Aaron Fettes is Building a Team on a Path to Success
Aaron Fettes began his professional career joining a public accounting firm in downtown Milwaukee after graduating from Carthage College in Kenosha, WI. He stayed there for the next three years doing audit and tax work, mostly for the not-for-profit sector. While Aaron enjoyed gaining experience, he knew he wanted something different. He wanted to be part of a company’s accounting department, working on their month-end close work and helping them to be successful.
Eventually, Aaron joined Extendicare in the Contracted Services department as an Accountant. He was responsible for back office services for the skilled nursing buildings Extendicare did not own. It was over the next six years with Extendicare that Aaron built his knowledge in long-term care, as he continued to open up to the new projects that came through his department.
During his time with Extendicare, Aaron was happy to grow his experience, but he was even more appreciative of a mentor he had the pleasure to work with. Aaron says, “I still talk to her to this day, and I couldn’t be more grateful for everything she has done for me in my career.”
Aaron’s next opportunity had him leaving Extendicare to become the Controller for a long-term care company based out of West Palm Beach, FL. This company had been previously outsourcing their back office services and wanted to move it in house, so Aaron was put in charge of setting up departments and transitioning the accounting and accounts payable in house. Looking back, Aaron can see how this path was preparing him for his role at North Shore Healthcare!
After three years in Florida, Aaron and his spouse decided that West Palm Beach wasn’t for them. “Some say we are crazy, but we missed snow, the changing of the seasons and most importantly, our family in Wisconsin.” Aaron came home to Wisconsin after taking a role with a pharmaceutical company in Milwaukee’s Third Ward. He was here for six years serving various roles within the Finance department.
During Aaron’s professional career, he had made a connection with Lisa Benoit, North Shore Healthcare’s Director of Recruitment. Their paths crossed and Lisa ended up reaching out to Aaron asking if he was interested in an opportunity with North Shore Healthcare. The thought of getting back into long-term care was a dream come true, and he had missed the industry the past six years and couldn’t wait to get back into it.
“Even though we are in the back office, there’s a connection to the building and the resident care. Every role in our Support center ultimately helps the buildings provide crucial care to our residents. That connection to patient care is what pushes me every day to ensure our department is doing everything we can to assist the buildings in being successful,” says Aaron.
Since joining North Shore’s brand new department, Aaron and the Finance team have had the wonderful opportunity to show just how much value they can add to the department. Whether it be creating and providing reports to analyze financial outcomes, a quick and accurate financial month end close process, ensuring cash is processed timely or researching and determining the status of AP invoices, what Aaron and his team do is very important.
Aaron says his goal is “to always ensure that the Finance team sees how important their work is and stays motivated daily by that fact.” For example, without a quick and accurate month end close process, the operators won’t be able to identify potential areas of improvement until it’s too late. Aaron makes it his goal to get their financials ready quickly after the month and build trust in what his department is providing them so they can quickly pivot and respond to areas of concern.
Aaron is still building on to the great financial team at North Shore Healthcare and believes there are wonderful opportunities available. “As we continue to grow and build out our team, everyone on the team will be able to grow and get more exposure to new areas as we partner with other departments throughout the company,” says Aaron.
Aaron’s advice to any person looking to get into the financial field is to soak it all in. “Be open to new projects that give you more visibility to the company that will allow you to provide a better financial service to the company,” advises Aaron. He firmly believes that a great and knowledgeable finance team can help ensure the success of every company by providing the results, forecasting the future, and putting out financial fires before they start.
“It is important that the finance team is just as involved in planning the future as they are in reporting on the past.”