Communications Senior Officer - Public Relations and Outreach (retainer position)

  • Senior-level, Long-term consulting assignment
  • Posted on 13 March 2020

Job Description

Functional Responsibilities

Under the direct supervision of the Project Manager, the Communications Senior Officer - Public Relations and Outreach will provide training for MFA staff in areas of:

  1. Topic 1 - General presentation and communication skills. How to prepare for presentation, (including using PowerPoint “do’s/don’ts) how to establish communication with the audience, how to keep their attention (what not to do), fundamentals of public appearance skills;
  2. Topic 2 - Public communication and internal communication within MFA. How to prepare MFA statement, formulate key messages, how to secure MFA speaking with one voice and secure that entire MFA staff understands the policy and rational behind it.
  3. Topic 3 - Social networks management. Understanding how social media work, how to write a social media message, how to be to the point and attractive with 154 characters.
  4. Topic 4 - Leadership skills. Focus should be on practical tools e.g. on how to act in (any type of) negotiations, dynamics of negotiations, working with subordinates and gaining their confidence and support, as their leader

Assignment will be conducted through the series of five workshops. Two (two-day) workshop will be devoted to the topic 1: first in June/July 2020, and the second in the first half of 2021). One (two-day) workshop would be devoted to topic 2 in Q1 in 2021. One (two-day) workshop would be devoted to topic 3 in Q1 in 2021. One (two-day) workshop would be devoted to topic 4 in Q1 in 2021.

Required Selection Criteria


  • Advanced University Degree preferably in communications, public relations, media, or other relevant discipline is required.
  • University Degree (Bachelor’s degree / first level) with a combination of two additional years of relevant professional experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree

Work Experience

  • Two years with master’s degree or four years with bachelor’s degree of direct experience in the area of communications/public relations, preferably in public institutions/administration, is required
  • Experience in conducting training in communication area is required
  • Knowledge of the EU integration process would be an asset

Language Requirements

  • Fluency in English and Macedonian (speaking, reading and writing) is required

Core Competencies

  • Strategic Perspective - Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization. (for levels IICA-2, IICA-3, LICA Specialist- 10, LICA Specialist-11, NOC, NOD, P3, P4 and above)
  • Integrity & Inclusion - Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.
  • Leading Self and Others - Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.
  • Partnering - Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).
  • Results Orientation - Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.
  • Agility - Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behaviour. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.
  • Solution Focused - Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.
  • Effective Communication - Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.


Contract type, level and duration

This is a local position, it is therefore open to Nationals of North Macedonia and to individuals who have a valid residence/work permit.

Contract type: Individual Contractor Agreement (ICA) Retainer
Contract level: Local ICA 9
Contract duration: Up to 28 working days, in period of 18 months

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link:

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 candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
  • 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
  • For staff positions only, 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.

For more information on UNOPS, please visit the UNOPS website at

About the Organization

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. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

UNOPS has been active in Serbia since 2000, and the operations of UNOPS Serbia Project Office (RSPO) have since 2017 expanded to North Macedonia and Montenegro.

UNOPS has been a reliable partner primarily of the Government of Serbia, and later of the Governments of North Macedonia and Montenegro, in providing support for demanding socio-economic reforms and facilitating accession to the European Union.

Currently, the RSPO is implementing 12 projects focussed on sustainable socio-economic development, social cohesion, creating environment for employability, business and infrastructure growth, increased security, improved education, enhanced social inclusion either via enabling durable housing solutions or providing access to health, education and jobs for the most vulnerable population. All projects have good governance and gender equality as transversal themes. UNOPS projects are contextualised within the broader Sustainable Development Goals framework and objectives.

