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PROJECT MANAGEMENT SPECIALIST (BASIC EDUCATION AND YOUTH)

USAID Kenya NAIROBI, KENYA

Summary

GENERAL INFORMATION

1.  RE- SOLICITATION NO.: 21-21 

2.  ISSUANCE DATE: February 25, 2021

3.  CLOSING DATE/TIME FOR RECEIPT OF OFFERS: March 11, 2021         (4:30 PM East Africa Time).

4. POSITION TITLE: Project Management Specialist (Basic Education        and Youth)                     

5.  MARKET VALUE: Equivalent to FSN-PSC 10: (Step 1: 3,203,516.00       KSH to Step 13: 5,445,968.00 KSH per annum).  In accordance with       AIDAR Appendix J and the Local Compensation Plan of USAID/             Kenya and East Africa. Final compensation will be negotiated                   within the listed market value.

6. PERIOD OF PERFORMANCE: Initial six months probationary period        with 4 additional option years contingent on performance, position          need, and funds availability.

7. PLACE OF PERFORMANCE: Nairobi, Kenya; with possible travel as        stated in the Statement of Work.

8. SECURITY CERTIFICATION REQUIRED: Prior to joining USAID, the      selected candidate will be required to:

  • Undergo a comprehensive background investigation
  • Undergo a health check to obtain medical clearance and;
  • Obtain and Retain an embassy issued Security Certification.

9.  STATEMENT OF DUTIES: (See Below).

10. AREA OF CONSIDERATION: Open to qualified Kenyan Citizens.            USAID provides equal opportunity and equitable treatment for                employment of all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex,        national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status or            sexual orientation.

11. PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The position requirements do not involve            rigorous physical demands.

BACKGROUND

The USAID Program Management Specialist will serve as the Education and Youth Project Management in USAID/Somalia Social Services Office. The incumbent will work with the Education team and will provide technical direction and support to USAID/Somalia education and youth portfolio under the guidance of the Social Services Office Chief and his designate. The Project Management Specialist provides input to the overall education and youth programs, especially focusing on programming for Accelerated or Alternative Basic Education for out of school children and youth, school safety, youth and workforce development, monitoring and evaluation, and improving quality and access of education, including the social emotional learning (SEL) component of the program. S/he plays an important role in contributing to strategy deliberations and serves as AOR/COR for one or more education activities.  S/he will serve as the point of contact for the Social Services Office’s resilience efforts that support the Mission’s efforts that enable marginalized Somalis more effectively withstand shocks and stresses via strengthening and diversifying the livelihoods of marginalized populations.

The Specialist will play a leading role in fostering and managing relationships with Somali government counterparts, private sector, donor partners, and other stakeholders, leading or supporting coordination and negotiation efforts in education, youth, and resilience activities, and providing other technical guidance and leadership as appropriate. The Specialist will represent USAID at official meetings and events with the host government, donors and implementers, and provides written reports to USAID and State Department senior management as appropriate.

Description

MAJOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES  

The incumbent will be responsible for a full range of project management responsibilities for the Social Services team:

1.  PROGRAM AND PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND RELATED DUTIES                                                                                                     30%

The Specialist will provide project management and oversight to USAID/Somalia education portfolio as the Agreement Officer’s Representative or Contract Officer Representative for education, youth, and/or resilience activities, the responsibilities of which are defined in the AOR/COR letter issued by the Nairobi Office of Acquisition and Assistance. S/he will also serve as alternate AOR/COR or activity manager for various education, youth or resilience activities, including their evaluations and assessments. Specific duties will include: 

