Director – Financial Operations, Team Finance

Job Type

Full Time




New Haven
United States


Start Date:                            Immediately

Team:                                     Team Finance

Location:                               New Haven, CT or Brooklyn, NY

About Achievement First:

Achievement First, a non-profit 501(c)3 charter school management organization, operates over 30 public charter schools in Brooklyn, Connecticut and Rhode Island. The mission of Achievement First is to deliver on the promise of equal educational opportunity for all children, regardless of race or economic status. Achievement First currently educates more than 12,600 students in historically underserved neighborhoods, with over 90% of our students identifying as Black and Latino. With its college-preparatory focus, the Achievement First approach is attaining breakthrough academic gains throughout the network. Beyond our students and schools, Achievement First is an engaged and prominent partner in the larger conversation about how to improve public education and student achievement in our country.

Achievement First’s approach to teaching and learning enables every student to succeed at the highest levels. This involves:

  • Recruiting and developing successful teachers and school leaders and empowering them to use student data to strategically drive instruction;
  • Creating a joyful school culture where it is “cool to be smart” that emphasizes character education and focuses students on college;
  • Providing students with more time on task and intense intervention when they are struggling so that no child falls through the cracks.

For more information about Achievement First’s mission, approach, schools and team, please visit our website at


Reporting directly to the CFO, the primary function of the Director of Financial Operations is to manage the Purchasing, Payroll, and Risk Management functions of Achievement First. The purchasing/accounts payable function supports our schools to ensure that vendors are paid in a timely way and in accordance with our policies and procedures, and also encompasses our credit card program. Payroll consists of processing bi- weekly salary pay as well as part time and stipend pay across our three states for our 2,000 salaried and part- time employees. Finally, the Director will be responsible for risk and loss control, budget development support to schools and departments, administration, planning, program management, and training with regard to our insurance coverages.

This is an opportunity to work closely with some of the leading education reformers in the country while gaining insight about education reform within a top charter school management organization. The ideal candidate will possess exceptional multi-tasking abilities, excellent written and verbal communication skills, comfort with managing multi-part projects, analyzing data, and be extraordinarily self-directed.

Responsibilities of the Director – Financial Operations will include but are not limited to:

o  Purchasing Management

·        Analyzing top areas of purchasing for the organization, and seeking ways to identify process efficiencies and budgetary savings

·        Ownership of AF’s Travel and Expense reimbursement policies and procedures

·        Leads AF’s credit card program and updates policy, monitors compliance, and manages credit line limits across the organization

·        Ensures the timely payment of vendor payables and employee expenses

·        Reviews invoices and accompanying source documents to comply with policies and control procedures

·        Resolves any discrepancies and/or payment inquiries by effectively following up with assigned vendors/employees in a timely manner.

·        Assists in the development, implementation and monitoring of accounts payable policies, procedures, and controls to ensure the most effective use of resources in conjunction with audit and GAAP compliance

·        Supports schools and departments by researching and resolving complex payments and vendor escalated issues

·        Supporting the year-end 1099 reporting process

·        Supporting the annual audit process as it related to Accounts Payable and expenses

o  Payroll Management

·        Processing of semi-monthly payroll for a growing number of schools and departments from input to delivery (new hires, transfers, promotions, terminations and follow up)

·        Quality control over all related payroll transactions and changes (direct deposits, benefits, 403(b), etc.)

·        Provides leadership across region-specific requirements such as TRB transactions (Teacher Retirement Board for Connecticut, Paid Family Leave for New York, and others

·        Team Finance’s liaison to AF’s HR team (Talent Operations) on areas of overlap and coordination such as new employee processing and benefit change implementation

·        Payroll related inquiries from schools in a service-oriented manner

·        Coordinates and interacts with vendors, data providers, etc.

·        Data integrity in ADP payroll systems, generate a variety of reports or queries utilizing appropriate reporting tools

o  Risk Management

·        Leadership and stewardship of the Risk Management Committee, which is made up of representatives from legal, talent operations, finance, and operations.

·        Supporting AF’s 403b plan sponsor compliance efforts (plan document maintenance, contribution limit testing, nondiscrimination testing, etc.)

·        Supporting budget development by leading AF’s annual premium renewal process for property and casualty coverages, and actively participating in health, prescription, and dental insurance renewals

·        Compiling and analyzing data to develop and recommend policies and procedures regarding AF’s property and liability insurance programs, and workers compensation benefit insurance.

·        Analyzes claims, loss and accident history and identifies methods to eliminate, minimize, or indemnify risks or possible losses.

·        Investigates and analyzes accidents involving District employees and students injured while using AF equipment or facilities.

·        Participates in the investigation of incidents and coordinates preparation of materials and evidence for use in hearings, litigation, and insurance claim cases.

Skills and Characteristics

·        Belief in the Achievement First mission and educational model

·        Results-oriented and willing to do “whatever it takes”

·        Maintains a high degree of professionalism and ethics while handling sensitive and confidential material.

·        Flexible and able to thrive in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment – resourceful and independent thinker who can provide creative solutions to unique challenges

·        Takes ownership of role and able to work autonomously yet able to take direction as needed

·        Maturity, humility, strong work ethic, sense of humor, and “roll-up-my-sleeves” attitude

·        Excellent written and verbal communication skills

·        Highly motivated and capable of seeing projects through from beginning to end

·        Comfort and agility with gathering and doing basic data analysis directly

·        Knowledge of basic payroll processes, timelines, and information submission deadlines, ideally within a large HRIS system (ADP, Workday, MUNIS, etc.)

·        Demonstrated strength with Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Google Docs. Proven track record in learning new technologies quickly

·        Ability to work well with others in a fast-paced environment, ability to work to become proficient in memorizing and understanding standard operating procedures and practices.

·        Ability to communicate with all levels of employees, especially Senior Management and school-based Directors.

Educational Background and Work Experience

·        Bachelor’s degree from a competitive college or university

·        5 + years relevant experience with a documented track record of success and demonstrated ability to work independently in a growth environment

·        Experience in teaching or working in a school setting a plus.

Occasional weekend or evening work and some travel to our other offices and schools in New Haven, Brooklyn, Stamford, Bridgeport, Hartford, and Providence required.


Salary for this position is competitive and commensurate with experience. Additionally, Achievement First offers a comprehensive benefits package.

To Apply

Send resume and cover letter to:

Victor De La Paz

Chief Financial Officer, Team Finance

Achievement First is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity. People from all diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. Spanish language proficiency is a plus. You can learn more about diversity at Achievement First here:


Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

To Apply

Send resume and cover letter to:

Victor De La Paz

Chief Financial Officer, Team Finance

Achievement First is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity. People from all diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. Spanish language proficiency is a plus. You can learn more about diversity at Achievement First here: