Open Position: Vice President / VP Finance
Note: If you are interested in applying for this role, the application can be found at the bottom of this post or here. We understand that bonus cycles and other circumstances may impact desired timing. As we continue to build our talent pipeline, we welcome you to apply even if your preferred start date is up to six months out.
You’re established in your finance career, and are looking for something more (or different). You’re hungry for an environment where you can leverage your substantial technical skills to gain access to additional finance disciplines across financial planning and analysis (FP&A) and corporate development (including M&A). The idea of working with multiple businesses across industries and company lifecycle excites you. Perhaps most importantly, you understand that the purpose of data is dialogue, and you want to be a leading voice in synthesizing, socializing, and strategizing with management teams, investors, and other stakeholders.
As you analyze the traditional corporate FP&A track, you see the limitations of focusing inside of one business, one system environment, and one set of processes. You are eager to learn (continuously!), and crave the opportunity to make a mark that impacts customers and the market at large by being part of a team driving finance innovation into the small and midsize business (SMB) community. Summed up, you know you’re good, you know there’s much more to learn, and delivering value fulfills you.
ABOUT FIRST WATER
First Water connects teams with data and companies with capital by enabling innovative access to finance capabilities and expertise through Relational Finance. Our partner companies include small and midsize businesses (SMBs) and portfolio companies of prominent private equity firms.
Our strength lies in a “mutt culture” formed through experience across finance disciplines and perspectives from both sides of the table. Team backgrounds include financial planning & analysis (FP&A), private equity, investment banking, commercial lending, consulting, and small business leadership. As a result, we are the only firm that:
- Designs, develops, and maintains any aspect of the FP&A function, delivering data insights and forward visibility (Managed FP&A);
- Manages capital raising and transaction processes with a deep capital network to bring the right partners to the table (Capital & Transaction Initiatives);
- Serves as a tactical strike force for project-based initiatives, with a decade of success serving portfolio companies of private equity firms (Finance Acceleration); and,
- Activates finance capabilities for SMBs earlier, more cost effectively, and for longer relationship durations by drawing from a holistic finance toolbox, multiple engagement models, and a team-based approach (Relational Finance).
To build the next generation of finance professionals, we pound the drum on an operational culture that promotes access to opportunities and allows voices to be heard. Key components are as follows:
- Be a Mutt. You’re here because you strive to expand your experience and knowledge sets within finance, business, and varied situations/circumstances. You actively seek to step outside your comfort zone and advocate for opportunities to step up to the plate. In doing so, you do what it takes to get yourself up the curve in real time while managing deliverable timelines.
- Value is our Output. Everything we do for our companies is connected to growing, preserving, and/or monetizing business value. You step back from technical work to synthesize the why and how it matters for various stakeholders. The purpose of data is dialogue, and our companies rely on us to deliver value, not just numbers.
- Best Idea Wins. We are always better than we were [insert some period of time ago]. It is our responsibility and privilege to find better paths to deliver results to our partner companies. You think critically about innovation and tech-enablement and speak up in contributing to process improvements. It is better to be wrong than to not have an opinion.
- Transparency is the Process. Our companies rely on us to lead and/or own critical processes they otherwise cannot manage internally. You lean into project management and documentation to provide internal and external visibility and drive confidence in our ability to consistently deliver. Transparency is not part of the process, it is the process.
- Pedigree is not a KPI. We work in a sector (finance) where pedigree often serves as a barrier to entry. You don’t assign value based on names on a CV or letters after a name, and you treat team members and customers accordingly. Coachability, work ethic, professionalism, and intellectual curiosity move the needle here.
JOB DESCRIPTION – VP FINANCE
This position offers a unique opportunity to join a growing, scrappy team. First Water team members work across a variety of businesses, industries, situations, and capability sets. We are never bored and relish working in an environment where data-related and tech-enabled advancements present opportunities to continuously improve our processes and methodologies.
This role is particularly attractive for a professional looking to expand his/her finance skill sets, including:
- Data structuring, transformation, and visualization (business intelligence);
- Financial modeling and recurring process development;
- Due diligence, transaction negotiation, and process execution;
- Consulting skills with C-level, board, and investor stakeholder engagement;
- Development and deployment of scale-able process methodologies; and,
- Leading teams of finance professionals.
Many traditional finance roles run a high risk of pigeon-holing, as professionals become more and more versed in a single company, industry, system environment, and/or set of processes. At First Water, we believe learned skills should open exposure to other disciplines and perspectives, not just the next rung on ladder. As a result, we are not only building a better set of finance solutions for businesses, but we are also building the environment to cultivate better finance professionals.
- Lead partner company relationships and execution of client engagements, including discovery, project plan development, schematic designs, and deliverable management.
- Deliverable examples include management reporting packages, BI dashboards, 13- week cashflow forecasts, driver-based three statement models, custom forecast builds, management/board presentations, and other ad-hoc requests.
- Contribute to internal process improvement, standardization of methodologies, and quality control.
- Build-up flexible and granular financial models, perform various financial analyses, drill-downs, sensitivity analyses, and other analyses to drive operational and transactional insights.
- Design impactful reports, dashboards, and presentations, including stakeholder reporting packages, transaction marketing materials, and other presentations as required.
- Oversee and mentor junior team members.
- Occasional travel to client sites (infrequent since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic).
- 10+ years in finance-oriented positions (corporate FP&A, consulting, corporate finance), with responsibilities including process development, project management, and stakeholder engagement.
- Ability to do the work, not just delegate, with an eye toward role and team efficiency in carving up responsibilities.
- Ability to work collaboratively in a team-oriented environment, with limited oversight.
- Advanced Excel skills with extreme attention to detail.
- Expertise, or significant progress toward developing expertise, in data transformation and visualization tools, particularly the Microsoft Power Suite (Pivot/Query/BI).
- Strong PowerPoint and presentation building skills.
Additional Details – Financial Modeling:
- A strong financial modeling skill set is integral to the position, with a preference for experience in: three-statement financial analysis, corporate finance/capitalization analysis, budgeting/forecasting, reporting/KPI dashboard templates, financial projections, working capital analysis, profitability/performance analysis, and manipulation of non-financial/operational data sets.
- A financial modeling assessment will be conducted as part of the interview process.
Note on Remote Work / Work-From-Home
- We are headquartered in Houston, TX, though we serve partner companies across the United States and Canada.
- Although we value face-to-face collaboration for process design, troubleshooting, and team camaraderie, we are open to fully remote/work-from-home setups for the right candidates.