Specialist, Finance Solutions Architecture

Application Deadline :10-Apr-13 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :P-4
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :One-Year
Expected Duration of Assignment :One-Year (with expectation for renewal)


The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the United Nations' global development network, an organization advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life. We are on the ground in 177 countries, working with them on their own solutions to global and national development challenges. As they develop local capacity, they draw on the people of UNDP and our wide range of partners.

The Office of Information Systems and Technology (OIST) supports UNDP by delivering Information Communication Technology (ICT) solutions and providing technical support for a variety of platforms and software solutions.  Among other applications, UNDP has one of the largest PeopleSoft footprints in the world.  It is used globally by over 160 country offices to support Financial and Human Resources business functions.

As of 1 January 2012, UNDP has adopted the International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) in the area of financial transactional recording and reporting.  The goal of IPSAS is to harmonize financial reporting practices and to improve the comparability of financial statements across and beyond the UN system.  IPSAS was mandated in 2006 by the UN General Assembly for 23 organizations within the UN system, including UNDP.

Under the general direction and supervision of the Chief of Applications Support and Delivery in OIST, the incumbent will be mainly responsible for three areas as they relate to global enterprise software delivery and support. 

The first area involves architecting new ICT solutions as they relate to enhancing UNDP’s financial management and reporting.  This will mostly involve optimizing UNDP’s PeopleSoft Financials 9.0 application and enhancing information delivery through the use of UNDP’s Data Warehouse leveraging the PeopleSoft Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) application and using Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) as a reporting and Business Intelligence platform.  As a guiding principle of the Architecting function, s/he will be assigned to ensure coherence across financial management system solutions including feeder systems and to optimize systems integration.

Secondly, this role involves the managing and overseeing of the delivery process once an initiative has been architected and scoped.  Projects will range in size from a release of multiple enhancement requests to a PeopleSoft Financials upgrade.  The incumbent will be responsible for ensuring adherence to UNDP’s innovative agile software development methodology for ERP systems delivery.  For monthly releases and larger projects, s/he will be responsible for the typical project management functions as setting deadlines, assigning responsibilities, and monitoring and summarizing progress of project and/or release, prepare reports for upper management regarding status of project and issue escalation.

Thirdly is the role of continuous improvement and initial support.  Through the ITIL process of incident management and problem resolution, the incumbent will be responsible to report to OIST leadership on ways service can be improved through the reduction of system incidents and cases being reported to the UNDP service desk.  As well, once projects and enhancements are migrated to production, the incumbent will be responsible for structuring and performing post production support for a period of time before the UNDP Service Desk assumes full support.

This Position requires strong analytical, written and oral communication skills as well as the ability to work with UNDP business units, mainly the Office of Finance and Resource Management (OFRM) in order to fully understand business needs and architect solutions to meet those needs.  Consequently candidates with strong accounting knowledge, procure-to-pay, budgeting, and revenue management business process knowledge will be preferred. 

This is not a developer position and no hands on coding is expected from the incumbent however, strong technical knowledge of the PeopleSoft application stack, configuration options and tables, as well as deep knowledge of the PeopleSoft Financials table structure and data model is a must.  The ideal candidate will have a “can do” attitude and the ability to make pragmatic and practical decisions without compromising the integrity of the PeopleSoft application.


Provide coherent and efficient financial solutions to assure proper business functions and accurate financial reporting.  Failure to discharge this responsibility properly will put the organization at operational risk and the organization’s reputation at stake.  Such would result in inability to provide mission critical information timely basis, potential loss or leakage of documents and contents.  As a result, organizations operational capability and responsiveness to donors and recipients governments will be compromised.  

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Ensure overall coherency and optimal integration of financial solutions
  • Serve as financials solutions architect
  • Ensure effective and efficient delivery of financial solutions
  • Deliver on a continuous improvement programme
  • Structure and provide initial end user support
  • Lead solution adoption process through subject matter expert for training and change management

As the Lead Finance Solutions Architect, ensure coherency and optimal integration of entire finance solutions; provide advice to ESS management team and guidance to solutions architect team at different stages of solutions delivery.   In particular, the incumbent is expected to:

  • Working collaboratively with UNDP business community in looking at deployed functionality and/or business processes and creatively suggesting process improvements or minor adjustments or enhancements to the deployed system to increase overall user and business productivity;
  • Working with multi-disciplinary team members to design and implement significant new functionality to meet business needs based on specific requirements for functional performance by the PeopleSoft Solution;
  • Adhere to principles of master data management and systems architecture ensuring financial solutions integrity and coherence leading to data integrity and efficiency of the financials solution from the perspective of providing reliable financial reporting platform;
  • Provide technical leadership, architectural direction, and hands-on implementation assistance;
  • Explain application architecture decisions and their rationales to business and technical teams;
  • Work with Vendor software development team and UNDP solutions architecture team to promote use of best practices and design patterns;
  • Mentor/coach finance solutions team in problem solving skills and system integration adherence;

