Finance Specialist

Site UNDP

UNDP is hiring a Finance Specialist.

Background

The Liptako Gourma (LG) area, comprised of sub-national regions in Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger , is home to approximately 14.5 million people. Over the past three years, it has increasingly become one of the epicenters of violence in the Sahel, experiencing a proliferation of armed groups. During the period between 2018 and July 2020 there was a fivefold increase in the number of violent incidents and conflict-related deaths compared to the 2015-2017 period. Inter-ethnic violence is also on the rise. The crisis has triggered significant displacement of populations in the three countries. As of February 2021, over 2 million people have been displaced, the majority of them (55 per cent) in Burkina Faso, followed by Niger (26 per cent) and Mali (19 per cent). According to OCHA, people in urgent need of humanitarian assistance in the three countries have increased from 7.3 million to 10.3 million between 2018 and 2020.

Despite these multiple factors of instability, the Liptako-Gourma sub-region has strong potential and assets to address existing risks and vulnerabilities. These point to factors such as the richness in natural resources and the existence of common socio-cultural dynamics, as well as institutional cooperation frameworks across the borders between the three countries. Furthermore, community-based conflict resolution mechanisms have traditionally been used and could be further promoted to serve as a basis for peacebuilding and equitable natural resource management.

To respond to this crisis, in recent years a number of initiatives have been established, or strengthened, for institutional coordination on security and development policies’ matters, based on the acknowledgment that exclusively military solutions are not sufficient to address the multidimensional crisis in the Sahel. Among the main initiatives are G5 Sahel (G5S), created in 2014 by the Heads of States of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger; the intergovernmental organization covering the Liptako Gourma region – the Liptako-Gourma Authority (LGA) – which has received an expanded political mandate, since 2017; and the International Coalition for the Sahel, established in 2020 by the Heads of State of the G5 Sahel and France, and based on four pillars: 1) fight against terrorism; 2) capacity-building of the armed forces, 3) supporting the return of the State and administrations in the territory and improving access to basic services; and 4) assisting development. UN interventions in the Sahel are guided by the United Nations Integrated Strategy for the Sahel (UNISS) framework. In 2018, the UN also developed the UN Support Plan for the Sahel to scale up efforts to accelerate shared prosperity and lasting peace in the Sahel, built around six priority areas: i) cross border cooperation, ii) prevention and sustaining peace, iii) inclusive growth, iv) climate action, v) renewable energy and vi) women and youth empowerment.

In this framework, there is a growing recognition that, despite the number of existing initiatives, more efforts need to be pursued to swiftly redeploy authorities and state services to local areas, once they have been secured from the presence of militias, and to launch social cohesion initiatives before the return of jihadists. Currently this is the missing link to ensure a quicker return to peace and stability. Therefore, UNDP intends to lead an accelerated and scaled stabilization effort in fragile and instable zones with a view to advancing the political framework required for long-term stability. This effort will enable the re-establishment of state structures and basic services while fostering social cohesion through continuous inclusion and consultation. Stabilization interventions will require a dedicated operational backbone, special risk management procedures in the form of a Stabilization Facility.

Under the direct supervision of the Operations Coordinator/Manager, the Finance Specialist assists and guides in the donor reporting processes, guiding on HACT related matters, including assisting in the annual assurance and monitoring plans. His/Her services may be expanded to cover the entire region.

Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of key functions

  • Effective and accurate financial resources management and oversight in line with ICF requirements
  • Implementation of operational and financial management strategies and procedures for the Liptako-Gourma Stabilization Facility
  • Projects’ budgets management and organization of an optimal cost-recovery system
  • Control of CO accounts
  • Facilitation of knowledge building and sharing

Ensure effective and accurate financial resources management and oversight, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Advises selected COs on financial analysis and oversight for all resources managed by these COs and on provision of high-quality professional advice to the management
  • Guide the proper planning, expenditure tracking and audit of financial resources, including extra-budgetary income, DPC and other cost recovery sources in accordance with UNDP rules and regulations.
  • Provide advice on organization and oversight of COs cash management processes, including liquidity management, recommendation of imprest level, risk assessment, bank relationship management, timely accounting and reconciliation of all transactions, security for cash assets on site.
  • Guide the monitoring of financial exception reports for unusual activities, transactions and investigation of anomalies or unusual transactions. Provision of information to supervisors and other UNDP staff at HQ on the results of the investigation when satisfactory answers are not obtained.
  • Follow with CO’s an annual programme budget planning, donor reporting, resolution of financial matters, as needed.
  • Assist COs when necessary for proper segregation of functions and effective ICF implementation
  • Oversee the effectiveness of internal controls for the selected offices and guide offices on exception management in direct consultation with the bureau and OFRM

Ensure implementation of operational and financial management strategies and procedures, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Guide and advise the identified CO’s on the full compliance of financial activities, financial recording/reporting system and audit follow up with UN/UNDP rules, regulations, policies and strategies; implementation of the effective internal control, proper design and functioning of the financial resources management system.
  • Undertakings in this area should include and support activites for the continuous scanning, analysis, monitoring and assesment of fraud risks and the implementation of measures to detect, prevent and mitigate such risks.
  • Assist the CO’s finance business processes mapping and elaboration/establishment of internal standard operating procedures in the Finance Unit of the CO; control of the workflows in the Finance Unit.
  • Coach on continuous analysis and monitoring of the financial situation, presentation of forecasts for development and management projects.
  • Training on the best practices to elaboration of the framework and conditions of contribution within the CO resource mobilization efforts.
  • Guide and advice on the best practices for CO’s to elaboration and implementation of cost saving and reduction strategies (including introduction and development of e-banking).

