Director, Asia Operations Coordination

  • Senior-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 14 January 2019

Job Description

In an increasingly complex and interconnected world, Asia plays a crucial global role. Would you be excited at the prospect of employing your knowledge and skills to improve lives, expand opportunities, and help societies flourish across this dynamic region?

You could have this opportunity at The Asia Foundation. Informed by six decades of experience and deep local expertise, we address critical issues affecting Asia in the 21st century: governance and law, economic development, women’s empowerment, environment,and regional cooperation. We work with innovative leaders and communities to build effective institutions and advance path-breaking reforms. Together with our partners, we are committed to Asia’s continued development as a peaceful, just, and thriving regionof the world.

The Asia Foundation’s Asia Operations Coordination Unit in San Francisco is seeking a new Director. Under the direction of the Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer (EVP/COO), the Director, AOC serves to enhance the operational excellence of TAFcountry offices through two primary channels. First, the Director plays a strategic role within the Foundation’s headquarters in overseeing and strengthening country offices. Priority tasks in this area are to support effective country office leadership; monitorinternal operational performance and external operating environment trends and developments; enhance country office understanding of and compliance with TAF ethics, safeguarding and other Foundation-wide policies; and provide day-to-day administrative oversightfor Country Representatives (CRs);

Second, the Director provides strategic guidance and technical support directly to country offices on key operational management issues including local registration and legal standing, safety and security, and office administration. The position also worksacross these two channels to enhance information-sharing and collaboration among country offices and between country offices and headquarters.

The Director coordinates closely with Human Resources, Finance, Global Information Services, and other units on country office issues and needs related to staff management and development, ethics and safeguarding policies, budget and financial management, informationtechnology, and other operational issues. The position is designed to be both proactive in identifying areas for operational improvement as well as responsive to needs and challenges facing individual country offices. The Director supervises one Senior OperationsOfficer.


The job functions of the Director, AOC fall into the categories below, although additional priorities may be added depending on country offices issues and needs.

Support effective country office leadership
o In coordination with Human Resources, participate in the recruitment, onboarding, and succession planning for CR and DCR positions
o Lead on the organization of annual Country Representatives meetings and bi-annual Deputy Country Representatives meetings
o Advise CRs and DCRs on institutional policies and procedures
o Respond to daily requests for support from country offices

Monitor internal operational performance and external operating environment trends and developments
o Conduct site visits to country offices
o Review country office budgets, plans, and staffing to ensure alignment with Foundation and country office strategies
o Monitor trends and regulations related to international NGO and TAF operations in Asia

Enhance country office understanding and compliance with TAF ethics and safeguarding policies, in collaboration with Human Resources, Finance, Internal Audit, the Women’s Empowerment Program, and other units
o Develop training materials on TAF ethics and safeguarding policies (sexual harassment, child protection, conflict of interest, etc.)
o Establish a training schedule for regular training across country offices and US units, bringing in relevant staff from other units or consultants as trainers, facilitators, or other roles
o Ensure regular monitoring of compliance and understanding of reporting channels
Advise country offices on local registration and legal standing
o Work with country offices to develop registration strategies and contingency plans, if needed
o Maintain centralized institutional documentation on country office status agreements and privileges and obligations under local regulations
o Ensure unit provides effective administrative support to country offices undergoing regulatory or legal changes

Enhance safety and security of country offices
o Oversee country office compliance with Minimum Operating Safety and Security (MOSS) Standards and guide the Senior Operations Officer in training, reporting, and other processes

Advise country offices on office administration
o Respond to and facilitate responses from headquarters to daily requests for support from country offices
o Review country office facilities during site visits and advise on office relocations
o Guide offices going through staff restructuring, in coordination with HR

Provide day-to-day administrative oversight of Country Representatives
o Review and approve CR timesheets, leave and travel requests, expense reports, journal vouchers, and other requests in accordance with TAF policies and procedures

Enhance information-sharing and collaboration among country offices and between country offices and headquarters

• Regular international and domestic travel required. Occasional opportunities to represent the Foundation at external conferences and events.


• 10 years of experience in an international development or international nonprofit/ nongovernmental organization
• Demonstrated success managing in-country programs and office operations
• Experience with policy development, training, and/or compliance
• Proven track record of enhancing operational effectiveness for a country office or international nonprofit/nongovernmental organization
• Ability to solve problems within established policy guidelines, industry standards and best practices including personnel standards, legal requirements, and information technology systems
• Good judgment, calm under pressure, and enthusiasm for collaboration
• Demonstrated effectiveness serving as a trusted and confidential advisor for senior leadership
• Systems thinker who can effectively develop, operationalize, and implement plans based on longer-term strategic goals
• Outstanding interpersonal, oral and written communication skills
• Experience managing culturally diverse and geographically-dispersed teams
• Work experience in Asia will be considered a plus with a strong preference for prior work experience at The Asia Foundation

A Master’s degree in a relevant field

Who are we looking for?
The ideal candidate is passionate about leading programs and people in a collaborative, innovative, culturally sensitive way that advances the impact of the Foundation’s work. You are a detail-oriented manager and clear communicator who establishes shared goalsand ensures accountability in carrying out programs to the highest standards. You harness the talents and ideas of program teams and Foundation partners, and excel at fostering a culture of mutual respect and learning. You are adept at analyzing and solvingproblems, managing multiple responsibilities, prioritizing issues, and maintaining stability in a challenging and insecure context.

Applications should be submitted by visiting our website: and selecting “Employment Opportunities.” A cover letter and resume should be submitted for consideration. The application deadline is January 28, 2019 and the position will remainopen until filled.

About the Organization

About The Asia Foundation

The Asia Foundation is a nonprofit international development organization committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. Informed by six decades of experience and deep local expertise, our work across the region addresses five overarching goals—strengthen governance, empower women, expand economic opportunity, increase environmental resilience, and promote regional cooperation.

Headquartered in San Francisco, The Asia Foundation works through a network of offices in 18 Asian countries and in Washington, DC. Working with public and private partners, the Foundation receives funding from a diverse group of bilateral and multilateral development agencies, foundations, corporations, and individuals. In 2016, we provided $87.8 million in direct program support and distributed textbooks and other educational materials valued at $9.5 million.

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