Serves as financial solutions delivery lead by heading and overseeing the discovery, design, and implementation of UNDP’s PeopleSoft Financials modules as they relate to achieving the stated goals of IPSAS.  In particular, the incumbent is expected to:

  • Ensure Document current and future state processes;
  • Develop Business Requirement Documents and functional specifications;
  • Develop Process Maps;
  • Collaborate with UNDP business units and IT Vendor to determine level of effort, schedule, and costs to implement a discrete effort;
  • Enforce UNDP’s ERP Agile development methodology;
  • Lead or participate in QA/UAT, developing test plans and scripts, coordinating test cycles, analyzing and reporting on test results, and performing testing;
  • Provide status updates addressing functional and technical elements, milestones, budget, and other elements as appropriate.
Serves as lead for continuous improvement programme and provides initial support for deployed solutions.
  • Formalize process for collection and analysis of incident and help desk case data
  • Liaise with the UNDP Service Desk on a periodic basis to review and analyze data
  • Propose solutions that will result in a reduction of number of system incidents and cases submitted to the service desk
  • Present findings in regard to necessary enhancements to improve solutions design and delivery process by incorporating tools and elements to enhance coherency and efficiency of financial solutions to the solution delivery process under the guidance of Chief Application Delivery and Support. 
  • Provide Tier One, Tier Two, or Tier Three support for issues and matters surrounding system utilization, functionality, and data as they relate to specific enhancement roll outs.
  • Troubleshoot issues and resolves or escalates to IT Vendor.
  • Report on issues, utilization, and trends.
  • Based on above, make recommendations for enhancements and improvements
Serves as lead subject matter expert for training, change management, and adoption processes and tools for business users.
  • Manage rollout, adoption, and utilization of tools.
  • Define training requirements.
  • Develop with appropriate team members training materials and job aids to support end user training
  • Develop project, deployment, and operations communications materials.
  • Provides proactive user support activities, such as training, user groups, practice labs, and workshops.
  • Conduct training.
  • Develop presentations for business community.
  • Identify and communicates risk appropriately.
  • Develop metrics that track adoption rates and adoption success rate


Corporate Competencies:
  • Demonstrates integrity and fairness, by modeling the UN’s values and ethical standard
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP
  • Displays cultural and gender sensitivity and adaptability
  • Treats all people fairly without favoritism
Functional Competencies:
  • Deep knowledge of PeopleSoft Financials 9.X General Ledger (GL) and Commitment Control (KK) modules and
  • Working knowledge of multiple modules within in the areas of Procure To Pay (Purchasing, e-Procurement
  • Accounts Payable, Asset Management), Revenue Management (Contracts, Grants, Accounts Receivable, Billing), Travel & Expense, Treasury, or Project Management.  Knowledge of PeopleSoft Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) or Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) is a plus;
  • Deep knowledge of the PeopleSoft Financials 9.X Data Model and the data behavior.
  • Working knowledge of People Tools;
  • Knowledge of any industry standard Software Development Lifecycle Methodologies (SDLCs) such as Waterfall, Agile, etc.;
  • Knowledge and understanding of IFRS/IPSAS accounting standards and practices.  United States, Canadian, or United Kingdom Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) is also acceptable;
  • Effective communication skills, with the ability to clearly and concisely express ideas both verbally and in writing;
  • Ability to communicate solutions architecture matters in a business context and language to senior management team of OIST and business owners.  
  • Excellent interpersonal skills that build trust and instill confidence in order to motivate, influence and persuade others;
  • Ability to take initiative to identify, prioritize and implement all elements required for team to fulfill responsibilities in accordance with core strategic goals;
  • Excellent problem solving skills, including ability to effectively address any issue in collaboration with others as appropriate; strong ability to proactively identify and prevent potential problems; 
  • Ability to coach peers and other team members in problem solving skills and system integration perspective;
  • Ability to work well under pressure and effectively handle multiple, concurrent demands and appropriately prioritize responsibilities;
  • Ability to collaborate with others and act in an objective manner in order to effectively solve problems and stay on track towards accomplishing organizational goals.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Master’s Degree in Information Technology, with a concentration on financial systems (Accounting), Engineering, or Business/Public Administration with five (5) years’ experience, or Bachelor's Degree in the above-mentioned fields with specialized relevant experience of seven (7) years
  • Specialized relevant experience of at least seven (7) years in implementing or supporting PeopleSoft Financials Solutions 9.X in a similar role
  • Proven track record in ensuring systems stability
  • English is required.  Knowledge of another UNDP official language an asset

FC: 11810

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