We would like to share with you the brilliant experience of one of the top recruiters at the ILO. In this first part of the interview, Marc explains what drives him in his day-to-day life in the International Public Sector and what it takes to work for such an organisation…
1. What was your background? How did you first get into the International Public Sector?
Despite the fact that I now work in Human Resources Management, I am not a pure “HR guy”, I have an economist background, and had worked three years in the private sector before joining the International Public Sector, first as a UN Volunteer (with UNDP in Sudan and then Cambodia), then as a junior professional officer (with the ILO in Côte d’Ivoire and Geneva); I was then recruited as a regional programme analyst with the ILO Regional Office for Africa. I also spent several years with the ILO Department in Geneva in charge of programming and strategic management. Almost five years ago, I won a competition as Head of the ILO Recruitment Unit. I was convinced that my knowledge of the ILO operations in the field (in Africa, Asia, Latin Americas, etc) but also my knowledge of ILO results-based management and strategic programming systems could help me validly contribute to the ILO’s efforts to identify the best recruits from inside or outside in order to best serve the ILO’s objectives.
2. Would you do the same again?
I would indeed. My move from the private sector to the International Public Sector was an interesting one, as I in fact resigned from my job (in Belgium) and then had a few months break as my recruitment with the UN (UNV) at that time was a bit longer that what I had expected.
3. What drives you?
My main motivation is that the fact that the International Public Sector, and in my case the International Labour Organization, works towards the public good, and not for any private interest. The UN aims at achieving a more balance and sustainable development for all. The ILO in particular aims at promoting opportunities for women and men to obtain decent and productive work in conditions of freedom, equity, security and human dignity”. The ILO’s key messages are that (i) work is central to people’s well-being; (ii) employment shall be at the heart of sustainable development and (iii) globalization shall be more inclusive and more to really succeed.
4. Proudest achievements with your organization?
In my current job, I try to find the right people for the ILO to best achieve its Decent Work agenda. Concretely, I have been instrumental in putting in place a recruitment system, called RAPS (Recruitment, Assignment and Placement system) which aims at advertising all ILO professional vacancies in two rounds every year (around February and August) and conducting all stages of the assessment/tests/interviews in a maximum of four months (half of the time taken in the past at the ILO to run such competitions).
5. Nicest fact/surprise about your organization?
When you first come to ILO, you may consider that we are very much a “Headquarters centered” agency – with more than 1,200 staff here in Geneva – but we are not only that. The ILO has more than 40 country offices all over the world, and 1,700 ILO staff are based in more than 100 duty-stations.