CRISIS RESPONSE SPECIALIST

Location : New York, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Application Deadline :27-Jun-13
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :P-4
Languages Required :
English  
Duration of Initial Contract :one year

Background

The overall goal of the Country Support Management Team (CSMT) is to lead and coordinate all BCPR support activities provided to Country Offices (CO) in line with the Bureau’s overall strategic goals and priorities, managing the effective interaction of BCPR Teams and Regional Bureau counterparts for more integrated country support. The CSMT works closely with the Regional Bureaux and other BCPR Teams to ensure timely, coherent, relevant and high quality support to UNDPs COs and UN Resident Coordinators before, during and after crises. The CSMT aims to provide regular analytical updates to support Early Warning. It also supports and coordinates BCPR’s crisis response capacity and takes the lead in a UNDP-wide approach to CPR capacity strengthening.

The Rapid Response Group (RRG) is part of the CSMT and is managed by the Team Leader. The RRG manages UNDP’s crisis response tools, including the SURGE Mechanism, the ExpRes roster for the rapid deployment of CPR consultants, the Standard Operating Procedures for crisis response, and the UNDP website for crisis response, among other instruments. The purpose of the team is to enhance UNDPs capacity to respond quickly and effectively to the recovery demands following a crisis whether conflict or natural disasters, and to enhance preparedness for emergency response.

Under the direct supervision of the Team Leader of the Rapid Response Group (RRG) and the overall guidance of the Coordinator of the CSMT, the Crisis Response Specialist is responsible for the maintenance, enhancement and development of the crisis response systems, and tools and for the systematic gathering and enhancement of the organizational knowledge on crisis response.

The key results will impact on UNDP’s capacities to quickly and effectively respond to the recovery demands immediately following a crisis, either man-made or caused by natural disaster, in three ways: (1) UNDP management and staff will be adequately prepared when an immediate recovery situation arises; (2) UNDP will be able to quickly conduct the necessary assessments and start the programming and resource mobilization effort; and (3) UNDP will be able to effectively and swiftly deliver recovery assistance. In this respect, UNDP will be able to effectively control its interventions, institutionally learn and truthfully report to donors and other external stakeholders

Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of Key Functions:

  • Oversees crisis deployment policy and practice and establishes an effective mechanism to capture lessons learned to improve existing arrangements and procedures
  • Collaborates in the development and maintenance of crisis response systems and mechanisms.
  • Monitors the utilization of crisis response mechanisms and the compliance with corporate policies and procedures with view of providing a quality assurance function and supporting the users of the system.
  • Systematic gathering, codification and dissemination of the organizational knowledge in crisis response.
  • Management support and collaboration with other team member.

Oversees crisis deployment policy and practice and establishes an effective mechanism to capture lessons learned to improve existing arrangements and procedures, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Enhancing existing systems and designing new mechanisms to meet UNDP’s post-crisis capacity needs in programmatic and operational areas.
  • Effective management and development of crisis deployment policies and practices.
  • Identification of sources and development of systems and tools for recruitment of personnel with the required competencies for UNDP country offices in crisis situations
  • Monitoring and analysis of short- and long-term SURGE staffing needs. Advice on SURGE recruitment policy and established practices; initiation of new approaches
  • Expanding and managing partnership arrangements with UNV and stand-by roster partners.
  • Support to the SURGE “planning cycle” during crisis response, including working closely with the Crisis Deployment Specialist for SURGE planning, deployment and draw down
  • Support to and/or participation in Headquarters-based SOP processes such as the preparation of Crisis Board and SURGE HQ Management Team sessions in close cooperation with relevant UNDP Bureaux
  • Establishment of an effective mechanism to capture lessons learned in order to improve existing deployment arrangements and procedures
  • Collaborates with the capacity development specialist for the design and implementation training initiatives for SURGE personnel, and CPR core consultants.

Collaborates in the development and maintenance of crisis response systems and mechanisms, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • In collaboration with other team members, ensure that the corporate crisis response tools, including SURGE, CPR rosters, SOPs, Fast Track, and the crisis response website, are kept user friendly, updated, maintained and are accessible to the Country Offices and other users.
  • Ensure the continuous development of UNDP’s corporate policies, procedures and mechanisms for crisis response including both operational and programmatic tools.
  • Cooperate with Bureau of Management BOM and its different units, and any other Bureaus to address any policy or procedural issues that may hinder UNDP’s efficient and effective response in emergency and crisis situations.
  • Cooperates with the Business Continuity Unit in BOM for enhancing organizational preparedness for crisis response.
  • Supports the development and pursing of partnerships with emergency response actors within the UN system and beyond, including stand-by roster agreements with humanitarian actors.
  • Collaborate with the Early Warning team for the establishment of an effective EW system and for ensuring that the EW and the crisis response systems are coherent.

