Desk Program Manager

The Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA)

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The Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA) is an independent medical aid organization based in Dakar, Senegal. ALIMA has three principal areas of expertise: providing medical care in humanitarian crises, supporting the development of national medical organizations, and conducting operational research to bring medical innovation to the field.

Objectives

  • The Desk Program Manager, as well as the rest of the Nigeria Desk team, will be based in Abuja with regular visits to the field and to our operational headquarter in Dakar, Senegal (25% to 30% of the time).
  • The Desk Program Manager plans organize and implements the overall support and advice necessary to projects and teams in Nigeria in order to ensure the delivery of efficient operations that hold up ALIMA’s values and principles and put the patients at the center of our actions.
  • She/he is leading the Nigeria operational strategy which includes finding the means to support the operational ambitions.
  • She/he is liaising with Lake Tchad’s other desks/operations and contributes to a global context understanding that supports the security and pertinence of Nigeria operations.
  • The Desk Program Manager works in close collaboration with ALIMA’s Operations’ leadership team and is responsible for operational quality, efficiency and for her/his team’s management (desk team, Borno Head of Mission, and Project Coordinators directly working with her/him).

Key Responsibilities

  • Regarding the ongoing and future operational volume, the diversity and the breadth of the portfolio in Nigeria (context, regular & emergencies activities, research), the decision was made to set-up a full desk in Abuja.
  • Due to the this specific set-up, with a desk, currently a full coordination team in Borno State and 2 projects in the country (Lassa Fever project in the south and SSR project in Jigawa State), the Desk Program Manager should demonstrate a strong ability to stand back so as to be informed (avoiding the micromanagement), to discern, delegate and decide when appropriate.
  • Generally speaking, the Desk Program Manager is directly responsible of ALIMA operations in Nigeria; based on the means at her / his disposal, and within the framework of ALIMA’s values and validation processes, she/he will define and develop ALIMA strategy in the country.
  • Based in Abuja, he/she should provide a global and analytic reading of the context in sub-region including the cross-border trends and problematics in link with others Desk Program Managers (especially NIger and Cameroon).
  • In this role, the Desk Program Manager is in charge of the global support of operations in Nigeria and she/he is responsible for the relevance, quality and good implementation of field projects.

Programs definition:

  • Provides advice to the field on future project directions, in collaboration with the field, partner NGOs, desk team, support departments and external experts when necessary
  • Propose future operational directions, in collaboration with all of the above, for possible new projects- Defines and constantly adjust the organization and the means necessary for the deployment of the missions as well as the stages of implementation of the actions
  • Decide on strategic orientations, goals and allocated resources, in association with partner NGOs, when pertinent and with the support and advice of HQ experts and leaders.
  • Submit the opening and orientations of new programs to Operational Support Director and her team
  • Responsible for the establishment of the annual plan, including the partnership goals, to be approved by the board of directors

Programs management:

  • Ensure the coherence of the portfolio
  • Provide support to Head of Mission and Coordinators ensuring that objectives, expected results, allocated resources are known by Alima HoM and CP’s in the country, NGO partners and desk team
  • Supervising the implementation of programs
  • Responsible for the monitoring, evaluation, and reporting on the programs
  • Ensure program quality and recommend re-orientation if required
  • Responsible for context monitoring and security policy (definition and implementation) for teams and operations
  • Supervise activity of the desk
  • Supervise field managers
  • Feeding back to operations, the board of directors, on regular operations and strategy choices, including providing analytics reports
  • Participate actively and guide the field team in search of funding
  • Is the guarantor of the application of policies and the deployment of tools
  • Ensure the smooth flow of information between the Operations Department, the other departments, the field and within its teams.
  • Is a privileged interlocutor of the heads of the support departments
  • Propose public communications and be the key ALIMA spokesperson when it comes to ALIMA external communication

Operations development and representation:

  • Represent ALIMA at national/international discussions or communications initiatives
  • Develop relationships and partnerships with international/national organizations and donors
  • Ensure adequacy of programs and donor expectations
  • Understand and map out donors strategies and negotiate with donors when medical humanitarian needs need to be covered
  • Ensure the smooth flow of information and coordination with all stakeholders (internal & external) in Nigeria as appropriate
  • Identify potential new funding and develop relationships with donors (institutional and private - with the support of Donors and Dev/com dpts)

