Chief Financial Officer

Application Deadline :11-Oct-20 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :D-2
Languages Required :
Expected Duration of Assignment :More than a year; Fixed Term Appointment

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.


I. Job Purpose and Organizational Context

The Bureau for Management Services’ Office of Financial Resources Management (BMS/OFRM), supports the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the implementation of the 2030 agenda and UNDP’s Strategic Plan. It achieves this by developing and making fully operational a dynamic and harmonized integrated resource management framework based on comprehensive analysis that enhances UNDP’s financial and administrative performance, as well as facilitates UN reform and coherence.


To these ends, the framework addresses strategically critical financial, budgetary and administrative resource planning and management issues, including: institutional results based budgeting;  the implementation and enhancements to the Integrated Resources Plan and the Integrated Budget within the context of the integrated budget from 2014 onwards; enhanced cost classification and cost recovery;  capital budgeting; adherence to IPSAS;  foreign exchange and investment activities; organizational assets; budgetary and financial  management and other performance management initiatives;  and support to UN harmonization. The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) provides leadership in all financial aspects and the provision of strategic perspectives, to ensure and enhance organizational performance.


The CFO provides substantive and strategic advice to the Administrator and the Executive Group on risk-intelligent culture and risk management approaches; the Integrated Resources Plan and the Integrated Budget; internal financial planning; and the financial regulatory framework.


As a member of the BMS Senior  Leadership Team, responsibility for the CFO’s annual performance management lies with the BMS Director.


Effective and efficient integrated resources management is enabled through a continuous and robust process comprising:


A) the provision of strategic and expert advice in relation to the following areas:


  1. Integrated Resources Plan and the Integrated Budget: Formulate and align financial and high level budgetary strategies and frameworks with the organization’s Strategic Plan and the resolutions of the Executive Board.
  2. Risk-intelligent culture and risk management approaches: Catalyze and instill financial approaches throughout the organization to help other parts of business perform better, while promoting a risk-intelligent culture and risk management approaches triggering early-warning thereby continuously improving institutional oversight as well as audit performance and results. 
  3. Financial Regulatory Framework: Custodian of the financial regulatory framework and related policies and procedures (POPP). Provision of policy guidance, advisory services and operational support to strengthen client capacities and help them achieve results, seeking to build consensus within UNDP and with key stakeholders on critical budgetary related matters requiring Executive Board legislation.
  4. Internal Financial Planning: Lead robust internal financial planning, budgeting and analysis, supported by clear business analytics, that enables the leadership to make decisions that are fact-based and risk-informed.


B) In addition to reporting on and providing strategic advice to the BMS Director on the issues detailed above, undertake the following corporate roles and responsibilities as the CFO, with a management report to the BMS Director:


  1. Institute stewardship thereby preserving assets of the organization, minimizing risk and getting the books of account right. Promoting clear accountability for financial transactions and producing financial statements, including financial reporting to funding partners and the UNDP Executive Board.
  2. ­Ensuring utilization of financial resources in line with the financial regulations and rules, budgetary and financial framework the organization’s internal control framework, to achieve results. Continuously promote tight financial operations that are efficient and effective. 
  3. Continuous innovation for new financial instruments and adjustments to existing instruments aligning with the evolving development strategies and funding landscape, noting the regulatory framework and GA/EB resolutions.
  4. Lead the global finance function, including as the global process owner on finance and budgetary matters, and create inventory of finance staff with requisite qualifications.
  5. The incumbent shall perform the role of the Comptroller as set out in the UNDP Financial Regulations and Rules

