Head of Program

Peace and Security Cluster

For over 20 years, the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) Peace and Security Cluster (PSC) has provided its largest partner, UNMAS, with interlinked portfolio, programme and project management services that are reinforced by comprehensive management and oversight controls.

Under this umbrella, the Cluster is responsible for the day-to-day management of UNMAS Field Programmes through a comprehensive approach encompassing areas such as human resources, procurement and contract management, as well as planning, implementation and risk management, that is supported by cross-cutting initiatives that include knowledge and information management, and gender, diversity and inclusion. This comprehensive delivery platform is implemented according to client requirements and in line with UNOPS rules and regulations through the leadership of the Cluster Director, who has the overall authority and accountability for the performance of PSC on behalf of its clients.

Background Information – UNMAS

Established in 1997 and operating under UN legislative mandates of both the General Assembly and the Security Council, the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) is a specialized entity that works to eliminate the threat posed by mines, explosive remnants of war and improvised explosive devices by coordinating United Nations mine action, leading operational responses at the country level, and supporting the development of standards, policies and norms.
At the country level, through its 19 field programmes, UNMAS provides strategic direction as part of peacekeeping operations, humanitarian emergencies and development contexts. In line with its global and/or country-programme specific mandates, UNMAS may plan and design mine-action projects, support and coordinate the work of local and international mine-action actors, and set priorities for mine action activities.

As a component of the United Nations Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS), UNMAS provides explosive hazard management capacities, including mitigation, to AMISOM as part of a logistical support package. Non-lethal tactical advice and analysis is delivered by UNMAS technical advisors located in each AMISOM Sector Headquarters and at AMISOM Force Headquarters, who support AMISOM planning and operations. UNMAS support includes both enabling (“operate in spite of IEDs”) and response (“defeat the device”). As a component of the UN Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), UNMAS also supports the Federal Government of Somalia, including the Somali Police Force, Somali Explosive Management Authority and National Security Advisor.

** Functional Responsibilities

Reporting directly to the Somalia Programme Director, the Head of Programme will have overall management responsibility for programme delivery throughout Somalia, and UNMAS representational duties with UNSOM, UNSOS and UNCT at senior management level on explosive hazard management issues. In the absence of the Somalia Programme Director, the Head of Programme will act as the Deputy Programme Director and can expect to represent UNMAS at regular meetings of the Special Representative of the Secretary General (SRSG), the Security Management Meeting, the Senior Management Group, the Crisis Management Group, and the United Nations Country Team.
The Head of Programme will play a critical role in the management of the programme office and development and implementation of strategies and practices necessary to develop the Programme further for the implementation of projects, while meeting and exceeding the organization’s performance and delivery goals. The Head of Programme will be a senior manager within the Programme structure, with overall responsibility for a broad portfolio of competencies and capabilities with significant expected growth across various performance indicators. S/he will be responsible for the following functions:

Summary of Key Functions :

  1. Programme Management and Coordination

  2. Proactively monitor the Programme’s overall progress;

  3. Identify risks/issues and initiate corrective action as appropriate while also ensuring that these are escalated to the Director in a timely manner as and when required;

  4. Implement Project Cycle Management systems in line with UNOPS processes;

  5. Coordinate the reporting to donors and ensure Smart Sheet is maintained as a knowledge management and reporting tool for all projects;

  6. Ensure projects are aligned to UNMAS multi-year strategy, Theory of Change and mission strategic processes;
  7. Ensure Project and Programme Implementation Plans are continually updated and interdependencies between projects are promoted;
  8. Ensure successful delivery of new capabilities as per the Managing Successful Programmes (MSP) standard;
  9. Ensure that the delivery of outputs/outcomes or services from the projects meet programme requirements in line with the programme blueprint and projects dossier, and is to the appropriate quality, on time and within budget;
  10. Ensure outcomes and impact orientated programming is promoted and processes are developed to monitor impact of project implementation;
  11. M&E processes are implemented to improve project delivery and quality is continually enhanced through documentation of lessons learned;
  12. Manage the Programme Management Office (PMO) to ensure knowledge management is institutionalized;
  13. Mentor and assist the Project Managers with planning, execution and delivery of allocated projects/service agreements, ensuring capturing of lessons learned and incorporation of best practice project management in the service delivery processes;
  14. Mainstream Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in project and programme processes and ensure staff awareness is enhanced;
  15. Develop standard project management and service costing tools, and develop the project management and technical skills of the Project Managers and other project personnel;
  16. Develop and drive a culture of excellence, continuous improvement and performance optimization across all projects;
  17. Identify potential new business, customer opportunities and fundraising possibilities supporting the work of the Senior Progamme Manager;
  18. Develop and maintain a close working relationship with donors, Governments and clients; and
  19. Report progress of the programme at regular intervals to the Senior Programme Manager.

