Framework Agreement Consultant for operational guidance on UNDP financial instruments/grant-making modalities


Location : Home-based with missions to New York, USA
Application Deadline :06-Mar-17 (Midnight New York, USA)
Time left :5d 11h 14m
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
03-Apr-2017
Duration of Initial Contract :One year
Expected Duration of Assignment :Up to 3 years (max. 150 working days in the period) dependent on demand for services and performance


Background

UNDP is updating its offering on financial instruments to respond to emerging interest from developing countries for support in designing, combining and sequencing financial instruments to achieve development objectives. This reflects an evolving development finance landscape, including an increased emphasis on blending public and private finance to improve development outcomes. The term ‘financial instrument’ refers to a product involved in the outflow of funds from UNDP to a beneficiary in the pursuit of development objectives.

In 2016, UNDP drafted an initial internal discussion paper and summary note on financial instruments. In November 2016, UNDP’s Operations Performance Group (OPG) endorsed the summary note’s recommendations, including – of relevance to this consultancy – to prioritize developing updated policies and operational guidance for (i) low value grants (micro capital grants); and (ii) performance based payments. These financial instruments were assessed as having high suitability to UNDP, high potential impact, high demand, and, in general, relatively lower associated fiduciary risks. This consultancy is to provide support to the development of these policies and guidance.

Low value grants (LVGs) and performance based payments (PBPs) may be categorized as ‘grant instruments’. UNDP’s approach to LVGs will build on UNDP’s existing Micro Capital Grant modality. LVGs are distinguished by being ex-ante payments to end-beneficiaries, with limitations on grant size due to their inherent higher risk. PBPs are distinguished by being ex-post payments, with funding provided on the delivery of development results, verified by independent third parties. UNDP may work on grant instruments both directly – providing funding directly to end-beneficiaries – or indirectly, via third party intermediaries (typically national partners and funds).

Within UNDP, its Bureau of Management Services (BMS), Bureau for External Relations and Affairs (BERA), and Bureau for Policy and Programme Support (BPPS) are working collectively on these activities. An informal UNDP working group on financial instruments, comprised of staff members from BMS, BERA and BPPS, has been established and will be chaired by the Deputy Director of BMS and the Executive Coordinator of UNDP-Global Environmental Finance (UNDP-GEF) unit within BPPS. The working group will provide the consultant with guidance and access to all relevant documents. This consultant will report to the UNDP-GEF Executive Coordinator. It is expected that this consultancy will coordinate and provide inputs to other consultancies managed by BMS, working on the financial policies and fiduciary regulations related to these instruments. 


Duties and Responsibilities

A number of potential tasks related to (i) low-value grants and (ii) performance-based payments are envisioned for the consultancy. The scope of the consultancy may include one or multiple such tasks, taking a flexible approach. Decisions on inclusion of specific tasks in the actual consultancy will be made on a case-by-case basis by mutual agreement between UNDP and the consultant.

Tasks may include the following work streams:

Low Value Grants (LVGs)

  • Drafting project management action plans, including roles and responsibilities of internal and external stakeholders for the completion of the deliverables for this work stream;
  • Draft operational manual and standardized programming templates:
    • This will build off UNDP’s “Guidance on Micro-Capital Grants” and the GEF Small Grants Programme Operational Guidelines (https://sgp.undp.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=108&Itemid=229#.WItc4RsrJaR);
    • The manual will provide updated guidelines for grant awarding (within a UNDP programming architecture) with transparent eligibility criteria and evaluation processes, grant award decision and procedures, and monitoring and results procedures & platforms for public access to information on beneficiaries and results.
  • Formulate updated policy and prescriptive content for LVGs;
  • Provide support for consultations under UNDP’s Policy Review Network (PRN), including preparing management response;
  • Finalize the operational manual and required prescriptive content for use of LVGs in UNDP’s POPP (based on feedback and guidance received by the PRN);
  • Assist (if required) in preparing documents for approval of instrument by UNDP’s Organizational Performance Group.