  • Support the design and procurement of new education, youth, and resilience activities, based on evidence and data and incorporating proven practices to improve equity, quality and access to education opportunities. 
  • Develop and leverage partnerships with private and public sector actors to support in- and out-of-school children and youth as it relates to the U.S. Mission to Somalia goal to promote social inclusion, stability and inclusive economic growth. 
  • Draft statements of work for M&E and learning activities, review and provide inputs to assessment/ evaluation/research designs and reports, participate in the development, piloting, and administration of data collection instruments, and dissemination, sharing, and use of data and evidence produced under USAID’s education program. 
  • Provide technical advice and direction to implementing partners, and interface as needed with the Federal Ministry of Education, Culture and Higher Education (MOECHE), other relevant line ministries, donor and other development partners, and civil society and private sector actors, to ensure project/activity effectiveness. 
  • Prepare necessary internal USAID activity implementation documentation, including Concept Papers, Action Memos, Project Appraisal Documents (PADs), Statements of Work (SOWs), Program Descriptions, and other required reporting. Participate on Technical Evaluation Committees to evaluate proposals/applications to be funded to achieve USAID/Somalia basic education objectives and provides inputs on decisions or recommendations on the technical approach of the proposals. 
  • Manage financial matters such as providing input on contracts administrative approval of vouchers, planning and preparing for incremental funding actions, processing GLAAS requisition, reviewing expenditures/burn rates, and conducting quarterly pipeline analysis to ensure that fiscal requirements are met in a timely manner. 
  • Conduct regular assessment of data on program performance and site/field visits to monitor program progress and implementing partner performance at the local and national levels and provide recommendations to improve performance. 
  • Ensure effective coordination and integration with other USG-funded activities, especially those working in the areas of psychosocial support, resilience, gender equality, social inclusion, equity and access, and youth and adolescent development. 
  • Ensure that all activities are appropriately documented in required reports and through regular updates given to USAID stakeholders and external development partners, including the Operational Plan, Performance Plan Report, Portfolio Reviews, quarterly budget and pipeline analyses, Congressional Budget Justifications, Mission Resource Request, briefing memos and talking points. 
  • Review annual work plans, activity monitoring and evaluation plans and negotiate program activities with host country government counterparts and civil society, as appropriate. 
  • Ensure indicators to measure program performance and impact are appropriate, tracked accurately, and used to revise program implementation and strategy as necessary.

2. MONITORING, EVALUATION AND LEARNING              25%

The Specialist will serve as the Social Services Office’s main PoC on monitoring, evaluation, and learning activities related to measuring and tracking learning achievement, especially early grade reading, languages of reading instruction, access to education, especially for girls, marginalized female and male youth’s workforce development/readiness or improved resilience. S/he will:

  • Track and promote the use of education data in sector management, decision making, and policy formulation.                                       
  • Build and strengthen relationships and contribute to collaborative efforts with partner institutions, including the MOECHE and the Federal member states and other data gathering entities within the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), as well as other national and non-government institutions and donors. 
  • Keep abreast of important data trends and issues in the education sector, particularly related activities in the USAID education portfolio, analyze those developments that have implications for USAID education programming, and provide analytical guidance to the team to achieve USG’s education objectives. 
  • Support the education team’s learning agenda by contributing to the design, implementation, and dissemination of relevant research or studies that will fill the education evidence gap in Somalia on early grade reading instruction and achievement, language of instruction, parental and community engagement to promote reading, equity and access to education, especially for girls, and youth and other out-of-school vulnerable children. 
  • Participate and represent the education team on Mission-wide working groups related to basic education, youth, resilience, and M&E, as well as MOECHE technical working groups related to M&E, basic education, youth, gender, equity and access, and education for resilience. 
  • Provide the environmental review and compliance for the Social Services team through reviewing required 22 CRF 216 documents and related documentation, such as the initial environmental examinations requests for categorical exclusions and environmental assessments, advising the Team on: 1) how best to comply with USAID’s Environmental Procedures, and 2) how to obtain additional environmental expertise to assist in compliance with USAID’s mandatory environmental procedures. 

