Director of Operations

The African Initiatives for Relief and Development (AIRD) is a non-political, non-religious and non-profit making NGO with Country Programme Offices in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic,  Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Republic of Congo, Tanzania, and Uganda. AIRD’s objective is to offer operational support, including but not limited to: supply chain, logistics, construction, infrastructure, environment, livelihoods and WASH in partnership with relief and development organizations that focus on disaster-affected and development oriented areas. AIRD delivers for and through partners including but not limited to UN Agencies, international and national donor organizations and governments

AIRD seeks to recruit a Director of Operations to oversee and monitor organizational performance by enhancing operational systems and organizational procedures, flow of information inside and outside the organization.

The Director Of Operations shall:

  • Lead and manage the AIRD’s programs and project implementation in countries of operation in Africa with potential to expand outside of Africa
  • Provide strategic and tactical recommendations to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Country Program Directors (CPDs) that are aligned with and support AIRD’s, 5-year strategic plan
  • Maintain knowledge and understanding of the operational context in the countries and region
  • Communicate regularly with the CEO and other relevant Head Office staff on important issues and events related to country and Head Office operations - including program implementation; legal, financial and human resource issues; donor, local government and external relations; and new program opportunities
  • Adhere to all regulations, instructions and observe guidelines, orientations, systems, procedures forms & formats of the AIRD Standard Operating Procedures
  • Provide information and analysis on regional and country specific issues in support of program choice, finances, and budgets, and recommend program and process improvements as needed
  • Provide support to the Operations sub-committee of the Board as requested

 

Strategy & Planning

  • Provide strategic and creative leadership to the region focused on scaling AIRD’s operations to deliver impact through high quality, efficient and effective programs that maximize outcomes
  • Lead program development and support, working with Country Directors and the Head Office focused teams to ensure that projects and programs are of high quality and effectiveness.

Management and Coordination

  • Build and maintain a high-functioning, diverse, inclusive, and collaborative Program team.
  • Develop and facilitate cross-country learning and knowledge management to enable sharing across the organization, incorporating learnings into project design and operations management
  • Promote teamwork, common purpose, and continuous professional growth
  • Oversee Country Directors for management and oversight of the programs/projects and operations, driving accountability for the achievement of Country Office goals
  • Performance management of direct reports including coaching, mentoring and managing delivery of critical milestones on an ongoing basis
  • Manage relationships with all departments to optimize impact on program quality within and across country programs and sure that consultative decision processes are used
  • Ensure programs are continually adapted to the evolving contexts across the region
  • In cooperation with each Country Director, maintain the legal standing in each country where there are programs. Ensure compliance with local laws and regulations governing the organization’s operations.

Operational Duties

  • Develop an operational plan which incorporates goals and objectives that work towards the strategic direction of the organization
  • Design and continuously update AIRD operational systems according to the generally accepted best practice
  • Ensure that the operation of the organization meets the expectations of its stakeholders, Board and Funders
  • Review operational contracts, reports and other documents;
  • Draft policies for the approval of the CEO and prepare procedures to implement the organizational policies; review existing policies on an annual basis and recommend changes to the CEO as appropriate
  • Implement new operational systems and upgrades through the entire organization
  • Oversee and control the overall quality of AIRD operations
  • Provide support to the Operations sub-committee of the Board as requested
  • Oversee the efficient and effective day-to-day operation of the organization liaising with CEO to make decisions for operational activities and set strategic goals
  • Planning and monitoring the day-to-day running of business to ensure smooth progress
  • Assist the CEO in Management and planning activities; Represent the organization at community activities to enhance the organization's community profile
  • In collaboration with FAD, conduct training and capacity building activities for Head Office and project staff;
  • Report to management about the overall performance of the organization as well as individual projects
  • Support all projects in operational matters and internal control including onsite visits
  • Planning and monitoring the day-to-day running of business to ensure smooth progress
  • Sign cheques within the authorized mandate and after verification of payment requirements;

Program Implementation and Monitoring

  • Oversee the implementation of AIRD’s program strategy; refine, monitor and evaluate program results.
  • Monitor and support the implementation of quality programming, delivery against plans, and management of risk to ensure accountability against stated objectives.
  • Ensure that the programs and services offered by the organization contribute to the organization's mission and reflect the priorities of the Board
  • Provide effective program operations management, managing human and financial resources to effectively reach program and project objectives Drive seamless coordination between programming and operations and across programs and outcomes, with the objective of improving the quality and impact of programs
  • Ensure that organizational deliverable benchmarks are monitored in a timely manner and that project expenses are within budget.
  • Oversee development and monitoring of work plans, organizational metrics and milestones including monthly burn rates for each project

Development and External Representation

  • Work closely with Finance  and the Communications and Development to communicate program and project status, outcomes, successes, challenges, timelines, finances and direction to inform organizational development.
  • Initiate and foster relationships with key national government, partners, donors and stakeholders for program related issues; Make informed recommendations for go/no-go decisions by providing country and regional perspective on considerations including; pursuit of funding opportunities, project alignment with Program Operations strategies, capacity to successfully support the projects and partner viability.