Manage the budget of development and management projects and organize an optimal cost-recovery system, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Assist CO’s in the management of all financial resources through planning, guiding, monitoring and controlling of the resources in accordance with UNDP rules and regulations.
  • Guide on the best tools to preparation and monitoring of projects’ budgets in Atlas.
  • Advice on the regular analysis and reporting on the budget approvals and the delivery situation of management projects.
  • Advice on the elaboration of proper mechanisms to eliminate deficiencies in budget management.
  • Review and advice selected CO’s on the organization of cost-recovery mechanisms for services provided by
  • UNDP ensuring the preparation of pro-forma invoices for UN agencies and monitoring through the Atlas tracking system.
  • Assist in the preparation of submission of financial reports to donors on a timely and quality basis; guiding
  • CO’s on the standard requirements, generating financial information in support to CO’s regular reporting activities.
  • Identify deviations before the reports are submitted to donors, if required.

Ensure proper control of CO accounts, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Review and guide CO’s on exceptions reports, dashboard errors and other key performance indicators, advising CO’s on corrective measures.
  • Guide CO’s on how to utilize corporate dashboards, one pagers and other KPI’s to address pending matters, and follow up with necessary parties to resolve the erros.
  • Advise the CO’s on the annual HACT planning and implementation of assurance activities.
  • Advise the CO’s on BOS required activities and ensuring coherence with other participating UN agencies.

Ensure facilitation of knowledge building and sharing in the CO, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Organization of training for the operations/ projects staff on Finance matters, for the selected CO’s..
  • Synthesis of lessons learned and best practices in Finance.
  • Sound contributions to knowledge networks and communities of practice.

Competencies

Core/

Innovation

  • Ability to make new and useful ideas work
  • Level 5: Creates new and relevant ideas and leads others to implement them

Leadership

  • Ability to persuade others to follow
  • Level 5: Plans and acts transparently, actively works to remove barriers

People Management

  • Ability to improve performance and satisfaction
  • Level 5: Models high professional standards and motivates excellence in others

Communication

  • Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform
  • Level 5: Gains trust of peers, partners, clients by presenting complex concepts in practical terms to others

Delivery

  • Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement
  • Level 5: Critically assesses value and relevance of existing policy / practice and contributes to enhanced delivery of products, services, and innovative solutions

Technical/Functional

Building Partnerships

  • Identifying and building partnerships
  • Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise

Promoting Organizational Learning and Knowledge Sharing

  • Developing tools and mechanisms
  • Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise

Job Knowledge/Technical Expertise

In-depth knowledge of the subject-matter

  • Level 5:Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise

Promoting Organizational Change and Development

  • Assisting the individuals to cope with change
  • Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise

Design and Implementation of Management Systems

  • Designing and implementing management systems
  • Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise

Client Orientation

  • Contributing to positive outcomes for the clients
  • Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise
  • Promoting Accountability and Results-based Management
    Input to the development of standards and policeis
  • Level 5: Originate: Catalyzes new ideas, methods, and applications to pave a path for innovation and continuous improvement in professional area of expertise

Required Skills and Experience

Education

  • Advanced (Masters) University Degree in Finance/Accounting/Business Administration, or a professional accounting qualification from an internationally recognized institute of accountancy.
  • Professionally qualified accountants from an internationally recognized institute of accountancy will have a distinct advantage.
  • UNDP Advanced Accountancy & Finance Test required.

Experience

  • 5 years of relevant experience in providing financial management advisory services and/or managing staff and operational systems.
  • Experience in the usage of computers and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc) and advance knowledge of spreadsheet and database packages.
  • Experience in handling of web-based management systems and ERP financials, preferably PeopleSoft.
  • Experience of IPSAS and/or IFRS is required for external candidates.

Language Requirements

  • Proficiency in English and French.
  • Working knowledge of other UN language desirable.

Disclaimer

Important information for US Permanent Residents (‘Green Card’ holders)

Under US immigration law, acceptance of a staff position with UNDP, an international organization, may have significant implications for US Permanent Residents. UNDP advises applicants for all professional level posts that they must relinquish their US Permanent Resident status and accept a G-4 visa, or have submitted a valid application for US citizenship prior to commencement of employment.

UNDP is not in a position to provide advice or assistance on applying for US citizenship and therefore applicants are advised to seek the advice of competent immigration lawyers regarding any applications.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement. We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

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Vacancy End Date: (Midnight New York, USA) 07/06/2021

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