Consultant: PHP/Elgg Developer

Application Deadline :30-Sep-09 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :Six months with possibility of extension
Expected Duration of Assignment :Six months with possibility of extension

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.


The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is the global development network of the United Nations, advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help people build a better life.
The Knowledge Management Group in UNDP has conceptualised and prototyped a social networking application called “Teamworks” in order to share knowledge assets, create several types of collaborative “spaces,” and establish communities of practices linking together thousands of staff members, experts, consultants, external partners and clients around the world.
Teamworks prototype is built on the popular open source social networking engine Elgg. The interfaces of Elgg have been customised by using plugins, views, and modifications to the core Elgg code to cater UNDP’s requirements.
The Knowledge Management Group in UNDP is seeking experienced PHP developers with Elgg expertise to build this prototype further based on the feedback from users.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Advising and assisting UNDP internal team members on Elgg architecture and best practices in Elgg development
  • Analyzing the impact of the modifications done to Elgg core of the prototype
  • Developing new features and changing current functionality of the prototype based on user feedback
  • Adding functionality to extend current prototype to other UN Agencies, including handling of different authentication mechanisms
  • Developing scripts to migrate or integrate data from other systems used in the UNDP (HR Database, Learning Management Database)
  • Fixing bugs reported by users in the current prototype
  • Developing new Elgg plugins according to agreed specifications
  • Developing business intelligence components on current prototype usage for users, service space owners and system
  • Developing PHP code snippets to automate some of the administration tasks performed manually on the current prototype
  • Advising UNDP team members on optimising the performance of the prototype and implementing different caching methods


  • Design and develop web applications according to users’ expectations
  • Advises and guides users during all the steps of development process in order to achieve a product that will have a positive and significant impact
  • Builds and maintains effective strong relationships – establishes lasting relationships and substantive dialogue with users
  • Manages projects effectively – consistently ensures timeliness and quality of work carried out
  • Communicates clearly and effectively- creates an environment for open communication and exchange of  ideas
  • Actively listen to users and team members

Required Skills and Experience

  • Bachelor's degree in information technology, computer science, or a related field
  • Zend certification in PHP is preferable
  • At least 5 years of PHP development experience
  • Demonstrate a solid portfolio of PHP work; preference will be given to candidates who can demonstrate they have gained expertise through working with Elgg and have participated in its community
  • Strong understanding of object orientated methodologies in PHP 5 and database optimization / normalization techniques
  • In depth knowledge in LAMP
  • Experience in developing with AJAX, RSS, JSON and RESTful APIs
  • Strong understanding of Web 2.0 concepts, including social networking applications
  • Fluency in English required
Note on selection process:
  • The consultant will be recruited locally and would work for a period of 6 months with possibility of extension. The envisaged starting is October 15, 2009.
  • Interested candidates should provide payment levels to assess value for money or best financial offer when assessment of technical competencies is completed.

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