I guess it’s time to fess up what I really do. My best friend Sydney asked this the other day about my job. She’s like I was trying to explain to a friend what you do, but all I know is that you do some important work with numbers.
I sent her the article about 12 things to know about Budget/Finance people.
First off, surprise, I know it’s hard for some of you to believe, but I work. Just because I don’t brag about my degree, job, and let my job define me like so many others on the East Coast does not mean it’s any less difficult.
Don’t let this free-spirit, care-free, extroverted, fun person who does a lot of different things and is easily distracted by sparkly things fool you…I might love clothes, shopping, and make-up, but I do have a brain somewhere in my head.
I really do have a job and a real “grown-up” job. I’ve been in a grown-up job going on 10 years now. I know a decade. I started in the corporate office of the bank when I was 19 and never stopped working.
My last job in marketing was exciting, fun, and sexy to be in the social media atmosphere. The reason why I joke that all I do is make Excel sheets pretty is that my job doesn’t match me.
Budgets aren’t sexy, innovative, nor is it exciting.
Here is a simple overview of what I do, but our tasks and challenges change daily. Again, you’re not going to be sitting at the edge of your seat saying, that’s so cool. Actually you’re going to say, wow, her job sounds stressful, how does she not have more white hairs by now?
- Manage the travel team. We have over 10,000 travels that go through our shop. We review every single one of them; this does not include issues when they try to voucher. We resolve them.
- Travel guidance. As part of travel, we have to provide guidance, disperse policy changes, and answer questions from anyone. And because they have deemed me the “travel expert,” many of the difficult ones come to me.
- Procurement. Any type of purchase from a small paperclip to a $3 million software purchase that goes through us. Thousands of them a year.
- Manage budgets. This sounds fun, but it’s not. You have to run burn rates, determine if you’re short and if you are short, how you’ll beg for more money or what programs you’ll cut. Not only do you monitor current spending, but you need to project future spending.
- Reporting. There are a lot of reports. Daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly reports. My life is turning in reports in all the time.
- Program reviews. We review all of our programs very closely. My main responsibility is the healthcare unit.
- ROI. We have to consider the return on investment on everything we do.
- Invoice reviews. Since we are in budget, there are 2nd and 3rd level reviews for everything. One wrong move and no internal controls means we will be pulled in an audit and being pulled in an audit is the worst news of the day.
- Building electronic programs. One other great thing I get to do in my job is to control and design our internal webpage, help build and maintain electronic systems for travel and other processes.
- Making Excel sheets, presentations, and policies pretty. Not only do you make pivot tables, pretty sheets, create pretty presentations, but also write policies and a lot of policies.
This is just a quick overview, but see, isn’t it so much better that I just tell you all I make Excel sheets pretty?