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Grants and Finance Specialist – Washington DC


Job Summary

In this role, you will assist in supporting a diverse team of experts. This is an excellent opportunity for someone with experience in nonprofits, grants, contracts, finance, and administration to be a part of an elite environmental research and analysis organisation lauded for its subject matter expertise and operational transparency. You will work on complex, multi-year, multi-faceted international grants developing and updating budgets, tracking expenditures, preparing financial reports and invoices, monitoring contracts, event management, and other tasks as needed. You will report to the Coalition’s Operations & Grants Manager.

You will be responsible for overseeing budgets and grants for the Coalition for Urban Transitions. This will include developing budgets for new proposals, tracking and updating current project budgets and expenditure, preparing financial reports and invoices, and other administrative, operational, and support tasks as needed. You will work closely with our grants and contracts team, accounting team, and will be part of a growing team of Coordinators within the WRI Ross Center.

Job Responsibilities

Financial Management (50% time)

  • Regularly reviews, updates, and monitors all transactions, commitments, and revenue prospects for all team projects
  • Updates and maintains project budgets utilising WRI’s budgeting and forecasting software (TM1)
  • Updates and maintains project funding and allocations in coordination with workstream director(s) and project managers
  • Coordinates and advises team monthly on budget management and supplies financial reports
  • Develops fiscal year budget forecasts on a yearly basis in coordination with operations and your workstream director
  • Follows WRI’s internal processes and deadlines related to funding, including quarterly reviews, monthly & annual closeouts, and future fiscal year annual budget submission
  • Processes invoices and pay applications for projects in compliance with established governance
  • Prepares and supports financial reports to donors, under supervision
  • Provides guidance to partner organisations and consultants to ensure their compliance with funder policies, while proactively and professionally communicating with partners and consultants.

Project & Grant Management (40% time)

  • Processes documentation for project commitments (i.e. agreements, contracts, work authorisations, and purchase orders)
  • Monitors program/project performance against contract requirements
  • Monitors partners by reviewing and drafting language for contracts, reviewing interim and final reports and ensuring they have all their supporting documentation, reminding them of deadlines, keeping records of all their documents (financial reports, invoices, receipts etc.).
  • Coordinates with project teams to support their ad hoc financial expenditures for outreach and delivery efforts
  • Ensures team compliance with terms and conditions of complex grant and contract agreements
  • Drafts grant proposal budgets and assists in the collection and submission of formal proposals for team fundraising efforts
  • Supports donor and grants management by keeping database software (Salesforce) up-to-date
  • Supports preparation of detailed proposal budgets and institutional knowledge management for all grants and proposals

Administration (10% time)

  • Coordinates and schedules team meetings and assists in coordination of team’s planning processes
  • Updates and maintains new hire staffing information with operations
  • Provides timesheet guidance to team members on a bi-weekly basis
  • Manages various program, department, and organizational trackers
  • Keeps meticulous electronic filing system for team project management
  • Supports teams with financial management for conference and event logistics as needed, including participant travel
  • Provides in-depth budget updates to senior management
  • Other duties may be assigned

Job Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field (i.e. Business, Finance, Economics, Accounting)
  • Two+ years of relevant, full-time work experience, preferably in financial management, budgeting, administration, or nonprofit operations
  • Proven experience managing highly complex budgeting structures
  • Must be adaptable to rapidly changing priorities and have the ability to manage multiple projects with varying deadlines
  • Attention to deadlines particularly with regard to grant compliance and monitoring sub-grant and contract relationships
  • Strong process orientation with sensitivity to quality, timelines, and organisational systems
  • Strong writing, database management, and proofreading skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including the ability to work well in a team
  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision
  • Strong computer skills including high level of comfort with Microsoft
  • Office (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook), web-based communications (Skype, Zoom), and CRM database (Salesforce).
  • Budgeting experience with Excel, or other budgeting software is highly desirable
  • US work authorisation is required for this opportunity, and WRI is unable to provide visa sponsorship for this position

How to Apply

Please include your resume and cover letter when applying. Applicants must apply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered.

Program Overview

About the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities and the Coalition for Urban Transitions

Half of the global population resides in cities. That figure is set to increase to 70 percent by 2050. Traditional models of urban development and business as usual can lock us into congestion, sprawl, and inefficient resource use; the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities (WRI Cities) works to ensure cities are competitive and drive economic opportunity while sustaining natural resources and providing a better quality of life for citizens.

The Coalition for Urban Transitions is a special initiative of the New Climate Economy (NCE). It is hosted by the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities, and jointly managed with the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group. The Coalition is made up of a wider partnership of 20+ leading urban focused institutions and their practice leaders from major think-tanks, research institutions, city networks, international organisations, major investors, infrastructure providers, and strategic advisory companies. It has recently formed a high-level Urban Leadership Council of the world’s most prominent urban, SDG, and climate focused organisations to help drive forward its work.

The vision of the initiative is to unlock the power of cities to support enhanced national economic, social, and environmental prosperity, including addressing the risks of climate change. By 2019, the aim is for the Coalition for Urban Transitions to be the most concerted and coordinated attempt globally at assembling a partnership of the world’s best thinkers, institutions, and senior public-private leaders to drive action globally and in key countries related to sustainable urban transitions.

WRI Overview

World Resources Institute (WRI) is an independent, nonprofit global research organisation that turns big ideas into action at the nexus of environment, economic opportunity and human well-being. We are working to address seven critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade in order to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean.

We are passionate. We value our diversity of interests, skills and backgrounds. We have a flexible work environment. And we share a common goal to catalyse change that will improve the lives of people. Our shared ideals are at the core of our approach. They include: integrity, innovation, urgency, independence and respect.

The foundation of our work is delivering high-quality research, data, maps and analysis to solve the world’s greatest environment and international development challenges, and improve people’s lives. We work with leaders in government, business and civil society to drive ambitious action and create change on the ground. Equally important, we bring together partners to develop breakthrough ideas and scale-up solutions for far-reaching, enduring impact.

We have been growing rapidly: our staff has doubled in size over the past 5 years and our operating budget is now $120 million. Founded in 1982, WRI has a global staff of 800+ people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico and the United States as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.

WRI is committed to advancing gender and social equity for human well-being in our mission and applies this principle to our organisational and programmatic practices.

The World Resources Institute is an environmental and development research and policy organisation that creates solutions to protect the Earth and improve people’s lives. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, it is WRI’s policy to recruit, hire, and provide opportunities for advancement in all job classifications without regard to race, colour, religion, sex, national origin, age, citizenship, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, parental status, protected veteran status, or disability. WRI’s global agenda requires a staff that is diverse – with respect to race, gender, cultural, and international background. Diverse perspectives and experience enhance the way WRI selects and approaches issues, as well as the creativity and applicability of WRI’s policy research and analysis. WRI, therefore, encourages applications from U.S. minorities, persons from other countries (especially developing nations), and from women of all backgrounds.