Deputy Project Manager, Multiple duty stations At United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Closing date: Sunday, 20 August 2023

Background Information – Job-specific

UNOPS Ethiopia Multi-Country Office (ETMCO) exciting career opportunity. UNOPS-ETMCO is recruiting for this position: Deputy Project Manager based in multiple duty stations (Afar, Adwa and South Omo). Qualified females and candidates from underrepresented groups in UNOPS are highly encouraged to apply. Ethiopia Multi-country office (ETMCO) sub-region currently consists of an established Operation Centre in Addis Ababa which manages a portfolio of engagements in four (4) Horn of Africa countries (Ethiopia, Djibouti, Sudan and South Sudan). ETMCO focuses on Infrastructure, Procurement, Project Management, HR and Transactional Services, and Fund Management services across a wide range of sectors including Health, Education, Agriculture, Resilient infrastructure among others. Our goal is to support countries, help people in need and enable our partners through delivering on our mandate of infrastructure, procurement and project management in the countries in the Horn of Africa. Building on our global experience successfully delivering projects in complex operating environments, a healthy pipeline of engagements are at various stages of discussion with our priority partners. In anticipation of new opportunities the Ethiopia Country Office is looking for qualified project management professionals ready to join the team as new projects come online. If you have experience leading teams, are excited to expand our sustainable project management initiatives, are great at facilitating technical teams to develop specifications that match clients needs and budget, are always ready to get hands on with the work, and can lead partners through best practices and operational excellence, then this is your opportunity.

The Deputy Project Manager is responsible for supporting the Senior Project Manager to deliver the day-to-day operations of the project(s) and provides services to the different donors, partners and beneficiaries. Deputy Project Manager acts on behalf of the Project Board to manage the project on an ongoing basis during the Implementation Stage. The main responsibility of the Deputy Project Manager is to ensure that the project outputs are delivered within the specified project tolerances of time, cost, quality, scope, risk and benefits. S/he is expected to meet the organization’s performance and delivery goals.

The Deputy Project Manager has the authority to assign, as per the Project Plan, work packages to Team Managers and approve deliverables produced by them.

The Deputy Project Manager is responsible for creating the Implementation Plan, using the Project Initiation Document (PID), Legal Agreement and having a thorough understanding of the terms, conditions, and the respective roles and responsibilities of the partners/stakeholders, to ensure the project(s) outputs are capable of meeting the business cases for both UNOPS and the partner(s). Success of the project(s) and hence of the Deputy Project Manager will be based on the defined success criteria.

Functional Responsibilities

The Deputy Project Manager will be responsible for the following summary of functions: Summary of functions:

  •  Project Delivery and Performance
  •  Procedures
  •  Monitoring and reporting
  •  Stakeholder engagement
  •  Quality assurance
  •  Knowledge management and innovation
  •  Personnel Management

Project Delivery and Performance

  •  Develop, complete and update implementation plan(s)
  •  Implement the approved plan (including the establishment of milestones) within tolerances set by the Project Board.
  •  Embed sustainability dimensions including social and gender inclusion, environmental and economic aspects into project life span.
  •  Manage the production of the required outputs, taking responsibility for overall progress and use of resources and initiating corrective action where necessary.
  •  Ensure that quality of work packages and deliverables complies with the quality requirements defined in the Implementation Plan.
  •  Liaise with any external suppliers or account managers
  •  Manage acceptance and delivery of work packages
  •  Monitor project progress ensuring that work packages are being executed properly
  •  Control project and work packages changes
  •  Accept goods, services or works delivered by suppliers.
  •  Lead contract management duties including supplier performance evaluation.
  •  Act as the Employer’s Representative within the FIDIC works contracts as needed
  •  Identify, and anticipate in a timely manner, potential risks and issues and advises mitigating measures to senior management/ Project Board so that maximum benefit to partner(s) and other stakeholders is achieved
  •  Identify and report to the supervisor potential business opportunities for UNOPS


  •  Comply with all organizational policy and specifically the Project Management Manual
  •  Prepare/adapt all relevant plans for approval by the Project Board.
  •  Manage the reporting obligations defined in the Legal Agreement(s) and in the Implementation Plan
  •  Draft the requirements definitions for procurement processes. Approving requisitions and requests for non-purchase order payments; Evaluating submissions received, if appointed to the evaluation team.
  •  Ensure maintenance of the project files and lessons learned are recorded
  •  Ensure the development and implementation of project financial management guidelines and control mechanisms, in conformity with UNOPS rules and regulations.
  •  Manage budgets, cash flow and obligations to ensure that deliverables are met and payments to contractors and personnel are received on time.
  •  Understand and manage UNOPS overheads, allocable charges, and related corporate charges as they apply to the project
  •  Understand the unique structures of the UN and budget appropriately for personnel
  •  Manage expenditures against the budget (based on accurate financial reports)
  •  Where the Deputy/Project Manager has no delegation as a committing officer, s/he retains these responsibilities and will monitor and instruct/request others to carry out the relevant commitments and disbursements.
  •  For project closure purposes, provide a formal handover of the project to the closure manager
  •  Support project audit activities, including planning, preparation and coordination during the audits and follow up on audit observations/recommendations

Monitoring and Reporting

  •  Prepare and issue regular project and/or financial reports in accordance with Partner and UNOPS requirements for reporting.
  •  Regularly review project status, evaluating performance criteria (scope, cost, schedule and quality).
  •  Maintain diaries and progress reports as required by the organization’s standard procedures.
  •  Provide routine oversight and analysis of delivery data within the dashboard system.
  •  Ensure all project team members track and regularly update milestones and targets for the duration of projects’ life span

