Interim Program and Proposal Development Manager – Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.
Mercy Corps has been operating in Ethiopia since 2004, working in rural, peri-urban and urban areas in five regional states - Somali, Oromia, Afar, Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples, Amhara - and the capital city of Addis Ababa. We engage in both development and humanitarian work, and seek to integrate approaches, programs and geographies as much as possible. Our partners include government, academic institutions, development and private sector actors, civil societies and communities. Mercy Corps envisions to contribute to contribute to the emergence of a peaceful, prosperous, and resilient Ethiopia which is inclusive of youth and women. Our strategic focus in the country includes in promoting dynamic and inclusive markets; natural resource management; peace and social cohesion, and humanitarian responses.
General Position Summary
Mercy Corps is seeking an Interim Program Management and Proposal Development Specialist in Ethiopia for a five-month period.
This position will provide guidance and support across Mercy Corps’ portfolio of programs to help ensure adherence to Mercy Corps’ program management standards, and contribute to delivery of programs on budget, on time and on scope. This will include start-up support to new programs.
The position will also be responsible for leading new business development opportunities, including facilitating development of the technical design, being the team lead on proposal development processes, and providing writing support.
Finally, the position will work closely with the country MEL team to ensure programs are generating evidence and learning, and will contribute to Mercy Corps Ethiopia communication efforts through supporting write-up of case studies.
Mercy Corps is seeking an experienced and entrepreneurial leader with past experience of managing multiple programs and new business development experience.
Essential Job Responsibilities
● Support the conceptualization, implementation and continual improvement of Mercy Corps’ portfolio of programs;
● In coordination with senior program team members, support program start-up, management, administration and close-out. Ensure implementation is on time, target and budget.
● In partnership with Program Directors and senior program team members, support program teams with intervention planning and implementation, including frequent field travel to support intervention design workshops;
● Contribute to coordination, management and motivation of program leads, ensuring they have clear objectives / individual work plans as part of performance management;
● Work to ensure programs fulfill Mercy Corps Program Management Minimum Standards based on the organization-wide guide;
● Participate in Quarterly Program Review Meetings to reflect on programmatic and budget progress;
● Ensure that the portfolio of programs is managed adaptively, through periodic reflection exercises and use of MEL data;
● Ensure high quality reports are developed and submitted to donors;
● Monitor work and targets closely to ensure that programs are able to provide maximum benefit to our beneficiaries within program timeframes;
● Support integration of community approaches, gender sensitivity and capacity building into all activities.
● Help to identify new funding opportunities across our portfolio, in consultation with the Country Director and Program Directors;
● Support the technical design of new proposals, including planning and leading design workshops;
● Support writing/review of concept notes and proposals;
● Act as ‘Team Lead’ on proposal development processes, coordinating the moving parts of the proposal development and submission process, including budget development;
● Work closely with field teams to influence their engagement and support of program pre-positioning, development and implementation.
Team Building and Management
● Oversee the documentation and filing systems for all programs in the portfolio, and ensure that information is organized according to the reporting and auditing needs. Ensure required levels of confidentiality;
● Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback
● Help to create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
Finance and Operations Management
● Support program teams to ensure compliance with donor and Mercy Corps’ regulations related to programming and operations.
● Ensure proper logistics, administration, human resources and transport needs of the programs are conducted within Mercy Corps policy;
● Work with program leads to ensure high-quality budget management including forecasting;
● Ensure all projects’ funds are spent in accordance with donor rules and regulations. Work with Program Directors to forecast expenditure surpluses and deficits to enable adjustments;
● Strictly follow Mercy Corps’ Fraud and Prevention guidelines.
Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning
● Coordinate with the Country MEL team to ensure that program teams are continually gathering and digesting operating environment data and activity reports, and that teams are holding frequent activity review sessions to continually re-examine the relevance and impact of their programming;
● Coordinate and share information with the Country Director and Program Directors to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are being achieved. Advise on suggested improvements, as required;
● In consultation with Program Directors and program teams, identify communication and learning opportunities and develop products such as impact and learning briefs.
● As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve, we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.
Accountability to Beneficiaries
● Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically
to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
This position does not have any direct supervisory responsibility.
Reports Directly To: Interim Director of Programs, Mercy Corps Ethiopia
Works Directly With: Director of Programs, Director of Humanitarian Response and Durable Solutions; Program Managers / Leads across the portfolio; Country-level Finance; Country MEL Manager
Knowledge and Experience
● Bachelor’s degree required. M.A, M.S., M.Sc., or equivalent in a field related to economics, international development, business management or subject with relevance for market systems development are preferred;
● At least 10 years’ experience working in international development;
● Experience of working on market systems development and/or humanitarian programming is strongly preferred;
● Demonstrated experience of leading proposal development processes and writing proposals is required;
● At least 5 years of senior-level leadership and team management experience, including oversight of multiple programs;
● Demonstrated success building, managing and leading a team of professionals in a fast-paced challenging environment with high standards for success (with limited burnout).
● Strong writing, communication, organization, prioritization and negotiating skills.
● Excellent coordination and representation is needed, especially in building and maintaining strong/productive relations with implementing and strategic partner agencies and government agencies;
● Strong financial management experience required.
● Willingness and ability to travel frequently to Mercy Corps project sites and field locations, including traveling to insecure environments, is required;
● Fluency in English is required.
The successful candidate will possess excellent leadership skills, with the ability to maintain a broad perspective. He/she will undertake innovative approaches, be agile in the conceptualization of new program ideas, and will be well versed in strategic thinking and planning. The ideal candidate will have a strong curiosity for understanding and working effectively within the complex cultural, political, security and social environment of Ethiopia. He/She will be an excellent communicator, multi-tasker, and able to work in ambiguous situations. He/She will be a tolerant and flexible individual able to work in difficult and stressful environments and follow procedures.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
The position is based in (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia) and it requires up to (40%) travel to field locations.
Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.
Fostering a diverse and open workplace is an important part of Mercy Corps’ vision. Mercy Corps is an Equal Opportunity Employer regardless of background. We are committed to creating an inclusive environment.
In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.
We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.
We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.
Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.