Support Services Manager

United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Vienna, Austria 🇦🇹

Job categories: Project Management, Programme Management

Vacancy code: VA/2023/B5002/25264

Level: ICS-10

Department/office: ECR, AUMCO, Water, Environment & Climate (WEC)

Duty station: Vienna, Austria

Contract type: International ICA

Contract level: IICA-2

Duration: Open-ended, subject to organizational requirements, availability of funds and satisfactory performance.

Application period: 16-Jan-2023 to 30-Jan-2023

Applications to vacancies must be received before midnight Copenhagen time (CET) on the closing date of the announcement.

Please note that UNOPS will at no stage of the recruitment process request candidates to make payments of any kind.

Background Information – Job-specific

The United Nations Office for Project Services (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 supports partners to build a better future by providing services that increase the efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability of peace building, humanitarian and development projects.  Mandated as a central resource of the United Nations, UNOPS provides sustainable project management, procurement and infrastructure services to a wide range of governments, donors and United Nations organizations.  

Background Information –  AUMCO
The Austria Multi-Country Office (AUMCO) was set up in August 2019 as a part of the UNOPS Europe & Central Asia Region (ECR). Specifically, AUMCO aims to enable achievement of Agenda 2030 and the Paris Agreement through global programmes and tailored interventions in the Balkans, South Caucasus, and Central Asia, focused on:

  • Infrastructure
  • Procurement 
  • Project Management (full service, back on track)
  • HR and Transactional Services
  • Grants Management 
  • Technical and Advisory Services

Background Information –  Water Environment & Climate Portfolio (WEC)
UNOPS WEC supports the design and management of multi-stakeholder initiatives by providing services in financial and grant management, procurement, human resources, and project management.
The portfolio has supported projects in the areas of water resource management, climate change adaptation, mitigation and transparency, energy access and distribution and environmental conservation under the Paris Agreement. The WEC has also supported operations and financial management services, in Vienna, the rest of the ECR region and beyond.

The main partners include UN agencies such as UNEP and UNDP, bilateral donors (Nordic countries, Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and the UK), the Green Climate Fund and the Global Environment Facility. 

Under the primary supervision of the Senior Portfolio Manager and with a secondary reporting line to the AUMCO Head of Support Services, the position focuses on WEC’s operational performance and process excellence, ensuring a close coordination between the portfolio and projects and the support services team.

Functional Responsibilities

1. Operations management support

  • Undertake analysis and advise the WEC Management and MCO HoSS on overall portfolio operational needs, plans and challenges in accordance with the evolving portfolio and business priorities.
  • Support the team in establishing management performance targets and monitor progress towards their achievement. 
  • Facilitate efficient delivery of project operations in compliance  with corporate strategies, UNOPS rules, regulations, policies, and standards of accountability, ethics and integrity and achievement of results. 
  • Monitor effectiveness of project resourcing and shared services, to ensure optimum client service and satisfaction, and drive timely readjustment and improvements of the operations. 
  • Address operational bottlenecks in a timely, efficient and solution-focused manner in coordination with relevant AUMCO teams and HQ units.
  • Identify capacity support needs, develop and implement appropriate capacity support requirements, including supporting tools.
  • Coordinate business and opportunity development planning.
  • Support early stage opportunity development.
  • Take the lead in developing project agreements, organograms, budgets, as well as operational documents such as Standard Operating Procedures, project manuals and the respective data and monitoring systems. 
  • Coordinate and liaise with MCO Support Services teams to identify solutions to operational challenges and lead their implementation.

2. Financial management support

  • Coordinate portfolio and project budget preparation, including recommendations on cost-sharing parameters and cost recovery.
  • Lead project budget preparation, amendments and adjustments, including cost-sharing approaches and cost recovery in consultation with the MCO HoSS.
  • Coordinate project financial reporting and closures.
  • Monitor, track and control portfolio expenditure to ensure optimum and appropriate use of financial resources, and proactively escalate issues and risks. 
  • Take the lead in coordinating audit exercises involving WEC projects under the guidance of the MCO HoSS.
  • Ensure the availability of required project financial reports and exception reports, including investigating anomalies to resolve problems, reporting or recommending any action required to relevant stakeholders. 
  • Monitor the project management budget expenditures and ensure that relevant costs are properly recovered, billed and spent in accordance with the applicable procedures.

3. Grants management support

  • Facilitate provision of recommendations for the set-up, management and strategic development of the WEC grant management support in accordance with the UNOPS corporate guidelines for grant management.
  • Identify and set-up effectiveness and efficiency criteria, as well as the relevant monitoring and assurance systems, for measuring and applying appropriate strengthening measures for WEC grant management support.
  • Ensure that all WEC grants are managed in accordance with the UNOPS legislative framework and that the mandatory provisions are systematically applied through all projects, including through hands-on coordination on the implementation of the respective policies across UNOPS, in areas including PSEA, HSSE, financial capacity, etc.
  • Participate in development of the calls for proposals, evaluation panels and assess grant proposals, as necessary.
  • Review all documentation and pre-clear cases as part of the grants award process as well as submissions to the Engagement Acceptance Committee,  where required.
  • Coordinate the Financial Management Capacity Assessment (FMCA) process of the prospective grant recipients. This includes but is not limited to: reviewer’s team coordination, interaction with implementing partners for documents transmission and filing, review FMCA reports and liaise with the project teams to ensure appropriate follow-up during project implementation.
  • Identify and manage the strategic value of FMCA results for grant performance management, and roll out the respective management systems and their improvements.

4. Knowledge Management 

  • Pursue knowledge building and sharing with regards to management and operations in WEC and the MCO, synthesis of lessons learnt/best practices, and sound contributions to UNOPS knowledge management initiatives with a view to contribute to efficiency and effectiveness of WEC’s service provisions. 
  • Coordinate the development of tools and platforms for operations and data management, ensuring information and knowledge sharing with project colleagues, clients and partners. 
  • Organize, facilitate and/or deliver training and learning initiatives for project personnel on operations related topics.
  • Provide sound contributions to knowledge networks and communities of practice by synthesizing lessons learnt and dissemination of best practices.

Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • Advanced university degree related to international relations, business administration, development or a related field, is required
  • A relevant university degree (bachelor’s degree) with a combination of 2 additional years of relevant professional experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.


  • At least 5 years of progressive experience required in operations/support services management in a public sector organization is required. 
  • Experience working on multi-stakeholder projects of regional or global nature, in particular in the areas of environment and climate change, is a strong asset. 
  • Expertise in grant management, especially in the international development context, is a strong asset.
  • Experience working on operations/support services in a UN organization or a similar international organization would be considered a strong asset.


  • Experience/knowledge of Google Suite products, especially Google forms, sheets, docs and slides is an asset.
  • Experience with ERP systems, in particular oneUNOPs, is an asset.


  • Fluency in English (written and spoken) is required. 
  • Knowledge of other UN languages is desirable.

Contract type, level and duration

Contract type: ICAContract level: I-ICA2 – ISC10

Contract duration: Ongoing ICA – ‘Open-ended, subject to organizational requirements, availability of funds and satisfactory performance.’

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link:

Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time.
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • UNOPS embraces diversity and it is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all its employees and encourages qualified candidates to apply irrespective of race, colour, national origin, ethnic or social background, genetic information, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, religion or belief, or disability.
  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
  • Work life harmonization – UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (around 4 hours) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS.
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.  
  • All UNOPS personnel are responsible for performing their duties in accordance with the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNOPS Policies and Instructions, as well as other relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, all personnel must demonstrate an understanding of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a manner consistent with UN core values and the UN Common Agenda.
  • It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns. Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.





IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development