Programme Assistant, UNV

Location : Bogotá, COLOMBIA
Application Deadline :28-Jan-16 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Management
Type of Contract :FTA Local
Post Level :GS-5
Languages Required :
English   Spanish  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)


Based in the Country Office of UNDP, the UNV field unit generally consists of a UNV Programme Officer and a UNV Programme Assistant/Associate. In some cases, the field unit consists of only a UNV Programme Assistant or a UNV Programme Associate. The field unit is an integral part of the UNV HQ Portfolio Team. The UNV field unit is responsible for the day-to-day management of UN volunteers, UNV-managed programmes, responding to appropriate local demands and seeking out new opportunities for UNV.


As part of the UNV field unit, the UNV Programme Assistant is assigned to the UNDP Country Office to work with his/her supervisor to provide support to UNV activities in the country. The UNV Programme Assistant is responsible for the administrative requirements related to the UNV inputs/assignments.


The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme is the UN organization that contributes to peace and development through volunteerism worldwide. Volunteerism is a powerful means of engaging people in tackling development challenges, and it can transform the pace and nature of development. Volunteerism benefits both society at large and the individual volunteer by strengthening trust, solidarity and reciprocity among citizens, and by purposefully creating opportunities for participation. UNV contributes to peace and development by advocating for recognition of volunteers, working with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming, and mobilizing an increasing number and diversity of volunteers, including experienced UN volunteers, throughout the world. UNV embraces volunteerism as universal and inclusive, and recognizes volunteerism in its diversity as well as the values that sustain it: free will, commitment, engagement and solidarity.


UNV engaged 7,545 UN volunteers in 2009, on a total of 7,716 assignments. With an average age of 37 years and the requisite professional skills and qualifications of some 5 to 10 years relevant experience, UN volunteers served in 128 countries in 2009 and came themselves from 158. The majority – 79 per cent – come from developing countries themselves. One third of UN volunteers served in their own countries, with the others carrying out international assignments. The financial equivalent of programme activities exceeds US$219 million annually.   In addition, as the focal point in the United Nations for the International Year of the Volunteers (IYV2001), UNV is active in the follow-up to the Year, for which the key objectives are the recognition, facilitation, networking and promotion of volunteerism. 


As one of the key pillars, the Peace and Development Portfolio Team is responsible for implementing UNV’s programme strategy including volunteer management at global, regional and local levels. The team is responsible for the following task: performs strategic planning and programming in the portfolio of countries based on the UNV programme strategy; builds and strengthens relationships with main partners within the UN system and with external partners on operational and programmatic matters; ensures effective communications between UNV HQ and the UNV field presence for quality programming and volunteer management; monitors the implementation of programming and volunteer management at the macro level; provides substantive focus area inputs and support to cross-unit and corporate initiatives related to programming and volunteer management activities.


Under the general guidance of the respective Portfolio Team at UNV HQ, the UNV Programme Assistant works under his/her direct supervisor through whom he/she reports to the UNDP Resident Representative. To function effectively, it is essential for the UNV Programme Assistant to maintain close working relations with other staff in the UNDP office, in both operations and programme divisions, and be well integrated as a member of the UNDP team

Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of Key Functions: 

  • Programme-related support
  • Volunteer-related support
  • Administrative and logistical support

1. Ensures effective programme-related support, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Provide the required support, where appropriate, to his/her supervisor in managing and monitoring UNV projects under the supervisor’s responsibility.

  • Maintain required financial information on expenditures to assist his/her supervisor in the preparation of project budgets and subsequent revisions.

  • Act upon and follow-up on pipeline UNV assignments with partner agencies, particularly in the timely submission of Descriptions of Assignment, confirmation of funds, clearance of candidates, etc.

  • Support the supervisor in volunteerism related activities, including International Volunteer Day (IVD) events

2. Ensures effective volunteer-related support, focusing on achievement of the following results:


  • Maintain volunteer files of all UN volunteers assigned to the country, ensuring that all correspondence and periodic reports (online) are properly kept, and that related matters requiring action are brought to the attention of his/her supervisor.

  • Monitor and keep records of the contractual status of all serving UN volunteers and flag to his/her supervisor follow-up actions on assignment extensions, renewals and replacements.

  • Maintain up-to-date volunteer leave records and ensure that all UN volunteers submit their leave requests well in advance to the UNDP office (particular attention is given to final leave entitlements); submit to UNV headquarters copies of the final leave records for all departing UN volunteers.

  • Maintain up to date contact records of all serving UN volunteers, including their recognized dependents.

  • Ensure that inventories of personal effects of UN volunteers are compiled, updated and sent to UNV headquarters in a timely manner, in accordance with the relevant provisions included in the Field Security Handbook as well as in the UNV Conditions of Service.

  • Liaise with UNV HQ and/or country of recruitment on the logistical and travel arrangements of arriving UN volunteers and his/her recognized dependents.

  • Facilitate government clearance and entry visas of incoming UN volunteers and their recognized dependents.

