Head of Support Services – Generic Job Profile

Industry Sector:
International Public Sector
Type of contract:

Head of Support Services – Generic Job Profile

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Please note this is only a profile and not a live Vacancy. If you are interested in this role, chat to UNOPS recruiters at the upcoming Global Careers For Women event on 10 October


Operational leadership, advisory and technical support
  • As a key leadership role for the Country/Multi-Country Office, the Head of Support Services monitors and supervises teams as well as all aspects of operations (Finance, HR, Procurement, Health, Safety, Security and Environmental (HSSE), Information Technology (ICT) and Administration) to ensure achievement of results whilst driving compliance with corporate strategies, UNOPS rules, regulations, policies, and standards of accountability, ethics and integrity.
  • Monitor support services to ensure continuously improving client service and satisfaction, including liaising with appropriate Headquarters Practice Groups and IPAS for required support.
  • Contribute to the formulation of Country Office/Multi-Country Office strategies and policies through advisory services to the Country Office/Multi-Country Office Director.
  • Provide technical advice and operational guidance on innovative approaches to project financing, risk assessment/mitigation and use of financing structures, mechanisms instruments and guarantees.
  • Collaborate with colleagues to identify the need, determine the cost and plan all Country Office/Multi-Country Office support services, including Procurement, Finance, Human Resources and administrative services.
  • Assist the Country Office/Multi-Country Office Director in setting goals, targets and performance standards for projects, and recommend tools for monitoring, evaluation and auditing.
  • At the request of the Country Office/Multi-Country Office Director participate in any UN forum discussions and planning to ensure UNOPS position, interests and priorities are fully considered.
  • Lead on Health, Safety, Security and Environmental (HSSE) matters to ensure they are integrated into all aspects of the operations and that related risks are managed effectively.
Project planning and coordination support
  • Provide assistance and support to programme and project budget preparation, revisions and work planning.
  • Provide input into project engagement and acceptance documents including assisting with contract negotiations.
  • Provide advice on goal setting, targets and performance standards for projects and recommend tools for monitoring, evaluation and auditing.
  • Monitor project financial projections, take decisions and/or refer critical issues to the Country Office/Multi-Country Office Director and/or other stakeholders for action.
  • Provide advice on programme and project cost-sharing, deployment of funds and closure.
  • Constantly monitor and analyze the operating environment to identify potential risks and take action/refer critical issues for intervention to ensure delivery of results.
  • Closely liaise with the Field Offices (within the Country Office/Multi-Country Office) in order to troubleshoot any issues that might cause an interruption in the support services management.
  • Oversee and supervise Country Office/Multi-Country Office procurement processes, including tendering processes and evaluation and supplier selection, to ensure viable procurement solutions that meet operational needs and compliance with UNOPS procurement procedures, regulations and standard of accountability, ethics, integrity and performance.
  • Evaluate contractual arrangements and legal commitments/risks for appropriate action.
  • In consultation with relevant colleagues, review, administer and issue contracts, agreements/amendments with institutions and UN agencies.
  • Oversee the logistics of goods and equipment on project sites to confirm delivery and safe warehousing.
  • Evaluate, list, update and monitor the performance of the roster of service providers of suitable firms or institutions.
Financial and compliance management
  • Prepare the Country Office/Multi Country Office financial plan and manage the budget process/cycle to ensure timely revisions and reallocation of funds.
  • Oversee the Support Services Finance Unit and ensure compliance with the UNOPS/Financial Rules & Regulations and Finance procedures.
  • Monitor, track and control expenditure to ensure the optimum and appropriate use of resources.
  • Ensure the availability of required financial reports and exception reports including investigating anomalies to resolve problems, reporting or recommending any action required to relevant stakeholders.
  • Supervise the timely review, posting and closure of accounts. Certify/verify accuracy and compliance with standards of accountability framework. Submit/prepare a mandated report on financial status.
  • Supervise all financial services (accounting, cash management, payments etc.) ensuring timeliness and compliance with standards of accountability and performance.
  • Monitor the Management Budget expenditures for the Country Office/Multi Country Office and ensure that LMDC (Locally Managed Direct Cost) is properly recovered, billed and spent in accordance with the applicable procedures.
  • Act as focal point for any internal/external audit exercise.
Human resource management
  • Plan personnel required for Country Office/Multi Country Office programmes/projects.
  • Oversee all human resource services/processes including recruitment, salary administration and compensation, performance review, training and development, ensuring compliance with human resource rules, regulations, procedures and standards of performance and ensuring that hiring managers actively seek to create diverse teams in terms of gender and geography.
  • Promote and support a learning culture by empowering individuals and teams to identify critical learning needs and plan/provide easy access to learning opportunities to maintain personnel competency and flexibility.
  • Foster a positive work environment, respectful of both men and women, and ensure that the highest standards of conduct are observed.
  • Exercise control of all staffing issues within the Country Office/Multi Country Office as required by the projects’ demands including recruitment, training, staff performance review.
Administration and Information Technology
  • In close collaboration with Headquarters, support maintenance of a secure and reliable ICT environment, including adequate plans for disaster recovery.
  • Manage the acquisition, maintenance, inventory, recording, verification and protection of project and administrative facilities/assets, including IT infrastructure, equipment and servers.
  • Identify opportunities for leveraging the use of IT to enhance business operations and efficiency and to facilitate knowledge management, and information sharing.
  • Manage the timely and efficient delivery of all administrative services, (e.g. premises, asset management, organizational and personnel security, travel and IT).
Knowledge management and innovation
  • Contribute to the development and introduction of innovation to ensure UNOPS is continually incorporating best practice approaches in Country Office/Multi Country Office Support Services.
  • Contribute to the dissemination and sharing of best practices and lessons learned for corporate development planning and knowledge building.
  • At the request of the Country Office/Multi Country Office Director and in collaboration with the team, plan, implement and organize strategic capacity building of project personnel, clients and stakeholders.

Recruitment Qualifications


A Master’s degree in a relevant related field is required. A combination of Bachelor’s degree with an additional 2 years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the education requirements outlined above.


A minimum of 7 years of progressively responsible experience covering at least two of the following operations functions: Procurement, Finance, Logistics/ Asset Management and Human Resources. Knowledge of the other functions is desirable. A minimum of 3 years of leadership experience, including a proven record of accomplishment managing staff and operational systems, is required. Some experience in UN system organizations preferably in a developing country is desirable. Experience dealing with UN regulations, rules and policies in the areas of contracting, procurement and human resources is desirable.

Language Requirements:

Full working knowledge of English or French or Spanish is essential. Knowledge of Arabic or another official UNOPS language is an asset.

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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