Appointment of the Group Chief Financial Officer

London South Bank University


Dear candidate

Thank you for your interest in the role of Group Chief Financial Officer at London South Bank University (LSBU).

LSBU is a modern, dynamic university with a long history of leading the way in applied education and practice-led learning. With over 17,000 students and 2,000 staff from over 130 countries, we work together to foster the development of graduates, ready to address business and societal challenges. We are focused on turning passion into purpose.

We are highly commended as an Outstanding Entrepreneurial University (Times Higher Awards, 2022) and ranked 5th in the world for Reducing Inequality (Times Higher Education Impact Rankings, 2022). We’re proud that our graduates are the highest paid amongst all London modern universities one year after completing their course (LEO, 2022).

The University created LSBU Group, a unique and growing partnership of secondary, further and higher education providers in south London. LSBU Group is made up of four organisations and was created in 2019 after London South Bank University oversaw the first merger of its kind between a university and college.

We are now seeking to appoint a dynamic and experienced financial leader to join our executive team and help us achieve our strategic goals.

As our Group CFO, you will be responsible for providing strategic leadership and direction to our finance function and supporting the delivery of our ambitious strategic goals. Reporting to me, you will be a key member of the executive team and will work closely with other leaders across the University to ensure that we are using our resources effectively to achieve our objectives.

To be successful in this role, you will need to have significant experience in a senior finance leadership role in a large and complex organisation. You will have the ability to develop financial strategies that support long term sustainability by balancing plans around revenue growth with the need for capital investment. You will also bring a successful track record of delivering high-quality financial management and reporting, managing financial controls and statutory reporting, and of leading significant financial change programs.

You will be an experienced people leader and will work to ensure that inclusion and diversity are integral to the culture of the University.

If you are interested in this exciting opportunity, I encourage you to apply. You can find more information about the role and how to apply on this website. Our advising consultants at Anderson Quigley would be pleased to discuss the role with you in confidence – their details can also be found on this site.

I do hope you will express an interest in joining us at this exciting stage in our development.

Professor David Phoenix OBE
Vice Chancellor, LSBU and CEO of LSBU Group

About us

LSBU – Turning Passion into Purpose

Founded in 1892 as the Borough Polytechnic Institute to “promote the industrial skill, general knowledge, health and wellbeing of young men and women belonging to the poorer classes”, the University’s mission has remained largely the same ever since: to provide professional opportunities to all who seek them. In 1970 the Institute merged with four other colleges to become South Bank Polytechnic. In 1992 after being awarded University status, the name changed again to South Bank University, before finally becoming London South Bank University in 2003. In 2019, Lambeth College joined the Group, which together with London South Bank Technical College, South Bank University Academy, South Bank University Sixth Form and South Bank Innovation, forms the LSBU Group. The Group has a diverse, multicultural population of around 17,000 London based university students, plus around 6,500 transnational students, 7,000 college students and 1,100 academy students. Over half of the university students identify as black and minority ethnic, more than half come from deprived neighbourhoods, over 60% are mature students and 9% are international.

Our vision is to transform lives, communities, businesses and society through applied education and insight. LSBU is for people who want to make an impact. The education we offer can be truly life changing for our students, and every day we come to work with a single goal: nurture their learning and growth. We’ve offered opportunities for all since 1892. We were pioneers at the time. Now it’s in our DNA, and the heart and soul of our university lies in the power of our diversity and the strength of our local communities.

Our ambition is to create educational pathways that empower people of all backgrounds and talents to realise their aspirations, add to the knowledge base, and contribute their skills and drive to wider society. To realise our ambition, we need people with energy, courage and imagination, who are enthused by our vision and recognise our values as theirs; people who bring ideas to enrich our approach to learning, research and innovation; collaborative people who love creating and spreading knowledge; brilliant people who seek growth and yearn to make a positive, personal difference.

At LSBU, you’ll get to contribute to a vibrant and dynamic culture, which is fuelled by purpose, built around people, and genuinely diverse. You’ll be trusted and recognised for your unique contribution.

