Finance Specialist

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Dakar, SENEGAL
Application Deadline :24-Jul-22 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Gender Equality
Type of Contract :FTA Local
Post Level :NO-C
Languages Required :
English   French  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :1 year

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


UN Women, grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security.

Under the overall guidance and of the Deputy Director of Financial Management in Headquarters and the Regional Operations Manager for guidance and daily supervision, the Finance Specialist is responsible for providing assistance to offices in the Region.  The Finance Specialist will ensure capacity and support; assistance with development projects for the finance users of UN Women for better business practices and controls as well as automation; ensuring all finance users are compliant with and trained in the accounting standards, financial regulations and rules, policies and procedures; assisting Finance Section HQ in dedicated support, training, advice for Regional Offices, Programme Presence Offices (PPOs), Multi-Country Offices and COs (ROs/MCOs/COs); and acts as the Audit focal point for the Region in co-ordination with Finance Section HQ, as well as finance users in ROs, PPOs and MCOs/COs. 

The Finance Specialist supervises and leads finance support staff. The Finance Specialist works in close collaboration with Finance Section HQ, Programme and Operations colleagues, teams at the country level, UNDP staff and Government officials ensuring high performance and efficiency in Finance.

Duties and Responsibilities

1. Manage the financial planning, analysis, and provision of services to the RO and Programme Presence Offices in accordance with UN Women internal control framework, rules, regulations, policies and procedures

  • Recommend and/or implement cost saving and reduction strategies;
  • Review, recommend and implement and/or verify financial transactions/activities, recording/reporting system and audit reports. Co-ordinate with Finance Section HQ on suggestions for amendments;
  • Review, recommend and oversee the financial business processes and use of Atlas system and other corporate financial systems to ensure accurate and complete reporting of financial transactions by UN Women staff in accordance with the Internal Control Framework and Delegation of Authority and the timely flow of financial information in UNW for management, monitoring and oversight purposes;
  • Analyze and oversee all financial resources managed by the RO and provide high-quality professional advice on financial issues to management;
  • Organize and oversee resources management processes, including liquidity management, recommend impress level, risk assessment, security for cash assets on site;
  • Identify areas of risk and providing recommendations and action plans for addressing issues raised as part of the financial risk assessment reviews;
  • Participate in broader planning processes;
  • Anticipate needs, bring solutions and participate in actions to achieve financial targets

2. Manage the monitoring and oversight of financial systems in accordance with UN Women rules, regulations, policies and procedures

  • Monitor financial systems and reports for unusual activities, transactions, investigate anomalies;
  • Supervise and assist the RO and Programme Presence Offices with timely completion of their Month-end Instructions Checklist and Year-end Instructions Closure Checklist;
  • Prepare all financial reports in accordance with International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS) and ensure continued compliance.  Monitor the RO and Programme Presence Offices for compliance with IPSAS accounting standards by reviewing business processes and systems modules resulting in IPSAS compliant general ledger and financial statements;
  • Review Implementing/Responsible Partner advance procedures and test against UN Women policies to ensure compliance.  Investigate and follow up on any anomalies for timely action and resolution; 
  • Review all contractual arrangements with suppliers of goods and services to ensure that the financial terms and conditions of all contracts are being adhered to by the suppliers of goods and services;
  • Report to Operations Manager and Chief of Accounts any case of non-adherence for timely action and recommendations for actions/decisions;
  • Assist and respond in a timely manner to questions and provide analysis as requested to the Finance Section HQ and Offices of the Region;
  • Provide financial oversight to EVAW Trust Fund.

3. Manage financial reporting in the RO and Programme Presence Offices in accordance with UN Women rules, regulations, policies and procedures

  • Prepare timely and accurate financial reports to SMT, governments and donors as required under the donor agreements and other cost-sharing arrangements; in collaboration with Finance Section HQ;
  • Track and report of contributions within the resource mobilization efforts, including pipeline, contracted and overdue and future milestones.  Review contributions receivables and provide information to Operations Manager for follow up;
  • Generate ad hoc financial and other reports as requested;
  • Follow up and/or take prompt action to respond to audits and other findings on financial management;
  • Provide recommendations to Operations Manager and Chief of Accounts for improvements to existing reports and development of new reports. Identify and assist to develop projects for the Finance Users for improvement in accounting systems, processes and procedures.

4. Manage the audit process in accordance with UN Women rules, regulations, policies and procedures

  • Manage the pre-audit preparations for financial management of the RO and Programme Presence Offices to be audit ready and complete the pre-audit checklists.  Travel to the COs as necessary to assist in the preparation for CO audits and when required during CO audits;
  • Conduct training to the Region as part of the training plan or requirement of pre-audit preparations or as otherwise determined by Operations Manager or Chief of Accounts;
  • Prepare responses to internal and external audit inquiries and other findings related to financial management for review/approval by Operations Manager and Chief of Accounts and incorporate recommendations in development in policies, procedures and practices;
  • Provide technical support and guidance to project managers during the NGO/DIM audit processes;
  • Plan and track expenditures and performance audit of financial resources, including extra-budgetary income.

