Director, Office of Human Resources

Application Deadline :16-Aug-17 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :D-2
Languages Required :


With the Secretary-General’s reform efforts underway and the beginning of a new administration at UNDP, there has never been a more exciting time to be at the forefront of organizational change.  Human resources management will be an important driver in achieving the kind of dynamic, transformational change that is called for to support the 2030 Agenda and the achievement of the SDGs.

UNDP is a unique working environment and will play a forward looking, effective and central role in delivering on the SG's agenda and strategy.  Our staff provide services to some of the world’s most vulnerable people, investing in development programmes across the globe, “working as one” with our UN sister agencies, to achieve our vision of “Empowered Lives and Resilient Nations”. This working environment presents special challenges for people management.  UNDP works in over 150 country settings around the world and has a global workforce of over 17,000 people including staff, UNVs, long term consultants and senior managers. We work in development, humanitarian, post disaster and multi country programme contexts. UNDP’s national and international staff and long term experts contribute to on the ground solutions around the world working as part of a larger UN system.

The role of the Office of Human Resources (OHR) is to provide UNDP and its leadership with the best strategic HR advice. Leading the provision of HR business focused services, the office delivers best practice HR services and interventions that deliver results.

The Office is accountable for the strategies, policies, systems and frameworks that enable UNDP to attract, develop, retain and motivate a highly skilled and diverse workforce. It shapes and cultivates a workplace that enables the organization’s staff to be productive, valued and rewarded.  Based in HQ in New York, and with its presence in regional hubs, OHR offers high quality business focused HR services across the globe.

OHR ensures the availability of a highly skilled, aligned and engaged workforce to deliver today and tomorrow.  Services include workforce planning, change management, recruitment, talent development including leadership development, engagement, performance management and succession management. It provides advisory and oversight services for human resources management of its global workforce.  It provides the learning and knowledge management systems to ensure that staff skills and competencies remain highly competitive for advisory and development services.  It ensures that the Human Resources architecture is aligned to support the organization’s direction and the UN Reform.

OHR administers the global workforce through its systems support and advisory services.  Key functions of OHR include:

  • Thought leadership
  • Integrated talent management
  • Policy development, including compensation
  • Business partnering

The Office of Human Resources is one of the pillars of the Bureau for Management Services (BMS) under the supervision of the Assistant Administrator and Director of BMS. Staff administrative services are provided through a separately managed BMS Global Shared Services Unit.

Duties and Responsibilities

HR strategic Contribution

  • Defines the global vision and strategic direction of the organization’s human-resources-management practice consistent with evolving business needs and best practice, and leads and drives change to achieve the identified vision.
  • Exercises thought leadership, introduces and originates methods and systems to align talent to give effect to UNDP’s strategic plan.
  • Ensures the provision of critical business reporting, information and insight to senior management on workforce trends, profile, and emerging issues to position the organization and proactively anticipate, plan and meet future workforce needs.
  • Identifies risks and ensures quality assurance for all people processes and systems, liaising with independent evaluation, ethics and other oversight bodies.

HR technical Leadership

  • Establishes the parameters, and provides strategic direction to the work programmes and strategies of the accountable areas of the Office of Human Resources (OHR) to achieve results.


  Workforce planning

  Change management

  Integrated Talent Management

  Management Consultancy Services

  Organizational Development

  Staff Engagement



   Strategic Sourcing/Succession,

   Learning/Career Development

  • On behalf of the UN system, oversees the administration of the Resident Coordinator/Resident Representative assessment, selection and placement  processes including UN-system governance arrangements
  • Provides technical leadership to the HR community including HR expertise in country offices.
  • Provides crisis response as appropriate for people matters in sudden and unexpected emergency situations.


  • Oversees and directs the planning, resources provision, management, operations, activities and change priorities of the specialized team leaders in diverse disciplines for consistently high levels of performance, efficiency and engagement.
  • Approves the Office’s annual work plans. Collaboratively sets objectives, performance measurements, standards and expected results and delivers within agreed budgets and timeframes.
  • Inspires the team, cultivates engagement and ensures alignment
  • Guides and shapes the development and implementation of updated HR systems, processes, and tools, with an emphasis on e-HR and simplification. Redesign systems to improve the experience of managers and staff in using HR tools and increase productivity and efficiency for all HR activities at HQs, in regional hubs and in Country Offices.
  • Builds capability for HR expertise, within the OHR office and also across the wider HR community.
  • Role models excellence in management and leadership practice.

Partnerships and Representation

  • Defines the vision and establishes methods for building and maintaining strategic partnerships to support the achievement of the organization’s HR objectives and enhance the reputation of UNDP.
  • Positions UNDP as a leader in UN Human Resources reform ensuring the evolution of a modern and dynamic international civil service, actively partnering with the United Nations Common System with particular attention to the demands of field-based programmes and the challenges of staff mobility.
  • Works with HR colleagues in UN sister agencies of the whole system on people matters to ensure joined up thinking and a “one UN” approach.
  • Serves as UNDP's principal representative with the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), the HR Directors Forum and other policy making bodies.
  • Supports the management of the strategic partnership with the Staff Association to advance harmonious and effective staff-management relations.
  • Supports the Bureau for external relations to contribute to their agenda in developing partnerships with key stakeholders.
  • Develops new partnerships for strategic alignments to advance the talent development agenda to ensure a diverse workforce in the future.

Leader within the Bureau for Management Services and UNDP

  • As a Senior Manager of the Bureau for Management Services, contributes to the design and delivery of a vision for management services aligned with evolving business needs
  • As a senior leader within the Bureau for Management Services, work collaboratively with peers and colleagues to provide joined up services to clients.  This includes joined up reporting, developing whole of business solutions and participating in the management committee for the Business Transactions unit.
  • Provides leadership across UNDP through participation in appropriate forums and senior management meetings.
  • Acts as a confidential and trusted advisor to the Administrator and Senior Executives surfacing the hard issues and reflecting the truth on people matters. Provides a safe haven for challenging ideas.


  • Provides authoritative, forward-looking advice concerning management strategies, services and systems design and implementation
  • In line with organizational directions, identifies areas for change and supports the transformation process
  • Demonstrates a commitment to the provision of quality services to clients, both internal and external, promoting a mindset of valuing clients
  • Provides leadership to support innovation, learning and knowledge sharing towards capacity development
  • Identifies and manages risk, including at the corporate level
  • Works collaboratively with UN System and external partners as required on management systems and tools
  • Creates and promotes an enabling environment for open communication
  • Develops regional/global strategic partnerships and networks with UN agencies and other international partners in support of UNDP’s agenda

Required Skills and Experience


  • Advanced university degree (Masters) in Human Resources, Business or Public Administration or Management or equivalent.


  • At least 15 years of progressively responsible experience in Human Resources Management, including managing teams in a diverse workforce in private or public international organizations
  • Demonstrated professional expertise in Strategic Human Resources Management developed through significant experience at a senior level in large and complex organizations.

Language Requirements:

  • Excellent knowledge of English, as well as writing, presentation and communication skills.
  • Fluency in other UN languages is an asset

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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.

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