word, PowerPoint)
  • Strong decision-making and problem-solving skills
  • Experience and keen interest in continuous improvement around processes
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, ability to interact professionally and effectively (oral and written) with diverse constituencies of the university and external contacts
  • Ability to analyze numeric and other data and present it in appropriate format
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team in a complex environment
  • Demonstrated ability in providing functional guidance to staff members and monitoring/reviewing their work
  • Maturity of judgement
  • Self-motivator and self-starter
Grade : WLUSA-08
Salary : $33.33 to $39.23
Salary Notes :

This position is not eligible on education equivalencies.

This position is currently under review.

Please Note :

This position is represented by the WLU Staff Association bargaining unit.

Please submit a cover letter and resume.

Wilfrid Laurier University endeavors to fill positions with qualified candidates who have a combination of education, experience, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position while demonstrating Laurier’s Employee Success Factors.

Diversity and creating a culture of inclusion is a key pillar of Wilfrid Laurier University’s Strategic Academic Plan and is one of Laurier’s core values. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities, and from persons of any sexual identities and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at Candidates from other equity seeking groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Diversity and Equity Office at We have strived to make our application process accessible however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources at 519-884-1970 ext.2007 or

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