ALIMA NGO development:

  • Proactively contribute to the debate on operational and strategic orientations, innovative ideas
  • Contribute to the link between operations and research in order to improve medical care
  • Contribute to the search for practical and intelligent partnerships when and where they support our objectives
  • Contribute to the fundraising effort in support of the communication and development team
  • Attend meetings with the executive committee, partners, board of directors and platforms

Contribute to building ALIMA’s future:

  • Participate in the definition of ALIMA strategy and operational policies
  • Elaborate regional and/or thematic strategies where and when necessary
  • In the spirit of project management freedom, the desk manager and his team will periodically monitor and evaluate the projects in light of ALIMA’s principles and values, guidelines and project objectives.

People and Team Management:

  • Manage your team (finance operations, manager, HR advisor, and heads of mission): Recruit, coach, advise, support, motivate, federate your teams and contribute to their professional development
  • Set orientations and contribute to the definition of collective and individual objectives
  • Ensure the good contribution of your desk to transversal projects within ALIMA
  • Ensure that ALIMA’s Charter is central to everyone’s work and attitudes
  • Building and transferring competencies: participate in the definition and implementation of training.
  • Propose assessments / capitalisations on your perimeter.
  • Considering the HR level in Nigeria, in support of the HR department, contribute to identifying potentialities for ALIMA globally for HR sourcing + training (in hospital, universities, etc.)

Financial Responsibilities

  • Responsible for the overall financial efficiency and visibility of operations and team: support and advise the Desk Finance Operations Manager and Head of Mission on budget construction and management
  • Work in collaboration with the Finance Director for the planning and follow-up of team budget
  • Ensure search for institutional funding ; indirectly and by a delegation from her / his project coordinators and Head of Mission, the achievement of objectives and the respect of contracts signed with donors with the support of the Donors Service in Dakar
  • This newly created position is part of a new team which needs to find its own way of working ensuring that the principles and values lying within our Charter are at the heart of how they work with others as much as with and for the patients.
  • This job description is not exhaustive.

Experiences and Competencies

Experiences:

  • Medical humanitarian field experience including head of mission position or medical coordination (inclusive of opening-closing and re-orientation of projects and exploratory missions)
  • Exposure to volatile political environments and humanitarian crises
  • Experience in emergency contexts
  • Experience managing large teams

Qualities required:

  • Demonstrated leadership and management skills
  • Proven and demonstrated analytical and political skills, excellent judgment and diplomacy
  • Ability to synthesize complex and sensitive material and communicate it effectively to others
  • Strong interpersonal, written and oral communications skills in English and French

Salary

  • This is an HQ position and as such is paid according to HQ compensation and benefits policies which are different from expatriate positions since the position and contract are long term. Total cash package: equivalent to 3 625 Euros net, after tax

Benefits:

  • Travel costs between the employee’s country of origin and Abuja, Nigeria, unless recruited locally;
  • Five weeks annual leave per year as well as a recovery system for days spent on work travels; + one additional month paid leave after 3 years at HQ
  • One round trip per year between Abuja and the employee’s country of origin for the employee and her / his dependents + one individual round trip ;
  • One-off relocation allowance at the beginning of the contract in Abuja;
  • School annual enrollment fees for children from 2 to 18, according to the ALIMA HQ policy;
  • Medical cover insurance including repatriation insurance for the employee and her/ his dependents, as per the definition of our insurer.

Note:

  • Interested and qualified candidates should send their CV's and answers to the following below questions (which stands for a classical Cover Letter) with the reference “ Desk Program Manager_NIGERIA” in the subject line.

Questions: 

  • Why are you applying in light of ALIMA’s operational approach and CHARTER? 
  • Explain how you think the operational strategy in Nigeria can contribute to ALIMA’s transformative medicine ambitions?
  • When you read the job description, what are the main challenges you think this new team will face?
  • When would you be available to start?
  • Reference check: please indicate the names of 2 previous managers as well as 1 HQ HR contact.

Note

  • Applications are processed in the order of arrival and we reserve the right to close the offer before the term initially indicated if a good application is successful.
  • Only full applications (CV + answer to questions) will be taken into account.

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