Head of Office, Herat, Afghanistan

  • Added Date: Friday, 23 August 2019
  • Deadline Date: Friday, 20 September 2019

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Job Title: Head of Office, Herat, Afghanistan

Dept/Country: EMECA, Afghanistan

Position Type: Full-Time

Job Location: Herat, Afghanistan

Reports To: Afghanistan Country Representative

About CRS: Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.


CRS began supporting development efforts in Afghanistan in 1998 as a member of the Caritas Network, and began direct operations in Afghanistan in early 2002. CRS maintains an administrative office in Kabul, four provincial offices throughout the country (Herat, Ghor, Bamiyan and Daykundi) and several sub-offices within each province of operation. CRS Afghanistan does direct program implementation and has more than 360 national staff and 10 international staff. The 2016-2020 Strategic Program Plan for Afghanistan supports the people of Afghanistan to realize their full human potential and live in dignity. To achieve this goal, CRS works in two primary sectors: agricultural livelihoods and education. In agricultural livelihoods, CRS supports poor rural households to increase and diversify their food security using a holistic, training-based approach with activities in community management of land and water, knowledge development and skill training in crop and livestock productivity, household nutrition and hygiene and household financial management. In education, CRS increases access to quality education for children and youth, with a particular focus on girls, in remote, rural communities through a community based education model. Programs encompass primary education for grades 1-6, lower secondary education, accelerated learning programs for out of school youth, teacher training and various components learning enhancement including community libraries and school improvement plans. In both sectors, CRS coordinates closely with national, provincial and local government in an effort to build capacity and increase sustainability. CRS also works in humanitarian response following the severe drought of 2017/18 in Afghanistan. CRS supports increased water supply and livestock protection for drought affected communities in Herat.

Primary Role:

The Head of Office in Herat will work closely with a dynamic team of local and international staff and will be responsible for efficiency and accountability of the administration unit, supervision of the Education and Livelihoods programs, and general management and oversight of the Herat office. The Head of Office will ensure high quality implementation of all programs in Herat, oversee staff safety and security, and represent CRS interests with government agencies, partners and donors in Herat and Kabul. S/he will provide leadership in the management of the office, with emphasis on administration, program quality, human resources, security, transport, procurement and external relations with government and other partners. This is a dual administration and programming position with significant responsibilities for strengthening the program and management quality capacity of senior local staff. S/he will work closely with the CR to build management systems and ensure programs are carried out with high quality. Emphasis will be placed on developing the professional capacity of local staff, with a special focus on the promotion of leadership and management skills for female staff.

Key Responsibilities:**

A. General Support -- Administration, HR and Operations:

  1. Provide direct supervision to the senior support staff, including security, administration, transport/operations, human resources and procurement. Provide guidance/leadership in making systems efficient and transparent and creating an overall supporting environment.

  2. Oversee the daily management of the Herat office to ensure the integrity of the administration systems and procedures to assure compliance with accepted CRS standards.

  3. Ensure the timely recruitment of highly qualified staff, in adherence to CRS recruitment policies and procedures.

  4. Oversee implementation of daily finance management activities/systems in CRS Herat to ensure accountability and transparency of office funds and assets/supplies.

  5. Review the CP's policies and procedures and recommend changes as appropriate.

  6. Ensure compliance with Government of Afghanistan rules and regulations including issues of taxation and reporting.

  7. Ensure completion of support staff performance management activities i.e. staff performance plans and development plans are done, coaching sessions are conducted and year-end evaluations/appraisals are completed and submitted to HR for further office recording/documentation.

B. Security Management and Staff Safety/Staff Care

  1. Proactively manage the security of all CRS staff in Herat, regularly updating the CR on incidents and trends, consulting with senior Herat staff and external stakeholders, and proposing adjustments to standard operating procedures and security posture as needed.

  2. Ensure that all Herat staff are aware of staff safety and security protocols, that systems are in place to ensure full compliance, that communication occurs on a daily basis, and that all staff accept responsibility for their respective roles in maintaining a proactive and effective security management plan.

  3. Oversee the Herat office staff care committee and ensure that staff care activities are addressing key needs that are identified through a consultative process involving all Herat staff.

  4. Oversee roll-out and implementation of safeguarding policies among staff in Ghor and Daykundi and ensure staff have a common understanding of safeguarding approaches within the Country Program.

C. Program Supervision and Support:

  1. Directly supervise the Program Manager for Education and Livelihoods and ensure accountable, high quality programming.

