The Big Issue Foundation
Director of Finance
Part time (21 hours – can be worked flexibly)
Home or office based (offices in London, Bristol, Birmingham, Cardiff, and Glasgow)
The Big Issue mission is to dismantle poverty by creating opportunity through self-help, social trading and business solutions – a “hand up, not a hand out” We provide an “access to all’ means for people to earn a legitimate source of income, to raise their self-esteem and to take control of their lives. One of the ways we do this is through supporting vendors to sell The Big Issue magazine.
Our vendors are traders, retailers on the High Street. Since The Big Issue was launched in 1991 and its Foundation in 1995, we’ve supported hundreds of thousands of people to work their way out of poverty. Over the past two decades the magazine has become synonymous with challenging, independent journalism. It currently circulates around 100,000 copies every week.
Vendors are allocated a pitch and issued with five free copies of the magazine to get them started. From that point, vendors invest in additional magazines at £1.50 and sell them on at £3.00 retaining the profit. Last year alone, we put more than £5million in the pockets of our vendors, releasing them from a dependence on hand-outs, building confidence, gaining respect, and providing a connection and in some cases a lifeline to their communities.
The Big Issue Foundation supports Vendors (and increasingly others) with “wrap around support’ – (health, housing, debt, addiction, mental health and employability). We do this by connecting vendors with the vital support services, personal solutions, Big Issue programmes and employment pathways that enable them to rebuild their lives and determine their own routes to a better and more sustainable future.
Managing and shaping the business model, risk and financials of any business, is one of the most critical functions of an organisation. It is the engine that provides information from which all key business decisions are made.
Like many charities, 2020 was a challenging year. However, out of crisis often comes innovation, urgency and improvement. Being a small, agile organisation, we were able to pivot our income generation and our service provision to provide support to for whom we are exist, and to ensure we remain a growing, sustainable organisation of circa £2m income and with a healthy level of reserves.
It is a tremendously exciting time to join us as our new Director of Finance. With a new operating structure in place, we are developing our plans for investment and extending our growth across the UK.
You will be a strategic and commercially minded Director of Finance that welcomes a ‘hands-on ‘role with one direct report and a number of services delivered by third party organisations. You will work closely alongside the CEO to shape the business model, improve our effectiveness and will have significant opportunity to influence across the whole organisation, including at Board level.
You will have experience of and enjoy driving improvements and efficiencies, shaping and implementing new systems, processes and financial models. You will have a flair for and enjoy presenting information in numeric and visual formats, which are accessible for non-financial managers.
As Director of Finance you will be responsible for the management of the charity’s finance in compliance with regulation and will ensure that the organisation is meticulous in meeting its statutory duties. You will be responsible for leading on and delivering the annual return to the Charity Commission. You will ensure that our resources are utilised to best effect and that risk is sensibly managed in pursuit of our charitable objectives.
You’ll join us in promoting a culture of openness, collaboration, flexibility and ambition and ensure the Foundation remains true to its core values as we grow. Our culture is important to us. You’ll enjoy collaborating to develop and deliver strategies and plans that enhance both employee wellbeing and business performance.
The successful candidate is likely to be a qualified accountant who brings senior financial management experience within the charity sector, or acting as a charity finance trustee and/or as a Treasurer in a voluntary or non-executive capacity.
How to apply
Application is by way of a CV and a Supporting Statement of no more than 2 sides of A4 which highlights your motivations for applying and how your experience and knowledge fit the criteria of the Person Specification.
Closing date: 10.00am Thursday 27th January 2022
Selection and timescales:
There is a two-stage selection process.
First Interviews: Wednesday 2nd February 2022
Second interviews: Wednesday 9th February 2022
The format of the interviews will be determined by the COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions that apply at the time.
If you would like an informal and confidential discussion about the role before you formally apply, please contact our recruitment partner: Carroll Lloyd, Director, NFP Consulting