DES MOINES WATER WORKS
UPDATED: February 27, 2007
JOB TITLE: CONTROLLER
JOB SUMMARY: Under the administrative direction of the Director of Finance, is
responsible for planning, coordinating, and directing the utility’s general accounting
department and presenting accurate, meaningful financial statements and reports. The
Controller is also responsible for financial planning and control to ensure the preservation
of the utility’s assets.
• Oversees general accounting processes of the utility including accounts payable,
payroll, and customer accounting performed within a computerized accounting
• Oversees and reviews the preparation of monthly balance sheets, operating statements
and related reports to ensure their accuracy and conformity with generally accepted
accounting principles. Prepares monthly analysis for presentation to the Board of
Trustees. Prepares management reports on an as-needed basis.
• Manages cash flow and purchases investments in accordance with Board policy
including determining cash requirements, appropriate investments, and future needs.
• Coordinates the preparation of the annual budget, reviews for accuracy and
completeness, and prepares budget presentation for the Board of Trustees. Oversees
the monitoring of compliance with the budget.
• Directs accounting efforts in preparation for the annual audit and coordinates efforts
with independent auditors.
• Supervises accounting staff including hiring, training, assigning work, and managing
• Performs financial analysis as required including review of service contract pricing.
• Acts as a financial consultant to management.
• Performs other duties of a similar nature.
Education: Bachelors degree in accounting.
Experience: Five years experience in accounting at a staff level or above. Experience
with PeopleSoft financial systems desired.
Licenses/Certifications: CPA preferred.
MINIMUM KNOWLEDGE/SKILLS REQUIRED:
• Advanced teamwork and interpersonal skills.
• Advanced communication skills.
• Advanced decision-making and problem-solving skills.
• Advanced planning and organizing skills to achieve end results.
• Proficient customer focus skills.
• Leadership performance management skills.
• Knowledge of general accounting practices and procedures (GAAP) to direct general
accounting functions within a computerized accounting system and to assure
compliance in presentation of financial information.
• Computer software skills.
• Principles of financial planning and control.
• Principles of financial analysis.
• Leadership teamwork and interpersonal skills.
• Leadership communication skills.
• Leadership decision-making and problem-solving skills.
• Leadership planning and organizing skills to achieve end results.
• Leadership customer focus.
• Leadership job knowledge and continual learning.
• Leadership quantity of work and results achievement.
• Leadership quality and process improvement.
• Leadership organizational awareness.
• Knowledge of investment principles and practices.
• Advanced computer knowledge and skills.
• Advanced knowledge of financial planning and control, including knowledge of
water utility accounting, cost of service theory and rate making and the DMWW
• Repetitive hand motion for short periods of time.
• Office environment.
TECHNICAL SKILLS CHECKLIST
Demonstrates knowledge of payroll processing, accounts payable processing, and
customer billing practices.
Performs accounting processes in a computerized environment.
Demonstrates knowledge of activity based costing system.
Applies GAAP to determine appropriate accounting treatment for transactions.
Applies GAAP in classification of transactions and financial statement presentation.
Demonstrates knowledge of auditing theory and procedures.
Coordinates the staff preparation of work papers for the annual audit.
Computer Software Skills
Demonstrates ability to prepare financial statements and reports on spreadsheets,
including the use of multi-operand formulas, VLOOKUP and pivot tables in
Demonstrates knowledge of maintaining computerized accounting records.
Demonstrates ability to analyze and recognize areas for automation and make
recommendations for their usefulness.
Demonstrates efficient application of office automation technologies in daily work
(word processing, e-mail, on-line calendaring.)
Principles of Financial Planning and Control
Demonstrates knowledge of budgeting principles.
Prepares a budget in income statement format.
Prepares reports analyzing actual results in comparison to budget.
Provides training and guidance to utility staff on budgeting principles.
Principles of Financial Analysis
Demonstrates knowledge of financial ratios and can calculate ratios.
Prepares reports providing comparative financial information, ratios, and statistics.
Prepares narrative reports providing analytics of utility financial position.
Prepares graphs that illustrate financial analysis reports.
Investment Principles and Practices
Demonstrates knowledge of investment theory and practices.
Demonstrates knowledge of investment vehicles such as U.S. Treasuries, mutual
funds, and Certificates of Deposit.
Demonstrates knowledge of the stock market, how it functions, and its interaction
with economic events and other influences.
Demonstrates knowledge of principles and rules relating to Pension funds.
Demonstrates knowledge of principles and rules relating to Deferred Compensation
Prepares and analyze cash flow projections.
Advanced Computer Software Skills
Uses advanced spreadsheet techniques such as linking, consolidation, and graphing.
Demonstrates ability to use Microsoft Word and Microsoft Outlook.
Demonstrates knowledge of all modules of DMWW accounting software, and how
Demonstrates skill creating queries using PeopleSoft query.
Advanced Knowledge of Financial Planning and Control
Demonstrates knowledge of DMWW work plan and budget system.
Provides facilitation to work plan authors in the utility.
Prepares consolidated utility budget from individual work plans including compiling
work plans into master budget, preparing revenue projections, and preparing budget
presentation materials for utility Board.
Demonstrates knowledge of the principles of municipal bond financing, especially
water revenue bonds, and the role of agencies such as Moody’s Investor Services in
rating municipal credits.
Maintains established relationship with financial consultant in structuring bond issues
and preparing for public bond sales.
Creates debt service projections and preliminary debt schedules for the utility and
Demonstrates an understanding of the concepts of bond reserve funds and the effect
these investments have on overall debt repayment by external participants.
Demonstrates ability to plan and execute benchmarking techniques including
analyzing data and developing improvement plan.
Demonstrates ability to analyze activity based costing techniques used outside
DMWW and make recommendations for their applicability and usefulness to
Demonstrates knowledge of e-commerce.
Demonstrates knowledge of performance based measurement systems.
Demonstrates in-depth knowledge of operating components of the Des Moines Water
Works including water treatment, distribution system, service and finance and fully
understands the operations, maintenance and capital replacement characteristics of
each. Understands the relationships between these areas and how each impacts the
cost of service.
Understands and applies the concepts of the cash-needs and utility approaches to
determining revenue requirements.
Understands and applies the concepts of cost of service including distribution of costs
to customer classes, return on capital investment and revenue vs. debt financing.
Understands the general concepts of rate making including rate block design,
minimum bills vs. service charges, wholesale service rates, demand rates and standby
Understands the DMWW billing and accounts receivable system.
Understands the DMWW rate structure and billing process.
Analyzes proposed changes to DMWW system to determine effects on accounting
processes and controls; makes recommendations regarding proposed changes.