Director of Strategic Accountability and Adaptation - MEL

Water for People

Denver, CO, USA

Guatemala 🇬🇹

Honduras 🇭🇳

Peru 🇵🇪

India 🇮🇳

Malawi 🇲🇼

Rwanda 🇷🇼

Uganda 🇺🇬

United Kingdom 🇬🇧



The Director of Strategic Accountability and Adaptation leads the team responsible for the programmatic monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) processes that drives adaptive planning and results in organizational accountability for achievement of our mission and strategic targets.  This includes oversight of the global MEL framework, in addition to development and implementation of the Results Framework for Water For People’s ambitious Destination 2030 strategy and alliance. The Director of Strategic Accountability and Adaptation also ensures technical support is provided to country programs on MEL activities as the organization continues to decentralize MEL functions and as country teams prioritize the strengthening of national water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) monitoring systems. As the organization grows, it is also essential for this position to continually identify opportunities for increased efficiency, sustainability, and scalability of the MEL functions.

The Director of Strategic Accountability and Adaptation is also responsible for building a team that can respond to the full portfolio of funding opportunities at country, regional, and global levels, and generate learning products for internal and external audiences. The portfolio includes foundations, individuals, corporate partners, and institutional donors and the level of support varies based on the type of funding opportunity, the thematic area of the work, and the geographic scope. For country-led funding opportunities the support would be through the country M&E officer. Support to the Influence Team responsible for making change in the WASH and related sectors, and also guidance to regional and country teams on strengthening evidence-based advocacy for national WASH systems strengthening, are priorities of this role. The Director of Strategic Accountability and Adaptation demonstrates trust and teamwork in all aspects of Water For People business; provides exceptional internal and external leadership and customer service; and communicates in an open and honest manner.


  • Collaborate with the Chief Operations Officer and the entire Global Leadership Team to lead programmatic MEL processes that lead to organizational accountability and adaptive management for delivery of our Destination 2030 targets
  • Lead Strategic Accountability and Adaptation Team, which includes direct management of Sr. Manager of M&E and the Sr. Manager of Program Learning and leadership of the broader team who carry out different MEL functions
  • Lead development and implementation of the results framework of the Destination 2030 Alliance with IRC (and potentially others in the future), and update in future years as needed
  • Oversee development and implementation of the global MEL Framework and ensure alignment to the Destination 2030 results framework.
  • Ensure appropriate quality assurance/quality control for centralized and decentralized MEL functions
  • Ensure appropriate database and systems are in place to support MEL framework
  • Collaborate with Chief Operations Officer and Regional Directors to identify necessary adjustments to organizational strategy which respond to program learning and/or shifts in the WASH sector and/or broader sociopolitical environment
  • Collaborate with global advisors of the Influence Team and country program teams on documenting key learnings and aligning those learnings with our results framework
  • Collaborate with global advisors to align programmatic priorities with influence goals and Destination 2030 Strategy.
  • Support implementation of conference strategy by ensuring alignment of program learning documentation
  • Promote evidence-based decision making at all levels, from designing specific programmatic approaches withing a country to influencing long-term strategic planning processes
  • Develop and oversee implementation of organizational evaluation agenda and provide adaptive management support to country programs
  • Ensure collaboration with the Influence Team on programmatic evaluation and learning and global data sharing initiatives across organizations
  • Manage relationships with sector partners working to strengthen and harmonize WASH MEL systems
  • Build team with capacity to offer technical assistance to strategic external clients on strengthening MEL systems

Regional and Country Support

  • Collaborate with Regional Leadership Teams to implement the global MEL framework and Destination 2030 results framework in the Latin America, Africa, and South Asia regions.
  • Ensure collaboration with regional teams to facilitate operational planning processes that are based on data and result in adaptive management.
  • Ensure collaboration with regional teams to coordinate organizational impact reporting
  • Collaborate with Chief Operations Officer and regional teams to help coordinate organizational strategy efforts at regional and country levels
  • Ensure technical support is provided to country programs on program design and MEL frameworks during the pursuit and implementation of in-country funding opportunities, as requested
  • Ensure high-level support to country-led efforts to embed service level monitoring and system strength assessments as part of national impact initiatives
  • Ensure establishment of community of practice of MEL professionals across countries and regions


  • Support Donor Impact Team with impact tracking and communication of our programmatic impact, and meetings with donors, as requested
  • Collaborate with Donor Impact Team to develop and maintain external impact data dashboards
  • Support Donor Impact Team with varying MEL requirements associated with different types of funding partners including foundations, individuals, corporate partners, and institutional donors
  • Support marketing department with data for annual reports that track progress on Destination 2030, as Water For People and as part of the Destination 2030 Alliance