  20. Fiscal Responsibilities

  21. Manage the programme’s budget, monitor the expenditures and costs as the programme progresses;

  22. Coordinate budget and project tracking processes and provide timely and accurate project update, expenditure overview and ensure timely decisions are taken with the Senior Programme Manager as and when required;

  23. Coordinate activities with the Head of Support to ensure prograrme and support are working in a complementary manner;

  24. Provide guidance and oversight to the Programme Office (PO) with overall resource planning for the programme;

  25. Provide strategic advice on the development of resource mobilisation strategies, in full compliance with UNOPS pricing policy, with a disciplined approach to business case development and pricing models which balances revenues and development capacity, within the mandate and spirit of the United Nations;
  26. Supervise the development of revenue and expenditure forecasts based on established financial goals;
  27. Responsible for certifying and authorizing disbursements.

  28. Technical Functions

  29. Ultimately responsible for the delivering capabilities and relevant outcomes of the Programme, meeting and exceeding donor and client expectations;

  30. Research, identify, and introduce appropriate new technologies to assist delivery of capabilities and outcomes across the programme;

  31. Plan, develop, implement and maintain appropriate standards, best practices and procedures across the programme.

  32. Human Resource Responsibilities

  33. In consultation with the Senior Programme Manager, facilitate the appointment of individuals to project delivery teams and ensure relevant induction of personnel into organizational policies and processes;

  34. Manage the programme and project team;

  35. Manage staff and establish clear performance objectives, with appropriate measures for all staff within the line management;

  36. Ensure that all roles have clearly defined responsibilities;

  37. Conduct personnel skills gap assessments and initiate relevant trainings;
  38. Conduct personnel performance reviews in accordance with current UNOPS HR Policies, conduct personnel surveys, analyse results and initiate appropriate responses;
  39. Develop and maintain effective working relationships with other members of the programme management team, senior managers, project teams and third-party service providers.

Impact of Results:
The effective and successful performance by the Head of Programme directly impacts on achievement of programme results and consequently reinforces the visibility and image of the UNMAS/UNOPS as an effective service provider in project services and management and strengthens its competitive position as a partner of choice in sustainable development and project services.

** Education/Experience/Language requirements

*CANDIDATES WITH NO UN OR UNOPS EXPERIENCE ARE ENCOURAGED TO APPLY *Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply
Education and Minimum Years of Experience **

  • Advanced University Degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) with a minimum of 10 years of relevant experience; Or
  • First-level University Degree (Bachelor’s degree or equivalent) with a minimum of 12 years of relevant experience.

Experience

  • Relevant experience is defined as progressively responsible experience in leadership, programme, project or portfolio management roles, supporting operations in a humanitarian, conflict, post-conflict or development contexts, with public or private sector organizations.
  • Experience working in a hardship location is desired.
  • Experience in overseeing central aspects of programme(s) e.g. budget(s), human resources management, clients relations, risk management, programme monitoring and evaluation is desired.

Languages

  • Fluency in English (reading, writing and speaking) is required.
  • Fluency in another UN official language is desired.

** Competencies

Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization.(for levels IICA-2, IICA-3, LICA Specialist- 10, LICA Specialist-11, NOC, NOD, P3, P4 and above)

Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.

Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.

Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).

Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.

Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.

Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.

Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

** Contract type, level and duration

  1. Contract type: Fixed Term Appointment (FTA)
  2. Contract level: P5 (ICS-12)
  3. Contract duration: 12 months*
    For more details about United Nations staff contracts, please follow this link
    :* https://www.unops.org/english/Opportunities/job-opportunities/what-we-of…

** Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
  • Work life harmonization – UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (around 4 hours) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS.
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns.
Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

** Background Information – UNOPS

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.

Diversity

With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

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