5. Manage programme/ project budgets in accordance with UN Women rules, regulations, policies and procedures

  • Manage all financial resources of programmes/ projects through planning, guiding, monitoring and controlling of the resources;
  • Provide technical support and guidance in planning and set-up of the budgets under UN Women Management/ Development Results Framework;
  • Monitor delivery of the Regional Office and Offices from the region;
  • Analyze and report on the budget approvals and the delivery situation of management projects;
  • Develop proper mechanisms to eliminate deficiencies in budget management ensuring quality and accuracy of information; 
  • Submit financial information for timely preparation of donor reports;
  • Oversee that advance payments and direct payments for programme implementation are properly reviewed and made on a timely basis and recorded into Atlas.

6. Manage financial training and communication for the Region and Programme Presence Offices

  • Monitor the effectiveness of the services of the Region’s finance team on a regular basis to ensure close relationship between Finance Section and Finance Users in the region and take corrective measures as needed;
  • Lead and support development projects to ensure effective finance and communication tools are in place and regularly monitored for improvements;
  • Perform the Finance Helpdesk function for the region to ensure accurate and timely response to issues and advice requested by Country Offices in conjunction with Finance Section HQ;
  • Supervise Finance staff of the RO and Programme Presence Offices and monitor progress and provide guidance and direction to the staff as necessary to ensure goals and objectives are achieved.

7. Participate in knowledge management and capacity building

  • Identify, participate in the development and/or recommend enhancement/updates/improvement in Atlas financial modules and other financial systems for better business practices and controls in the RO and Programme Presence Offices;
  • Capture, synthesize and/or codify lessons learned and best practices in the region support and financial management and services. Disseminate to Finance Section HQ and other Offices to share knowledge and build capacity;
  • Design and/or introduce, learning tools, best practices and innovations in financial business operational practices and management, promote transparency, ease of communications, hosting of financial documents, and all policies and procedures between all UNW users of the RO data.

Key Performance Indicators

  • Timely and accurate monitoring of performance of the financial team, including providing recommendations to improve business processes
  • Financial activities/transactions and documentations are implemented/processed according to UN Women rules and regulations, policies and procedures
  • Programme units receive timely support in relation to financial management, budgeting and planning
  • Timely and accurate professional advice on financial issues provided to the RO management and Region’s Country Offices
  • Timely reporting on financial issues


Core Values:

  • Respect for Diversity
  • Integrity
  • Professionalism

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
  • Accountability
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Effective Communication
  • Inclusive Collaboration
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Leading by Example


  • Very strong knowledge and expertise in accounting and financial management
  • Very strong knowledge of complex financial rules and a regulations, preferably UN/UN Women Financial Rules and regulations
  • Demonstrated business acumen and judgment
  • Strong conceptual/strategic skills and success in implementing financial re-engineering, management systems development, policy design, innovation and knowledge product development
  • Very strong knowledge and experience in the application of complex financial systems and modules (such as Atlas)
  • Advance knowledge of spreadsheet and database packages
  • Ability to provide advice and support
  • Strong communication skills and personable approach is required
  • Strong analytical skills

Required Skills and Experience

Education and certification

  • Advanced (Masters) University Degree in Finance/Accounting is required
  • Professionally qualified accountants from an internationally recognized institute of accountancy will have a distinct advantage.


  • Minimum 5 years of extensive and progressively responsible experience in accounting, financial management and at least (2) years of which should be at the supervisory level, in a large international and/or corporate organization preferably in the UN system and its organizations.
  • Experience of IPSAS or IFRS is required
  • Experience in the usage of office software packages (MS Word, Excel, Cloud, etc)
  • Experience in web based management systems and ERP financial systems such as PeopleSoft (Atlas).
  • Completion of UN Women Accountancy & Finance Test required

Language Requirements

  • Fluency in English and French are required
  • Working knowledge of any other UN official languages is an asset

All applications must include (as an attachment) the completed UN Women Personal History Form (P-11), which can be downloaded from . Please note that the system only allows one attachment. Applications without the UN Women P-11 form will be considered incomplete and will not be considered for further evaluation.

At UN Women, we are committed to creating an environment of diversity, inclusion and mutual respect. UN Women recruits, employs, trains, remunerates and promotes without regard to race, religion, colour, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, national origin or any other basis covered by the appropriate law. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, skills, integrity and the needs of the organisation.

If you need any reasonable accommodation to support your participation in the recruitment and selection process, please include this information in your application.

UN Women has a zero tolerance policy towards behaviour that is inconsistent with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UN Women, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination.  All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to UN Women policies and procedures and the standards of conduct expected of UN Women staff and will therefore be subject to a rigorous reference and background check. (The background check will include verification of academic qualifications and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to complete a background check).

Note: In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly established UN Women, the UN entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women. The creation of UN Women is part of the UN reform agenda, which aims to pool resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously separate parts of the UN system (DAW, OSAGI, INSTRAW and UNIFEM), which focused exclusively on gender equality and women's empowerment.

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