UNOPS Programme Management Office Specialist Job Kenya 2021
Career Employment Kenya: UNOPS Programme Management Office Specialist Job Kenya 2021
Job Description: Today vacancy in Kenya

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. 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 organisations. With over 6,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, where they need it. By implementing around 1,000 projects for our partners at any given time, UNOPS makes significant contributions to results on the ground, often in the most challenging environments.

Job Specific:

The primary role of Programme Management Office (PMO) Specialist is to provide the Somalia Country Office (SOCO) with the structures, tools and techniques needed to ensure that it has the right programme and projects in place, that are operational and change priorities are balanced, the governance and decision making is facilitated and it has the resources and capability to deliver them consistently well. S/he to ensure that programme and project management policies, processes and methods are followed and practiced according to the organization standards, while acting as the overall Project Assurance capacity within the business unit on behalf of the Director and Representative (Executive). S/he will strongly contribute to moving the Somalia office toward achieving its mission-focused goals and objectives.

The functions and services of the PMO include:

Strategic Planning/Portfolio Support: Ensuring UNOPS is focused on doing the right projects by supporting management decision-making.

Delivery Support: Ensuring UNOPS is doing projects the right way, through the effective delivery of the programme and projects.

Best Practices: Applying UNOPS standards in project management, encouraging consistent working practices and ensuring appropriate application.

There will be a reassignment of this role to Mogadishu, Somalia in the second year or as per need. The role will require frequent travel to Mogadishu, Somalia.

Purpose and Scope of Assignment

Summary of functions:

  • Development and planning
  • Set-up and closure
  • Monitoring and reporting
  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Quality assurance
  • Knowledge management and innovation
  • Personnel management

Development and planning

  • In conjunction with the PMO team, provides appropriate levels of programmatic management and administrative support to the Head of Programme regarding all ongoing project activities, while maintaining and implementing appropriate standards and best practices in line with UNOPS policies and procedures.
  • Directly contribute to strategic oversight, advice and direction on programme and project management activities in line with service agreements and project documents.
  • Ensure proper development, implementation and, as and when appropriate, amendments, of the projects, ensuring synergies across Somalia Country Office.
  • Develops and establishes resource tracking systems for use within the PMO, complementary to UNOPS’ online tools, to ensure effective planning, forecasting and tracking of delivery across the Somalia office.
  • Identifies, and anticipates in a timely manner, potential risks and issues and advises mitigating measures to the Head of Programme.
  • Deliver programme and project management related guidance to programme personnel as required.
  • Ensure that projects are being implemented in accordance with the implementation of the Project Management Manual and related Project management guidelines and policies that are rolled out by the Infrastructure and Project Management Group (IPMG) and the UNOPS PMI (Project Management and Infrastructure) Advisory group.
  • Identify, track and disseminate information with regard to Project and Programme Management Dashboards in order to ensure that Project teams have access to the most relevant tools to enable better PM oversight.
  • Ensure that Projects are fully compliant with the requirements for mainstreaming gender into their projects and have corresponding Action plans (GAP) completed and monitored on a regular basis (As determined by the Project board)
  • In collaboration with the HSSE Specialist, ensure that projects are fully compliant with the requirements for Health and Safety requirements, and have corresponding plans completed, monitored and reported on a regular basis (As determined by the Project Board)

Set-up and closure.

  • In collaboration with the PDO, facilitate the development of high-level programme/project implementation plans during programme/project development (engagement acceptance process), including the collation of lower-level plans into programme/project-level milestones.
  • Develop, track and maintain dependencies.
  • Liaise closely and support the Head of Support Services in all project assets and finance related issues.
  • For project closure purposes, acts as (or nominates and supervises) a focal point between the Somalia office and donors throughout the process.
  • Oversee and coordinate all project closure activities, ensuring appropriate disposal of project assets, timely and effective final (operational) reporting, initiation of financial disbursements as appropriate during Defects Liability Periods, updating of information on the UNOPS systems, and effective handover of closed projects to UNOPS HQ for financial closure processes.
  • Provide expertise for start-up, planning and closing of projects and programmes. Provide temporary hands-on delivery support to a programme or project for; surge purposes in selected projects (including dealing with troubled projects, advising, mentoring and covering personnel gaps)
  • Put in place a system of tracking project closure and report to the SMT on progress of project closure

