Operations Specialist, London

Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund

Country: United Kingdom

City: London, United Kingdom

Office: UNICEF House London

Grade: P-3

Closing date: Sunday, 1 November 2020

Operations Specialist, P3, Education Outcome Fund (EOF), London, United Kingdom

Job no: 534803

Position type: Fixed Term Appointment

Location: United Kingdom Division/Equivalent: UNITED HOSTED FUNDS


Department/Office: Education Outcomes Fund

Categories: Education, P-3, Operations and Business Management

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, an education...

The Education Outcomes Fund (EOF), is a global fund whose main objective is to improve the education of 10 million children and young people. EOF aims to pool $1 billion in aid and philanthropic funds, to support governments to pay for results in education and youth employment over the next decade. It will partner with governments to strengthen education systems, harnessing the capacity and capability of partners to improve the effectiveness of expenditure and help deliver on the promise of quality education for all.

EOF is hosted by UNICEF in New York and is administered under UNICEF’s financial, human resources and administrative rules and regulations. EOF has its own independent governance structure , while operations are run by the Fund’s own independent governance structure that provides strategic guidance and oversight to its operations and investments. EOF’s day-to-day activities are carried out by a Secretariat under the direction of the EOF Director.

How can you make a difference?

The Operations Specialist will be under the direct supervision of the EOF Director for their day to day activities and work closely with DFAM, FSO and DHR Business Partners for Hosted Funds. The Operations Specialist will provide support to the EOF Secretariat by supervising and coordinating with UNICEF entities, the full range of operational services including financial services, human resources, supply and logistics, administration, information and communications technology and facilities management ensuring compliance with UNICEF’s policies and procedures, standards of performance, ethics, and integrity.

Facilitating services in the functional areas of operations support: budget, financial management and reporting, facilities management, administration, supply and logistics management, information and communications technology, human resources, and safety and security;
Supporting the EOF Director to implement career development, opportunities for staff;
Understanding business needs for the office, to anticipate challenges, propose viable/creative solutions aimed at value for money.

Promoting the fundamentals of ICT management, information security and controls;
Supporting EOF during external and internal audit reviews and responding to audit observations and monitoring implementation of recommendations.

Providing regular feedback on risks and achievements of operations functions in the Fund;
Monitoring business transactions from a perspective of Efficiency, Performance, Risk Management and Fraud prevention

Lead EOF’s effective risk management, under the guidance of the EOF Director

The Operations Specialist will be entrusted with the following UNICEF’s five pillars, the core focus of all operations functions: Valuing People, Valuing Money, Valuing Risk Management, Valuing Systems and Structures, Valuing Partners.

Valuing People: Develop people resources to promote technical competence and foster career progression and retention of a ‚fit for purpose‘/ agile workforce

Facilitate an environment of management excellence, staff well-being and accessibility and inclusion through implementation of strategies, policies, procedures.

Implement solutions and advise on funds management on people management and office culture.

Coordinate the human resource development and resourcing strategies to bring about changes in knowledge, skills, abilities and mind sets.

HR Focal point for EOF. Work with GSSC on the onboarding, maintenance and off boarding of staff in EOF.

Keep abreast of industry standards in management and finance and share best practices and knowledge learned within the office.

Support Excellence in Operations in the Fund derived from the five strategic pillars.

Valuing Money: Champion strategic resources to support financial planning and management and ensure Value for Money (VfM)

Ensure effective identification and use of resources in various concrete Value for Money (VfM) areas, including, costing, results-based budgeting financial monitoring etc

Lead the financial oversight management, monitoring and reporting of all the EOF budget; make analysis and risk informed recommendations for the EOF Director

Implement various modalities of valuing resources through financing modalities such as budgeting and pre-financing modalities for supplies

Provide technical and operational support on the application, interpretation and implementation of financial policies, procedures and guidelines to the EOF Director. Resolve routine financial issues and/or recommend (and record) deviation from procedures and guidelines to meet objectives.

Process and/or review (as per delegated authority) the accurate and timely submission of payments and other financial transactions within scope to the UNICEF Global Shared Services Center (GSSC), ensuring compliance with budgetary limits, IPSAS and organizational regulations, rules, policies, procedures, standards of accountability, and ethics.

Monitor and analyze financial transactions, accounting reports and reconciliation of accounts to ensure accurate and current financial information for applicable compliance (e.g. IPSAS, donor reporting, internal policies) and management oversight, planning and/or action.

Liaise with the UNICEF Funds Support Office (FSO) in tracking donor contributions to the EOF and Secretariat to ensure their timely deposit and recording in UNICEF systems.

In collaboration with FSO, prepare mandated management financial and accounting reports to the EOF board verifying the reliability of data and compliance with organizational guidelines.

Assure proper and timely completion of UNICEF’s accounts closure activities.

Valuing Risk Management: Enhance Risk Management to increase organizational performance and strengthen internal control

Support the office with up-to-date information to make operational and programmatic risk informed decisions and improve performance, with the support of the enterprise Governance, Risk and Compliance (eGRC) platform.

Review internal controls and policies/guidance included in the Regulatory Framework, provide oversight of appropriate implementation of policies and procedures and provide feedback on policy and internal controls as appropriate.

Support implementation mandatory anti-fraud systems, processes and actions, and share anti-fraud achievements within the office.

Facilitate mitigation of risks of engagement with external partners via appropriate, risk-informed due diligence.

