Chief Accountant

Bristol / England / United Kingdom

We are a Fortune 500 company you've probably never heard of. Based in Yate (Bristol) and looking for a Chief Accountant. WestRock Company (NYSE: WRK) aspires to be the premier partner and unrivalled provider of paper and packaging solutions in consumer and corrugated markets. WestRock’s 39,000 team members support customers around the world from more than 250 operating and business locations spanning North America, South America, Europe and Asia.

For our plant in Bristol (Yate) we are currently looking for an experienced

Chief Accountant m/f

The Chief Accountant is responsible for all areas relating to financial reporting. This position will be responsible for developing and maintaining accounting principles, practices and procedures to ensure accurate and timely financial statements.

The Chief Accountant will also be responsible for proper configuration of the existing financial and manufacturing platform.  The individual will be the primary driver for enhancements and process improvement implementation including system automation and/or new system rollout for the Europe.

  • The Chief Accountant supervises the staff (Accounting assistant, Cost Accountant) and is responsible for managing the team to ensure that work is properly allocated and completed in a timely and accurate manner. This position addresses tight deadlines and a multitude of accounting activities including general ledger preparation (month-end close process), financial reporting, year-end audit preparation and the support of budget and forecast activities both for US GAPP and statutory.  It also includes maintenance of manufacturing standards.
  • The Chief Accountant will have contact with appropriate Senior executives of the finance group (Accounting/Consolidation/controller/Tax/treasury/GM…) in the company and in the HQ which requires strong communication skills both written and verbal as well as experience in international accounting issues (US GAAP vs. statutory accounting differences, Group Consolidation, etc).


  • Obtain and maintain a thorough understanding of the financial reporting, general ledger structure and manufacturing standards.
  • Support the production of key statutory / legal accounting reports as well as other internal management reports, including cost accounting reporting.
  • Ensure an accurate and timely monthly, quarterly and year end close, including accurate and timely cost accounting month-end close tasks such as review of work orders, job close out activities and manufacturing standards set up.
  • Ensure the timely reporting of all monthly financial information.
  • Assist the European Controller in the daily requirements.
  • Ensure the accurate and timely processing of positive pay transactions.
  • Ensure the monthly and quarterly Bank Compliance activities are performed in a timely and accurate manner.
  • Supports budget and forecasting activities.
  • Responsible for enforcement of existing SOX controls such as physical counts, reconciliation, etc… 
  • Develop and implement policies and procedures with emphasis on internal controls
  • Ensure Risk Management procedures bases on the Group Corporate Governance and Risk Management policies
  • Collaborates with the central team and other department managers to support overall department goals and objectives.
  • Advises staff regarding the handling of non-routine reporting transactions.
  • Engage with IT group in Europe and the US to support ongoing system enhancements and roll outs.  Drive process improvement and automation for the European region.  
  • Responds to inquiries from various origins of the company: GM, Finance lead and Accounting Manager, European and Division Controllers and other managers regarding financial results, special reporting requests and the like.
  • Supervise the general ledger group to ensure all financial reporting deadlines are met.
  • Assist in development and implementation of new procedures and features to enhance the workflow of the department.
  • Provide training to new and existing staff as needed.
  • Work with each direct report to establish goals and objectives for each year and monitor and advise on the progress to enhance the professional development of staff.
  • Support Cost Analyst with special projects and workflow process improvements. Create reporting/evaluation process that ensures team is being held accountable for performance and appropriate corrective action and opportunity development occurs


strong financial accounting background Education: BA/BS in Business with an emphasis in Accounting, MBA degree and/or CPA are preferred 


Incumbent has substantial financial operational experience in leadership roles with increasing responsibilities supporting global business. Substantial international and manufacturing experience is required along with demonstrated strategic business partnering experience.


  • Eight - ten years prior experience in the financial reporting/general ledger area.
  • Experience working for a manufacturing multi-national company
  • Experience with standard costing.
  • Must be PC proficient and able to thrive in a fast -pace setting.
  • Must have strong experience with Microsoft Excel.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills in English.
  • Strong interpersonal and customer oriented skills required.
  • Ability to multi-task, work under pressure and meet deadlines required.
  • The marginal functions of this position have not been included.
  • Knowledge of JDE World and Enterprise strongly recommended.

What We Offer

  • Corporate culture based on integrity, respect, accountability and excellence
  • Attractive salary reflecting skills, competencies and potential
  • Small team, in a comfortable and relaxed working environment
  • Free parking space, and convenient links to public transport
  • Life Assurance, and Income Protection
  • Company contributory pension scheme
  • Employee benefit discount vouchers
  • Employee Assistance Program

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