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Computing Consultant


School of Accountancy

Effective Date: March 2006
Grade: USG 8 Reports to: Director

General Accountability

This position is a full-time ongoing position that is accountable to the Director of the School of Accountancy (SOA).   The incumbent is responsible for providing daily computing support for the School’s research, teaching, and service/administration needs as an IT consultant.  These responsibilities include troubleshooting, coaching, and maintenance of existing systems and infrastructure as well as assisting with development and implementation of new systems and infrastructure under the supervision of the Director of SOA.  The incumbent is expected to be proficient in computer languages, hardware and systems software and installation, and use of databases.  In addition, the incumbent must be proficient in the use of network and related Internet technologies. 

Nature and Scope

This position is contingent on the availability of funding. With knowledge of information technologies and the work environment, the incumbent plays a key role in meeting the daily needs of the teaching and learning, research and academic support activities of the SOA.  The incumbent will not only troubleshoot computing problems, but also assist users to enhance their computing skills.  Moreover, the incumbent will not only maintain existing systems and infrastructure but also assist with development and implementation of new systems and infrastructure.


The School of Accountancy offers a four-year undergraduate program.  On average there are 2000 applicants and annual admissions are approximately 215 accounting students (150Arts/55 Mathematics/10 Science).  Approximately 840 students are enrolled in the undergraduate program.  The School offers Masters (accounting, finance and taxation), Diploma (accounting, information technology and information systems assurance), and PhD academic programs.  On average there are 300 applications per year for these programs and the most recent admission figures are as follows:  MAcc  - 115; MTax  - 30; MFinance  - 10, Diplomas  - 40, and PhD’s -  12. 


The School has several distinctive features that may have implications for computing. The Accounting and Financial Management program and several of the Masters programs are cost-recovery programs, which requires the School to manage and track related revenues and expenditures including forecasting and budgeting.  The School also actively engages in marketing several of the programs, manages the resulting applicant pool, surveys existing students on program satisfaction, assists in locating and contacting co-op employers and arranging placements, and has an active alumni network.


The School embodies a large and varied mix of operating, research, trust and endowment funding, including seven Centres spanning research and education issues. The School has 14 support staff positions and 32 faculty members as well as 10-12 Ph.D students. Faculty members and Ph.D. students are very involved in research activities, typically requiring either access to a number of commercially provided databases or development of computer-based experimental materials and surveys.   The School currently subscribes to a Unix based research computing and database service hosted by the Wharton School of Business (WRDS), and has its own Unix-based (Solaris) School of Accountancy Research (SOAR) computing facility that provides access to commercial data via custom access programs as well as hosting web-based experiments. 


Operating platforms for personal computers within the School are primarily Windows based, but there are also users of Mac OS X and Linux.  Some faculty and staff are using the Nexus system, as well as the Arts Faculty system provided by the Arts Computing Office. 



Significant Internal Contacts:


Director of the School of Accountancy

Administrative Officer of School of Accountancy

Faculty, staff and Ph.D. students of the School of Accountancy

Undergraduate and Masters students

Arts Computing Office

Audio-Visual Department



Procurement Office


Significant External Relationships:


       Off campus computing suppliers

Statistical Data

Specific Accountabilities

1. Assessment, Tracking and Deployment

This incumbent should be proficient at anticipating computing issues and providing high quality problem-solving support regarding use of the Internet, networks, hardware, and software for faculty, PhD students, and staff.  Also this incumbent will evaluate the administrative computing systems, processes and infrastructure in place in the School and make recommendations for change (such as automated processes, on-line forms, etc).  S/he would also be responsible for the development and implementation of the approved changes under the supervision of the Director of SOA.


2. Training and Coaching

The incumbent will proficiently provide training/coaching for faculty, PhD students, and staff in the use of information technologies and systems.  For example, the incumbent will provide research assistance such as research database account management, research data retrieval, development of web-based surveys and experiments and data and programs backup for faculty and PhD students in using SOAR, WRDS, and other computing facilities as assigned.  Also, the incumbent will provide consulting assistance for various programming, scripting and computer languages (C, Fortran, SQL, UNIX Shell, Awk) and for users of standard office productivity software, such as MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access as well as web-based course management systems such as UW-ACE, web browsers and e-mail applications.


3. Support Activities

The incumbent will assist faculty, staff, and students to open and manage accounts with University Systems such as Quest, UWDir, Nexus, Watarts, and Bookit.  The incumbent will also assist faculty and staff in selecting, ordering, and installing hardware and software with reference to standards or policies established by the Director of SOA.  Other activities include:


4. Communications

The incumbent will communicate effectively with the SOA faculty and staff, the Arts Computing Office (ACO), and IST.  This will include acting as a liaison for the School of Accountancy in resolving computing-related problems.  The incumbent will assist faculty and staff to locate help from appropriate computing areas of the university.


5. Accountability and Impact

The incumbent will contribute to the provision of computing services of the SOA under the supervision of the Director, SOA.


6. Project Management

The incumbent will develop a yearly plan with goals and supporting  activities and budget.

The incumbent is accountable for each computing project initiated or assigned and therefore progress reporting to those involved in each project is necessary.  Regular reporting to the Director will be necessary to ensure the computing plan is on target.


7.  Technical Expertise and Learning

The incumbent requires proficient knowledge of Windows and Unix based operating systems, and communication protocols, as well as networks. Knowledge of Mac OS X would be an asset.  The incumbent should also have proficient level knowledge of the technologies and tools relevant for developing web, database, and shared applications to support various School needs, such as Apache, Java, Java script, ASP, Perl, PHP, HTML, and MySQL as well as web-based course management systems such as UW-ACE) and products such as Dreamweaver.  The incumbent should maintain awareness of general developments in computing technology and continually update their skills through courses and reading.


8.  Problem Solving Skills

The incumbent will proficiently apply knowledge of the broad range of the above technologies, theories and logic to troubleshoot routine problems of varying complexity.


9.  Communication Skills

The incumbent needs to understand and communicate complex technical concepts in ways that are appropriate to the requirements of the faculty, staff and students of the school.  The incumbent should be able to communicate clearly in delivering knowledge during the training/coaching process.

Working Conditions