Finance Business Partner – Dubai Campus

Accounting / Finance Full Time
  • Accounting / Finance
  • Full Time
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Attractive Salary AED / Month
  • Salary: Attractive Salary
  • Educated in Accounting & Finance to first degree level or equivalent practical experience in the workplace

Website Heriot Watt University

Heriot-Watt University is a public university based in Edinburgh, established in 1821 as the world's first mechanics' institute. It has been a university by Royal Charter since 1966. It has branch campuses in the Scottish Borders, Orkney, Dubai, and Putrajaya in Malaysia.

Finance Business Partner – Dubai Campus

Job Description

Purpose of Role

  • The Finance Business Partner reports to the Dubai Financial Controller  but will also work closely with the Group Management Accounting team based in the UK.
  • Leading the Management Accounts function for the campus, responsible for:
    • the production of reliable management accounting and other financial / performance information in a timely manner.
    • budgeting and financial analysis for the University.
    • providing support and advice to the management team, budget holders and other staff on a variety of business / financial issues

Summary of Key Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Leading the management accounting function of the campus
  • Managing the overall month end process
  • Liaising with the remainder of Dubai Finance and working as a team to support the delivery of campus overall operational results.
  • Interact with the operations team to ensure that the proper AR side information is reflected in the month end statements such as student income, debtors, provisions etc.
  • Interact with the Procurement and Payables team to ensure that the right accruals in place before the close of the month
  • Financial analysis
  • Preparation of specific balance sheet reconciliations. Review and approval of balance sheet reconciliations prepared by the Accounts Assistant.
  • Ensuring the availability of accurate and timely financial management reports, analysis and commentaries
  • Verification of management accounting information integrity, investigations and resultant action for all areas of the team and organisation
  • Developing effective budgeting, forecasting and planning processes
  • Development and reporting on KPI’s for the organisation
  • Supporting overall campus, schools and professional services teams with decision support activities
  • Developing specific reporting for research activities carried out in the campus and liaising with relevant UK based Research Finance staff to ensure effective management of external grant funding
  • Regular Budget Holder meetings with cost centre managers, helping ensure that they dedicate adequate time and resource to management of budgets
  • Leading the annual financial performance review for the campus (individual programme viability review)
  • Developing and issuing relevant financial information for external stakeholders when required (e.g. Ministry of Education, KHDA, CAA, Government Agencies)
  • Liaising with Financial Systems Team in the UK in relation to system development requirements for the campus
  • Ensure that the team operate to a uniform, consistent standard
  • Address all aspects of people management, objective setting, development and review across the team
  • Liaise with internal and external auditors, tax agent, bankers and other professional / regulatory bodies
  • Building good relations with internal stakeholders
  • Any Ad-hoc tasks or project as and when required

Education, Qualifications & Experience: 


  1. Educated in Accounting & Finance to first degree level or equivalent practical experience in the workplace
  2. Experience of working within a similar environment as outlined above
  3. Qualified Accountant with significant experience of producing management accounts and other financial information for senior management in a similar sized organisation
  4. Strong communication and interpersonal skills with a focus on outputs.
  5. Significant experience of leading a team and being a team player.
  6. Strong IT skills including ERP type systems and Microsoft products
  7. Ability to persuade, motivate and lead a team, including setting objectives and managing workload
  8. Competent in the use of relevant IT packages
  9. Demonstrable substantial professional expertise in own specialism
  10. Well-developed understanding of relevant legal, statutory and governance applications and turning them into good practice (specifics, e.g. H&S, employment law, statutory requirements, may be specified here)
  11. Excellent interpersonal, influencing and presentation skills, able to understand and communicate complex issues effectively
  12. Demonstrable excellent customer service
  13. Demonstrable ability to work quickly, flexibly and accurately in a dynamic, changing and pressured environment
  14. Experience of working closely with stakeholders across all levels of the organisation
  15. Ability to research, analyse and present complex information effectively with good attention to detail
  16. High level planning and organisational skills with the ability to prioritise major developments and to function effectively in a pressured environment
  17. Demonstrable professional and proactive approach
  18. Ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team


  1. Experience of working in Higher Education

At Heriot-Watt we understand that being diverse makes us better which is why we support a culture of respect and equal opportunity, and value diversity at the heart of what we do. We want to increase the diversity of our workplace to underpin a dynamic and creative environment. 

The appointment is conditional upon successful completion of all Labour and Immigration formalities, and the start date will need to be delayed if the employment visa is not in place.

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