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Senior Conflict Resolver

Date: Jun 11, 2021

Location: Watford, United Kingdom

Company: KPMG UK


The Sentinel Resolvers team (Sentinel team) are part of the Quality and Risk Management Department which is responsible for monitoring the firm’s and its individuals’ compliance with the firm’s professional risk management and quality control policies, procedures and guidance. Furthermore, the team work with the wider Quality and Risk community and across the KPMG network to exchange knowledge, develop and improve processes and procedures in response to emerging regulatory, business and other requirements.

The Sentinel team are responsible for the processes relating to the firm’s global Sentinel application, a KPMG secure online application developed to assist KPMG member firms in complying with legal and regulatory independence requirements related to the provision of services and in identifying potential conflicts of interest with proposed engagements. In particular, the team review and propose mitigations for identified conflicts of interests, help engagement teams with correctly onboarding new clients onto the application, maintain a list of firm’s restricted clients for personal independence purposes.

The Role

This role has responsibility for supporting the team of resolvers who identify and assist with the management of potential conflicts of interest with proposed engagements within the global network of KPMG member firms. Every engagement entered into by each KPMG member firm is required to be submitted into Sentinel and receive a Sentinel Approval Number (SAN) prior to starting work. In addition to clearing requests to team undertake a number of other processes regarding using Sentinel data, to enable the firm to be compliant with auditor independence rules.

You will have responsibility for supporting the day to day operation of the Sentinel Team to ensure all engagements are reviewed for potential conflicts of interest and cleared in accordance with policies and procedures and in line with service level agreements. You will also and manage other compliance processes and, with support from the Sentinel manager, act as an escalation point for more complex queries.

Key Responsibilities

The key responsibilities are as follows:

 Deputising for and supporting the Sentinel Manager during periods of absence/project work
 Assist with ongoing training and development of the Sentinel team
 Ensuring no professional engagement is undertaken by KPMG create an unmanageable conflict of interest through the review of Sentinel request
 Working with engagement teams to ensure that steps are taken to manage conflicts identified, whilst protecting client confidentiality
 Participating on the Sentinel helpline to answer phone and email queries on the Sentinel system, conflicts of interest and the progress of engagement requests
 Liaising with global conflict resolvers, UK client facing teams and Quality and Risk Management professionals to manage conflicts of interest on cross-border engagements
 Liaising with functional risk management in order to reach comprehensive decisions in relations to contentious conflicts of interest identified
 Undertaking certain compliance processes associated with the Sentinel system to ensure the data it contains is up to date and accurate as well as checking the quality of work performed by other team members
 Monitor the process for following up on engagements that have been associated with a SAN that is no longer valid.
 Providing support, including holiday cover, across the team and acting as an escalation point to the team on complex mailbox queries.
 Developing awareness/familiarity of the relevant firm’s compliance policies, auditor independence rules, conflict of interest rules and systems that support the Sentinel procedures to become a subject matter expert.

The Person – Skills, Qualifications and Behaviours

• Sound organisational and analytical skills with the ability to prioritise efficiently, work well under pressure and identify issues that require escalation to a higher level.
• The ability and willingness to work autonomously and take responsibility for own work.
• Strong team-player who is both supportive and willing to help out with experience of managing a small team.
• Client-focused approach with a passion for delivering excellence, capable of empathising with others and understanding the issues they face.
• Excellent written and oral communication skills, ability to communicate with people at all levels and build relationships.
• A pragmatic and logical approach to analysis and problem solving, ability to take decisions based on facts and circumstances applying principles learned.
• Broad understanding of the different services provided by the Firm
• The ability to interpret complex information and identify issues.
• The ability to work well under pressure.
• Extremely high level of attention to detail is essential.
• The ability to handle sensitive/confidential information appropriately.
• The confidence to challenge the status-quo and provide fresh ideas.
• Confident user of Microsoft Office applications and internet-based research tools.

Prior working experience for a professional services firm and/or understanding of conflict of interest are a distinct advantage, although training will be given.

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