3.  STRATEGIC PLANNING, COORDINATION AND                                   REPRESENTATIONAL DUTIES                                                25%

The Specialist will be responsible for liaising with the MOECHE, other line ministries, and relevant education stakeholders on interventions that address out-of-school children and youth, youth, especially female youth, workforce development/readiness and resilience/and livelihoods, as well as evaluations or assessments that address evidence gaps identified in MOECHE’s policies. S/he will: 

  • Provide strategic, technical, and organizational input on the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of education program activities, particularly in the areas of basic education, social inclusion, and youth workforce development/readiness and resilience/livelihoods. 
  • Serve as a key advisor in managing and implementing USG education interventions, working closely with host government officials, implementing partners, civil society, and the private sector, to ensure effective coordination and integration with donor and host government-led activities in the education sector. 
  • Maintain collaborative, professional relationships with mid- and senior-level government officials, civil society, development partners (DPs) in the education sector, corporate philanthropic foundations, international and local organizations, private sector companies, and leading education research institutions, to ensure effective coordination of USAID and USG activities. 
  • Represent USAID in a wide variety of events, including conferences, workshops and other relevant forums on education – namely periodic Joint Review of Education Sector meetings, monthly Education Sector Donor Coordination meetings, and Social Development pillar working group and sub working group meetings – to ensure that government officials and DPs are apprised of Social Services program progress. 

4.  PROGRAM AND OFFICE MANAGEMENT SUPPORT               20%

The Specialist will maintain and update the Social Services Office’s financial planning records and forward planning documentation, including tracking the expenditure of program area and program element funds, and ensuring that the Operational Plan and Congressional Notifications are adhered to, including notifying AORs/CORs and the Office Chief if changes need to be made.  The incumbent will also mentor new USAID staff on Mission's activity management and related business processes, and backstop other Team members as needed.  S/he will:

  • Be responsible for tracking, documentation, and priority setting for closeouts of all Social Services awards including those for personnel. 
  • Draft communications products, such as fact sheets and success stories, briefing materials, and annual reporting, and coordinates communications activities with the Mission’s Development Outreach Coordination Specialist and the communications staff of implementing partners, providing guidance to implementing partners on project outreach activities when necessary. 
  • Assist in securing the approval of equipment disposition plans and closeouts by obtaining inventories of equipment purchased with USAID funds and final vouchers reports and any other documentation required for close-outs. 
  • Develop and maintain permanent filing systems; maintains orderly records of USAID Social Services reference materials, regularly used forms, updates office publications, and provides records management guidance to Social Services team members. 
  • Produce technical PowerPoint presentations and assist other staff members where necessary.  
  • Maintain up-to-date partners contact details for the Social Services Office and assist with travel and logistical arrangements for staff and high-level visitors on international travel and field visits when required.   
  • Assist the Social Services Office staff in preparing other documentation and follow up on the clearance process of clearance documents from relevant offices, until the relevant action has been taken. 
  • Coordinate Social Services Office events held outside the US Embassy when required and serve as the primary administrative liaison with other USAID staff and external partners.

POSITION ELEMENTS

A.  SUPERVISION RECEIVED: The Education and Youth PMS will work under the supervision of the Direct Hire Social Services Office Chief or their designate. However, the incumbent is largely independent of technical supervision; guidance provided by the supervisor is primarily with regard to policy, priorities, results to be achieved, basic approaches to be followed, and the basic content of reports. Work is assigned primarily in terms of desired results and suggested approaches. In consultation with the supervisor, the incumbent plans her/his own work and establishes priorities. Performance is evaluated primarily in terms of accomplishments. The Social Services Office Chief, education technical team and other USG staff will provide technical guidance as necessary.

In collaboration with the incumbent, the supervisor will:

1) Establish annual work objectives and performance measures;

2) Review work outputs and accomplishments to ensure compliance with      Agency policies and implementation of best practices;

3) Provide regular feedback to incumbent throughout the Performance          Evaluation period; and

4) Prepare the annual Evaluation Report as/when required.

As the incumbent is expected to work with a high degree of independence, s/he must be able to establish priorities, adhere to and meet established deadlines, and perform responsibilities and duties with minimal supervision and limited follow-up. In addition, frequent travel to Somalia is required. The incumbent must be able and willing to work beyond specific duties detailed in this position description, as assigned by USAID, in direct support of USAID/Somalia and USG strategic objectives, goals, and the Mission Performance Plan (MPP).      

