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Head of Internal Controls

Company: American Equity
Location: West Des Moines
Posted on: May 3, 2021

Job Description:



The Head of Internal Controls is responsible for monitoring and improving, as needed, the Company's internal controls over financial reporting under SOX and the NAIC Model Audit Rule, as well as non-SOX business controls; and additionally assists in the design of controls as new processes/systems are implemented or existing processes are changed/updated. The incumbent provides control expertise and consultation to key functional areas of the Company, working closely with key executives and internal audit to conduct management's assessment of internal controls, and serving as primary point of contact with internal and external auditors in conducting control testing and coordinating efforts; including identifying deficiencies, and working with the appropriate business leaders to develop a plan for remediation and mitigation. The incumbent is responsible for building out a team to establish standards of quality and consistency for the enterprise-wide internal control function.


+ Oversees the control framework at the company (both SOX and non-SOX controls), evaluating the soundness, adequacy and effectiveness of key financial and operational controls; provides risk and controls-based consultative support.

+ Sets standards for control design and execution and documentation of controls to drive consistency throughout the organization.

+ Works with business representatives in each department to ensure appropriate controls are in place and designed appropriately to manage risk.

+ Evaluates the design and performance of internal controls through the execution of control evaluations.

+ Completes control evaluations, escalates deficiencies and leads proposed resolution plans including controls around new or changing processes, etc.

+ Assists in or completes reviews of SOC 1 reports and assists business units with establishment of user controls to address user control considerations in SOC 1 reports.

+ Directs or participates in the development and enhancement of processes, systems, procedures and controls throughout the company and its business units, with the emphasis on reducing risk and minimizing liability while ensuring operational controls run efficiently and are effective.

+ Assists business process owners/departments with documentation as needed and serves as key resource for process owners/departments on questions related to controls.

+ Develops strategies and tactics to drive efficiencies in testing by internal and external auditors.

+ Supports and coordinates with the Risk team in the review and evaluation of risks and controls.

+ Conducts "pre-audit" reviews of key controls to ensure quality, adherence to standards and reduce the risk of control deficiencies.

+ Builds out formal attestation process for process owners/departments with significant control responsibilities.

+ Leads a diverse team of employees with responsibility for managing the employee life cycle and experience, including but not limited to, selection and retention of talent, continuous feedback and performance management, reward and recognition, corrective action and employee development.

+ Reviews and interprets regulations and provides technical controls guidance.

+ Collaborates with other members of the Finance team to align departmental strategy or direction with the overall goals of the company.

+ Establishes department functional policies, practices, and procedures and oversees and implements process improvement initiatives.

+ Accountable for prudent management of departmental expenses by establishing and monitoring a department budget in accordance with corporate guidelines.

+ Performs other related work as assigned.


Direct Reports:

Small team of internal control analysts TBD.

General Description of Indirect Reports (2 and 3-downs):



Bachelor's degree in Accounting, Finance or related field of study; plus ten (10) years of progressively responsible related internal controls or audit experience; or equivalent combination of education and/or experience.

Experience in public accounting strongly preferred.

Prior supervisory experience beneficial.


Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) designation preferred.


+ Thorough understanding and demonstrated experience with the COSO framework.

+ General knowledge of industry standards and best practices around control evaluations and risk management processes.

+ Proficiency with risk types, methodologies and frameworks for evaluating or testing controls and assessing results, conducting research, and identifying control deficiencies.

+ Comprehensive knowledge of auditing practices and procedures.

+ Highly motivated and demonstrated ability to take initiative.

+ Strong understanding of business process and risk.

+ Ability to influence in absence of formal reporting relationships and inspire confidence throughout the organization.

+ Understanding of industry related laws, rules and regulations impacting financial and nonfinancial controls.

+ Strong customer service orientation.

+ Effective verbal and written communication skills, including ability to effectively respond to data requests from external/internal auditors, internal departments, etc.

+ Strong attention to detail.

+ Ability to work cooperatively and successfully with employees, customers, and other outside third parties.

+ Strong organizational and planning skills.

+ Proficient in the use of MicroSoft Office Suite.

+ Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals.

+ Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions.

+ Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals and technical/operational procedures.

+ Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions.

+ Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.

+ Ability to successfully handle pressure and meet deadlines in a fast-paced work environment.

Keywords: American Equity, West Des Moines , Head of Internal Controls, Other , West Des Moines, Iowa

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