Performance Based Payments (PBPs)

  • Drafting project management action plans, including roles and responsibilities of internal and external stakeholders for the completion of the deliverables for this work stream;
  • Technical application case studies:
    • Prepare 4 case-studies, based on a project typologies identified from the UNDP-GEF portfolio, where PBPs would be appropriate as a financial instrument to achieve development objectives;
    • Prepare 2-3 case-studies from project typologies of other units within BPPS (non-GEF) where PBPs would be appropriate as a financial instrument to achieve development objectives.
  • Draft operational manual and standardized programming templates for PBPs, to accompany existing draft PBP financial agreement (to be developed by OFRM). This can include:
    • Defining PBP instrument and categories;
    • Summary of technical applications;
    • Defining targets, internal review of targets, and independent M&E of targets. This will involve consulting with UNDP’s Independent Evaluation Office;
    • Competitive selection of end-beneficiaries;
    • Due diligence of end-beneficiaries;
    • Internal assessment of risks, risk management approach, monitoring of risks, and escalation;
    • Assessing UNDP capacities, and building of UNDP capacities;
    • Exit strategies and procedures for non-performing PBPs;
    • Approach to implementation oversight, including monitoring and compliance;
    • Development of graphic, user-friendly process steps;
    • In addition, for indirect PBPs (with third party intermediaries/funds):
      • Due diligence of third party intermediaries/funds;
      • Governance, standards and control mechanisms for third-party intermediaries/funds.
  • Formulate updated policy and prescriptive content for PBPs;
  • Provide support for consultations under UNDP’s Policy Review Network (PRN), including preparing management response;
  • Finalize the operational manual and required prescriptive content for use of PBPs in UNDP’s POPP (based on feedback and guidance received by the PRN);
  • Assist (if required) in preparing documents for approval of instrument by UNDP’s Organizational Performance Group.

Information on Working Arrangements:

  • The objective of the framework agreement contract is to facilitate and expedite the process by which UNDP can hire the services of a consultant on a flexible basis;
  • Estimated level of effort:  approximately 100 days the first year and 50 days the remaining second and third year, spread in various intermittent assignments. Maximum working days over the 3-year period would be 150;
  • UNDP does not warrant that any quantity of services will be purchased during the term of the Framework Agreement as this will depend on forthcoming needs;
  • The initial contract would be for one year (April 2017 – April 2018) with an option for annual renewal in two other subsequent years dependent on demand for services and satisfactory performance evaluation;
  • The Framework Agreement to be signed will be for a fixed all-inclusive daily fee;
  • Once the framework agreement is signed, if there is a specific assignment, the focal person at UNDP will contact the consultant and provide updated information on the specific task, detailed description of deliverables, available background/supporting materials, available UNDP resource people, and timeline;
  • The consultant will advise within 48 hours whether s/he is available to deliver the requested tasks, and the estimated number of days work to do so;
  • Thereafter a Purchase Order will be raised. Financial commitments will only be established each time the services are requested within the scope of the Framework Agreement through the transmitted email and purchase order;
  • IC as a Framework agreement is non-exclusive (i.e. it does not prohibit UNDP from entering into another such framework agreement with another individuals or entities);
  • The Consultant will be given access to relevant information necessary for execution of the tasks under this assignment;
  • Given the global consultations to be undertaken during this assignment, the consultant is expected to be reasonably flexible with his/her availability for such consultations taking into consideration different time zones;
  • The consultant will be responsible for providing her/his own working station (i.e. laptop, internet, phone, scanner/printer, etc.) and must have access to a reliable internet connection;
  • Payments will be made upon submission of a detailed time sheet and certification of payment form, and acceptance and confirmation by the Supervisor on days worked and outputs delivered.

Travel:

  • 2-3 missions to New York, USA will be required within the first year (maximum 12 working days);
  • Any necessary mission travel must be approved in advance and in writing by the Supervisor;
  • The Basic Security in the Field II courses must be successfully completed prior to commencement of travel;
  • Individual Consultants are responsible for ensuring they have vaccinations/inoculations when travelling to certain countries, as designated by the UN Medical Director;
  • Consultants are also required to comply with the UN security directives set forth under https://dss.un.org/dssweb/
  • The consultant will be responsible for making his/her own mission travel arrangements in line with UNDP travel policies;
  • All travel expenses related to mission travels will be supported by the project travel fund and will be reimbursed as per UNDP rules and regulations for consultants.  Cost of mission travel should not be included in the financial proposal.