B.  SUPERVISION EXERCISED: This position is designated as non-supervisory.

C.  AVAILABLE GUIDELINES: USAID Automated Directives System (ADS), AIDAR, FAR, GAO Guidebook, the USAID Internet, USAID Policy Papers, Mission Orders, USAID workshops, seminars, conferences and OMB Circulars provide basic guidelines with which employee must remain familiar. The incumbent must be able to assess alternatives and interpret the guidelines accordingly and exercise excellent judgment and the ability to deal with ambiguity as appropriate. Oral guidance from the immediate supervisor and specific detailed instructions will be given when necessary for carrying out unique assignments. The incumbent will be required to be proactive in keeping abreast of evolving guidelines and policies which affect the design, management, implementation, and monitoring of USG education assistance programs within Somalia, including but not limited to the ADS, Mission Orders, Mission notices, USG procurement regulations, and USAID and USG program strategy and policy documents.

D.  EXERCISE OF JUDGMENT: The incumbent will exercise professional judgment to make decisions and recommendations on the USAID education and youth portfolio, S/he will apply appropriate Agency and Federal regulations and policies to a broad spectrum of technical and project support matters and in communications with Embassy and Mission employees, Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) counterparts, Somalia private sector individuals, and counterparts at other donor organizations. The Mission may make policy based on her/his recommendations.

E.  AUTHORITY TO MAKE COMMITMENTS: The incumbent will speak with authority on USAID project implementation requirements and regulations acting as both a specialist and an information resource to contacts in both public and private sectors. S/he is expected to represent USAID/Somalia with high level government and other counterparts; however, s/he cannot commit USG funds.

F.  NATURE, LEVEL, AND PURPOSE OF CONTACTS: The incumbent will interact regularly with senior Somalia government officials (including the federal ministry of education and federal member states), high level officials in donor agencies (including other USG agencies, USG employees at post and in Washington DC), International Organizations, Donors, Embassies, and will be required to act as a liaison with a broad range of Somali and international stakeholders at the project level, including government authorities, private sector firms, civil society, and public and private organizations and institutions. The incumbent will also establish and maintain regular contact with UN, NGO partners, and staff within USAID and the broader interagency.

Most contacts will be in the education and youth sector, related to policy, planning, program implementation, budgeting, and monitoring and evaluation. The incumbent will also be required to establish and maintain a good working relationship with all categories of Mission personnel.

G.  TIME EXPECTED TO REACH FULL PERFORMANCE LEVEL: One year.

 

Education
Bachelor’s Degree In Education, Psychology Or A Related Social Science

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION

Any application that does not meet the minimum requirements stated below will not be evaluated. Only short-listed applicants will be contacted. If you have not been contacted within one month from the closing date of this advertisement, please consider your application unsuccessful.

EDUCATION: A Bachelor’s degree in education, psychology or a related social science from an accredited university is required. The field of study should have provided the incumbent with a skill set suited to critical thinking and analytical problem solving.

POST ENTRY TRAINING: The incumbent will be expected to possess the necessary technical training and skills required to perform the duties/responsibilities required for this position. On-the-job training will be provided by the Supervisor and Agency. Training will be focused primarily on the Agency’s established policies, procedures, and regulations that govern:

(1) USAID-specific AOR/COR responsibilities/ duties;

(2) USAID-specific activity management and procurement systems; and

(3) USAID-sponsored training in project design and activity management.

Organized/formal training (both internal and external) may be provided from time-to-time depending on the availability of program funds and when determined to be in direct support of education, youth, and resilience activities. Participation in job-related seminars, workshops and development studies programs organized by USAID, e.g., AOR/COR courses, education modules, USAID’s e-Learning Institute’s Courses, etc.

LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY: Level IV fluency (written/spoken/reading) in English and Kiswahili and additional fluency in Somali.

More Details on Experience

PRIOR WORK EXPERIENCE: A minimum of three years of progressively responsible experience in education, youth, and/or resilience/livelihoods project management. Experience working in Somalia, or with organizations working in Somalia, is required. Experience working with donor institutional structures in education, resilience or a closely related sector is required. Prior experience in budgeting and project financial monitoring also required.

