Special Assistant/Program Specialist, USAID/OAPA Front Office

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Washington, D.C., District of Columbia, United States
Apply by 20 October 2018
Posted on 20 September 2018

Job Description

Since 2001, Dexis has provided innovative management solutions for a secure and prosperous world. In the last three years alone, Dexis has worked in 90 countries supporting critical missions of agencies in the global development and security assistance space. With triple digit growth in recent years, Dexis was ranked in the top 10 consulting firms by funding at the US Agency for International Development in FY16 and FY17. Dexis was also among the highest rated employers on Glassdoor, where many of its 250-plus employees cited a people-centered leadership and culture as the main drivers to its success.

Dexis is seeking an experienced Special Assistant/Program Specialist to provide support services to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Office of Afghanistan and Pakistan Affairs’ Assistant Administrator. The Assistant Administrator (AA) of the Office of Afghanistan and Pakistan Affairs (OAPA) is responsible for providing strategic leadership, policy guidance, and overall oversight of the U.S. Government’s (USG) programs in OAPA. The Special Assistant/Program Specialist plays a key role in supporting the AA achieve his/her objectives by ensuring: the most effective use of the AA’s time and attention; that the OAPA Bureau responds effectively and in a timely manner to taskers from the Administrator, the National Security Council, the State Department and other USG agencies, and the Congress; and that communications and messaging within and outside the Bureau effectively convey and incorporate the AA’s, the Administrator’s, and the Administration’s goals and policies. The work location for this position will be in Washington, DC. This is a full-time position, and the start date is immediate.

Responsibilities

Ensures Effective Use of the Assistant Administrator’s time 35%

The Special Assistant will ensure that the AA’s calendar reflects the priority needs of the Bureau so that the AA can carry out his/her functions effectively and efficiently. This will require a deep knowledge by the Special Assistant of key issues, events, and people and ability to identify those that will require the AA’s time as well as identify alternates for those that the AA does not have to personally handle. The Special Assistant will need to have a high-level of organizational skills to ensure that priority meetings are scheduled at the right time; that the right people are identified and provided sufficient guidance to support the needs of the AA; and that overall, priority issues—no matter how many—are simultaneously or sequentially addressed, as necessary, to meet the needs of the Bureau in a timely manner.

The Special Assistant will identify emerging issues in a timely manner, and ensure that the AA receives accurate, complete, and timely briefings and reports, as appropriate, to address those issues. In addition, the Special Assistant should be aware of, and collect in a timely manner, news articles, studies, and similar information that should be brought to the immediate attention of the AA. If such documents need to be summarized and distilled to focus on key issues, it will be the responsibility of the Special Assistant to do so.

The Special Assistant coordinates with the Bureau Front Office’s Executive Assistant to ensure that the AA’s domestic and international travel arrangements are made expeditiously before the travel, and that travel vouchers are prepared in a timely manner upon completion of the AA’s travel. The Special Assistant coordinates the AA’s travel schedule with the Administrator’s Office when he/she travels with the Administrator, and coordinates with field missions on the schedule and other arrangements for the AA’s travel to Afghanistan and Pakistan as well as other Missions. This includes ensuring the most efficient and productive travel itineraries and the timely preparation of travel briefers.

Ensures Appropriate and Timely Response to High-Level Taskers 35%

The Special Assistant serves as the primary Correspondence Control Contact, providing coordination and oversight on taskers from the Office of the Executive Secretariat. The Special Assistant is responsible for ensuring that taskers from the Administrator’s Office, the National Security Council, the Department of State and other USG agencies, and the Congress are responded to correctly and in a timely manner. To this end, the Special Assistant will be required to know the appropriate format for executive responses and the right people to assign taskers to. The Special Assistant will provide guidance in responding, as appropriate, and have a tracking system to ensure that responses to taskers are submitted in a timely manner.

The Special Assistant will be responsible for reviewing responses to taskers and ensuring that they are correct and written well and concisely before submitting to the AA for his/her signature. The Special Assistant will also be responsible for ensuring consistency in responses.

Finally, the Special Assistant will be responsible for giving feedback to drafters of responses to taskers to close the loop on the tasker. If the final response is different from that prepared by the responder, the feedback will provide an opportunity for learning.

Ensures Effective Communications and Messaging 30%

The Special Assistant acts as primary liaison for persons and groups from within and outside the Bureau, speaking as an intermediary for the AA on program and administrative issues, as assigned by the AA. As necessary, the Special Assistant communicates and interprets policy direction from the AA within the Bureau.

The Special Assistant assists the AA with communicating program, policy, and administrative priorities that have a direct impact on Bureau and field mission operations. He or she ensures that formal decisions made by the AA are relayed to the proper offices for action or review. Likewise, the Special Assistant ensures communication links with Bureau and field missions to ensure that the AA is aware of issues within the Bureau and in the field, especially those that require his/her attention.

The Special Assistant organizes Senior Staff meetings, monthly Bureau all-hands meetings, and regular discussions with field missions. The Special Assistant coordinates the preparation of the agenda for these meetings to ensure effective communication of policies, strategies, and regulations issued by the Administrator, the AA, and/or the White House and other USG agencies. Finally, the Special Assistant is responsible for liaising with the Bureau’s Outreach Team to ensure that the AA has access to outreach materials, and to facilitate effective dissemination of such materials externally.

Performs other Job-related Duties as Assigned.

Qualifications
  • Master degree with a minimum of eight (8) years of directly related professional experience, or Bachelor degree with a minimum of ten (10) years of directly related professional experience.
  • Proficiency in the use of Microsoft Office, Internet, and e-mail applications (Google/Outlook) is required.
  • Experience with project management and/or international development, administrative, and financial procedures.
  • Experience using database applications and other trackers to organize data preferred.
  • Superb written and oral communication skills, with experience interacting with senior level officials.
  • Previous USAID experience preferred.
  • Active security clearance required.

Dexis is an equal opportunity employer offering employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin, citizenship, physical or mental handicap, or status as a disabled or Vietnam Era veteran of the US Armed Forces.

About the Organization

Since 2001, Dexis has provided innovative management solutions for a secure and prosperous world. In the last three years alone, Dexis has worked in 90 countries supporting critical missions of agencies in the global development and security assistance space. With triple digit growth in recent years, Dexis was ranked in the top 10 consulting firms by funding at the US Agency for International Development in FY16 and FY17. Dexis was also among the highest rated employers on Glassdoor, where many of its 250-plus employees cited a people-centered leadership and culture as the main drivers to its success.

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