Finance Officer (VAT)
Job purpose: To provide advice on the administration and accounting of VAT in relation to all the Authority's activities, including managing the Authority’s partial exemption position and making the necessary returns to HMRC. To keep the Finance Manager (Tax, Control & Pensions Finance) fully briefed on any key VAT issues. This job is accountable for: 1. To monitor and review existing and new VAT regulations to ensure the County Council’s VAT affairs are properly and effectively managed, in particular, the Authority’s partial exemption position and the impact of all new initiatives in funding, supplying and receiving services. 2. Provide specialist technical VAT advice for all departments of the County Council and to provide instructions, advice and training to all Officers involved in VAT accounting, including the regular updating and issuing of VAT guides to schools and departments. 3. To ensure that VAT data is input and accurately recorded on the Councils financial system and that adequate arrangements are in place to enable the accurate and prompt completion and submission of the monthly VAT return to HMRC and for the recording of errors for the purpose of voluntary disclosure and avoidance of penalties. 4. To assist with specific tasks/projects within agreed timescales.These projects may involve cross-departmental working and/or external agencies on changes arising from statutory or local financial reporting requirements. 5. To plan and action the day to day management of the VAT team that includes: · liaison with CIPFA VAT working group and South West VAT Forum · advising on VAT issues relating to capital projects · managing external stakeholder arrangements connected with VAT including enquires under Freedom of Information legislation · partial exemption calculation · liaison with internal & external managers · advising on national/local VAT issues · critically review current VAT arrangements & guides as determined by changes in and evaluation of VAT regulations · preparing the monthly VAT return · liase with internal audit · oversee and plan an effective VAT compliance check programme · analysis/interpretation/assimilation/calculation of data, providing timely/accurate information to facilitate accurate and timely reports for designated services · ensuring all queries raised on VAT issues are dealt with in a professional and timely manner · identification of best value improvements and development of VAT expertise to promote informed decision-making and continuous improvement. 6.To plan, control and review the work of the VAT team, ensuring: · team members are customer focused to the key service users (i.e. Senior Officers, Schools etc. · overall performance management of the teams responsibilities, and that individuals have clear work programmes that are regularly reviewed; · each individual is aware of, and understands the objectives of the County Council and understands how his/her work contributes towards these objectives. · each member of staff is aware of the training and personal development opportunities that are available and is actively encouraged to take advantage of those opportunities; · annual Performance Appraisal Reviews for all staff in the unit are undertaken, ensuring that all development points are adequately followed up. 7.To contribute, as a senior member of the Tax, Control & Pensions Finance section, to: · the management of the section as a whole; · workload planning; · risk assessment. · Deputise for the Finance Manager in his/her absence. 8. To ensure that all health and safety instructions are followed and that all reasonable care is taken not to do anything that might endanger the post-holder or others; to report to the line manager any dangerous situations in the workplace or any perceived shortcomings in health and safety arrangements. 9. To undertake those duties which support the achievement of the County Council’s Fairness and Diversity Strategy. 10. To enable the best use to be made of the available manpower and personnel resources there is a need for commitment to flexibility in the duties of all post-holders.To this end, the post-holder will be required to undertake such other duties and responsibilities which may reasonably be allocated from time to time by the Finance Manager. Education/Qualifications Essential: · The post holder will hold an accountancy qualification (at least AAT) or will have at least five years VAT experience at a senior level within a Local Authority. Knowledge and Experience Essential: · Experience of Sect 33 VAT regulations · Practical experience of working in a VAT office in Local Government · Experience of extracting data from financial software packages and reconciling complicated financial reports · Experience in analysing financial data from a variety of sources · Demonstration of supervision skills · Experience and confidence in dealing with and explaining VAT issues to non Financial customers
High Orchard, ...
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