Associate Vice President of Human Resources and Administration

  • Executive-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 3 January 2019

Job Description

Position Summary

The purpose of this position is to provide executive leadership to develop a highly engaged and high-performing workforce, promote a healthy culture, and manage effective administrative support systems. The Associate Vice President of Human Resources and Administration has overall accountability for directing all people management functions of Search and overseeing the adequacy and quality of administrative operations and support at Headquarters. The position requires a leader with vision, a strategic thinker, team player, collaborator, and someone with strong emotional resilience and stamina. The AVP of Human Resources and Administration demonstrates deep experience in managing global administrative support, solid competency in talent acquisition and management, exposure to development and operation of systems, highly developed skills in leading teams of leaders and developing leaders of teams, and experience in strengthening matrix management and coordination of back-office support functions in a global decentralized organization. The position is a member of the Executive Team and is expected to play a leadership role in strengthening organizational health and sustainability.

Key Responsibilities

Roles and responsibilities include:

  • Develop and implement a global strategic framework, organizational structure, standards, policies and procedures, business processes, metrics, and clear accountabilities for effective acquisition and retention of talent, onboarding and assimilation of new staff, administration of total pay/compensation and benefits, staff placement, performance management system, and employee engagement and relations
  • As a member of the Executive Team, lead a process to strengthen culture and demonstrate commitment to organizational values, embracing and enforcing the Code of Conduct, and promoting the Search Common Ground Approach
  • Function as Champion for staff and promote diversity, gender equity, and staff development in collaboration with leaders across the organization.
  • Oversee employee engagement surveys and coordinate follow-up action plans.
  • Oversee compliance to US labor laws and regulations and undertake proactive measures to mitigate enterprise risks and develop awareness and understanding among managers.
  • In collaboration with Business Development and Program leadership, develop and strengthen Search capacity to recruit competent key personnel for grants and support the surge capacity needed for effective proposal mobilization and startups.
  • Partner with the Director of Safety and Security and/or relevant staff across the organization to strengthen Search safety and security policies and practices (staff and assets), manage any needed global response to safety and security incidents involving Search staff (such as activation of threat response from our business insurance providers), and institute appropriate global mitigation and response mechanisms in the Human Resources area.
  • Oversee HQs office administration ensuring simplicity and effectiveness of business processes associated with travel administration, payroll, inventory, contracts and procurement, legal services, central documentation related to statutory compliance (registration and MoUs with host governments), and back-office support functions. 9.
  • Function as a convener for the Global Services Coordination Team and put in place a two-way global services feedback mechanism to strengthen customer satisfaction, increase quality of management practice and culture, better coordinate HQs global services activities, and achieve ongoing efficiency and cost containment.
  • Gradually strengthen major organizational competencies required for effective execution of the strategic plan. These include, but are not limited to, matrix management, organizational development, development of highly performing teams, cross boundary leadership; strategic management in the context of peacebuilding and a global decentralized organization, and volatile and uncertain operating contexts.
  • Organize and directly supervise a small HQs team and develop and implement a matrix management structure to facilitate the performance management of HR and administration functional staff in regions.
  • Oversee the functioning of human resources management systems.
  • As a member of the Executive Team, contribute to the overall long-term health and sustainability of Search and ensure that the ‘people’ aspect remains central to the strategy and business transformation stipulated in the strategic plan.

As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the position holder may be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key responsibilities.


You meet the following qualifications:


  • Secondary or tertiary degree (Master or Ph.D.) in human resources management, business administration, or a related field.


  • Experience in developing and managing low-cost and mobile technology enhanced human resources and administration systems.
  • Experience or qualifications (paralegal or legal) in managing the supporting mechanisms associated with the Code of Conduct.

Skills and Competencies


  • Excellent verbal and written communication and language skills. Proficiency in English is required and French and/or Arabic language skills are highly desired.
  • Demonstrated competency and experience in organizational development and development of teams.
  • Familiarity with labor laws and international human resources management standards and practices.
  • Familiarity and experience in global safety and security policy/procedure and protocols
  • Ability to establish and use metrics and analytics
  • Emotional resilience and stamina.

To apply

To apply, interested candidates should send the following items to our employment portal here:

  • current resume
  • cover letter

Only applicants invited for an interview will be contacted. No phone calls please. Please see our for full details of our work.

All Search Employees must adhere to the values: Shared Humanity - Empathy - Impartiality - Inclusivity - Courage - Hope - Humility - Audacity. In accordance with these values, Search enforces compliance with the Code of Conduct and related policies on Anti Workplace Harassment, Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Conflict of Interest and Anti-fraud.

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About the Organization

Search for Common Ground (Search) is an international non-profit organization that promotes the peaceful resolution of conflict. With headquarters in Washington, DC and Brussels, Belgium, Search’s mission is to transform how individuals, organizations, and governments deal with conflict—away from destructive approaches towards cooperative solutions. With more than 600 staff worldwide, Search implements projects in more than 30 countries across the globe.

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