Monitoring and reporting

  • Ensure SOCO programmes and projects have periodic plans (e.g. quarterly plans) in place with clear milestones which are cascaded from the overall implementation plan
  • Ensure that all Somalia country Office programmes and projects adhere to internal and external reporting requirements
  • Reviews periodic project (monthly, quarterly etc) reports and ensures their submission internally and or externally to partners in accordance with the legal agreement and the donor guidelines for reporting.
  • Regularly review project status, evaluating performance criteria (scope, cost, schedule and quality).
  • Maintain diaries and progress reports as required by UNOPS standard procedures.
  • Identify and anticipates in a timely manner, potential risks and issues specific to delivery forecasts, and advises mitigating measures to the Head of Programme.
  • Provide routine oversight and analysis of delivery data within the dashboard system, using UNOPS ERP and oneUNOPS Projects systems as required.
  • Perform routine maintenance and implementation of effective monitoring and evaluation systems of programme and project activities, in line with logical frameworks.
  • Provide meaningful inputs into the health status of the portfolio with quarterly analysis of the Self Assessment exercise and quarterly assurance
  • Within the context of monitoring and evaluation, ensure all projects submit and regularly update specific milestones and targets for the duration of projects’ life-cycles, and track progress, or otherwise, against such information.
  • Provide the Head of Programmes with the necessary periodic portfolio analysis and reports on compliance with the PMM, HSSE and Gender Action Plans
  • Provide the Head of Support Services with necessary project analysis reports and information to support areas relevant to the project management team (i.e. Locally Managed Direct Costs projections etc.).
  • Coordinate and oversee the implementation of requests or initiatives relevant to project management from the Regional Office, IPAS, and HQ Teams, as required.

Stakeholder engagement

  • Ensure office-level stakeholder engagement strategy is developed and monitor the effective implementation of the same by SOCO programme and projects
  • Ensure the formulation & implementation of programme and project communications plans and monitor the effectiveness of programme/project communications.
  • Coordinate stakeholder engagement and communication, ensuring effective timing and interdependency management of communications across programmes and projects.
  • Coordinate internal programme/project communications such as weekly project managers meetings.

Quality assurance

  • Work with internal audit and finance to ensure the programme complies with audit requirements.
  • Work with procurement/purchasing staff to ensure effective interface with suppliers’ quality systems.
  • Ensure compliance with UNOPS defined standards for programme/project management such as PMM, FRR, and other requirements.
  • Coordinate quality reviews of programme/project documents and deliverables.
  • Provide quality control for management products (project documents, reports, etc.).
  • Represent the Head of Programme in supporting key stakeholders to continuously identify and improve operational processes relevant to project implementation.

Knowledge management and innovation

  • Act as a focal point for the Somalia Country Office programme/project maturity enhancement initiatives
  • Ensure programme and project documentation management in accordance with UNOPS policies and procedures
  • Ensure routine and effective capacity building activities are conducted in order to build the long-term and sustainable capacity of national staff.
  • Participate in, and advocate PMs’ participation in, relevant Communities of Practice.
  • Actively interact with PMs and the wider PM community to share case studies, lessons learned and best practices in the Knowledge System.
  • Provides feedback to Regional Office/HQ Units on policy and supporting guidance working to achieve continuous improvement of UNOPS policies.
  • Contributes to the oversight of lessons learned procedures, ensuring that lessons learnt are shared in a timely and appropriate manner.

Personnel Management (if managing a team)

  • Exercise control of all staffing issues within the PMO team including recruitment, on-boarding and staff performance reviews.
  • Directly contributes to the development and maintenance of budget and resource availability tables in conjunction with project managers and relevant project staff.
  • Promote and support a learning culture by empowering individuals and teams to identify critical learning needs and plan/provide easy access to learning opportunities to maintain personnel competency and flexibility.
  • Foster a positive work environment, respectful of both men and women, and ensure that the highest standards of conduct are observed.

Impact of Results

The Programme Management Office Specialist directly impacts on achievement of project results by assisting the Head of Programme to implement effective project management methods and strategies, reduce risks, cut costs and improve success rates. This consequently reinforces the visibility and image of the UNOPS as an effective service provider in project services and management and strengthens its competitive position as a partner of choice in sustainable development and project services.

Education and Experience Requirement:

A. Education

  • Master’s Degree (or higher) in Project/Programme Management, Business Administration, or other relevant discipline is required.
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Project/Programme Management, Business Administration, or related field in combination with an additional two (2) years is acceptable in lieu of the advanced degree


  • PRINCE2 Practitioner Certification is highly desirable.
  • MSP certification (Foundation and/or Practitioner) is an advantage.

B. Work Experience:

  • A minimum of five (5) years of relevant experience, specifically in the field of Project Management/support, business analytics and reporting skills in terms of successful implementation and/or oversight of programmes and projects is required.
  • Previous experience of working within a PMO environment is an advantage.
  • Previous experience in UNOPS is desired;
  • Previous experience in a UN environment is an added advantage;
  • Experience/knowledge of Google Suite products, especially google forms, sheets, docs and slides is an asset.

C. Language Requirements

  • Fluency in the English Language (i.e. writing, reading, and speaking) is required.

D. 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.
  • Qualified female (Women) candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • 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.
  • Nairobi is a Family Duty Station. However, the duty station will be changed to Mogadishu, Somalia (Non-Family duty station) in the second year or as per need. The role will require frequent travel to Mogadishu, Somalia.
  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
  • UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post.
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.
  • 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. **