Senior Accounting Assistant

World Bank, Chennai, India

Skill Required:, Finance and Accounts
Preferred Experience: 
3 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
23rd June, 2020

Job Description


Do you want to build a career that is truly worthwhile? Working at the World Bank Group provides a unique opportunity for you to help our clients solve their greatest development challenges. The World Bank Group is one of the largest sources of funding and knowledge for developing countries; a unique global partnership of five institutions dedicated to ending extreme poverty, increasing shared prosperity and promoting sustainable development. With 189 member countries and more than 120 offices worldwide, we work with public and private sector partners, investing in groundbreaking projects and using data, research, and technology to develop solutions to the most urgent global challenges. 

World Bank Group Finance and Accounting (WFA) is led by the Vice President and Controller, who reports to the Chief Financial Officer. WFA in the Bank comprises the following functions: Financial Instruments Accounting and Valuation; Loan and Trust Fund Operations; Accounting Business Services; Financial Reporting; Accounting Policy; Documentation and Communication; Advisory Services; and Risks and Controls. These units collectively include approximately 450 staff, of which 100 are in Washington, D.C. with the remainder in regional offices including the largest in Chennai, India.

WFA Financial Controls (WFAFC) is a business division in WFA and is responsible for the fair recording and reporting of the WBG’s administrative expenses and fixed assets, which have a combined financial statement value of nearly $4.0B. This includes delivering core accounting services, maintaining an effective system of internal controls, and providing strategic leadership on complex business issues pertaining to the following administrative expenses and functions: (i) Travel Accounting, Accounts Payable, Fixed Asset and Lease Accounting, and Quality Assurance (together known as WFATA); and (ii) Accounts Receivable, Payroll and Tax Allowance Administration (WFAPT).

Unit Overview

The Assurance and Client Support unit (WFATQ) is located in Chennai, India, and functionally reports to WFATA. The unit supports WFATA in effective delivery of work program related to (a) Travel accounting; and (b) Quality assurance.

Quality Assurance: The primary purpose of this function is to review administrative expense records to test for compliance with policies and procedures; identify opportunities for strengthening controls; identify improvement needs in systems, policies and procedures; identify potential errors in expenses reported in the financial statements; and provide managers with a sound basis to make their annual ICFR assertions about the effectiveness of controls over their use of administrative expenses.

Travel Accounting: Ensure that the policy related to Operational Travel Expense Reimbursement reflects management objectives; as owner (jointly with GCS) of the institutional Travel system (TravelWeb), maintain the system and ensure it operates in a manner consistent with policy; develop new tools and enhancements to address the changing needs of travelers and the institution; manage vendor contracts for corporate travel cards and manage user policies, processes and systems.

This remains a competitive process and interested candidates are encouraged to apply.

Duties and Accountabilities:

  • Establish and maintain accounting practices to ensure accurate and reliable data necessary for business operations. Conduct reviews of the World Bank group’s administrative expense transactions (both travel and staff & other admin expenses related) to verify accuracy of records, compliance with Bank’s policies and procedures.
  • Follow-up with the units on appropriate and timely submission of documentation for review.
  • Compile review findings and recommend follow-up actions to the units and the management.
  • Preparation of MIS on a periodical basis and support the QA program activities and provide assistance in meeting any ad-hoc requirements.
  • Identification of problems and areas of possible improvements and development of constructive recommendations for improvements in effectiveness and efficiency and internal controls over the activities reviewed.
  • Processing of invoices, reconciliation, following up for missing information, fixing of issues and ensuring prompt payment to vendors.
  • Monitor card spend, travelers’ past due balances, communicate delinquencies and refer for collections; periodically review and update MTV and hotel maximum rates by city; provide guidance and advice to travelers and Budget staff on travel policy and system.
  • Participate in the user testing and implementation of any new systems, applications, tools and reports for the team, to enhance efficiency, effectiveness and standardization.