Competencies

Corporate:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favoritism;
  • Fulfills all obligations to gender sensitivity and zero tolerance for sexual harassment.

Technical:

  • Technical skills in grant-making modalities and/or financial instruments for use in a development or philanthropic context.

Communication:

  • Ability to communicate effectively in writing to in a simple and concise manner;

Professionalism:

  • Demonstrated ability in strategic planning;
  • Strong organizational, reporting and writing abilities;
  • Ability to work with multiple stakeholders across a wide range of disciplines;
  • Able to work independently and remotely with minimal supervision;
  • Ability to work under pressure and time constraints.
  • Capacity to plan, prioritize and deliver tasks on time.

Teamwork:

  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively as part of a collaborative team and process;
  • Openness to change and ability to receive/integrate feedback;
  • Ability to work under pressure;
  • Ability to work in teams.


Required Skills and Experience

Education:

  • Advanced university degree (masters or higher level) in business management, public administration, finance, economics, programme management or other closely-related field (max. 10 points).

Experience:

  • Minimum of 7 years of relevant professional experience in, or advising, international organizations or major foundations involved in grant-making (max. 20 points);
  • Proven experience in the technical, operational and fiduciary issues concerning the use of financial instruments or grant-making to assist end beneficiaries by international organisations or major foundations working in developing country contexts (max. 30 points);
  • Superior writing skills and track record of drafting published documents of an operational nature. Please provide a relevant publication/link of previous work in which the candidate served as lead author) (max. 10 points);
  • Previous experience working with UNDP is an advantage (max. 10 points);
  • Previous experience working with IFIs, development banks and/or the private sector regarding financial instruments or blended finance is an advantage (max. 10 points).

Language requirements:

  • Fluency in written and spoken English is essential (max. 10 points).

Evaluation Method:

  • Only those applications which are responsive and compliant will be evaluated;
  • Offers will be evaluated according to the Combined Scoring method – where the technical criteria will be weighted at 70% and the financial offer will be weighted at 30%;
  • The technical criteria [(education, experience, language will be worth a maximum 100 points) and (interviews will be worth a maximum 40 points)] will be based on a maximum 140 points. Only the top 3 candidates that have achieved a minimum of 70 points from the review of the education, experience, and language will be invited for the interviews;
  • Candidates obtaining 28 points or higher in the interview will deemed technically qualified and considered for financial evaluation;
  • The financial score (max 100pts) shall be computed as a ratio of the proposal being evaluated and the lowest priced proposal of those technically qualified;
  • The financial proposal shall specify an all-inclusive daily fee.  In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal must additionally include a breakdown of this daily fee (including all foreseeable expenses to carry out the assignment);
  • The applicant receiving the highest combined score and that has accepted UNDP’s General Terms and Conditions will be awarded the contract.

Documentation to be submitted:

  • Applicants must submit a duly completed and signed UNDP Personal History form (P11) to be downloaded from the below link;
  • Please provide a relevant publication/link of previous work in which the candidate served as lead author). Failure to meet this requirement will lead to automatic disqualification of application;
  • Applicants must reply to the mandatory questions asked by the system when submitting the application;
  • Applicants must submit a duly completed and signed Annex II Offeror´s letter to UNDP confirming interest and availability for the Individual Contractor (IC) assignment to be downloaded from the UNDP procurement site.

Kindly note you can upload only one document to this application (scan all documents in one single PDF file to attach).

UNDP Personal History form (P11) required of all applicants:

http://www.undp.org/content/dam/undp/library/corporate/Careers/P11_Personal_history_form.doc.

General Conditions of Contract for the ICs:

http://www.undp.org/content/dam/undp/documents/procurement/documents/IC%20-%20General%20Conditions.pdf.

Annex II Offeror´s letter to UNDP confirming interest and availability for the Individual Contractor (IC) assignment

http://procurement-notices.undp.org/view_notice.cfm?notice_id=35672


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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