Senior Advisor -- Health Products Procurement

  • Senior-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 9 April 2018

Job Description

About CRS:
Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need. CRS has activities in 117 countries, where we serve 125 million people. We reached 82 million people with health programming in 2016, and project to distribute nearly 21 million Long Lasting Insecticide-treated Nets in 2017.

The position holder is a team member of the Operations Excellence (OpEx) Department, responsible for leading CRS’ global health products market expertise and procurement. This includes market research, strategies for developing and nurturing relationships with major donors, suppliers, and service providers, with a special focus on malaria. The position holder will support CRS’ field offices in the implementation of CRS’ health products SCM transformation, including but not limited to ensuring field-level alignment to WHO, donors’, and relevant governments’ standards and regulations, as well as CRS’ policies and procedures pertaining to the planning, sourcing, purchasing and international transport of health products.

The position will support Country Programs (CP) in the design of SCM operations through proposal development or review, as well as procurement planning and implementation. This will include markets intelligence, forecasting, strategic sourcing, procurement contracts negotiation and supplier relationships and performance management.

All deliverables must support the CRS Agency Strategy, and must meet the standards defined in the CRS Procure to Pay - P2P Manual, the CRS Global SCM Handbook, Project Insight (CRS’ ERP system), CRS’ policies and SOPs, industry standards, donor rules and regulations, as well as audit recommendations.


1 Lead all procurement – related aspects of the global Health SCM transformation strategy, including the development and deployment of relevant research materials, standards, guidelines, policies / procedures:
1 Participate in the detailed activities planning and implementation of the CRS global health SCM strategy, as a procurement Subject Matter Expert (SME).
2 Further develop CRS’ procurement policies, procedures and practices, to ensure they match and support the CRS health strategies and operations, mitigate procurement risk and/or enhance both efficiency and probity, especially pertaining to the procurement of health products and associated services.
3 Lead the review and optimization of CP-level practices related to procurement planning, items specification, solicitation and contracting, supplier relationships and performance management, 3PL management, quality control and international transport for health products.
4 Lead the implementation of the change and learning agenda, including relevant materials development for health products procurement, engaging CP-level colleagues, peer organizations, and relevant donors to identify performance gaps and learning needs.
5 Conduct regular analyses of health products used in CRS projects, including annual spend, price and competition reviews, trends in donor, governments and industry regulations, as well as other relevant histories and trends.

2 Promote the professionalization and excellence of field-level health product planning and procurement:
1 Review current procurement staffing levels and staff capacity for CPs with significant health products. Participate in relevant CP-level health SCM staff recruitment, training and performance enhancement.
2 Review CRS and donor mandated health programs audit findings, as well as performance gaps / risks, and support CPs to develop proactive solutions to minimize risks and address audit recommendations.
3 Train CPs on ever-evolving WHO and donor regulations (e.g. the Global Fund PSM Guide, etc.) and international standards (e.g. ISO, GMP, and pharmacopoeia).
- Identify innovative health procurement practices and support them to succeed. Identify, test, implement and disseminate related performance monitoring and support.
- Identify innovative international health products sourcing and procurement practices. Develop and maintain a set of relevant Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and ensure their successful adoption and tracking by CPs. Maintain a global set of KPIs for CRS’ global health products procurement performance monitoring. Identify, test, implement and disseminate related performance monitoring and support mechanisms, to assist CPs in continuously improving their health products procurement practices.

3 Lead CRS’ health products market intelligence and positioning for increased efficiency in health products sourcing:
1 Regularly conduct a global scan of CRS’ current and potential portfolio in health products procurement, identify key opportunities for direct procurement and establish priorities for capacity growth investments.
2 Develop and lead the implementation of a CRS health products market and supplier engagement strategy.
3 Collaborate with the CRS Office of Legal Counsel (OGC) team to develop and execute optimal supplier Long Term Agreement (LTA) contracts, for selected globally strategic suppliers. Negotiate and implement LTAs with suppliers.
4 Provide ad-hoc and ongoing robust technical support to CPs for relevant current activities and new initiatives:
- Ensure that the procurement of health products complies with the principles set forth in relevant donor requirements (such as WHO Model Quality Assurance System for Procurement Agencies (MQAS), FAR, AIDAR, USAID/OFDA Proposal Guidelines Pharmaceutical Annexes, DFID Smart Rules, UNITAID procurement guide for health products). Develop and maintain a Quality Assurance system in accordance with donors’ principles, CRS policies and procedures, and industry best practices.
- Partner with relevant colleagues at the beginning of health projects to determine the procurement scope of work including sourcing strategies, budgetary information, cycle times, deliverables, and supply chain requirements.
- Review systematically relevant procurement planning and regular reporting information, and provide both technical and strategic feedback, especially the Annual Program Plan (APP), proposal development, and/or donor reports.
– Respond to requests for temporary assignments to fill relevant critical short-term CP health products procurement staffing gaps, either through deployment, or the identification of qualified consultants or internal human resources.

Agency-wide Competencies (for all CRS Staff):

These are rooted in the mission, values, and guiding principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.
1 Serves with Integrity
2 Models Stewardship
3 Cultivates Constructive Relationships
4 Promotes Learning

Key Working Relationships:
* INTERNAL: GSCM and Global Procurement Team, PIQA/Health Team; Procurement Managers, Supply Chain Managers, Heads of Operations; Country Representatives; Regional and Senior Advisors for SCM and for Health; Deputy Regional Directors for Management Quality; OPEX; Finance; Purchasing; Audit; GKIM; IDEA/Global Fund Support Unit and other donor teams; MEAL.
* EXTERNAL: Procurement representatives of peer organizations; health suppliers and industry representatives; donors such as Global Fund, USAID, USG and other public, corporate and/or international donors; industry experts, SCM education and certification bodies.

1 Advanced degree in a business or international trade field, public health, pharmacy or related discipline. Procurement and/or SCM Certification from a recognized US or international certification body highly regarded.
2 At least five (5) years international health products procurement experience in a large corporate or government organization, or in the humanitarian sector.
3 Relevant hands-on experience in managing or advising on the procurement, supply and use of health products, particularly in developing countries with specific experience in assessing policies, systems, and structures in the public and/or private health sector relevant for managing effective and efficient access to pharmaceuticals, lab commodities and other health products, particularly for AIDS, TB and malaria.
4 Proven understanding of AIDS, TB and malaria medical products market dynamics and existing global supply challenges as well as international health products procurement and supply management practices, applicable national and international laws and recognized standards; and good writing and analytical skills.

Experience in quantification and forecasting of health product needs, and in managing large complex electronic data sets in public health programs.

Strong representation and inter-personal skills, with a successful record in effectively operating in multi-cultural settings, providing technical support and managing capacity strengthening initiatives.

Excellent negotiator with a proven record of developing competitive sourcing strategies and managing international tendering processes for substantial value.

Fluency in English with strong oral and written communication skills and strong analytical skills. Professional proficiency in French highly desired. Working ability in Spanish and Arabic a plus.

Physical Requirements/Environment:
1 Normal conditions for an office environment
2 Willingness and ability to travel overseas, including to and in difficult operating environments, sometimes for long periods, estimated 25-50% of the time.

This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skills, efforts, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.

Note: All applicants must be legally authorized to work in the United States at the time of application.

CRS’ talent acquisition procedures reflect our commitment to protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.


About the Organization

Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.

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