The four pillars of the 2025 Group Strategy are Access to Opportunity, Student Success, Real World Impact and Fit for the Future. These pillars articulate what is at the heart of what the LSBU Group is trying to achieve. Success against the strategy will be judged against these four pillars. What joins these pillars is the overarching offer of delivering: Social mobility; A student experience designed around our students; Professional and technical education; Impact through insight; Strength from diversity; and Engagement with place.

LSBU Group:

The University

The University has eight schools of study each led by a dedicated Dean. These are:

  • School of Applied Sciences
  • School of Arts & Creative Industries
  • School of The Built Environment & Architecture
  • LSBU Business School
  • School of Engineering
  • School of Law & Social Sciences
  • Institute of Health & Social Care ( School of Allied and Community Health, School of Nursing and Midwifery)

You can read more about our schools here.

Lambeth College

The college offers a wide range of specialist courses to support students into employment and on to further education. Courses focus on real-world, practical learning, helping students to build a diverse skill set preparing them for life and future careers. Find out more here.

London South Bank Technical College

London South Bank Technical College is a college that does things differently, in a revolutionary new campus in Nine Elms, with tech-forward, industry-focused learning spaces that are sector leading. Find out more here.

South Bank University Academy

South Bank University Academy is a school which stays true to its values of social justice, kindness and empathy, and community: helping students become change makers, live a good life and improve the lives of others. Find out more here.

South Bank University Sixth Form

South Bank University Sixth Form is a new and innovative sixth form with strong employer links, cutting-edge facilities and a specialist technical curriculum in engineering, health, business and finance. The Sixth Form launches in September 2023.

South Bank Innovation

South Bank Innovation drives impact and knowledge exchange, through a team of 50+ experts passionate about enabling both our academic and student communities to engage with innovation and generate economic and societal benefits at the local, national and international levels. Find out more here.

Facts and figures

You can read our latest reviews and financial statements here.

You can read our Report and Financial Statements for the year ending 31st July 2022 here.

Further information

You can find out more about the University here.

The role

Group Chief Financial Officer (AQ1907)

Apply now

Job title: Group Chief Financial Officer
Directorate: Executive Team
Department: Finance
Grade: Executive
Reporting to: Group CEO
Resource/Budget Management: £200M+


Key responsibilities and purposes of the post

The Group CFO will be responsible for directing the financial agenda to support LSBU priorities and for delivering Group financial sustainability, strong financial control and performance and compliance with statutory financial reporting requirements.

More specifically, as a member of the Executive, reporting to the Group CEO, the Group CFO will contribute to the corporate leadership of the Group and its strategic direction. The Executive has individual and collective responsibilities for ensuring that the Group can develop and deliver its business plans and further develop its reputation and impact regionally, nationally and internationally. They will uphold the Group’s EPIIC values and will work to ensure inclusion and diversity is integral to the culture of the University. They will deliver the corporate KPIs for which they are responsible and contribute to delivery against the UN Sustainable Development Goals embedded within our Strategy.

The CFO is expected to work as part of a team and has executive level responsibility for all the following activities at consolidated level and for all entities within the Group:

  • Board/Committee lead for all Group financial matters and membership of entities within the Group as appropriate, deputising for the Vice Chancellor at Executive and Board committees as appropriate.
  • Determining Group financial strategy and ensuring Group financial sustainability whilst securing value for money and alignment of scarce financial resources with key strategic priorities.
  • Maintaining accurate accounting records for all Group entities, developing financial forecasts and budgets and delivering against those forecasts.
  • Group liquidity and cashflow management.
  • All aspects of financial transaction processing, and executive lead for Corporate Procurement, Payroll and pensions.
  • Ensuring the effective operation of financial control processes and procedures.
  • Monitoring Group financial performance and the performance of all companies within the Group.
  • The provision of timely, accurate and relevant management information to budget holders, committees and officers of the Group for control, planning and decision making purposes.
  • Meeting corporate obligations with respect to tax and other financial compliance matters including statutory accounts reporting and reporting as required, for example, by OfS, ESFA, IfATE.
  • Group risk management including leadership of external and internal audit.
  • Financial oversight of key projects, including M & A activity.
  • The effective and efficient operation of the Finance and Management Information professional service group (FMI).
  • Establishing effective relationships with regulators and other external stakeholders.

