Programme Coordination Specialist

  • Added Date: Wednesday, 12 August 2020
  • Deadline Date: Wednesday, 26 August 2020

As it enters its tenth year of crisis, the scale, severity, and complexity of needs across Syria remain deep and far-reaching. Over half of the countryโ€™s population have fled their homes: 5.5 million people have sought refuge in the region and beyond, and 6.1 million people are internally displaced. 13.1 million people remain in need of humanitarian assistance. Of these, 5.6 million people face acute humanitarian needs. Millions of people have fallen into poverty, forced to resort to harmful coping strategies and faced with increasing protection risks. If hostilities continue in some parts of the country, humanitarian needs are expected to deepen in these areas.ย  In 2020, with conflict still raging in parts of the country, and the COVID-19 pandemic expected to result in severe economic and social impact, humanitarian needs are projected to continue to grow.ย  The Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) and the successor arrangement to the UNSF are expected to play a role in strengthening the Humanitarian-Development-Peacebuilding Nexus by strengthening Resilience of the affected population in Syria.ย  The role of Resilience is expected to grow in importance and significance due to the need to accelerate the transition from immediate Humanitarian assistance to IDPs and affected population to more sustainable and recovery-oriented support, including support to potential returns of IDPs as well as refugees.

Based on the interaction within with the broader partner community during the last quarter of 2019, the UNCT and the HCT members in Syria identified risk management as a critical area of the work for the UN and the humanitarian community to deliver in a more effective, efficient and equitable way its assistance to the people in Syria. Therefore, the UNCT and the HCT agreed to look for resources to mobilize the necessary capacities within the RCO, in order to:

  • Strengthen UN coordination in the area of risk management, both within the UN system and the broader humanitarian community;
  • Take a more proactive approach in ongoing joint risk assessment and timely adoption of mitigation measures.ย 

Under the overall guidance of the RC/HC and the direct supervision of the RCโ€™s Office Team Leader, the Programme Coordination Specialist will be responsible for advising the UNCT and the HCT on the ongoing risk management, oversight and review of programme and operations management compliance with UN relevant policies. (S)he will have responsibility and accountability to reinforce the UNโ€™s risk management framework in Syria.

The Programme Coordination Specialist will be working in close collaboration with OCHA and the UN Risk Management Working Group (RMWG), UN Agencies and the UNCT/HCT. (S)he should promote knowledge building and knowledge sharing on the areas of specialty related to her/his functions.

  • Improving the operational response and effectiveness in the Syria operation;
  • Enhancing complementarity of actions and collaboration among UN agencies and the broader Humanitarian Country team;ย 
  • Strengthening accountability for results and resources; and
  • Ensuring targeted advocacy and information sharing both internally and externally on actions taken on risk management and due diligence.

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Improving the operational response and effectiveness in the Syria operation:

  • Mainstream risk culture and ensure effective functioning of the UNโ€™s risk management framework;
  • Serve as UNCT/HCT main focal point for Risk Management and contribute to the inter-agency level Risk Management System;
  • Lead and undertake cross-practice capacity risk assessments;
  • Advise the UN Risk Management Working Group (RMWG), develop, follow up with assigned focal points and update the UN risk register including preparing inputs on risks for the UN integrated risk management workplan;
  • Advise the UN Risk Management Working Group (RMWG) and participate in the development of the UN risk management strategy, and prepare agreed action plans;
  • Support the RC/HC and the UNCT/HCT in their collective and individual management of hazard, financial, programmatic and operational risks:
    • In collaboration with respective focal points, develop and monitor implementation of risk management strategies and action plans with a view towards UNโ€™s accountability and ethical framework, โ€˜Do No Harmโ€™ approach and humanitarian accountability;
    • Assess and analyze the operating environment in Syria, keeping abreast of the evolving situation with regards to hazard, financial, programmatic and operational risks;
    • Monitor the implementation of recommendations and advice the UN RMWG on the actions required to implement outstanding audit recommendations.
  • In collaboration with respective focal points, develop and monitor implementation of risk management strategies and action plans with a view towards UNโ€™s accountability and ethical framework, โ€˜Do No Harmโ€™ approach and humanitarian accountability;
  • Assess and analyze the operating environment in Syria, keeping abreast of the evolving situation with regards to hazard, financial, programmatic and operational risks;
  • Monitor the implementation of recommendations and advice the UN RMWG on the actions required to implement outstanding audit recommendations.

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Enhancing complementarity of actions and collaboration among UN agencies and the broader Humanitarian Country Team:ย 