  • Undertake all the tasks in order to ensure that all UN volunteers arriving for the first time in the country are met and pre-arrival arrangements are made. Ensure timely payment of UN volunteer Settling-in-Grant.
  • Provide the necessary support to UN volunteers to open bank accounts as well as to complete forms required to obtain residence permits, driving license, etc.
  • Prepare, when required, in consultation with the supervisor, travel authorization for UN volunteers in connection with their in-country duty-related travel.

  • Respond to and liaise with all UN volunteers in the country regarding financial and administrative issues.

  • Undertake tasks in the overall management of the UN volunteers and recognized dependents in the country.

  • Process monthly entitlements of UN volunteers.

  • Provide, when required, in consultation with the supervisor, the necessary support to UN volunteers in the case of serious illness, medical evacuation, security evacuations or the death of a UN volunteer.

  • Ensure all conditions are met before the payment of final entitlements to UN volunteers at the end of their assignment.

  • Provide guidance and advice on conditions of service and administrative processes in co-ordination with the Portfolio Team at UNV HQ.

  • Screen national candidates applying for UNV positions

3. Ensures effective administrative and logistical support, focusing on achievement of the following results:

  • Maintain inventories of all UNV-supplied, non-expendable equipment, and ensure records of all items purchased for UNV-executed projects are submitted to UNV headquarters.

  • Perform functions related to carrying out surveys on housing and utilities relevant to UNV and ensure that the results are communicated to UNV headquarters.

  • Draft and type correspondence, including memoranda and notes for the file.

  • Maintain general office files and keep information and reference material in a manner that allows easy reference and retrieval.

  • Perform duties such as photocopying, collection and distribution of incoming mail, dispatching outgoing mail, locating files, etc.

  • < >form ATLAS HCM roles related to contract management, payroll validation, earnings and deductions, leave management, terminations, etc.

    Prepare requisitions, purchase orders and vouchers for all UNV payments in ATLAS and take timely corrective actions on incorrect requisition, purchase orders, and vouchers.

  • Provide administrative support in updating and maintaining a NUN volunteers candidates’ data base and recruitment of NUN volunteers.

  • Provide administrative support for the recruitment of local UNV candidates who are deployed to other countries.

  • Perform other administrative duties as may be required

Impact of Results

Achievement of key results has an impact on the efficiency and effectiveness of the UNV field unit, and strengthens the capacity of the office to promote the image of UNV/UNDP as an effective contributor to the development of the country


Functional Competencies:            


Promoting Organizational Learning and Knowledge Sharing

Level 1.1: Basic research and analysis

  • Documents innovative strategies and new approaches

  • Identifies and communicates opportunities to promote learning and knowledge sharing

  • Develops awareness of the various internal/external learning and knowledge-sharing resources


Job Knowledge/Technical Expertise

Level 1.1: Fundamental knowledge of processes, methods and procedures

  • Understands the main processes and methods of work regarding to the position

  • Possesses basic knowledge of organizational policies and procedures relating to the position and applies them consistently in work tasks

  • Identifies new and better approaches to work processes and incorporates same in own work

  • Strives to keep job knowledge up-to-date through self-directed study and other means of learning

  • Demonstrates good knowledge of information technology and applies it in work assignments


Promoting Organizational Change and Development

Level 1.1: Presentation of information on best practices in organizational change

  • Demonstrates ability to identify problems and proposes solutions

  • Documents processes to support change initiatives


    Strategic Alignment of Management Practice (HQ & RSCs)

    Level 1.1: Collecting information, identifying best practice

  • Understands the organizational structure, knows key functional and operational areas of organizational units and provides inputs to the delivery of management systems and services


    Design and Implementation of Management Systems

    Level 1.1: Data gathering and implementation of management systems

  • Uses information/databases/other management systems


    Client Orientation

    Level 1.1:  Maintains effective client relationships

  • Organizes and prioritizes work schedule to meet client needs and deadlines

  • Establishes, builds and sustains effective relationships within the work unit and with internal and external clients

  • Responds to client needs promptly


    Promoting Accountability and Results-Based Management

    Level 1.1:  Gathering and disseminating information

  • Prepares timely inputs to reports

  • Maintains databases


Core Competencies:

  • Demonstrating/safeguarding ethics and integrity  

  • Demonstrate corporate knowledge and sound judgment

  • Self-development, initiative-taking

  • Acting as a team player and facilitating team work

  • Facilitating and encouraging open communication in the team, communicating effectively

  • Creating synergies through self-control

  • Managing conflict

  • Learning and sharing knowledge and encourage the learning of others

  • Informed and transparent decision making

Required Skills and Experience


  • Secondary education. 


  • 5 years of relevant experience in administration and/or programme support services.
  • Experience using computers and office software packages (ERP, MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.).
  • Experience in handling of web-based management systems is highly desirable

Language Requirements

  • Fluency in English and national language of the duty station



Only on-line applications which contain a signed UNDP P11 form will be considered. You can find P-11 form at

Only nationals from Colombia are elegible to apply.

UN/UNDP internal candidates may be applying for this position.

We strongly encourage qualified women to apply.



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.

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