Stakeholder Engagement

  •  Develop stakeholder profiles and facilitate the formulation of stakeholder engagement strategies
  •  Establish solid working relationships with the Project Board (Executive, Senior Users and Senior Suppliers), client and key stakeholders
  •  Enable the formulation of project communications plans. Coordinate internal project communications. Monitor the effectiveness of project communications
  •  Coordinate stakeholder engagement and communication, ensuring effective timing and interdependency management of communications. Ensure stakeholders are aware of project activities, progress, exceptions and are in a position to accept handover outputs

Quality Assurance

  •  Work with internal stakeholders to ensure projects comply with audit requirements
  •  Work with procurement/purchasing staff to ensure effective interface with suppliers’ quality systems
  •  Coordinate quality reviews of project documents and deliverables
  •  Provide quality control for management outputs (project documents, reports, etc.)

Knowledge management and innovation

  •  Encourage routine and effective capacity building activities are conducted in order to build the long-term and sustainable capacity of staff.
  •  Actively interact with other Deputy/Project Managers and the wider PM community to share case studies, lessons learned and best practices
  •  Contribute to the oversight of lessons learned procedures, ensuring that lessons learnt are shared in a timely and appropriate manner. Participate in the relevant Communities of Practice
  •  Research and logging of lessons learned throughout the project life span.
  •  Provide feedback to Practice Groups on policy, supporting guidance with an aim towards continuous improvement of UNOPS policies

Personnel Management

  •  Lead and motivate the project management team, if applicable
  •  Ensure that behavioral expectations of team members are established
  •  Ensure that performance reviews are conducted fairly, accurately and timely
  •  Select, recruit and train the team as required and take into account gender parity and diversity objectives.
  •  Ensure safety and security for all project personnel and comply with UNDSS standards
  •  Create, foster and role model a culture of respect and zero tolerance for discrimination, abuse of authority, harassment, sexual harassment and sexual exploitation and abuse. Ensure accountability for actions and perform duties in accordance with protection mechanisms and action plans, as expected by UNOPS policies, standards and commitments.

The Deputy Project Manager directly impacts on achievement of project results by adhering to project management methods and strategies, reducing risks, cutting costs and improving success rates. This consequently reinforces the visibility and image of UNOPS as an effective service provider in project services and management and strengthens its competitive position as a partner of choice in sustainable development and project servicesCompetencies

Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.

Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.

Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).

Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.

Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.

Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.

Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Education/Experience/Language requirements


  •  Advanced University Degree (Master’s Degree) in Project Management, Procurement/ Supply Chain Management, Engineering, Construction Engineering, Architecture, Building Construction or other relevant discipline is required.
  •  A combination of Bachelor’s Degree with an additional two (2) years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the education requirements outlined above.


  •  PRINCE2® Foundation or equivalent is an advantage.
  •  PRINCE2® Practitioner or equivalent is an advantage.


  •  A minimum of two (2) years’ progressive experience in infrastructure is required;
  •  A minimum of one (1) year experience implementing international norms in Health and Safety is required;
  •  Experience working in development sector is an added advantage;
  •  Experience in a Project Management role (incl. Team Leader, Lead Engineer, Technical Coordinator, Deputy PM or Acting) in the delivery of development projects is highly desirable;
  •  Experience working with multidisciplinary teams is desired;
  •  Experience working with Environmental and Social Management Plans (ESMP) and/or World Bank Safeguard Frameworks is an advantage;
  •  Past experience involved in procurement of goods/services/ works is a distinct advantage;
  •  Knowledge of the UN system and familiarity with UNOPS procedures is an advantage;
  •  Demonstrated experience working with Government Ministries, Departments & Agencies (MDAs) on donor funded projects is an asset;

Language Requirements:

  •  Fluency in written, spoken and reading English is required.
  •  Knowledge of another UN Official language is an asset.

Contract type, level and duration

  •  Contract type: Local Individual Contractual Agreement (LICA)
  •  Contract level: LICA-9 (ICS9)
  •  Contract duration: Ongoing ICA – ‘Open-ended, subject to organizational requirements, availability of funds and satisfactory performance.’

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link: This is a local position, and hence is open to Ethiopian nationals only.Additional Information

  •  Please note that UNOPS does not accept unsolicited resumes.
  •  Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  •  Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process, which involves various assessments.
  •  UNOPS embraces diversity and is committed to equal employment opportunity. Our workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages, races, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities. UNOPS seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce.
  •  Qualified women and candidates from groups which are underrepresented in the UNOPS workforce are encouraged to apply. These include in particular candidates from racialized and/or indigenous groups, members of minority gender identities and sexual orientations, and people with disabilities.
  •  We would like to ensure all candidates perform at their best during the assessment process. If you are shortlisted and require additional assistance to complete any assessment, including reasonable accommodation, please inform our human resources team when you receive an invitation.

Terms and Conditions

  •  For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post.
  •  For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (they take around 4 hours to complete) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS. For more information on a retainer contract here.
  •  All UNOPS personnel are responsible for performing their duties in accordance with the UN Charter and UNOPS Policies and Instructions, as well as other relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, all personnel must demonstrate an understanding of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a manner consistent with UN core values and the UN Common Agenda.
  •  It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential personnel. Recruitment in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.


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