  • Prepare a comprehensive risk management strategy to support and strengthen UNCT/HCT existing risk management activities and common approaches;
  • Recommend to the RMWG the adoption of preventive actions and/or apply proactive approaches to assure that UN resources are adequately safeguarded and used for intended purposes and further avoid similar problems and recurring audit issues through:
    • Identify the potential causes of non-compliance based on recurring audit findings and observations from various audits and internal reviews conducted;
    • Support carrying out periodic spot-checks and internal reviews of selected measures;
    • Provide substantive advice to develop systems to foster improvements in the application of internal control systems and in the maintenance of compliance standards;
    • Trouble shoot and provide rapid objective solutions for perceived problems, and to provide practical and immediate assistance in eliminating control deficiencies.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 
  • Identify the potential causes of non-compliance based on recurring audit findings and observations from various audits and internal reviews conducted;
  • Support carrying out periodic spot-checks and internal reviews of selected measures;
  • Provide substantive advice to develop systems to foster improvements in the application of internal control systems and in the maintenance of compliance standards;
  • Trouble shoot and provide rapid objective solutions for perceived problems, and to provide practical and immediate assistance in eliminating control deficiencies.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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  • Document and evaluate systems and controls to determine their adequacy and effectiveness, ensuring compliance with policies and procedures, reliability and integrity of information and economical use of resources;
  • Monitoring key risks across the humanitarian partner network, analyzing control effectiveness and progress for implementing mitigation strategies;
  • Analyzing and escalating emerging themes/gaps from both agency- and system-wide oversight findings;
  • Facilitate regular updates/reports together with other technical working groups;
  • Ensure all relevant risk management efforts overseen by different technical coordination mechanisms -PMT, OMT, PSEA network, HACT, etc., are coherent and consolidated in one place for UNCT/HCT adequate decision-making;
  • Advise on risk analysis of programmes, projects and outputs.

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Strengthening accountability for results and resources:

  • As part of managing partner risks, provide support to RC/HC concerning interactions/liaison with donors and partners in co-operation with the relevant RCO colleagues, OCHA and the UNCT/HCT, including preparation of inter-agency reports, and reporting to donors on due diligence measures and results;
  • Provide quality briefs and options to the UNCT/HCT on issues related to the nexus between Programme/Operations and Main Office/Area Offices in close cooperation with respective teams;
  • Advise the RC/HC about any suspected misconducts in operations of programme and project activities;
  • As requested, prepare working papers, reports and presentations on audit, risks and other strategic issues to the RC/HC and UNCT/HCT in collaboration with the RMWG.

Ensuring targeted advocacy and information sharing both internally and externally on actions taken on risk management and due diligence:

  • Promote improved risk information sharing by providing regular (quarterly) updates to the Syria common risk register;
  • Support leadership with necessary information and analysis to facilitate risk-informed briefings with donor partners to articulate risk treatment and appetite, including for areas of highest risk or concern (i.e. monitoring, PSEA, etc.);
  • Maintain risk management products and communications for public information (eg. risk management one pager with facts, services... as well as summary risk register, etc.) that can be regularly shared with external stakeholders under the direction of the UNCT/HCT;
  • Facilitate availability of online and/or classroom learning on risk management for all United Nations staff and partners, including induction courses. Establish monitoring criteria and regularly update the UNCT/HCT;
  • Facilitate knowledge building and knowledge sharing as required by the organization;
  • Regularly review learning needs of partners, and monitor inclusion rate of national NGO partners;
  • Collect and share best practices and lessons learned;
  • Remain current on evolving risk management standards and leading risk management practices;
  • Support build internal capacity in risk management among programme and operations staff;
  • Support provisions of training on appropriate accountability, oversight, and monitoring strategies and implementation of corporate guidance;
  • As required and in consultation with the RMWG, develop written uniform and harmonized standard operating procedures on main business processes, procedures and templates across all implementation modalities, including area-offices and project offices.

Core Competencies:

Innovation:

  • Ability to make new and useful ideas work.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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Leadership:

  • Ability to persuade others to follow.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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People Management:

  • Ability to improve performance and satisfaction.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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Communication:

  • Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform.

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Delivery:

  • Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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Technical/Functional Competencies:ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

Financial Reporting and Analysis:

  • Ability to evaluate financial data, derive relevant findings and present them in a meaningful manner.

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Quality Assurance:ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

  • Ability to perform administrative and procedural activities to ensure that quality requirements and goals are fulfilled.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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Operational Efficiency:

  • Ability to identify and execute opportunities to improve operational efficiency.ย ย 

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Internal Reporting and Accountability:

  • Ability to create internal reporting and accountability processes and standards.

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Change Management:

  • Ability to apply a systematic approach to adapt, control and effect change.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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Risk Assessment:

  • Ability to identify and prioritize risks, and organize action around mitigating them.ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย 

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Knowledge Management:

  • Ability to capture, develop, share and effectively use information and knowledge.ย ย ย ย ย 

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Education:

  • Advanced University degree in business/public administration, finance, accounting, international development, audit or other relevant field;
  • A first-level university in Business or Public Administration, Finance/Accounting degree, in combination with 9 years of qualifying experience may be accepted.

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Experience:

  • At least 7 years progressively responsible experience in the oversight area or related areas such as finance, accounting, risk analysis, political analysis, monitoring and evaluation, business administration, or management advisory services;
  • Experience in auditing, consulting or reviewing procedures for programme/project implementation, risk management within the UN system or in the private sector is highly desirable;
  • Advanced user of computers and office software packages and experience in handling of web-based management systems;
  • Experience with working in a multi-national setting with people from different cultural backgrounds.

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Language Requirements:

  • Excellent proficiency in English;
  • working knowledge of Arabic is an important asset.ย 

Important information for US Permanent Residents ('Green Card' holders)

Under US immigration law, acceptance of a staff position with UNDP, an international organization, may have significant implications for US Permanent Residents. UNDP advises applicants for all professional level posts that they must relinquish their US Permanent Resident status and accept a G-4 visa, or have submitted a valid application for US citizenship prior to commencement of employment.ย 

UNDP is not in a position to provide advice or assistance on applying for US citizenship and therefore applicants are advised to seek the advice of competent immigration lawyers regarding any applications.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.ย  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 for extension

This vacancy is archived.

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