ABOUT FIRST WATER
First Water (www.firstwateradvisors.com) is a finance advisory firm connecting teams with data and companies with capital through Relational Finance. We provide access to finance function capabilities including reporting/business intelligence, budgeting and forecasting, debt and equity capital raising, and transaction execution (including M&A and sale). Our partner companies include small and midsize businesses (SMBs) and portfolio companies of prominent private equity firms.
Our strength lies in a “mutt culture” based on diversified financial disciplines: private equity, investment banking, financial planning & analysis (FP&A), commercial lending, consulting, and small business leadership. As a result, we are uniquely positioned to support business initiatives through our Relational Finance model that offers flexibility and the opportunity for long-term alignment, versus the rigid engagement frameworks and/or transaction-driven catalysts of traditional finance models.
JOB DESCRIPTION – SUMMER ASSOCIATE (Part Time / Full Time)
This position offers a unique opportunity for a finance professional to join a growing organization. This role is particularly attractive for a candidate looking to expand his/her finance skill set (financial modeling, data structuring, business intelligence, due diligence), gain exposure to multiple finance disciplines (FP&A, M&A, capital raising, etc.), and work with a variety of companies across industries and life-cycle (e.g. growth vs. exit).
Traditional finance roles run a high risk of pigeon-holing, as professionals become more and more versed in a single company, industry, system environment, and/or set of processes. At First Water, we believe that learned skills should open exposure to other disciplines and perspectives, not just the next rung on ladder. The rise of big data and tech-enabled solutions related to the finance function requires new age finance professionals to be “adept adapters” – quickly getting up the curve on new tools while engaging an always fresh lens toward capability and process improvement.
The finance capabilities we offer our partner companies are the same we offer to team members and their development – data, dialogue, and deals.
Data. The finance function has become a core data hub of business organizations. The natural evolution of finance professionals is to combine finance concepts with aspects of data science to bring a business mindset to data organization, transformation, and visualization. Far from just number crunching, FP&A skillsets require process design chops to stay ahead of the curve. That said, Excel remains critical – finance professionals must be exceptional spreadsheeters.
Dialogue. The “why” for finance’s role in business management and decision-making is what separates the people from the machines. No software or algorithm can define your options, set your goals, hold teams accountable, structure mutually beneficial incentives, negotiate transactions, and manage all these within unique circumstances and risk tolerances. Consultative communication is a learned skill that take reps to develop.
Deals. Transaction execution gets most of the finance headlines – debt financings, capital raises, restructurings, mergers and acquisitions, and business sales. Successful deal processes aren’t only defined by whether a deal gets done (especially when the right decision is to wait or walk away), there is also the question on how well a transacting party fares in the deal. Valuation, due diligence, structure, governance, and other factors impact this assessment. Two things we know to be invaluable? Solid data and iterative dialogue with experienced professionals. Emphasis on experienced.
Candidates for this role need not be experts or proficient these areas – we are looking for finance athletes with a desire to expand their skill sets, who have coach-ability, and with a willingness to put in self-directed time as part of their development.
Support partner company relationships and execution of client engagements.
Build-up flexible and granular financial models, perform various financial analyses, drill-downs, sensitivity analyses, and other analyses to drive operational and transactional insights.
Aggregate, structure, and synthesize actionable insights from data sets and information from multiple information sources and systems.
Efficiently maintain recurring partner company processes across reporting and forecasting, including rolling projections, 13-week cash flow, etc.
Prepare impactful reports, dashboards, and presentations, including stakeholder reporting packages, transaction marketing materials, and other presentations as required.
A bachelor’s degree in business, finance, accounting, economics, data science, or related field.
2-5 years in corporate FP&A (transaction or M&A experience a plus), investment banking, finance-related consulting, or other finance/analysis role.
Ability to work collaboratively in a team-oriented environment.
Ability to work independently/remotely with limited oversight in the completion of projects.
Extreme attention to detail.
Advanced Excel skills.
Experience with BI tools such as Microsoft Power BI a plus; interest in developing expertise in the Microsoft Power Suite (Pivot/Query/BI) an absolute must.
Candidates with significant professional experience are expected to have had exposure to data query, transformation, and BI tools. To the extent a candidate has not had direct experience with the Microsoft Power Suite, it is expected that the role will include significant self-directed training to build competency.
Strong PowerPoint and presentation building skills.
Travel to client sites may be required (though infrequent since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic).
Additional Details – Financial Modeling:
A strong financial modeling skill set is integral to the position, with a preference for experience in: three-statement financial analysis, corporate finance/capitalization analysis, budgeting/forecasting, reporting/KPI dashboard templates, financial projections, working capital analysis, profitability/performance analysis, and manipulation of non-financial/operational data sets.
Experience in creating automated processes for recurring financial and data management processes (e.g. rolling forecasts) is a plus; not required, but must be an area of interest.
A financial modeling assessment will be conducted as part of the interview process.
Note on Remote Work / Work-From-Home
We are headquartered in Houston, TX. Many of our relationships are Texas-based, though we serve partner companies across the United States and Canada.
Although we value face-to-face collaboration for process design, troubleshooting, and team camaraderie, we are open to fully remote/work-from-home setups for the right candidates located anywhere within the continental US.
To the extent desired, a WeWork membership is also included for workspace and meeting space needs.
Internship with potential for full time or expedited full time for the right candidate.