Deputy Chief of Party
About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.
Program / Department Summary
Mercy Corps has been operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since August 2007, with a staff of around 300 people working in North Kivu, South Kivu, Ituri, and Kinshasa. Mercy Corps’ national office is in Goma with five sub-field offices. Mercy Corps activities focus on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services in settlements of internally displaced people, and large-scale infrastructure and service delivery development in peri-urban centers. Mercy Corps also has Food Security, Economic Recovery/Development and Governance programs. The DRC team has a strong commitment to providing entrepreneurial and innovative solutions to development challenges, and is actively seeking and facilitating market-based solutions.
In 2008, Mercy Corps and USAID launched a project to rehabilitate and extend the municipal water system of Goma and it was extended through other various donors. In 2013, Mercy Corps signed a new $60M (USD) grant agreement with DFID-DRC to replicate and scale-up the Goma water project in two cities in Eastern Congo. The program involves designing, rehabilitating, extending and constructing city water and sanitation infrastructure as well as working to reform management structures to ensure that the systems are managed profitably and sustainably. In 2019, Mercy Corps intends to pursue its peri-urban water and sanitation programming with an anticipated USAID funded project.
General Position Summary
The Deputy Chief of Party (DCoP) is a senior leadership position for this multi-million dollar USAID-funded program and will play an essential role in its successful implementation. Charged with direct oversight and management of the engineering-related aspects of the program, s/he will oversee international partners’ water and sanitation infrastructure interventions. S/he will contribute to the strategic vision to the implementation of the program while managing staff and resources to ensure that the program meets its targets and deliverables on-time, on-scope and within budget. The DCoP will collaborate closely with the Chief of Party, program partners and key stakeholders. With the COP, the DCoP will be responsible for creating a culture of learning and for providing leadership and strategic direction to team members and partners and ensuring accountability to Mercy Corps’ policies and donor rules and regulations.
Essential Job Responsibilities
Strategy and Vision
- Recognize and act on opportunities for innovative action and create an environment where alternative viewpoints are welcomed.
- Set direction by prioritizing and organizing actions and resources to achieve objectives.
Program and Team Management
- Oversee and manage the works, including partner and consultant contracts;
- Ensure works, partner and consultants contracts are implemented as contracted;
- Maintain and review program workplans for the entire implementation of the project duration;
- Create and maintain systems ensuring effective and transparent use of financial resources for timely and informative reporting in line with development partners and Mercy Corps policies and procedures;
- Ensure quality control and Health-Safety-Security and Environment standards.
- Integrate gender sensitivity into all activities as appropriate.
- Conduct frequent field visits to all project sites – spend up to 30% of time in the field.
- Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
- Set a team culture valuing learning and adaptive management in support of an ongoing resilience approach in programming
- Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback via regular performance reviews.
- Supervise 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.
Finance and Compliance Management
- In collaboration with the country program’s operations and finance departments, ensure compliance with USAID and Mercy Corps regulations
- Oversee and ensure contractual procedure for interim payment certificates with supporting documentation for works, partners and consultant contracts
- Review scope of work and manage technical consultants and partners works contracts, including review for technical efficacy and contract budget
Influence and Representation
- Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships with consortium partners, sub-grantees, donors, local governments and other stakeholders.
- Communicate effectively to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are met
- Coordinate closely with and share information with consortium partners, sub-grantees, local government and other implementers, as well as with other Mercy Corps programs.
- Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country
- Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
- 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 toward 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.
National team members working on the program, as well as partnerships with international program partners. The number of direct and indirect reports is to be determined.
Reports Directly To: Chief of Party
Works Directly With: Technical Leads, Finance Manager, Operations Staff and Partner Organizations
Knowledge and Experience
- Relevant MA/S (Architecture/ Civil Engineering/ Disaster Management);
- 5-7 years’ demonstrated experience of increasing responsibility working as a Project Manager/Director in Sub-Sahara Africa, South America or Asia, preferably in a development or humanitarian context, USAID funded activities strongly preferred;
- Demonstrable technical experience, particularly in Urban Drinking Water Supply and Water Treatment Projects under FIDIC (Fédération Internationale Des Ingénieurs-Conseils) standard contracts and International Development funded projects, with 5-7 years’ professional experience;
- Experience working on USAID-funded assistance projects of a similar size and scope and familiarity with USAID rules, regulations and requirements is preferred.
- Effective verbal and written communication, multi-tasking, organizational and prioritization skills.
- Internationally recognized qualification in project or program management or a commitment to obtain the qualification in the early months of work.
- Knowledge of / experience with participatory methodologies;
- Self-supporting in computers (Windows, spread sheets, word-processing, program management, electronic drawing-processing, e-mail);
- Demonstrable skills and expertise in capacity building in development and emergencies;
- Good skills in training, facilitation and presentations;
- Skills in mentoring and developing staff;
- Creativity and the ability to work with limited resources;
- Fluency in spoken and written English and French required and Kiswahili preferred;
- Ability to effectively represent Mercy Corps and its interests to key stakeholders.
The successful DCoP will combine strong interpersonal, engineering and project management skills with a highly collaborative and program focused approach and be experienced in maintaining stakeholder relationships. She/he will have an outstanding ability to recognize potential challenges then develop, promote consensus and manage solutions within the implementation of the program. She/he will also have proven experience with cross-cultural teams and strong mentoring skills. Multi-tasking, prioritizing, problem solving, ability to seize opportunities, attention to detail whilst maintaining budget and schedule and a strategic vision are essential. S/he will be passionate about learning and adaptive management techniques as fundamental strategies to improve program impact.
The most successful Mercy Corps staff members have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and changing environments and make effective written and verbal communication a priority in all situations. She/he will have a strong commitment to quality control and Health-Safety-Security and Environment standards. The successful DCoP must be comfortable operating and traveling in a sometimes volatile security environment and therefore, changing plans and program tactics accordingly.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
This position is an accompanied post based in Goma (DRC) / Gisenyi (Rwanda). The position is entitled to individual housing and is suitable for an accompanied spouse and children (up to the age of 10 years due to limited education institutions). While conditions in the country are improving, and security is quite stable in Goma, there are still pockets of violence and insecurity. Mercy Corps' sub-offices experience variable levels of insecurity, with the situation closely monitored by UN peacekeepers. Air travel is necessary to get from one end of the country to the other. Mobile phones and cellular service are widely available. Internet is available in all Mercy Corps offices. Travel to field sites will be required where living conditions are clean and secure, but basic. There are a number of health services available with evacuation options for serious illnesses. There’s reasonable access to most consumer goods, although they can be expensive.
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.