Evaluate financial and reputational risk in transactions carried out by the office and alert when actions are needed by management.

Tags accounting standards asset management business continuity business management career development communication technology enterprise resource planning ethics facilities management financial management financial reporting financial services fundraising human resources information and communications technology information security information technology internal audit ipsas knowledge management logistics monitoring and reporting performance management project management public finance public sector quality education reconciliation resource mobilization results based management risk management safety and security shared services supply chain transparency youth employment

Periodically conduct a quality review of the table of authority and financial delegations to ensure compliance with the existing policies, and that accountabilities are clear.

Valuing Systems and Structures: Ensure further operational centralization and optimization for maximized efficiency gains

Review and recommend simplification of Operations processes to minimize cost, reduce duplication of work and maximize efficiencies while creating an environment of smarter controls to render the organization agile, resilient and ready to respond to programme needs.

Facilitate compliance with systems by building awareness and capacity of users, explore new ways of working - including in the context of SG Reform - and continuously improve IT-enabled business processes to increase productivity and collaboration, better knowledge management, and ensure effective use of EOF assets.

Support the EOF Director and update staff on administrative policies, procedures rules and regulations; implement the appropriate application and interpretation of administrative rules, regulations, policies and procedures and requirements.

Ensure the timely and cost-effective provision of basic office services including space management, supplies/equipment, and communications to enhance staff productivity.

Support asset management. Facilitate compliance with systems by building awareness and capacity of users to explore new ways of working and promote IT-enabled business processes to increase productivity and collaboration, better knowledge management and ensure effective use of the organization’s assets.

Ensure Business Continuity plans are up-to-date and participate in testing to ensure the EOF Secretariat’s resilience to disaster and risks and staff safety and security.

Valuing Partners: Strengthening internal and external-facing partnerships and leveraging oversight and understanding of financial management across all areas of the office.

Provide technical support and recommendations on grantee due diligence process in accordance with UNICEF HACT and CSO policies.

Support EOF Office resource mobilization partners from donor negotiation and formulation of partnership agreements and contracts through written financial reporting, resolve discrepancies and ensure donor accountability and transparency.

Foster a positive and enabling operations environment that supports fundraising and solution-focused engagement (where applicable).

The ability of the Operations Specialist to effectively implement the operations functions for the efficient delivery of related services, directly impact on program performance, resource mobilization and delivery of results for children. This in turn contributes to maintaining/enhancing the credibility of EOF as an effective and responsible manager of funds and resources entrusted to the organization and to furthering EOF’s image as a competent organization for delivering cost effective and sustainable program results in regular and emergency settings.

Operations Specialist should also support assessment, mitigation, monitoring, review and reporting on the most significant risks that could potentially harm the organization, is a critical element of EOF’s’and UNICEF’s risk and internal control performance management framework. Risk management skills are necessary to safeguard EOF’s and UNICEF’s reputation, resources, continuity of operations and reputation to fulfill our primary mission to save and protect children, globally.

Responsibilities beyond standard ‚operations‘ - the successful candidate will need to assist the broader work of Secretariat (this may include resource mobilization, comms, administration, etc.) We are a small team and all EOF staff must be flexible and responsive to work as required.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have...

An Advanced University Degree (Master’s and above) in one of the following areas is required: Business management; Financial management; Accounting; Public Finance; and related operations function (Supply Chain, Human Resources, Information Technology, International Business, Project management, etc.) is required or a full professional accounting designation (CA, ACA, ACCA, CPA, CIMA, CPFA, Expert Compatible) from an internationally recognized institute/body of accountancy with valid membership in good standing is required.‘

A minimum of 5 years of professional experience, at the national and/or international level, is required, specifically in implementing organizational initiatives in one or more operations management area including budget; financial management and reporting; facilities management; administration; supply and logistics management; information and communication technology; human resources.

Prior experience in the development sector or UN system/ international NGOs would be an asset.

Additional experience in one or more of the following areas, would be desired:

Audit and investigations

Safety and security

Grant Management

Enterprise Risk Management

Experience in a UN system agency, large private or public company, or experience working in a developing country and/or humanitarian/ emergency context is an asset.

For country offices with a significant private sector fundraising operation, prior experience working with or in the private sector, and supporting private sector fundraising, is desirable

Experience in working with corporate ERPs (Enterprise Resource Planning) and IPSAS (International Public Sector Accounting Standards) is highly desirable.

Knowledge of Results Based Management is a requirement.

Experience in supporting successful client-oriented work units is an asset.

Familiarity with Microsoft Office applications is required.

Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or local language of the duty station is considered as an asset.

Need for entrepreneurialism - as a growing organization, working in an innovative space, we require team members to have an entrepreneurial mindset and approach to our work. This should be specified in the competencies needed for the role

For every Child, you demonstrate...

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

Core competencies

Communication - Level 2

Drive for Result - Level 2

Working with People - Level 2

The functional competencies required for this post are...

Functional) Competencies:

Leading and Supervising - Level 2

Formulating Strategies and Concepts- Level 1

Relating and Networking - Level 2

Deciding and Initiating Action - Level 2

Following Instructions and Procedures- Level 2

Creating and Innovating - Level 1

Entrepreneurial Thinking - Level 1

Analyzing - Level 2

Other skills

Emotional Intelligence

Managing complexity and change

View our competency framework at


UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Effective Date of Availability: 1 January 2021

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Advertised: Oct 05 2020 GMT Daylight Time Application close: Nov 01 2020 GMT Standard Time