The Accounting Manager supervises all general accounting and billing activities in the West Coast offices. These activities include billing, client expense accounting, ad hoc reporting for local management, file maintenance and retention of accounting records. In addition, the Accounting Manager serves as the local offices liaison with the corporate accounting department, serves as the liaison between local accounting functions and the Firm’s partners, associates and staff, supervises local office billing staff, and assists the West Coast Director of Administration in all financial and accounting control issues and operations for the West Coast offices.
Duties and Responsibilities:
· Directly supervises billing personnel in the local offices in accordance with the Firm’s policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, training, developing and managing local office billing staff; planning, assigning, and supervising their work and appraising their performance.
Billing and Accounts Receivable:
· Manages the billing functions to ensure timely processing of transactions.
· Ensures that partners’ and clients’ billing questions are answered promptly and accurately.
· Ensures the accuracy of all billing rates and client expenses.
· Ensures that all clients are billed and their payments received on a timely basis.
· Monitors and ensures that all timekeepers enter their hours into the billing system on a daily basis.
· Participates in the West Coast offices Accounting & Finance Committee meetings.
· Manages the accounts receivable and unbilled time backlog for the West Coast offices, escalating potential issues as appropriate to the local office Accounting & Finance Committee members and firm management.
· Monitors and logs all office vault activity.
· Coordinates with corporate accounting the opening and closing of local office bank accounts, including trust accounts.
· Acts as the local office liaison with external banking relationships.
· Enforces the Firm’s check approval policies.
· Controls and monitors local office petty cash operations.
· Controls preparation of manual checks in the local office and coordinates their processing with Corporate accounting.
· Serves as liaison between accounts payable and the local offices to communicate policies and assist in resolving issues.
· Provides feedback to the West Coast Director of Administration and Corporate Controller regarding business practices and financial controls in the local office.
· Provides support to corporate accounting staff to ensure compliance with the regulatory and tax responsibilities of the local office.
· Safeguards all office assets.
· Develops comprehensive understanding of the firm’s internal control procedures and effectively communicates them to attorneys and staff when needed.
Corporate Office Reporting:
· Acts as liaison between Corporate accounting and local office attorneys and staff.
· Communicates Corporate accounting policies.
· Assists in implementing new accounting procedures, as directed by Corporate.
· Works closely with West Coast Director of Administration and attorneys on accounting matters.
· Provides requested information to Corporate on a timely basis.
· Assists in follow-up with local office personnel on aged time and costs on the personal account matters, telephone bills and unassigned matters.
· Ensures local office internal controls are in place and are being adhered to.
· Provides workable solutions to issues and notify Corporate, if necessary, to assist in problem resolution.
· Operates the department efficiently.
· Ensures that backups are available for all positions and critical functions within the department.
· Determines optimal departmental staffing by anticipating changes in the demands placed on the department.
· Identifies ways to improve operations through training opportunities and technological,
· procedural or system enhancements.
· Maintains technical knowledge and stays current with industry trends affecting the department.
· Maintains written documentation of departmental policies and procedures.
· With feedback from staff, proposes policies relating to the functioning of the department to ensure compliance with accounting principles and management objectives.
· Responsible for the direction, supervision, and development of staff in a fast paced environment. Complete staff evaluations annually.
· Travel to the other West Coast offices to have the face-to-face interaction with billing staff and partners.
· Represents the department in inter-departmental and inter-office meetings.
· Communicates the staffing, capital expenditure, and qualitative needs of the department to the West Coast Director of Administration.
· Fosters a spirit of teamwork by taking corrective measures to promptly resolve any intra- or inter-departmental problems as needed.
· Maintains and develops both internal and external contacts for the benefit of the department and the offices, which may include internal committee representation and professional organization affiliations.
· Performs other work related duties as assigned or as judgment or necessity dictates.
Education and/or Experience:
· Bachelor’s degree (B. A.) from a four year college or university or higher
· A minimum of 7 years of experience in an accounting and billing environment with significant operational and supervisory accounting responsibilities, preferably in a law firm
· Demonstrated strong understanding of integrated accounting systems
· Experience with Elite Enterprise
· Previous experience in a law firm or professional services firm
Other Skills and Abilities:
The following will also be required of the successful candidate:
· Strong organizational skills
· Strong attention to detail
· Good judgment
· Strong interpersonal communication skills
· Strong analytical and problem solving skills
· Able to work harmoniously and effectively with others
· A self-starter who desires to show ownership and commitment to the job
· Able to preserve confidentiality and exercise discretion
· Proofreads accurately