Monitors the utilization of crisis response mechanisms and the compliance with corporate policies and procedures with view of providing a quality assurance function and supporting the users of the system, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Develop and institute the utilization of crisis response performance indicators. Develop baseline and monitor the indicators with view of assessing the efficiency and effectiveness of UNDP’s crisis response mechanisms including the deployment mechanisms, financing mechanisms, SURGE planning, Crisis Boards, and other crisis response mechanisms.
  • Monitor the utilization and compliance of the organization at the country and the HQ level with regard to corporate systems, policies and procedures, including compliance with UNDP’s Standard Operating Procedures for Immediate Crisis Response and setting up response structures in times of emergencies.
  • Report and analyze deviations from corporate crisis response policies and procedures, and recommend remedial actions and corrective measures.
  • Provides support to the users of the crisis response systems, to ensure proper application and utilization of systems and tools. This includes the development of guidelines and manuals for reference.

Systematic gathering, codification and dissemination of the organizational knowledge in crisis response, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Facilitating and managing the implementation of the After Action Reviews following major crisis response operations;
  • Analyzing the AAR an devaluation reports and teasing out best practices and lessons learned.
  • Maintaining and updating the crisis response website as UNDP’s one-stop shop for crisis response knowledge and tools. Gather feedback to make improvements and additions
  • Updating the Standard Operating procedures for immediate Crisis Response (SOPs); maintenance of quality control over ownership and content of the SOPs
  • Developing tools for systematic sharing of crisis response knowledge across the organization.

Management support and collaboration with other team members, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Overall support to the RRSG team leader with the daily management of the RRSG activities.
  • Support the maintenance of effective roster system and the implementation of the recommendations of the roster review to ensure constant high quality of the roster.
  • Collaborates with and acts as alternate crisis deployment specialist and the capacity building specialist.
  • Any other tasks as assigned by the Team leader.

Competencies

Functional Competencies:

Building Strategic Partnerships 

  • Effectively networks with partners seizing opportunities to build strategic alliances relevant to UNDP’s mandate and strategic agenda;
  • Sensitizes UN Partners, donors and other international organizations to the UNDP’s strategic agenda, identifying areas for joint efforts.

Promoting Organizational Learning and Knowledge Sharing:

  • Makes the case for innovative ideas documenting successes and building them into the design of new approaches;
  • Identifies new approaches and strategies that promote the use of tools and mechanisms.

Job Knowledge/Technical Expertise:

  • Understands more advanced aspects of crisis prevention and recovery as well as the fundamental concepts of related disciplines;
  • Keeps abreast of new developments in area of crisis prevention and recovery and seeks to develop him/herself professionally;
  • Demonstrates comprehensive understanding and knowledge of the current guidelines and project management tools and utilizes these regularly in work assignments.

Conceptual Innovation in the Provision of Technical Expertise:

  • Leverages multi disciplinary, institutional knowledge and experience of other countries and regions to promote UNDP’s development agenda;
  • Develops innovative and creative approaches to meet programme and capacity development objectives;
Client Orientation:
  • Works towards creating an enabling environment for a smooth relationship between the clients and service provider;
  • Keeps the client informed of problems or delays in the provision of services.

Core Competencies: 

Ethics & Values:

  • Demonstrating / Safeguarding Ethics and Integrity;
  • Demonstrates and promotes the highest standard of integrity, impartiality, fairness and incorruptibility in all matters affecting his/her work and status.

Organizational Awareness:

  • Demonstrate corporate knowledge and sound judgment understands the structure and hierarchy of UN/UNDP, process flows throughout the organization, products and services, their measures of effectiveness, and perceptions of clients.

Developing & Empowering People/Coaching and Mentoring:

  • Self-development, initiative-taking;
  • Takes appropriate risk in developing new or adapting existing methods and approaches to more effectively perform tasks or to solve problems in new and unique ways.

Working in Teams:

  • Acting as a team player and facilitating team work; 
  • Works collaboratively with colleagues inside UN/UNDP as well as its partners and other stakeholders to pursue common goals.

Communicating Information and Ideas:

  • Facilitating and encouraging open communication in the team, communicating effectively; 
  • Delivers verbal/written information in a timely, clear, organized and easily understood manner.

Self-Management & Emotional Intelligence:

  • Creating synergies through self-control tolerates conditions of stress, uncertainty or ambiguity and continues to maintain a positive outlook and to work productively. 

Conflict Management/Negotiating & Resolving Disagreements:

  • Managing conflict;
  • Remains calm, composed and patient, regardless of his/her own state of mind in the face of conflict.

Knowledge Sharing & Continuous Learning:

  • Learning and sharing knowledge and encourage the learning of others;
  • Demonstrates commitment to ongoing professional development and keeps abreast of new developments in his/her professional field.

Appropriate and Transparent Decision-making:

  • Informed and transparent decision making; 
  • Accepts responsibility and accountability for the quality of the outcome of his/her decisions.

Required Skills and Experience

Education:

  • A minimum of a Master’s degree or equivalent in Human Resources, Business Administration, Public Administration, Economics, Political Science, Social Sciences or related development field.

Experience:

  • At least 7 years of relevant professional work experience at the national and/or international level in CPR and crisis response including relevant experience dealing with emergencies;
  • Able to provide project and programme management support;
  • Experience working in an international organization, preferably UNDP, and familiarity with Crisis Prevention and Recovery issues;
  • Knowledge of UNDP/UN regulations, rules, policies, procedures and practices;
  • Knowledge of PRINCE 2 management methodology.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in English, both oral and written, is required; working knowledge of other UN official language (preferably French and/or Spanish) is an asset.

FC:26900

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