Mercy Corps International Job Vacancy: Director of Programs - Tunisia

This is a 1 year duration role

Mercy Corps launched operations in Tunisia in July 2011. Mercy Corps aims to 1) build the capacity of emerging and existing non-politicized civil society actors, while 2) developing livelihood opportunities for youth (including addressing issues around employability, entrepreneurship skills and access to financial services) and 3) increasing civic engagement around communities' needs, including conflict mitigation and emergency response, all with the goal to empower vulnerable groups and communities in marginalized areas, to develop productive initiatives that build a secure and just environment. Mercy Corps focuses on empowering vulnerable individuals and groups in marginalized areas to develop productive initiatives that build secure and just communities.

Our programs focus on:
  • Integrating youth into the workforce, by developing opportunities for employment and skills development
  • Supporting financial inclusion of vulnerable populations underserved by financial services (e.g. Youth, women, rural populations)
  • Stimulating market development in sectors with the potential for job and wealth creation
  • Promoting local governance, by encouraging constructive dialogue between local authorities, private sector and civil society
  • Reducing the causes of marginalization, exclusion and radicalization of vulnerable population groups in Tunisia
Our current portfolio of programs includes Tunisia Works, Jendouba Works, Acting Together for Local Economic Development, LEAD, ADEL, and Youth Empowered for Success, with numerous other projects under development.

The Program Director – (PD) will work closely with the Country Director (CD) and the program teams to lead new program development and strategy, and ensure effective program coordination and technical support, monitoring, quality assurance and accountability in close collaboration with the operations, finance and internal control and Evaluation & Communication teams. S/he will help represent the Mercy Corps program to donors, major stakeholders, relevant government authorities and other program partners such as other NGOs.