Selection Criteria

  • Bachelor’s degree in Commerce OR Master’s degree in Finance/Accounting with at least 3 years of work experience;
  • CA or CPA (or an equivalent professional accounting qualification) is desirable
  • Strong conceptual skills and ability to interpret data, assess issues, develop sound conclusions, and formulate remedial measures.
  • Experience with SAP enterprise resource planning system is desirable, but not required.
  • Exposure to other systems like People soft, and proficiency in Microsoft windows applications viz, Excel, word, power point would be an added advantage. A proven track record of problem solving skills in an automated accounting environment
  • Excellent judgment, very good written and oral communications skills (including ability to write clear, concise and complete procedure); ability to carry out a multi-dimensional, multi-functional work program.
  • Exhibit a personality that enables the incumbent to be client focused, flexible and an excellent team player. Ability to effectively work with various levels of staff with-in the department and across the Institution.
  • Self-motivated person with high degree of initiative and a strong team player.


  • Deliver results for clients – Proactively addresses clients’ stated and unstated needs. Adds value by constantly looking for a better way to get more impactful results; sets challenging stretch goals for oneself. Identifies and proposes solutions to mitigate and manage risks
  • Collaborate within teams and across boundaries – Collaborates across boundaries, gives own perspective and willingly receives diverse perspectives. Appropriately involves others in decision making and communicates with key stakeholders. Approaches conflicts as common problems to be solved.
  • Lead and innovate – Develops innovative solutions. Contributes new insights to understand situations and develops solutions to resolve complex problems. Adapts as circumstances require and manages impact of own behavior on others in context of WBG's values and mission.
  • Create, Apply and Share Knowledge – Applies knowledge across WBG to strengthen WBG client solutions. Leverages department's expertise and body of knowledge across WBG to strengthen internal and/or external client solutions.
  • Make Smart Decisions – Interprets a wide range of information and pushes to move forward. Seeks diversity of information and inputs, researches possible solutions, and generates recommended options. Based on risk analysis makes decisions in a timely manner within own area of responsibility, considering the interests and concerns of stakeholders.
  • Client Understanding and Advising - Looks at issues from the client’s perspective and advocates for clients within own area as well as urges others to focus on meeting client needs. Works with others across the VPU to define client needs and develop the best approach to meet client needs.
  • Broad Business Thinking – Maintains an in-depth understanding of the long-term implications of decisions both for related areas within the VPU and the client’s business. Involves the key players in identifying operating needs, issues and immediate solutions.
  • Project Management – Prepares and manages multi-resource plans which affect the direction of the work unit. Analyzes complex, evolving circumstances and takes corrective action to avoid resource constraints and meet deadlines. Creates new solutions that address problems and anticipate obstacles – i.e. thinking ahead about next steps in detail.
  • Analytical Thinking – Determines criteria for assessing issues and opportunities. Establishes clear goals and priorities needed to assess performance. Identifies relationships and linkages between different information sources. Anticipates potential problems and develops solutions needed to resolve them. Translates analytical reports into management presentations and provides guidance to resolve issues.
  • Policies and Procedures – Demonstrate thorough knowledge of policies and procedures in related fields. Provide training and guidance to junior staff in enhancing their understanding of relevant policies and procedures. Lead by example and serve as the best practice champion in applying pertinent policies and procedures.
  • Risks and Controls – Lead by example and serve as best practice champions in completing internal control procedures, including understanding impact beyond own immediate functional areas. Assess impact of potential control risks and propose mitigating control procedures as appropriate, with balanced efficiency and effectiveness results within any given processes.
  • Information Technology and Systems – Demonstrate understanding of the functions and operations of pertinent IT systems and applications. Provide training and guidance to junior staff regarding IT system structure and function related area as relevant to the functional area. May Identify and/or lead opportunities for IT improvements to meet changing business needs and coordinate with IT professionals to design and implement new systems/applications as appropriate based on understanding of the business.
  • Communication – Adapt the communication style appropriate for the intended audience. Adopt an inclusive approach to communication as is appropriate to the situation, to ensure adequate stakeholder participation. Present information effectively and encourage feedback.

Poverty has no borders, neither does excellence. We succeed because of our differences and we continuously search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe.


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