Nordic Support for Progress of North Macedonia

A)The Government of Norway has decided to fund a sub-regional programme “Nordic Support for Progress in North Macedonia” to be implemented by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS). The project consists of a socio-economic development support to the more undeveloped parts of the country and also envisages support to the Macedonian authorities responsible for leading the renewed efforts on the EU accession process.
The Government of Norway has allocated funding for the implementation of the Project in Macedonia during 24 months.
The Overall Objective is to contribute to a more balanced socio-economic development and contribute to the implementation of the Stabilization and Association Agreement and EU accession negotiations priorities. Specifically, the programme has objectives at the local and national levels i.e. locally, to increase employment opportunities, support social cohesion as well as to enhance local infrastructure in the less developed areas with a focus given to the inclusion of youth, women and vulnerable groups in the labour market. Nationally, the programme aims at supporting the government to improve its capacity for EU integration and government reform agenda in the accession process
All Project activities will be undertaken in partnership and cooperation with national and local institutions, with the aim of allowing them to adopt/adapt the legal requirements and, where relevant, EU accession criteria. This will ensure national ownership and support the development of national capacities.
B)The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency has decided to fund a project “Support to progress in North Macedonia - Government reform agenda in the EU-accession process” to be implemented by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS). The objective of the project supported by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) is to support the enhancement of the EU integration capacity of the Republic of North Macedonia by providing technical assistance to government institutions during the accession period.
SIDA has allocated funding for the implementation of the project in Macedonia during 24 months.
The Overall Objective of the SIDA support is to contribute to, and effectively communicate to the public, the implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement, accession negotiations and government reform priorities in the Republic of North Macedonia.
Project interventions are aimed towards communicating the benefits of the EU accession process to the general population, as well as to involve the civil society and media throughout the accession phases. All project activities will be undertaken in partnership with the Government of Macedonia, in cooperation with the national institutions, with the aim of allowing them to adopt/adapt the legal requirements and, where relevant, EU accession criteria.
This will ensure national ownership and support the development of national capacities.

Background Information – relevant for the assignment The purpose of Result 1 “Supporting the government reform agenda in the accession process” is to provide support to relevant national institutions, is to contribute to further building of capacities of the central coordination structures for the accession process and relevant national authorities.
Within the framework of the political and reform processes, Macedonian government commenced with preparations for accession negotiations, and activated its coordination structures for EU integration.
In July 2018, the Government announced the concept of the Negotiation Platform (NP), and appointed Deputy Prime Minister in charge of European Affairs as Chief Political Negotiator and Head of State Delegation for Negotiations with the EU, and the Special Advisor for Euro-Atlantic integrations in the Office of the Prime Minister as Chief Technical Negotiator and Head of the Technical Negotiations Team. The Government of the Republic of North Macedonian on its 143 session held on 9 July has adopted Negotiation structure.
The key actors in the accession process are:Cabinet of the Deputy Prime Minister for EU Affairs, head of Secretariat for European Affairs (SEA);Special Advisor for Euro-Atlantic integrations in the Office of the Prime Minister as Chief Technical Negotiator; Secretariat for European Affairs (SEA);Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA)Parliamentary Committee for European Affairs (CEA).
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) via its Directorate for EU, coordinates the external dimension of the EU accession negotiations. The MFA, through the Mission of the country to the EU, is responsible for the political part of the accession negotiation process, and proper representing of country’s position in international dimension. MFA supports foreign policy aspect of the accession negotiations, with regards to the political dialogue, regional cooperation, contractual arrangements with the EU and the member states and candidate countries.
In the previous step, the project provided consultancy support for conducting the needs assessment of MFA. Based on the assessment findings and recommendations, the project team designed a tailor-made 2020/2021 training plan (training curriculum/capacity building) that will be provided to the MFA by the consultancy, and is aiming at bridging the recorded gaps, and further developing existing competencies and knowledge for accession process.
On the basis of the conducted training needs analysis and developed training plan, the project is implementing the training activities through outsourced expertise/consultancy.
The overall process of European integration of the Republic of North Macedonia is coordinated by the Secretariat for European Affairs (SEA), as main coordination body in the accession negotiation process. Both SEA and MFA via its Directorate for EU are secretariat of the negotiation team.

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