  2. Provide regular, quality coaching and supervision to Program Managers and support performance management of their respective teams.

  3. Oversee and ensure timely and accurate reporting to institutional and private donors and relevant Afghan government ministries.

  4. In coordination with Program Managers, the Head of Programming, and the Country Representative, assist in the development a long-term rural development strategy for Ghor and take the initiative to identify and develop proposals for external funding by public and private donors.

  5. Build a strong and effective communication and coordination bridge between program and support units.

D. Leadership and Staff Development:

  1. Participate in CRS Afghanistan Country Management Team (CMT) to contribute to strategic decision-making for the overall Country Program.

  2. Guide and support programs, administration, finance, human resources and operations to be effective in the implementation of CRS activities per the organization's strategy and donor agreements.

  3. Ensure CRS support staff professional development plans are collected for further review and analysis to strengthen the capacity of the organization to carry out its mission.

  4. Lead the draft and implementation of yearly capacity building plans.

E. Coordination and Government Relations:

  1. Work closely with Head of Programming, Head of Operations and Program Managers to ensure timely communication through reporting, good communication, and regular coordination meetings.

  2. Maintain a strong and supportive working relationship with other Heads of Office in Ghor, Bamiyan and Kabul; foster an environment of shared learning and mutual support across the four offices of CRS Afghanistan.

  3. Attend INGOs, UN and other meetings upon request.

  4. Ensure timely submission of Ministry of Economy and other reports to relevant governmental departments with close coordination of National Finance Manager, Finance Department in Herat, Head of Programming, and Program Managers.

  5. Attend government meetings on behalf of CRS management upon request.

F. Confidentiality:

  1. Keep all documents and information related to CRS' program activities, personnel and development plans confidential.

  2. Adhere to CRS' principles of confidentiality in relations to staff, partners, vendors and other stakeholders. Report to the management potential irregularities or any misbehavior that occurs.

Supervises: Senior Administrative Officer, Transport and Operations Senior Officer, Program Manager I -- Education, Program Manager I- Livelihoods; Security Officer, HR Officer

Coordinates With: Head of Programming, Heads of Offices, Head of Operations, Senior Finance Officer, Support Managers at national and provincial level and Country Representative.

Agency-wide Competencies (for all CRS Staff):

These are rooted in the mission, values, and guiding principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.

* Integrity

* Continuous Improvement & Innovation

* Builds Relationships

* Develops Talent

* Strategic Mindset

* Accountability & Stewardship

Position Competencies:

  • · Willingness to travel to, and work in, remote areas for extended periods.
  • · Strong sensitivity to local cultures.
  • · Strong teamwork, coordination and strategic planning skills.
  • · Research, analysis and excellent writing skills.
  • · Ability to think strategically and innovatively.
  • · Strong listening skills combined with excellent interpersonal and cross-cultural skills.
  • · Ability to respond practically and operate successfully in difficult field conditions.
  • · Ability to be flexible, persistent and diplomatic and to gain respect among staff, local community leaders as well as local government ministries and donor organizations.

Key Relationships:**

Internal: Deputy Head of Office; Ghor Program Managers; Senior Advisor (Lal); Senior Support and Program staff in Ghor; Country Representative; Head of Programming; Head of Operations; CP Finance Manager; other Heads of Office; CP Support Managers; Technical Advisors; and other CP Program Managers

External: Government ministries, UN and INGO partners, and other stakeholders in Herat.


  • Master's degree in International Development or related field.Additional experience may substitute for some education.
  • A minimum of five years of work experience in developing countries with a good understanding of development issues.
  • Preferable experience in Central Asia, South Asia, or countries with predominantly Muslim populations.
  • Demonstrated experience in managing staff from diverse backgrounds.
  • Demonstrated experience in grant/proposal writing.
  • Strong knowledge of CRS admin/finance policies and procedures.
  • Strong sensitivity to local cultures.
  • Strong teamwork, coordination and strategic planning skills.
  • Research, analysis and excellent writing skills.
  • Ability to think strategically and innovatively.
  • Strong listening skills combined with excellent interpersonal and cross-cultural skills.
  • Ability to respond practically and operate successfully in difficult conditions.
  • Ability to be flexible, persistent and diplomatic and to gain respect among staff, local community leaders as well as local government ministries and donor organizations.
  • Dari language skills an asset

Disclaimer: This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skill, effort, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.

CRS' talent acquisition procedures reflect our commitment to protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.

EOE/M/F/D/V - CRS is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

This vacancy is archived.

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