QSR / Food Services - CFO

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Our Client
 
Our client is a prepared-meals food producer and quick service restaurant chain whose products can be found in grocery stores, food courts, and its own branded locations in Canada and the US.
 
The grocery and restaurant categories that our client is in consistently grow at a double digit pace.  Our client has capitalized well on this market trend; and there still exists a large growth opportunity for the company, particularly in the Northeastern US.
 
Our client is seeking a new CFO to join the senior management team, and will assume control of a team of 16 staff, to help grow the company to the next stage of its evolution. 
 


The Role

Reporting to the CEO, the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is responsible for providing overall strategic financial leadership across the organization. The CFO is accountable for taking executive leadership in all areas of finance and accounting. 
 
The CFO must be a true financial and strategic contributor to the organization by partnering with the CEO and the senior management team to lead a proactive, responsible, approach to the finance function.
 
The CFO plays a critical role in supporting and achieving business objectives across the enterprise in collaboration with the senior leadership team.  The CFO will:

  • Actively participate with the senior leadership team in the establishment and execution of the company’s strategic plan
  • Collaborate with the senior Executive team to support the achievement of business objectives through financial reporting
  • In partnership with other senior Executives, develop and execute a Financial strategy to support the company’s current and long-term objectives
  • Provide advice and counsel to the CEO and the senior leadership team, and
  • Represent our client as a senior Executive in the business community where the company operates.


 
Specific Areas of Responsibility
The CFO is responsible for:
 
Leading and Developing the Financial Function ensuring the provision of the necessary financial services and resources to achieve current and future business objectives and ensuring that the management team performs their legal, fiduciary and shareholder responsibilities.
 
Performance Reporting and Management of the Business Planning Process including the development, installation and operation of systems for measuring and reporting business performance, ensuring their integrity, accuracy, reliability and timeliness.  Facilitate the business planning process from strategic assessment; to capital planning and detailed operating planning, ensuring that plans and budgets are both coherent and set appropriate targets and milestones.
 
Leading Decision Support; combining financial and non-financial information that facilitates timely decision making and advising on, and challenging the interpretation of, this information to ensure sound business decisions.
 
Treasury Management ensuring the availability of cost-effective financing and establishing sound cash management systems and procedures for the business. Managing the business’s finance related risks including foreign exchange risks.  Developing and maintaining good relationships with banks and other financial institutions which supply services to the business. 
 
Accounting Operations; developing and operating procedures and systems to make payments, collect monies and post, record and authorize transactions and provisions and including ensuring the company’s transaction systems completely, accurately and reliably process the revenues and expenses of the business.  Ensure the accounting records support both operational requirements and the requirements of external parties including the auditors of the Company.
 
Tax management ensuring tax considerations are given appropriate weight in Company decision making and setting and supervising appropriate tax controls to ensure all statutory obligations are met on a timely basis.
 
Internal Controls and Risk Management ensuring the integrity of business operations and adherence to the Company’s Code of Conduct and identifying and assessing of financial risk inherent in the business and installing policies, procedures and systems to ensure a degree of control appropriate to the risk of potential loss.
 
Mergers, Acquisitions and Disposals identifying opportunities/candidates, evaluating targets, and leading the diligence process for all acquisitions and disposals.  Ensure purchase and sale agreements are drafted in a manner that support the financial business case for the transaction, consider and manage all material risks, and utilize available tax saving opportunities.   Ensure all transaction closing, compliance and post-closing activities are completed effectively.
 
Overseeing the Information Technology (IT) function and developing and driving IT strategy to support the objectives, strategies and processes of the business and integrating IT into business plans while balancing demand with resources.  Ensuring staff and business units have the IT and communications infrastructure needed to execute the operating plans of the business.  Provide oversight of all mission critical business applications, used both centrally and at the Company’s meal preparation locations, to ensure these systems enable sustained improvement in the business’s performance.
 
Legal Affairs oversight; working through outside counsel. This includes signing off on all contracts (leases, franchise agreements, sub-contracting arrangements), ensuring trademarks are suitably protected and establishing policies for corporate record retention.  Ensure compliance with all material regulatory and licensing legislation and bylaws that affect the business on a day to day basis.
 
Insurance and Risk Management ensuring that all material risks are insured where coverage is cost effective.  Monitor compliance with all contractual obligations to insure (through leases, customer contacts and lending agreements) and ensure third parties contractors are properly insured (major suppliers, subcontractors, and franchisees).    Monitor the cost effectiveness of employee benefit plans to ensure they achieve their stated objectives to drive business performance.
 


The Candidate

Our client seeks a professional with the following experience and qualification as well as a competency profile. 
 
Competency Profile
 
Results Orientation.  Focuses strongly on achieving agreed upon outcomes and ensures that key objectives are met. Conveys a sense of urgency and drives issues to closure. Aims to improve upon past performance. Establishes aggressive personal targets and strives to achieve them.
 
Drive. Adopts an energetic approach. Demonstrates capacity for sustained effort and hard work over long periods of time, even in the face of adversity. Works towards goals and willingly tackles demanding tasks. Commitment to building a successful and profitable company.
 
Business Acumen. Applies appropriate commercial and financial principles. Understands situations in terms of costs, profits, added-value and return on investment. Appreciates the commercial impact of own work on the organization's total expenses and revenues.
 
Developing & Coaching Others. Accurately assesses strengths and development needs of employees; Challenges others to improve their abilities and actively supports their development; Continually provides timely and constructive feedback, coaching and challenging learning opportunities; Adjusts coaching style based on each employee's ability and motivation level.
 
Adaptability. Quickly adapts to new situations and approaches; Open to change and readily adopts new methods in the face of shifting priorities.  Candidate is an Executive, someone who is comfortable with ambiguity, who can see other perspectives in order to adjust to changes in the business.
 


Experience and Qualifications:

  •  A financial designation (CPA, CGA, CA or CMA) is critical to be able to effectively fulfill the role.
  • Ten to fifteen years experience in a services, food services or retail environment.
  • Candidates with operational or general management experience as well as financial experience are preferred.
  • Experience managing a finance department and directing all the activities involved in the financial stewardship of a company. 
  • Exposure to IT or experience managing and IT department would be a distinct advantage.