  • Manage Strategic Accountability and Adaptation Team budget, including quarterly reforecasts and monthly tracking
  • Lead regular Strategic Accountability and Adaptation Team meetings
  • Agree team and individual goals and priorities, and conduct performance reviews with direct reports
  • Review and approve timesheets, time off requests and monthly expense reports
  • Follow organization policies and ensure compliance
  • Create inclusive team environment


  • Builds Teams and Talent – Open and approachable, and able to extract excellent performance and develop leadership and confidence in others. Attracts, engages, develops and rewards talented people to build individual and organizational capability needed to achieve desired impact.
  • Uses Critical Thinking – Has a broad perspective and sees possibilities and opportunities by thinking innovatively. Manages competing priorities and makes hard decisions with an eye towards getting things done.
  • Connects to the Mission – Embraces the mission of Water For People and is passionate about advancing the dynamic role it plays leading social impact in international development. Understands and demonstrates how own efforts impact on the larger organization and operates in alignment with the vision, values and strategic objectives of the organization.
  • Demonstrates Ethics and Integrity – Understands ethical behavior and business practices and ensures that own behavior is consistent with these standards and aligns with the values of the organization. Consistently follows through on commitments and lives our values of accountability, courage, empowerment, partnership, and transparency.
  • Demonstrates Cultural Awareness – shows empathy, a high comfort level in the developing world, and unquestionable integrity; able to engage the wide range of stakeholders from a variety of backgrounds and cultures.


  • Bachelor’s Degree in relevant field (public health, engineering, international development, etc.) with preference for Master’s Degree or higher, or equivalent work experience
  • At least 10 years of progressively responsible and relevant experience in international development, of which at least 5 years should be in monitoring, evaluation, and learning
  • Experience designing programs or systems routed in adaptive management
  • Experience designing and leading participatory processes spanning multiple cultures and contexts
  • At least two years of WASH experience in a developing country desirable
  • The ability to handle rapid changes in a fast-paced, global environment, respond to new business requirements through the innovative implementation of best business practices.
  • Work with a diverse team comprising of business professionals, international staff, and water and sanitation technologists
  • Ability to influence through engagement rather than through direct authority
  • Proficient in Word and Excel
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and oral presentation
  • Experience in relationship management, with internal and external partners and institutional donors
  • Experience with multi-cultural teams
  • English language fluency required
  • Advanced Spanish language skills required


  • Ability to travel up to 10% of the time domestically and internationally (including to developing countries where travel is rugged).
  • This position has the option to work from an office or remotely in one of the following countries where Water For People is present: Guatemala, Honduras, India, Malawi, Peru, Rwanda, Uganda, the United Kingdom, or the United States.
  • Ability to work outside regular business hours to meet with personnel located in other time zones.

Note: This job description is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all duties, responsibilities, or qualifications associated with the job.

Contact and Further Information:

If you are both qualified and Water For People interests you, please visit our Career Center and apply with your resume and cover letter to this position.

Salary Range:  $95,000 – $115,000 (if based outside the US an equivalent salary will be determined)


Benefits are one of the ways we encourage healthy living for you and your family. Our generous package may include medical, dental and vision coverage. But health is more than a well-working body: it encompasses body, mind, and social well-being. To that end, we provide a global EAP and Telehealth benefit to address your holistic health. Healthy living also includes financial wellness tools including, digital tools, classes, counseling, paid time off and generous retirement savings plan. If based outside the US benefits will be dictated by the country in which the selected candidate is located.

Water For People cannot provide immigration sponsorship for this position.

Water For People is an equal opportunity employer who is committed to creating a culture of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion in our workplace. Water for people strives to create and maintain a level of diversity that reflects the communities we serve. Achieving this—regardless of race, ethnicity, ancestry, tribal affiliation, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, veteran status, disability, socioeconomic class, educational attainment, or other social identities is critical to our ability to have a world where every person has access to reliable and safe water and sanitation services.

Our commitment ensures that we:

  • Have a different array of thinking that comes from diverse backgrounds and cultures, enabling us to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.
  • Strive for a culture of inclusion and belonging by treating each other with dignity, respect, and appreciation enabling us to feel welcome, supported, and valued.
  • Effectively connect, communicate, and build long-lasting relationships with stakeholders within our diverse communities.
  • Have diversity of thought, perspectives, backgrounds, identities, and talents that will support our mission to develop high-quality drinking water and sanitation services are available to Everyone Forever.







IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development