In addition, members of the University Executive are expected, under the leadership of the Vice Chancellor and Group Chief Executive, to work as a team, providing collective leadership, strategic direction and overall management of the Group. Core functions common to all members of the executive include:

  • Assisting the Group CEO in the leadership, direction and management of the Group.
  • Advocating and behaving as a role model around the principles set out in the LSBU behavioural framework and complying with the standards of public behaviour set out in the Nolan Principles.
  • Ensuring the Group’s financial objectives, as set out in the annual budget and associated papers, are met and show due regard for the University’s financial regulations and the need to evidence proper and appropriate use of public funds.
  • Ensuring the diversification of income sources and support increased efficiency and effectiveness in all aspects of operations, giving due regard to the Group’s accountability to stakeholders for institutional performance.
  • Through the ambassadorial role which each member of the Executive has increase the regional, national and international profile of the Group and its component parts.
  • Ensuring the rules of corporate governance are complied with, in particular that their actions, and those of the staff reporting to them, comply with the Articles of Governance, the OFS financial memorandum and where appropriate articles of association for university companies, ESFA and Ofsted.



  • Qualified to degree level and evidence of appropriate CPD/professional qualifications, e.g., qualified member of one of the CCAB accountancy bodies with evidence of regular professional updating.


  • An experienced senior leader, able to demonstrate proven delivery of successful change management across large and complex organisations, including shaping and implementing new Finance team structures, systems and modernizing business processes.
  • Evidence of leading policy developments and turning plans into action.
  • Experience of attending and providing independent advice to Boards and Committees.
  • Strategic insight as demonstrated by engagement in cross-institutional leadership and strategy setting and implementation.
  • A comprehensive understanding of current and future developments in the sector and the key drivers behind them.
  • Specification and management of the development of effective resource allocation and finance information systems, as well as previous experience in delivery of final accounts.
  • Ability to manage financial and business planning in an uncertain external environment where diversification of sources of funding is a high priority and ideally experience of helping to identify, encourage and exploit such sources.
  • Significant experience of internal and external audit processes.
  • Experience of working in the HE sector, including an understanding of current and future developments in the HE sector and the key drivers behind them.
  • Experience of operating in a group environment.


  • Experience of the development, implementation and management of corporate management and risk frameworks.
  • Experience of major estates capital projects.
  • Knowledge of pension schemes.

Terms of appointment

Remuneration: A competitive salary will be agreed with the preferred candidate. The successful candidate will also be eligible for individual and team based performance related pay.

Hours of work and working pattern: Full time, London based with hybrid working.

Annual leave entitlement: 26.5 working days per annum, rising with length of service, plus public and bank holidays and days when the University is closed.

Pension scheme: The University offers automatic membership to a defined contribution (DC) scheme which is operated through Aviva.  Details of the contribution rates and pay bands, together with details of the Scheme, can be found here.

Equal opportunities policy statement: The University is committed to equality of opportunity both as an employer and as an educational institution. The University will promote good relations among its staff and students and will create conditions that contribute to the full development and potential of all its members.

Pre employment checks: All appointments are subject to satisfactory pre employment checks including medical questionnaire, references and right to work in the UK.

International applicants:  We welcome international applicants who have the right to work in the UK or who are eligible for sponsorship under the Skilled Worker Route (SWR) or the Global Talent Route. Under the UK Governments Points based scheme, this role meets the criteria to be sponsored by LSBU for an SWR application.

How to apply

Anderson Quigley is acting as an advisor to the University. An executive search process is being carried out by Anderson Quigley in addition to the public advertisement.

The closing date for applications is Friday 2nd June 2023.

Preliminary interviews will be held in mid-June.

Shortlisted candidates will be asked to undertake online psychometric assessments. Final interviews will be held on 5th July 2023.

Applications should consist of:

  • A full CV.
  • A covering letter (maximum of two pages) outlining how you meet the essential experience criteria of the person specification.
  • Please include details of two referees in your CV, though please note that we will not approach your referees without your prior consent and only should you be shortlisted.

To apply, please click the Apply Now button at the top of this page.

Should you wish to discuss the role in strict confidence, please contact Carolyn Coates on +44 (0)7825 871 944 or, or Elliott Rae on +44 (0)7584 078 534 or