Senior Lead, Information & Communication Technologies (ICT), USAID Promoting Excellence in Private Sector Engagement (PEPSE) Bureau For Food Security (BFS) Buy-in Activity

  • Senior-level
  • Posted on 20 November 2019
  • Washington, D.C., District of Columbia, United States
  • Closing on 20 December 2019

Job Description

Resonance is supporting USAID’s Bureau for Food Security (BFS) to implement the Agency’s 2018 Private Sector Engagement (PSE) Strategy. The pending new Bureau structure incorporates the Bureau for Food Security and the Feed the Future initiative into a new structure organized around four technical pillars: USAID’s Center for Agriculture-led Growth; Center for Nutrition; Center for Water; and Center for Resilience. Building on the Bureau for Food Security’s long history of successful collaboration, relationships with the private sector are a core tenet of the Bureau’s technical approach. Each Technical Center will build on work with the private sector and it will also be a central feature of its new organizational structure. Engagement and coordination are led by a multi-sectoral Bureau-level PSE Community of Practice (CoP), which is backed by a small team of full-time, dedicated PSE specialists that form the PSE Secretariat. This PSE Secretariat provides a critical set of functions: leads Bureau PSE strategy; develops enhanced systems and tools; provides advisory support to Technical Centers and USAID Missions; and leads outreach and strategic engagement with priority industries and private sector partners. The Bureau already works with dozens of premier global companies across a diverse array of industries and sectors, including agriculture; food and beverage; finance; tech and digital; and others.

Through the Promoting Excellence in Private Sector Engagement (PEPSE) Project, Resonance has helped BFS to align its PSE strategies, programming, human resources, and structures/processes within the new Bureau structure, and led the design and development of a Bureau-specific PSE strategy and implementation plan. In addition to providing advisory and consulting support to BFS, Resonance is also staffing a small, but growing, team of full-time embedded experts in the PSE Secretariat.

Through this Resonance team, BFS seeks a Senior Lead, Information & Communication Technologies (ICT) to join the PSE Secretariat as a full-time embedded resource. This role will function as an industry specialist, strategically leading Bureau (and sometimes Agency) engagement with tech and digital industry actors, to harness emerging innovation opportunities in the technical domains of agricultural innovation, nutrition, water and sanitation, and resilience. In addition to direct industry engagement, the Senior Lead will infuse a culture of digital incorporation into the bureau as a resource for agriculture and resilience partnerships. The Senior Lead will work with other PSE Secretariat members to foster private sector orientation and serve as a mentor to other team members.

The Senior Lead will be responsible for communications with the private sector, relationship management and capacity building for BFS staff in engagement with the tech industry. They should bring experience with a variety of different technologies and platforms, and be well-versed in emerging opportunities across an array of digital domains, including but not limited to: digital inclusion; mobile money; digital development for smallholder farmers (ICT4D); geo-spatial and earth imagery data; machine learning and artificial intelligence; and/or software as a solution for agriculture-related developing country context. They will serve as an integral member of the PSE CoP Secretariat, and provide the following support to the overall PSE CoP:

o Serve as select industry focal point for the Agency. This includes developing and managing industry contacts, identifying strategic areas of alignment and exploring potential partnership opportunities with both established and emerging industry actors, interfacing with industry representatives and leading follow-up, guiding leadership messaging and functioning as a first point-of-contact for industry requests.
o Serve as an industry resource to the Bureau. This includes monitoring industry trends and providing insight to the Bureau, helping Bureau staff identify ways to leverage industry on a multi-sectoral basis, and assisting Bureau staff engage industry actors in ways that are relevant, resonant, and timely.
o Support capacity building and coaching of other BFS Relationship Managers (RMs) in select industries and serve as an RM for key industry contacts and private sector partners.
o Take a team-oriented approach to build the capacity of bureau staff in relationship management best practices and infuse a digital aspect in all premier relationships, as well as across the bureau at large.
o Coordinate industry engagement across Technical Centers, promoting multi-sectoral approaches, and helping to ensure that Agency engagement with industry is conducted in a cohesive, holistic, whole-of-Bureau manner.
o Contribute to and participate in learning events (including the BFS learning series) and support the PEPSE/BFS Senior Advisor to review, provide input, and operationalize new PSE tools or systems within its RM and focal-point activities.
o On a regular basis, update and maintain documentation of industry contacts, relationship milestones, and partnership activities in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system (structure TBD).
o Liaise closely with the Global Development Lab/ PSE Hub as it builds relationships and participates in PSE events.
o Work across BFS Technical Centers and field support teams to provide technical input and/or participate in research and field support assignments as needed.
o Other duties as assigned.

• Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field required; Master’s preferred
• 10+ years of relevant work experience in the private sector, with a minimum of 5 years of experience working in digital strategies in the agriculture and resilience space including but not limited to: digital inclusion, mobile money, digital development for smallholder farmers (ICT4D), and/or software as a solution for agriculture-related developing country contexts
• Demonstrated experience managing private sector clients
• Experience and comfort working in matrixed team structures
• Demonstrated emotional intelligence and ability to build strong collaborative relationships with a diverse range of colleagues and partners
• Outstanding verbal and written communications skills
• Strong organizational skills, including task and time management
• Eligibility to work in US

How to Apply:
Qualified candidates should submit a cover letter, resume and three references to Please include “Senior Lead, ICT” in the email subject line, and save documents (cover letter, resume, and references) in one PDF as ‘Last Name_First Name.pdf’ (e.g., Smith_Jane.pdf). Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Only candidates selected for interviews will be contacted. No phone calls please. Resonance is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

About the Organization

Resonance is an award-winning frontier market solutions firm based in Burlington, Vermont that helps a variety of donor, commercial and investor clients around the world to catalyze lasting impact. We envision a prosperous and just world of thriving markets, healthy ecosystems, and vibrant communities where business, governments and citizens work together creating a better world for all.

Resonance seeks to catalyze large-scale social, environmental, and economic change by fostering new and dynamic forms of collaboration. We do this by fostering public-private partnerships, facilitating sustainable investment, and providing deep analytical insights in frontier markets. We strive to merge strategic insight with practical on-the-ground knowledge into an integrated approach that emphasizes results.

We seek candidates who are ready to apply their analytical and problem-solving skills to some of our planet’s greatest challenges in an entrepreneurial, fun, and fast-paced environment. We are looking for passionate and committed people who can work in a highly collaborative environment to deliver results for our clients and stakeholders around the world.

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