Head of Finance (0.8 FTE) Job Description

WELCOME! And thank you for your interest in the Exeter Northcott Theatre and the post of Head of Finance.

Closing Date: 24th January 2022 at 10am
Job title: Head of Finance / Financial Accountant
Department: Finance & Operations
Reporting to: Finance & Operations Director
Responsible for: Finance Officer


The Northcott Theatre has been attracting audiences in Exeter and the South West to the very best UK and international performing arts for over fifty years. Before the closure of theatres in 2020 due to Covid-19, our programme featured a mix of home-grown productions and top-quality touring drama, music, dance, comedy etc. We are now rebuilding our offer with a combination of work that we produce and present in our theatre space/s and a range of participatory projects with artists, communities and young people in Devon.


The Head of Finance is a key member of the Exeter Northcott Theatre’s management team, responsible for the smooth day-to-day running of the company’s finance systems, ensuring compliance with company policies & procedures and statutory requirements, and providing high-quality, accurate and timely information to Board, Executive and other managers/budget-holders. They will play a key role in supporting strategic planning and operational decision-making as the charity adapts to the challenges of a post-Covid operating environment.

See the Key Duties & Responsibilities section below for full details of what the job will entail.


The successful candidate will be a formally qualified accountant (ACA, ACCA, CIMA) with strong technical and systems skills. This role would suit someone who enjoys working as part of a team, either moving straight from practice or already in industry and looking to make a move into a varied and creative working environment.

There continues to be a significant lack of diversity across the arts, with a pressing need to provide progression routes for talented people from backgrounds that are under-represented. Exeter Northcott Theatre is committed to playing its part in addressing this by putting inclusion at the heart of our recruitment processes, finding new ways to share the power and resources we have at our disposal, and fostering a working culture that is welcoming for all our team.

We actively encourage people with different backgrounds to join us and positively impact our teams and working practice. We are particularly keen to receive applications from people of African and Caribbean heritage, people of South Asian, East Asian and South East Asian Heritage, D/deaf and disabled people, LGBTQ+ people, or those experiencing barriers due to their socioeconomic background.

This is a part-time role, and we welcome applications from candidates who need a flexible working pattern, for example due to caring responsibilities or access requirements.

See the Person Specification section below for full details of the skills/experience we’re looking for.

If this sounds like the kind of role you’re looking for, and if we sound like the kind of organisation you’re interested in working with, then we’d love to hear from you!



  • Leading on the effective day-to-day operation of the theatre’s finance systems and processes
  • Managing the theatre’s payroll system (monthly & weekly) and pension scheme
  • Preparing, paying & reconciling all statutory returns/payments as they become due
  • Preparing settlements for visiting companies/artists in accordance with contracts
  • Providing accurate financial information to budget holders as required
  • Supporting budget preparation for annual business planning and funding applications


  • Preparing quarterly Management Accounts and other reports/forecasts as required, including preparing and posting monthly journals
  • Completing and reconciling balance sheet control accounts and identifying and investigating any differences
  • Preparing and submitting VAT returns and ensuring VAT compliance including partial exemption calculations
  • Preparing Statutory Accounts for external audit and approval by the Board
  • Maintaining a working knowledge of relevant Finance legislation and contributing to the development of the theatre’s regulations
  • Ensuring compliance with all legal requirements & regulations


  • Line managing the Finance Officer p/t
  • Inducting new staff and supporting all staff in the use of the theatre’s finance systems
  • Playing an active role within the theatre’s Management Team
  • Representing the theatre at external meetings and deputising for the Finance & Operations Director as required


  • Maintaining up to date knowledge of the strategy and business plan of ENT
  • Maintaining a working knowledge of the theatre’s programme
  • Adhering to Exeter Northcott theatre policies & procedures
  • Taking an active role in promoting Equality, Diversity & inclusion in line with ENT policies & plans
  • Attending staff meetings/training as required
  • Maintaining confidentiality at all times

Any other duties which may be reasonably requested by Finance & Operations Director.



  • Qualified accountant (ACA, ACCA, CIMA)
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Experience of producing reports for Board or management
  • Excellent IT skills, including Microsoft Office
  • Experience of working with a computerised accounting system
  • Experience of producing management & statutory accounts
  • Experience of working in a complex VAT environment
  • Excellent organisational & administrative skills
  • Proven ability to prioritise a complex workload
  • Experience of supervising and supporting staff
  • Proven ability to work as part of a team
  • Friendly & outgoing with a good telephone manner


  • Working knowledge of SAGE 50 and SAGE Payroll Software
  • Experience of improving financial controls and/or debt collection
  • Experience of line-managing staff
  • Experience of working within the charity sector
  • Interest in the performing arts


Salary Range:

£35,000 – £40,000 per annum depending on experience
(£28,000 – £32,000 pro rata for 0.8 FTE)

Hours of Work:

39 hours per week
(31.2 hours pro rata for 0.8 FTE)

NB There may be the opportunity to increase to full-time in the future

 Annual Leave:

32 days per annum inc. statutory holidays
(25.6 days pro rata for 0.8 FTE)

 Probationary Period:

3 months

Notice Period:

2 months (2 weeks during probation)


Smart Pension Ltd – employer contributions in line with statutory auto-enrolment, currently 3%


An allocation of complimentary tickets per season
Discounts at the theatre bar/café


As part of our commitment to inclusion we’re working to widen the pool of people who hear about vacancies at the theatre and make the process of applying for a job as straightforward as possible.

For this role we’re asking all candidates to click on the Apply Now link for this vacancy on our website and submit written and/or video/audio responses to the same three questions so you can tell us about yourself and why you’re the right person for this role:

  • Tell us about yourself and why you want to work at the Northcott
  • Tell us how your professional experience meets the person specification
  • Tell us about what support you might need if we were to offer you this role

And then upload a copy of your latest CV.

Contact us at jobs@exeternorthcott.co.uk if you wish to submit in a different format

For an informal discussion about the role, please contact Emma Stephenson, Finance & Operations Director, at e.stephenson2@exeter.ac.uk or 01392 722414

All D/deaf or disabled candidates who demonstrate that they meet the essential criteria for this role will be invited for interview.

NB We’ll pay travel expenses for any candidate invited to interview.

NB When we invite candidates to interview we’ll ask if they have any access requirements.


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