JOB KNOWLEDGE: The incumbent is required to have in-depth knowledge of own work area and detailed understanding of the organization, including procurement processes, contract and grants management, strategic goals of the Mission and direct linkage to the Social Services Office.  Understanding of Somalia’s social, political and cultural characteristics and how to interact with key decision makers in the areas of education, youth, and resilience programming. A thorough knowledge of Somalia’s education system, development strategies and priorities is required. Understanding of inclusive education and other contextual issues related to education for vulnerable and disadvantaged learners is essential, as are key principles of resilience or livelihoods support.

More Details on Skills

SKILLS AND ABILITIES: The incumbent must have proven ability to adapt in the face of change, synthesize new information, and provide sound advice to Mission management and others. Ability to assess problems and develop sound solutions such as planning for and administering funds, personnel and equipment to best serve education and youth, and related resilience, program oversight objectives; ability to work with minimal supervision and work in a fast-paced environment; and strong organizational skills; and ability to maintain collaborative working relationships in a team structure are required. Ability to understand and analyze education and youth, as well as resilience where relevant, sector issues based on reading, discussion and observation in order to provide written and oral recommendations, options and strategies. Ability to develop and lead a rigorous monitoring and evaluation plan. Ability to compile, analyze, and present education and youth-oriented data in a variety of formats (charts, graphs, etc.). Ability to organize workshops and performance monitoring reviews for different program stakeholders. Ability to conduct administrative, technical, and financial management of large-scale technical programs and provide technical guidance and management oversight to implementing partners in a constructive, team-oriented manner. Ability to deal with various program management and implementation issues, take initiative and manage time effectively to achieve results. Must be able to represent USAID in discussion and policy dialogue with government, donor and other education sector stakeholders; and prepare documents, budgets, and reports using Google and MS Office software. Must be able to coordinate and maximize opportunities for sequencing, layering and integrating education and youth activities with resilience, livelihoods, and other sectoral activities. Ability to monitor the integration and implementation of social emotional learning and psychosocial components of the programs.

Terms And Conditions

EVALUATION AND SELECTION FACTORS

Applicants must submit a resume/cv which describes how their relevant professional experience and education has prepared them to meet the specific challenges of the duties and responsibilities described above.  As part of the interview process, those applicants ranked highest may be required to submit a timed writing sample on a topic provided.  The selection committee may conduct reference checks at any time during the selection process. 

Applications that do not meet the required minimum qualifications will not be scored. 

  • Prior work experience (30 points)
  • Job Knowledge (40 points)
  • Skills and abilities (30 points)

Total possible points:  100

Candidates meeting the above required qualifications for the position will be evaluated based on information presented in the application and reference checks.   References will be asked to assess the applicant’s technical knowledge, work performance, communication skills, and group dynamics, using the above criteria.  USAID reserves the right to conduct interviews with the top ranked short-listed applicants.  The interview will be one of the determining factors in the final selection.

How to Apply

Step 1:  Register in MyJobsInKenya at www.myjobsinkenya.com    

Step 2:  Complete the job application questionnaire at www.myjobsinkenya.com  The applicant must answer all the questions in the Questionnaire.

Step 3:  Internal Applicants/Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages), a copy of your most recent Performance Evaluation Report, and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents and upload to MyJobsInKenya. 

                                                     OR

External Applicants/Not Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages) and copies of all relevant certificates. Upload all the documents to MyJobsInKenya.

Note to Applicants:

1.  Applications must be received by the closing date and time specified in Section I, item 3, and submitted through myjobsinkenya.com as stated in Section IV.

2. Submissions will only be accepted through myjobsinkenya.com Late and Incomplete applications (those that do not contain the applicant’s most current and up to date detailed CV and relevant education certificates) will not be considered for the position. The closing date for receipt of applications is indicated above.

3. USAID DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING) AND DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS' BANK ACCOUNTS.