Administrative Assistant

  • Added Date: Wednesday, 22 January 2020
  • Deadline Date: Friday, 31 January 2020

The position is located at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of the Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA), Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (ROLAC) in Panama City. The Administrative Assistant reports to the Administrative and Finance Officer.

  • Drafts routine correspondence.
  • Maintains files of rules, regulations, administrative instructions and other related documentation.
  • Maintains up-to-date work unit files (both paper and electronic).   
  • Coordinates extensively with service units and liaises frequently with internal team members both at Headquarters and in the field.
  • Performs other related administrative duties, as required, e.g. monitoring accounts and payment to vendors and individual contractors for services; physical space planning; identification of office technology needs and maintenance of equipment; organizing and coordinating administrative arrangements for seminars, conferences and translations.
  • Provides procurement, logistical and administrative support to the Administrative Officer in the acquisition of a wide variety of goods and services.
  • Reviews, records and prioritizes purchasing requests and obtains additional information/documentation as required; monitors the availability of vendors and funding sources.
  • Monitors the status of existing requisitions, maintain contact with suppliers to ensure timely delivery of goods and services, coordinates shipment of goods/commodities/equipment to the Regional Office, verifies receipt and inspection of deliverables and accurately reports if required.
  • Produces tender documents (e.g. Invitations to Bids, Requests for Proposals and Requests for Quotation) based on the nature of requirements and cost of procurement involved.
  • Prepares abstracts of offers and compile data contained in quotations, proposals and bids to determine which supplier can deliver the required goods/services at the best terms and lowest costs possible under the guidance of the Administrative Officer.
  • Finalizes purchase orders and contracts for approval by the Administrative Officer; and, if required, prepares submission to the HQ Procurement Group for review and subsequent approval by the authorized official.
  • Maintains relevant internal databases and files; keeps track of any contractual agreements, systems contracts, etc. and informs affected users of contractual rights and obligations.
  • Researches, retrieves and presents information from a variety of internal and external sources on sources of supply, vendors by commodity, etc., as well as obtain specifications for new products and equipment on the market.
  • Assists with day-to-day administration of contracts between the UN and external contractors for outsourced services.
  • Audits the contractors' invoices against the goods and services provided by the contractor and approved by the UN.
  • Processes the payment of contractors' invoices and monitor payments.
  • Prepares requisitions and enters data to initiate requisition process.
  • Records contract status at all stages of process.
  • Coordinates on delivery schedules.
  • Ensures that Receipt and Inspection reports accurately reflect requisitioned items, and that invoices are timely processed.
  • Provides updates on requisition status to relevant units.
  • Manages and maintains records of procurement thresholds for each contract.
  • Maintains, updates and ensures accuracy of computer database by recording requisition details, purchase orders, delivery activity and invoice actions.
  • Communicates with the office managers to understand the furniture needs.
  • Ensures UN assets are assigned stock numbers, bar-coded, decaled and tagged as per UN guidelines.
  • Conducts periodic physical inventories of office furniture and expendable supplies to ensure accuracy of the UN property.
  • Submits reports on physical inventories to the Administrative Officer.
  • Assists in managing and maintaining a comprehensive electronic database of expendable and non-expendable UN property; enters data on all incoming expendable and non-expendable property, acquisitions, disposals, transfers, deletions and corrections.
  • Professionalism: Ability to perform a broad range of administrative functions, e.g., budget/work programme, human resources, database management, etc. Ability to apply knowledge of various United Nations administrative, financial and human resources rules and regulations in work situations. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Commitment to implementing the goal of gender equality by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects of work.
  • Communication:  Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors’ language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
  • Teamwork:  Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.
  • Planning & Organizing:  Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
  • Accountability: Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules; supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments; takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable.
  • Creativity: Actively seeks to improve programmes or services; offers new and different options to solve problems or meet client needs; promotes and persuades others to consider new ideas; takes calculated risks on new and unusual ideas; thinks “outside the box”; takes an interest in new ideas and new ways of doing things; is not bound by current thinking or traditional approaches.
  • Client Orientation: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.
  • Commitment to Continuous Learning: Keeps abreast of new developments in own occupation/profession; actively seeks to develop oneself professionally and personally; contributes to the learning of colleagues and subordinates; shows willingness to learn from others; seeks feedback to learn and improve.
  • Technological Awareness: Keeps abreast of available technology; understands applicability and limitation of technology to the work of the office; actively seeks to apply technology to appropriate tasks; shows willingness to learn new technology.
  • Candidates with High School Diploma, five (5) years of experience in administration, finance, accouting, or related areas.
  • Candidates with Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Accounting, Finance, Public Administration or related areas, two (2) years of experience in Administration, Finance, Accounting, or related areas.
  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, high intermediate level in oral and written English and fluency in Spanish are required. Knowledge of another official United Nations Language is an advantage.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UN OCHA) provides a work environment that reflects the values of gender equality, teamwork, respect for diversity, integrity and a health balance of work and life.  We are committed to mantain our balanced gender distribution and therefore encourage women to apply.

Important applicant information

All posts in the GS categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

Workforce diversity

UNDP is committed to achieving diversity within its workforce, and encourages all qualified applicants, irrespective of gender, nationality, disabilities, sexual orientation, culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence.

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Contract Duration: 1 Year with possibility of extension

This vacancy is archived.

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