MEAL Lead - Education For All South Sudan (EFASS)
Posted16 Aug 2023Closing date16 Sep 2023
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) is a leading humanitarian and development organization working in more than 40 countries and 26 U.S. cities to help people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover and gain control of their future.
The IRC has been operating in South Sudan since 1989. Our programs have provided critical Health, Nutrition, Protection and Rule of Law, Child Protection, Education and Economic Wellbeing (EWB) services in eleven field sites, covering five of the ten states and one administrative area. With two offices in Northern Bahr el Ghazal- NBeG (Aweil East and South), five offices in Unity State (Bentiu, Koch, Mayendit, Ganyliel and Nyal), one in the Ruweng Administrative Area (Jamjang) covering operations in the Ajuong Thok and Pamir Refugee Camps and the host community, one office in Rumbek town covering the whole of Lakes, one office in Maban covering the refugee response and one field office in Central Equatoria (Juba)-urban programming together with the Country office.
Background and Objectives of EFASS
FCDO funded Education For All South Sudan (EFASS) will directly support 350,000 girls and children with disabilities nationwide to access education through cash transfers, whilst investment in behaviour change, in-service teacher training, and catch-up classes will improve both access and learning for many more nationwide. Systems strengthening and incentivising greater ownership of, and investment in, the education sector by the Government of the Republic of South Sudan will help strengthen the social contract and build functioning education institutions to enable future development. Geographically targeted pilots, including an innovative health co-investment, will support life skills development, address additional barriers faced by children with disabilities, enable improved resilience (including to climate shocks), and support peacebuilding, including to help prevent drop-out. EFASS aims to build on the existing success of the multi-donor platform which was established under the Girls’ Education South Sudan Programme to continue current coordinated donor investment in shared sectoral priorities.
EFASS will target the following two outcomes:
• Children, especially girls and those living with disability, can safely access 12 years of quality education which equips them with the knowledge and skills they need to thrive.
• Quality is improved through increased investment (including as a result of increasing government budget allocation and execution) and strengthened national policy in areas critical to inclusion.
Scope of Work
The Finance Lead will be responsible for overseeing financial management and financial operations for the anticipated FCDO EFASS project. As a member of the Project’s Senior Management Team, the Finance Lead provides the leadership and management necessary to ensure the project has the appropriate financial infrastructure and systems in place to support smooth project implementation. The role holder will contribute to the development of the Project’s strategic and operational plans and be accountable for ensuring and monitoring delivery against the financial plans through targeted and comprehensive financial analytical review.
As Finance Lead, you will have responsibility for all aspects of strategic and operational finance, acting as the principal finance business partner to the Project Director and other Senior Management teams. This is a senior position that requires outstanding leadership, strategic thinking, and organisational, team-building and representational skills. The Finance Lead role is envisaged to be full-time and will be based in Juba, South Sudan
• Ensures that all policies and procedures are in compliance with IRC and FCDO policies, procedures, and requirements.
• Establishes project’s finance and supporting function policies, systems and procedures, and directs or performs their development, documentation, and implementation.
• Prepares and regularly reviews project financial management manual and ensures that all staff are compliant with the requirements (cascading down the overarching IRC/FCDO policies and requirements) arranging training as necessary during induction.
• Manages project finance activities and schedules to meet the financial reporting requirements and deadlines specified by HQ and FCDO. Prepares quarterly accrual reports, expenditure reporting, and quarterly expenditure projections – consolidated for all project offices in multiple cities (ensuring a variance of no more than 5% of actual from forecast).
• Provides project management and programme staff with monthly actual-to-budget expenditure reports and analysis for project funds and facilitate their review and discussion.
• Closely monitors all financial activities, and keeps the Project Director advised of all situations which have the potential for a negative impact on internal controls or financial performance.
• Directs the preparation of and approval of all FCDO financial reports in respect to accounting, legal and contractual requirements and ensures the review of such reports by the Project Director and HQ prior to submission.
• Maintains current knowledge of local government requirements related to financial matters and ensures compliance with tax regulations and other legal requirements. Supports the set-up of project-specific bank accounts in country to prevent co-mingling of funds and identifies necessary authorized signatories for each account to ensure a smooth banking process with adequate financial controls in place to prevent mismanagement of funds.
• Establishes project finance roles and responsibilities matrix; ensures job descriptions are current; recruits and maintains qualified staff to perform finance functions.
• Leads of interviewing and selection process for all new finance staff and implements a training programme for the project’s finance staff, including accurate expenditure tracking and quarterly forecasting of expenditure.
• Ensures that all finance staff are trained on and compliant with IRC/FCDO anti-fraud and corruption requirements and escalate any allegations of suspected mismanagement of funds.
• Supports and responds to any internal or external audit of project accounting by IRC or FCDO, providing required supporting documentation on request, in a timely fashion.
• Ensures constructive performance reviews are completed on a timely basis and facilitates discussion of performance, training requirements and career options with project finance staff.
• Designs, implements, and monitors systems, procedures and reporting necessary to maintain on current basis accurate forecasts of cash requirements for meeting future spending, including commitments entered into and which obligate IRC to future spending.
• Supervises the preparation of Cash Transfer Requests to HQ and ensures that appropriate cash balances are maintained to facilitate project implementation.
• A bachelor’s degree from an accredited university in Accounting, Business Administration, Commerce or Finance with a recognized professional certificate in accounting such as CPA, or a master’s degree in Accounting.
• Minimum of 10 years in a similar financial, compliance, or operational role supporting FCDO commercial contracts and other international donor projects in similar contexts.
• Experience with budgeting and financial reporting requirements on multimillion pound, multi-year, FCDO commercial contracts.
• Experience with financial management and reporting on projects with substantial sub-awards.
• Strong knowledge of generally accepted accounting practices, financial reporting standards, financial management processes and procedures.
• Familiarity with FCDO rules and regulations, particularly related to the management of project expenditure and forecasting requirements.
• Extensive experience in working with computerized accounting systems, standard spreadsheets and database programmes.
• Must have a proven track record of proactively identifying and communicating potential problems and proposing solutions.
• Excellent interpersonal communication skills and professional patience and be able to interact, partner and thrive in a diverse environment.
• Committed to staff training and development and effective at facilitation.
• Experience of management of staff performance gaps and provision of additional training or managing a performance improvement plan.
• Fluency in English required.
Please note that the JD is high level and indicative only at this stage and may be subject to change once the Terms of Reference for the programme is released and as the opportunity develops. This position will be contingent on the outcome of the bid.
Safety & Security Situation: All staff must comply with all IRC South Sudan by security policies and procedures.
Standards for Professional Conduct: The IRC and IRC workers must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way - Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Equality, Service, and Accountability. In accordance with these values, the IRC operates and enforces policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti Workplace Harassment, Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.
IRC is an Equal Opportunity Employer IRC considers all applicants based on merit without regard to race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status or disability.