This person is responsible for Pret Group’s Cost Accounting & Reporting function, ensuring that financial reports (Financial and Management reporting) are aligned to business and legal requirements and are based on accurate underlying financial records. Reporting into the Financial Controller. They will oversee a team, working closely with Transactional Services and Property Finance Team to ensure P&L cost lines are correct and related balance sheets positions are accurate. They will take ownership of weekly; period / month end; half year and yearly management & statutory reporting process in a way that optimises reporting cycles and provides timely and accurate financial reporting outputs in line with SLAs and agreed timetables. They will lead Pret’s reporting strategy to define and deliver usable finance reports that drive effective and efficient decision making.
They will be responsible for helping to set best in class practice on financial policy and procedure and putting in place a system of corporate governance that can proactively manage the Groups’ growth and identity and manage risk. This person must have a strong attention to detail, have the confidence to challenge and be able to work to and enforce clear deadlines.
They will be responsible for defining, meeting and exceeding Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and customer expectations set by the Finance Leadership Team. To improve operational effectiveness and efficiency, resolve problems and develop team members.
This role involves direct management of cost accountants. They will work closely with Financial Controller; Group Financial Controller; have contact with Finance teams across all of Pret’s markets and key internal and external customers.
The person must be an experienced accountant with the ability to challenge current accounting practices, identify and make recommendations (process; system; behavioural) that will ensure efficiency, whilst maintaining effective controls and adding real value to the organisation. They must be customer focused; understand the opportunities that shared services brings; be able to communicate effectively at all levels and be able to manage, train and develop a team.
The role requires a high appreciation of the importance of finance systems and automation for efficiency, as well as a passion to build an effective function that will support the ongoing growth of the Pret group. Working closely with the Head of Finance Systems and the IT Team to ensure accurate reporting.
Accountable for consistent and ongoing application of rules, guidelines; policies and internal controls
Oversee intercompany account postings and reconciliations across Pret, including process improvement and clear documentation
Review intercompany balance sheet positions to ensure that they are transparent and that reconciling items are cleared
Provide Holdco accounting support as and when required
Define strategy and own the ongoing maintenance of the Chart of Accounts (CoA); Subsidiary and Department structures
Own the management accounts month / period end close – including review of P&L costs to ensure that they are correctly recorded
Accountable for cost line review and report production
Accountable for query support from budget holders
Accountable for the completion of unaccounted reviews
Accountable for the completion of operating cost accounting – including postings; reconciliations and initial reviews
Accountable for the completion of shop cost accounting – including postings; reconciliations and initial reviews
Accountable for the completion of head office cost accounting – including postings; reconciliations and initial reviews
Input into Budget & Projections (understanding variances to budget; projection and prior year) – as and when required
Coordinate the completion of mandatory ONS surveys – as and when required
Provide support to FP&A Team in the compilation of UK Budget and Projections – as and when required
Own reporting strategy, ensuring clear reports are produced that align with genuine business review and decision making requirements of the Pret group
Run weekly reporting process – liaising with IT and other markets
Accountable for financial report production (e.g. Weekly Trading Updates; Head Office Departmental Reports; Shop reports; Operating cost reports; Property summary reports) – excluding Fixed Assets & Property related reports
Accountable for the production of Monthly Board pack; Weekly results; Group Flash Group Summary; Balance Sheet; Cash Flow; Annual HR Cycle; Covenant Reporting; Shop P&Ls; Shop database; Bank & Bridgepoint reporting
Accountable for the production of covenant and boarding reporting
Ensure that reporting commentary is suitable for the representative audiences (e.g. Management Teams; Executive Board; External Stakeholders)
Resolve team queries and challenge current practises to ensure that processes are efficient, including automation where possible
Establish and maintain clear programme and strategy to ensure reporting continuously improves
Deliver excellent customer service
Help set up and establish a customer service culture and orientation in the team
Support the execution of root-cause analysis to prevent quality issues or errors from occurring in the future
Develop relationships with key stakeholders to ensure service delivery exceeds their expectations and process and quality issues are resolved effectively
Work with the Financial Controller and Head of Finance Systems to ensure processes for financial reporting are appropriately measured and the plan for continuous improvement is maintained; reviewed and executed
Deliver service in line with agreed controls and procedures
Deliver service and report monthly performance in accordance with the Service Level Agreements
Lead, motivate, develop and manage Cost Accounting & Reporting Team
Take on the role of a mentor within the team, providing assistance, guidance and suggestions to improve performance
Support Financial Controller in the measuring of individual and team performance within the Cost Accounting & Reporting Team, ensuring that all team members have clear objectives and that regular team meeting & 1:2:1s are held.
Support Financial Controller in the monitoring of performance against objectives for all direct reports, taking performance improvement actions where necessary
Train new team members
Train new team members and support development of finance learning pathways
Take proactive role in developing their own career, setting clear development objectives and following Finance learning pathway
Professionally qualified (ACA / CIMA or equivalent)