Portfolio Support Manager

  • Senior-level, Long-term consulting assignment
  • Posted on 20 September 2019

Job Description

Background information - Implementation Practices and Standards (IPS)

Within UNOPS, Implementation Practices and Standards (IPS) is responsible for the UNOPS delivery practices. IPS provides thought leadership, standards and oversight as support to the successful delivery of programmes and projects within UNOPS service lines (infrastructure, procurement, project management, human resources and financial management services). IPS is comprised of the Infrastructure and Project Management Group and the Procurement Group which aims to reduce organizational risks, improve project performance, and promote excellence across UNOPS projects through the Standards Management Framework; and provides organisational oversight on the application of standards. These Groups also support the positioning of UNOPS in the UN system and development sector in Infrastructure, Project Management and Procurement.

Background Information - Job-specific

The Portfolio Support Manager (PSM) will contribute to development, and execution of the IPS strategy and the IPS Business Plan. He/she will be reporting to the Implementation Practices and Standards Director and is a member of the management team of IPS. The PSM fosters collaboration within all units in IPS, and ensures close cooperation with, and a strong service-oriented approach to, other internal and external stakeholders. The position holder will be managing a team.

Functional Responsibilities

The Portfolio Support Manager will perform the following duties and responsibilities:

1. Operational Readiness, Technical Leadership

With the guidance of the IPS Director and in collaboration with the regional stakeholders, the PSM will develop and implement the plan for organisational readiness by assessing needs and resources, in line with corporate strategy. In doing so, the PSM needs to demonstrate a strong capacity for innovation and creativity in providing strategic advice and direction in regards to operational readiness.

More specifically, the PSM will

  • Manage resources of the operational readiness function with a primary focus on infrastructure, project management and procurement areas for the global portfolio support, building on the existing internal capacity, including UNOPS retainer pools and Long-Term Agreements (LTAs).
  • Lead on the development and management of resources such as retainers and LTAs to supplement UNOPS internal engagement implementation capacity by establishing the process of mapping and associated planning for improving a corporate retainer roster and implementation services Long Term Agreements (LTAs).
  • Manage the development of tools and processes supporting the retainer and LTA management.
  • Contribute actively to policy improvements and increase process efficiencies by collaborating closely with other UNOPS units to enable an environment for an effective implementation of the UNOPS corporate readiness.
  • Establish an effective assessment approach to monitor the results of the resources developed to support the UNOPS Global portfolio.

2. Provision of operational management to IPS


The PSM is responsible for supporting the IPS Director on operational aspects of the IPS. More specifically, the PSM will:
  • Prepare the IPS financial plan and manage the budget process/cycle to ensure timely revisions and reallocation of funds, as well as budget corrections, as necessary. This also includes to monitor, track, control and reporting on expenditures to ensure optimum and appropriate use of resources, and compliance with standards of accountability framework.
  • Act as focal point for any internal/external audit exercise where IPS is assigned with requisitions or recommendations.
  • Take a coordination function for all IPS procurement requests. He/she will be responsible for IPS liaision with other units such as SSC for the establishment, review and administration of IPS related contracts and other agreements.
  • Oversee the personnel planning and management for IPS, and provide data analysis related to IPS Personnel to enable informed decision making by the IPS, IPMG and PG Directors, and in consideration with the corporate strategy(ies).
  • Take a leading role in ensuring communication of IPS is effective and up to date, such as the intranet, internal publications, and external communication.
  • Oversee the management of the Project of the Year Award (POTYA) from nomination to award and related promotion of the best practices in project management.
  • Oversee other administrative tasks, such as control of inventory belonging to IPS, travel and mission planning and security related tasks such as warden assignment.

3. Knowledge management and innovation

  • Contribute to the dissemination and sharing of best practices and lessons learned for corporate development planning and knowledge building.
  • At the request of the Director and in collaboration with the team, plan, implement and organise strategic capacity building of personnel and stakeholders.
  • Promote and support a learning culture in IPS by empowering individuals and teams to identify critical learning needs and plan/provide easy access to learning opportunities to maintain personnel competency and flexibility and foster innovation.
  • At the request of the IPS Director participate in any UNOPS forum discussions and planning to ensure IPS position, interests and priorities are fully considered.
  • Perform other duties as and when assigned.

4. Monitoring and Progress Controls

  • Setting standard, personal and development objectives for self and direct reports. Ongoing assessment of task completion, which meets quality expectations;
  • Achievement of the targets and workplan assigned to the Portfolio Support Manager;
  • Successfully meeting time, cost and quality expectations of the business unit work plan; escalate issues to IPS Director when applicable;
  • Completing progress reports as required.
Education/Experience/Language requirements

a. Education

  • An Advanced University degree (Master’s or equivalent) in a relevant related field, including but limited to business administration, economics, HR management, finance is required
  • A Bachelor’s Degree with two additional years of relevant experience may be accepted in lieu of a Master’s degree (total 9 years of experience)

b. Work Experience

  • A minimum of 7 years of progressively responsible experience covering at least two of the following operations functions: procurement, finance, logistics and human resources is required, in combination with a Master’s degree (9 years in combination with a Bachelor’s degree). Knowledge of the other functions is desirable;
  • A minimum of 2 years of leadership experience, including a proven track record managing personnel and operational systems is required. This can be embedded in the above experience.
  • Some experience in UN system organizations is desirable.
  • Experience dealing with UN regulations, rules and policies in the areas of procurement, finance and human resources is desirable. Knowledge of UNOPS policies, rules and processes is a distinctive advantage.
  • Experience in the development sector is an asset.
  • Experience in project or portfolio management is an asset.
  • Experience with gender parity issues is an asset.
  • Relevant experience working in developing countries is an asset.

c. Certifications

  • PRINCE2® Foundation is desired.

d. Languages

  • Full working knowledge of English, including excellent drafting and editing skills;
  • Knowledge of French or Spanish is highly desirable.
  • Knowledge of another official UNOPS language is an asset.

About the Organization

UNOPS supports the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to serve people in need by expanding the ability of the United Nations, governments and other partners to manage projects, infrastructure and procurement in a sustainable and efficient manner.

Working in some of the world’s most challenging environments, our vision is to advance sustainable implementation practices, always satisfying or surpassing our partners’ expectations.

With over 7,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, wherever they need it.

A flexible structure and global reach means that we can quickly respond to our partners' needs, while offering the benefits of economies of scale.

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