Communications/Partnerships Specialist

Belgrade, Serbia
Industry Sector:
International Public Sector
Type of contract:

Communications/Partnerships Specialist

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Application closing date: 16 October 2018

Background Information – Job-specific

The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Mandated as a central resource of the United Nations, UNOPS provides sustainable project management, procurement and infrastructure services to a wide range of governments, donors and United Nations organizations. With over 8,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, where they need it. By implementing around 1,000 projects for our partners at any given time, UNOPS makes significant contributions to results on the ground, often in the most challenging environments.

In Serbia, UNOPS has been active since 2000, became the Project Centre (RSPC) in 2013, and was reclassified, due a growing portfolio, to Operations Centre (RSOC) at the beginning of 2017. UNOPS has been a reliable partner of the Government of the Republic of Serbia in providing support for demanding socio-economic reforms and facilitating accession to the European Union.

Currently, the RSOC is implementing ten projects focussed on: sustainable municipal development, recovery from damages incurred by May 2014 floods in Serbia and building climate-resilient infrastructure, creation of more favourable environment for employability, business and infrastructure growth, enhanced social inclusion via durable housing solutions and access to health, education and jobs for the most vulnerable population. All projects have good governance and gender equality as transversal theme. UNOPS projects are contextualised within the broader Sustainable Development Goals framework and objectives.

Functional Responsibilities

Under the overall guidance and direct supervision of the Serbia Office Director, and in close coordination with the Regional Office and the Partnerships Practice Group, the Communications/ Partnership Specialist will be responsible for internal and external communications strategies and related activities for the Serbia Office while supporting the development and implementation of the partnership plan of the office.

Summary of key results:

  1. Management of Serbia Office related communications activities
  2. Representation and inter-agency networking
  3. Partnership and programme development planning
  4. Development and follow up of partnership opportunities
  5. Knowledge management and innovation

Management of Serbia Office related communications activities

  • Preparation and implementation of internal and external communications strategies and action plans
  • Ensuring compliance with UNOPS Branding standards for all communication products
  • Support the Serbia Office communication and business development activities, including, but not limited to: mapping and analysing stakeholders, preparation of stakeholder management strategies, preparation of key messages and presentations
  • Gather content for communications and outreach materials for any country managed by Serbia Office
  • Organisation of high profile and promotional events
  • Preparation of analytical and briefing notes for the high-profile visits
  • Development of partnership with media
  • Support for preparation of donors’ reports
  • Support to visibility and promotional activities of projects which don’t have communication teams
  • Ensure coordination and information exchange between different communication components of RSOC project
  • Support to the communications activities of the Europe Operations Cluster (EOC)
  • Contribution to the work of the Europe and Central Asia (ECR) Communication Unit and maintaining active relations with the Regional and Corporate communications units
  • Preparation of the blogs, news stories, social media posts for the Regional and Corporate internal and external online platforms
  • Contribution to the work of the United Nations Country Team (UNCT) Communications Group.

Representation and inter-agency partnership

  • Establish and develop networking with UN agencies, international organisations, governments, foundations, international NGOs and private sector organisations to diversify project opportunities within the Serbia Office.
  • On behalf of the Serbia Office Director and/or Head of Programme, participate in and report on the relevant inter-agency, donor and government coordination meetings including addressing project development issues in consultation with UNOPS project managers and technical experts when required. Take part in UN common planning and programming processes, including strategic country analysis, UNDAF, response plans, etc.

Partnership and programme development planning

  • Develop a comprehensive partnership and programme development plan in line with UNOPS Strategic Plan and Regional Strategies, including country context, analysis of the regional and national development, identification of main partners, strategic positioning of UNOPS in the potential operational niches identified, as well as grow a pipeline opportunities for all countries in scope of the Serbia Office. Ensure plan reflects in-house capacity, typology of projects and the internal tools and knowledge resources.
  • Examine risks and opportunities presented by the strategic positioning of the Serbia Office and propose appropriate responses to ensure sustainable growth.
  • Coordinate and collaborate with relevant Partnerships personnel at local, liaison and HQ level, as well as Project Managers and project personnel to ensure aligned and coherent interactions with partners.

Develop opportunities

  • Monitor and evaluate development trends and needs to identify areas of collaboration within UNOPS mandate and existing capacity.
  • Research events, publications and announcements, to track and screen opportunities for possible UNOPS interventions.
  • Contribute to the identification, design, formulation and negotiation of new projects and programs and draft concept notes and project document briefs for discussion with partners.
  • Create and maintain oneUNOPS opportunities and engagement functionalities in alignment with UNOPS corporate guidelines.
  • Coordinate technical and financial requirements, and negotiate proposals to close new project opportunities.
  • Understand and clearly explain UNOPS pricing policy to partners.
  • Contribute to the diversification portfolio of the Serbia Office in line with UNOPS strategic and Regional objectives.

Knowledge management and innovation

  • Implement standards, tools and templates provided by HQ to effectively manage partnership and project development within the Serbia Office to enhance/maintain UNOPS effectiveness as a provider of project services for sustainable results.
  • Contribute to the ongoing research, development and implementation of best practice and innovative approaches to maximise performance and sustain achievements in project and partnership development and communications activities of a common interest for the Serbia Office.
  • Help build partnerships capacity and negotiation skills among project managers.
  • Contribute to the dissemination and sharing of best practices and lessons learned including Communication for planning and knowledge building within project and partnership development.

Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • A Master’s degree preferably in Business Administration, Public Administration, International Development, Political Science, Communications or International Relations or other relevant field is required.
  • A combination of Bachelor’s degree with an additional two years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the education requirements outlined above.

Work Experience

  • At least five years of experience in communications and/or public relations and/or media and/or journalism and proven experience in developing and executing partnership and programme development plans, project development and proposal writing is required.
  • Prior experience working in project and programme management, international organizations, international development, post-disaster and/or emergency contexts is desirable.

Language Requirements

  • Fluency in English and Serbian is required.

Driving license and ability to travel independently is required

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United Nations Office for Project Services (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. UNOPS mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

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