About the Job
Aeris Ratings and Analysis
Aeris applies its proprietary rating methodology to assess a community investment loan fund’s impact management and financial strength. The impact management rating assesses alignment of the community investment loan fund’s programs and products with its mission; how effectively the community investment loan fund uses its resources—both on- and off-balance sheet; the appropriateness of output and outcome data and how such data is used by the loan fund to improve the effectiveness of its products and strategies relative to its mission. The financial strength and performance rating assesses organizational creditworthiness from the perspective of an unsecured investor with a 3- to 5-year investment horizon based on an in-depth analysis of capital strength, asset quality, management capacity, earnings, and liquidity (CAMEL).
Aeris’ rating analyses are conducted annually, based upon a rigorous and comprehensive due diligence process that culminates in a concise and thorough written analysis which addresses the most significant organizational and financial strengths and weaknesses of the rated entity.
Analyst’s Scope of Work
The Analyst will be assigned specific rating analyses, and will be responsible for the following:
- analyzing the most recent five years of financial information, including audits and portfolio performance reports, and review of written policies and narrative documents relating to impact, financial performance, and management;
- conducting one to two days of interviews with management and board members;
- developing a cohesive set of substantiated opinions on the significant strengths and weaknesses of the organization and its performance, which support the recommendation of a rating,
- writing the Rating Report, averaging 50 pages in length including a number of standard and custom tables and charts, explanations for changes, descriptions of programs and processes; and
- presenting the rating report and opinions with a recommended rating to the Aeris rating committee.
Analysts and Aeris management make up a rating committee via conference call for each rating analysis. Using the Rating Report, committee members score a community investment loan fund based on codified ratings guidelines. Ratings are finalized based on committee discussion and responses to questions posed to the Analysts.
The production of Aeris’ Rating Reports and other analysis work requires constructive collaboration between the Analyst and members of Aeris’ management and operations team. The time frame required to complete a rating exercise from start to completion is four to five months; the Analyst’s work is most intensive during the two to three months in the middle of the process.
Type of Contract
A number of options are available as appropriate to fit Aeris’ and candidates needs and requirements, from part-time contractor to full time staff. Rating assignments typically complete over a period of four to five months with total analyst hours ranging between 80 to 120 per assignment. Some training time should be factored into the first three to four assignments. Analysts must be able to commit to assignments approximately six months ahead to enable scheduling. Some scheduling flexibility is required to accommodate unforeseen changes.
Successful candidates must have:
- Extensive experience underwriting financial institutions or structured funds for investment. Experience with nonprofit financial statements and or experience in CDFIs is a plus.
- Solid understanding of accounting concepts;
- Understanding of underwriting from the perspective of an unsecured fixed-income investor;
- Excellent understanding and judgement of the relevance and materiality of credit and impact management issues;
- Excellent writing and editing skills of professional quality for publication fluency and clarity of writing are essential;
- Good communication and interpersonal skills; ability to represent Aeris with the highest professional standards; understand the role of an analyst;
- Excellent attention to detail and works well with rote processes;
- Ability to meet deadlines and adhere to standard processes and conventions;
- Proficiency in MS Office applications including Word and Excel. Experience with SalesForce is a plus.
Additional desirable qualities include:
- Understanding of the issues, trends, and operations of community investment loan funds and other sectors of the impact investment field;
- Experience assessing both quantitative and qualitative aspects of organizations.
Aeris Insight Inc.
Aeris is a rating and information service built on the belief that capital will flow to good more quickly when investors have confidence in the accountability, standards, and transparency of impact investments. Since 2004, Aeris’ due diligence and data have helped investors source, underwrite, and monitor investments that meet their risk parameters and impact goals. Aeris’ clients range from large financial institutions with Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) obligations to mission-driven charitable foundations, government, private wealth managers, and more.