Financial and Resource Management and Oversight

  • In collaboration with internal audit, monitor compliance with organization-wide operating policies; ensure each Country Office and Project has adequate internal financial and program controls, and recommend additional controls as necessary.
  • Ensure consistent communication between program and finance management.

Human Resource Management and Organizational Development

  • Determine staffing requirements for organizational management and program delivery as requested by the field
  • Work with the Human Resource department in the recruitment of highly qualified expatriate staff
  • Supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting performance objectives, providing regular and timely performance feedback, and leading documented annual performance reviews.
  • Ensure effective capacity building, professional development and performance improvement strategies are implemented to maximize staff potential using job descriptions, staffing models and performance management tools
  • Ensure effective capacity building, professional development and performance improvement strategies are implemented to maximize staff potential using job descriptions, staffing models and performance management tools
  • In line with the SOPs, discipline staff when necessary using appropriate techniques; release staff when necessary using appropriate and legally defensible procedures

Security and Risk Management

  • Identify and evaluate the risks to the organization's people (, staff, management, volunteers), property, finances, goodwill, and image and implement measures to control risks
  • Oversee the management and implementation of up-to-date safety and security protocols and policies in Country Offices and project locations including, timely communication with Head Office when events occur

 

Personal characteristics

The Director of Operations should demonstrate competence all of the following:

  • Behave Ethically: Understand ethical behaviour and practices, and ensure that own behaviour and the behaviour of others is consistent with these standards and aligns with the values of the organization
  • Build Relationships: Establish and maintain positive working relationships with others, both internally and externally, to achieve the goals of the organization
  • Communicate Effectively: Speak, listen and write in a clear, thorough and timely manner using appropriate and effective communication tools and techniques
  • Creativity/Innovation: Develop new and unique ways to improve operations of the organization and to create new opportunities
  • Focus on Donor Needs: Anticipate, understand, and respond to the needs of internal and external donors to meet or exceed their expectations within the organizational parameters
  • Foster Teamwork: Work cooperatively and effectively with others to set goals, resolve problems, and make decisions that enhance organizational effectiveness
  • Lead: Positively influence others to achieve results that are in the best interest of the organization
  • Make Decisions: Assess situations to determine the importance, urgency and risks, and make clear decisions which are timely and in the best interests of the organization as authorized
  • Organize: Set priorities, develop a work schedule, monitor progress towards goals, and track details, data, information and activities
  • Solve Problems: Assess problem situations to identify causes, gather and process relevant information, generate possible solutions, and make recommendations and/or resolve the problem
  • Strong analytical and information gathering skills
  • Ensuring value for money i.e. program/project monitoring
  • Ability to work under hardship environment and with minimum supervision
  • Willingness to travel as necessary, work the required schedule, work at different locations as required

Required Languages

Must be conversant with English and French (written and spoken)

Minimum Qualifications

  • At least 4-7 years practical experience in humanitarian response
  • Minimum bachelor’s degree and/or post graduate degree in Economics
  • Familiarity with the humanitarian reform process
  • Proven skills in networking and relationship building
  • Seven years of relevant experience managing people and complex projects in developing counties; Experience working in Africa preferable.
  • Strong leadership and team building skills with the ability to set and communicate vision and strategy.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with a range of people at all levels, including those from host country governmental and non-governmental organizations, and other counterparts, clients, donors (in particular UNHCR experience) and staff.
  • Ability to lead and work as a member of teams, including consensus building, communications, and leadership skills.
  • Ability to demonstrate cross-cultural sensitivity, tact, and poise.
  • Excellent communication skills (oral and written) in English and French
  • Proficiency to use MS Office suite of applications and other IT systems
  • Ability to write clearly articulate proposals, reports, and correspondence
  • Strong analytical, communication and problem solving skills is necessary along with capacity to identify and articulate potential problems and provide possible solutions in concise and clear manner
  • Experience working with international development partners, international Non Governmental Organizations (INGOs) and donors (in particular UNHCR experience) is an asset.

To be successful at the organization, you will also:

  • Have passion for our mission and a strong desire to impact a dynamic nonprofit organization
  • Be a proactive and innovative thinker who achieves results and creates positive change
  • Have a very high level of personal and professional integrity and trustworthiness
  • Embrace diversity and a commitment to collaboration

Partners

Membership Organizations