Duties and Responsibilities

II. Duties and Responsibilities


  1. The CFO will be responsible for leadership in the following areas: formulating high quality budgetary frameworks to the Executive Board that further build confidence of Member States in UNDP and support the Strategic Plan; formulating and implementing finance, and administration strategies and policies that support current and future directions; directing and advising to optimize the use of all financial resources and ensure the financial integrity of the organization; cost-effective best practice reform of financial, budgeting and administrative operations, particularly exploring the value of re-engineering, centralization and decentralization, regionalization, automation and outsourcing. Participation at the Corporate Risk Committee and HLCM’s Finance and Budget Network.
  2. Providing strategic and expert advice to the BMS Director on all financial matters, including representation  where appropriate, at the OPG and the EG.
  3. Formulating, implementing and monitoring a dynamic financial framework with incentives to units and linked to results. Advice to the BMS Director on budget execution based on high quality analytics that support critical decision-making.
  4. Formulating and implementing strategic risk management approaches in conjunction with the BMS Director, appropriate units, especially Regional Bureaus, for early-warning. Working with Regional Bureau representatives to shift organizational culture from post facto risk management to ex ante corporate risk management for the top 20 Country Offices and any other high-risk initiatives and ventures resulting in improved ERM discourse and decision-making.
  5. Representational functions: Liaising with the 5th Committee, Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) and the Executive Board, funding-partners, strategic partners and the financial community; liaising with UN system on finance and administration issues; liaising with UNDP headquarters management and the leadership of Country Offices and other units.
  6. Directing financial and administrative operations: (i) cash management, including liquidity investment and foreign exchange activities and funding of COs and implementing agencies; organization accounting, administrative and financial controls, including the production of financial statements.
  7. Responsible for ensuring and providing: compliance with accounting standards and financial controls; development of the integrated financial resources framework and its policies and controls; accurate and timely financial reporting to the Executive Board, the Administrator, donors and other stakeholders; support for financial and administrative training/learning of both clients and staff; customer service and support, including through financial analytics, particularly to UNDP COs; maximization of opportunities for cost-recovery and revenue generation.
  8. In close consultations with the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and the Chief Digital Officer (CDO), directing and overseeing support for financial systems development and implementation in the context of a wider corporate enterprise resource planning: (i) advisory on design, configuration, testing and roll-out; (ii) co-ordination and collaboration with both internal and external stakeholders; (iii) representation and advisory on decision making committees.
  9. Creation of and support, through the BMS/OFRM team, to the implementation of new financial instruments with the UNDP Financial Hub, in supporting Country Office/units in their implementation of programmes and projects.
  10. The incumbent shall perform the role of the Comptroller as set out in the UNDP Financial Regulations and Rules, which covers, inter alia, the following:
  • Mandatory clearance on the granting of exceptions to the General Management Services (GMS) fee
  • Approving all payments under all accounts
  • Designation of staff as verifying officers
  • Issuing administrative instructions on advance and progress payments
  • Issuing financial instructions
  • Prescription and maintenance of financial and subsidiary records to permit accurate and timely financial reporting
  • Certifying all material transactions have been properly charged in the accounting records and are properly reflected in the financial statements


The incumbent’s results impact the integrity of UNDP’s operations globally as well as UNDP’s relationship with partners and other agencies.


III. Competencies and Selection Criteria


Description of Competency at Level Required

(For more comprehensive descriptions please see the competency inventory)




Ability to make new and useful ideas work

Level 8: Champions organizational agility, stakeholder-focused service approaches, and organizational learning throughout UNDP’s institutional engagement


Ability to persuade others to follow; promotes the vision, mission and strategic goals of UNDP

Level 8: Typifies the values and integrity of UNDP

People Management

- Ability to improve performance and satisfaction;

- Ensures an organizational environment that respects diversity, gender equality, cultural sensitivity and fosters openness to diverse perspectives

- Treats all people fairly without favoritism

- Builds support and political acumen

-Ability to build strong and relationships with the capability to interact at all levels with the organization.

Level 7: Empowers team managers to act independently and takes people management decisions


- Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform

- Creates and promotes an enabling environment for open communication

- Creates an emotionally intelligent organization and has the ability to work effectively in a stressful environment

- Foresees how others will interpret and react to events using awareness to smooth the way

- Leverages conflict in the interest of UNDP and sets standards

- Makes decisions fairly and transparently

Level 7: Reconciles contrasting positions and ambiguous circumstances by communicating a clear path for resolution and progress


Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement

Level 7: Sets strategic goals and builds the means to achieve optimal service delivery and organizational excellence



Financial Management and Accountability

- Coordinating and managing the delivery of financial and administrative services that meet customer needs and comply with accounting standards at the highest level of performance and accountability’

- Willingness and ability to manage large amounts of detail with great care and accuracy through a keen eye for details.

Level 8: Role Model & Resolve: Creates an environment to facilitate full institutional potential and governs UNDP’s strategic and political investments in line with organizational values and principles

Strategic Thinking and Expert Advice

- Formulating strategy and policy that contributes to the operationalization of UNDP’s goals, and advising on complex and important financial administrative issues.

- Ability to think and act strategically with good political awareness;

- Ability to handle complex situations and multiple responsibilities simultaneously, mixing long-term projects with the urgency of immediate demands.

Level 8: Role Model & Resolve: Creates an environment to facilitate full institutional potential and governs UNDP’s strategic and political investments in line with organizational values and principles


Promotes ethics and integrity by modeling the UN’s values and ethical standards

Level 8:Role Model & Resolve: Creates an environment to facilitate full institutional potential and governs UNDP’s strategic and political investments in line with organizational values and principles

Required Skills and Experience

IV. Recruitment Qualifications


  • University education, with a master’s degree or equivalent in the areas of finance, accounting, management or a related discipline or CPA or comparable nationals/ international professional accounting qualifications.


  • Progressively more responsible experience in senior financial management positions for large international organizations for minimum 20 years;
  • Demonstrated success in implementing major corporate change management programs;
  • Demonstrated success in contributing to the design and implementation of computerized financial systems;
  • High level of communication and inter-personal skills with demonstrated experience in managing large numbers of staff;
  • Proven record of integrity and probity;
  • Familiarity with international development and the UN system would be an advantage. 
  • Developing country experience would be highly desirable. 

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in English is required;
  • Fluency in other UN languages is highly desirable.

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