Program Coordination and Management
  • Provide leadership in all aspects of program coordination to ensure consistent quality, including the incorporation of cross-cutting themes, monitoring, lessons learned and best practices;
  • Facilitate the coordination between different programs and ensure that program managers and technical coordinators for cross-cutting themes are able to work together effectively according to program work plans
  • Ensure that program implementation is responsive to communities and partners and aligned with Mercy Corps principles, values and strategic roadmap and country strategy;
  • Work with Program Managers to monitor adherence to grant agreements, Mercy Corps policies and procedures and relevant external rules and regulations;
  • Support Program Managers to oversee performance of partners, sub-grantees, and technical contractors;
  • Conduct frequent field visits to all project sites for monitoring, quality control and program staff mentoring and coaching.
Team Management and capacity building
  • Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
  • Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback via regular performance reviews.
  • Supervise, hire and orient new team members as necessary.
  • Provide team members with information, tools and other resources to improve performance and reach objectives.
  • Contribute to country team-building efforts, help team members identify problem-solving options and ensure the integration of all team members into relevant decision-making processes.
  • Mentor identified local team member in order to “nationalize” the position in the future: set up of career development milestones, identify gaps, provide regular assessment, trainings and coaching.
Program Minimal Standards and Reporting
  • Ensure that program documentation and program minimal standards are consistently adhered to;
  • Ensure that a comprehensive reporting schedule and quarterly planning process is maintained and adhered to according to requirements;
  • Ensure that donor reports produced by the Programs team effectively demonstrate the impact of Mercy Corps' program interventions.
  • Review all reports to ensure a high-quality product (in either English or French, depending on the donor)
  • Ensure that monitoring processes are successful and that monitoring is on track, monthly, by the program teams, to contribute to Mercy Corps data analysis.
Program Support Operations
  • Integrate and be an active member of the Country Management Team, to ensure that operational and financial management systems are responsive to program needs and that program staff are adhering to both donor and Mercy Corps procedures and regulations.
  • Work closely with the Finance Director and the Program Managers to ensure that co-financing is secured, effectively tracked on a regular basis between programs.
  • Ensure that the finance and operational systems in place enable program managers to manage co-financing effectively and have visibility on the total budget they have available for their activities.
Strategy, Vision and design
  • Oversee the identification of new initiatives and opportunities that respond to identified needs and the country strategy, in coordination with the Country Director and Program Managers, M&E, as well as the Regional Program Director, headquarters-based Program Officers, Technical Advisors and other relevant staff.
  • Plan and co-lead with M&E all assessments to better understand needs for program design and to further develop Tunisia's country strategy;
  • Conduct analyses to determine humanitarian/development gaps and how Mercy Corps should position itself to best serve the needs of beneficiaries;
  • Oversee the development of solicited and unsolicited proposals and concept notes.
  • Work closely with Program Managers and Country Management Team for programs that have a co-financing requirement to identify elements of these programs that can be integrated into new proposal development in order to secure the co-financing required, and actively identify potential donors and develop proposals to meet MC Tunisia co-financing need.
Coordination and Representation
  • Establish close and productive relationships with donors, national government authorities, private sector actors, and other NGOs., in close coordination with the Country Management Team;
  • Represent Mercy Corps at all relevant coordination meetings;
  • Coordinate with other NGOs in Tunisia to consolidate Mercy Corps' strategic niche and comparative advantages, while identifying strategic partnerships;
  • Ensure Mercy Corps' participation in a variety of external forums/workshops/conference/sector coordination meetings to share best practices and findings of the project with the government and development community.
  • Represent Mercy Corps in Country Director's absence on programmatic issues.
  • Ensure that programs are designed and implemented with a clear analysis and understanding of security management priorities.
Program Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning
  • Ensure, in coordination with M&E team, that robust design, monitoring, evaluation and learning (DMEL) and quality assurance and control (QAC) systems are in place, adhered to and used as a decision-making tool, encouraging consistency and best practice across programs;
  • Ensure that program managers have adequate understanding of DMEL and QAC
  • Program with M&E team to provide ongoing training and guidance to staff on M&E best practices.
  • Work /design with the M &E unit to develop a strategy for supporting program teams, a clear division of roles and responsibilities, and to communicate internally on their structure and roles
  • With the Country Director & Operation Manager, help staff identify and take advantage of professional development opportunities. Contribute to the country team-building efforts.
  • Conduct him/herself professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring credit to Mercy Corps and to not jeopardize its humanitarian mission.
  • Other duties as assigned.
Organizational Learning
As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve - we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.

Accountability to Beneficiaries
Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts towards accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITY: The Program Director will directly supervise program managers and technical coordinators



WORKS DIRECTLY WITH: Project Managers, Monitoring and Evaluation Team, Partners in Tunisia, Finance and Operations teams, Regional team, HQ Program Operations and Technical Support Unit


  • 7-10 years' experience managing youth employability, entrepreneurship development, market development, governance, migration, and civil society capacity building projects
  • Masters' degree or equivalent experience
  • Experience working on microfinance projects and youth-oriented financial inclusion projects
  • Experience in training, capacity building of partners and team members
  • Demonstrated attention to detail, ability to follow procedures, meet deadlines and work independently and cooperatively with team members
  • Experience managing national and international staff.
  • At least 3 years of experience within Mercy Corp
  • Fluency in French and English ;
  • Knowledge of Arabic.
  • Highly developed computers skills.
  • Good understanding of M&E system and relevance
  • Candidate must be willing to travel and work throughout Tunisia.
A successful candidate will have strong diplomacy skills in managing a team with different backgrounds, abilities, and technical knowledge and will have contextual knowledge of Tunisia. She/he will use effective communication and team-building techniques, have excellent organizational and strong interpersonal skills and display an even temperament and good sense of humor.

The position is based in Tunis, Tunisia with frequent field travel for a 1-year period. Tunis is the capital city of Tunisia with a significant international community presence and many western amenities. Amenities in field sites may be more basic. Tunis has excellent educational and medical facilities. This position can be accompanied by dependents, if not, accommodation will be shared with other team members or guests.

Mercy Corps Team members represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and Mercy Corps' policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Closing Date: 27 October 2016