Communication and Public Relations Consultant (Centre for Financial Health) [previously posted as Job 98772]

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Home-based
Application Deadline :20-May-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :4 months

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.


UNCDF is the UN’s capital investment agency for the world’s 47 Least Developed Countries (LDCs). UNCDF uses its capital mandate to support LDCs pursue inclusive growth. UNCDF promotes financial inclusion, also through digital financial services (DFS), as a key enabler of poverty reduction and inclusive growth; and it demonstrates how localizing finance outside the capital cities can accelerate growth in local economies, promote sustainable and climate-resilient infrastructure development, and empower local communities. Using capital grants, loans and credit enhancements, UNCDF tests financial models in inclusive finance and local development finance; ‘de-risks’ the local investment space; and provides proofs of concept, paving the way for larger and more risk-averse investors.

Recently, UNCDF has formulated its strategy ‘Leaving No One Behind in the Digital Era’ based on over a decade of experience in digital finance in Africa, Asia and the Pacific. UNCDF recognizes that reaching the full potential of digital financial inclusion in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aligns with the vision of promoting digital economies that leave no one behind. The vision of UNCDF is to empower millions of people by 2024 to use services daily that leverage innovation and technology and contribute to the SDGs. Please refer to the link for further information:

For years, many financial inclusion practitioners assumed that providing access to finance would enable people to use money in ways that would set them up for success. But having access does not cause people to be financially healthy, stable, and successful. For example, only 29% of Americans are financially healthy despite a booming economy and near-universal financial inclusion. 83% of Kenyans were financially included in 2019 but only 22% were deemed financially healthy, a drop from 39% in 2016.

Financial inclusion tends to be reduced to binaries as opposed to being a discussion of a spectrum. Financial health, on the other hand, is arguably a more customer-centric concept, one that offers principles to define impact more holistically, measure it systematically and create it in in a sustained and meaningful manner. Fundamentally, it is a non-product-centric approach based on the end consumers' needs.

Financial inclusion and financial health also are fundamentally different approaches, with distinct entry points. With financial inclusion we start with the question, “What does a financial product or service unlock?”. With financial health we turn this notion on its head and ask instead, “What does it take to be financially healthy?”. Using this “impact” question as an anchor, we work backwards to better align financial interventions to what makes customers financially healthy.

Hosted by UNCDF, the Centre for Financial Health is set-up as an umbrella platform towards convening a global coalition and thought leadership. The Centre for Financial Health acts as a convener, providing a platform to bring together global, regional and local actors committed to using financial and digital solutions to improve the financial lives of low-income families—helping them climb - and stay - out of poverty. The Centre creates space for thought leadership where best financial health practices and models are exchanged and lead to concrete action with governments and the private sector.

The Centre is implementing programmes in different countries called Living Labs which support players with a combination of high quality financial, advisory and networking support to design, test and scale financial health solutions. The aim of the programmes are to improve the financial health of five million people over the next four years.

Driving global advocacy and learnings around financial health requires focus on communication, evidence base, research, partnerships and proof of concepts. In line with that this TOR is outlined in process of building the communications team to strengthen the global efforts. The Communication and Publication Relations (PR) Consultant would be a key part of the Communication Team engaged to drive the global advocacy and communication related to different interventions managed under the Centre. The details are outlined below.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Communication and PR Consultant would be supported by other members of the Communication Teams in the Living Labs. The consultant would have to drive the agenda with ownership and function as a lead to actively drive the comms work. The Communication and PR Consultant would report to the Global Manager – Innovations and Financial Health. The following are the main activities and timelines of deliverables for four months:




Payment terms in % of total contract price

Communication Strategy and Operational Plan for Driving Advocacy and Thought Leadership and Programmes (Living Labs) on Financial Health, with allocation of responsibilities, timelines, frequencies, KPIs related to different activities.

  • Strategy and Operational Plan for Financial Health

Month 1


Organize different channels for driving the global agenda and showcase programmings at Living Labs:

  • Financial Health Website
  • Financial Health newsletter
  • Other media channels
  • Final report on execution and launch of the channels/tools

Month 3


  • Driving advocacy efforts around Financial Health through packaging and repackaging of content developed by the Centre.
  • Placement of Financial Health content across various platforms, e.g. traditional and social media.
  • Mainstream the Financial Health and measurement discussions with private sector, government and policy makers and donors.
  • Place the Centre as a thought leader through engagement with print and TV media in local geographies as well as at global level.
  • Drive positioning and visibility of the Centre, coalition and various partners engaging with the Centre.
  • Create opportunities for the Centre team and aligned donors/partners to speak at various forums and highlight the discussions related to Financial Health.
  • Provide oversight and guidance to the in-country teams related to comms work.
  • Lead on the Public Relations for the Centre.
  • Data and insights plan to drive thought leadership

Month 2


  • PPT outlining the dashboard for tracking communication efforts

Month 3


  • Operational plan around community engagement to be developed under the Financial Health portfolio

Month 4






  • Throughout the months, the Consultant together with the team would be responsible to capture UNCDF’s activities and share them through social media.
  • The Comms and PR Consultant will also coordinate the UNCDF team on Comms at corporate and programme level (IDE – Inclusive Digital Economies, BTCA - Better Than Cash Alliance).
  • The Comms and PR Consultant will be responsible for publishing a monthly newsletter, coordinate with local media (markets like India, Malaysia, China, Singapore, Kenya, South Africa, MENA) for print and TV coverage and update the contact list for regular information sharing.

Institutional Arrangement

Duration: 4 months

Duty Station:  Home-based

For unforeseeable travel, payment of travel costs including tickets, lodging and terminal expenses should be agreed upon, between the respective business unit and Individual Consultant, prior to travel and will be reimbursed. UNCDF would cover the cost of stay for the selected individual.

Please note that UNCDF cannot guarantee residence permits or visas for consultants. Consultants are responsible for securing their work documentation. In the case of national consultants, applicants that are not nationals of the duty station requested will have to prove their residence status. 

Provision of Monitoring, Progress Controls & Payments:

  • The consultant will work under the direct supervision of the Global Manager – Innovations and Financial Health.
  • Payment will be made against satisfactory completion of each deliverable according to the payment schedule listed in the table above. All payments shall be disbursed only upon written confirmation of acceptance of the deliverables and authorization for payment by the Global Manager – Innovations and Financial Health.
  • Final payment shall require a signed performance evaluation of the consultant.


  • Knowledge of communication, information and editing standards and techniques (typographic rules and syntactic rules, layout, multimedia writing, multimedia ergonomics).
  • Ability to organize, structure, and write content by adapting it to the intended audience.
  • Be able to listen and collaborate with a wide range of actors.
  • Ability to work independently and proactively.

Knowledge Management and Sharing

  • Excellent computer skills and ability to use software and other relevant applications; design and/or maintenance of websites.
  • Ability to manage events and coordinate contributions from different stakeholders.
  • Development and operational efficiency.
  • Knowledge of UNCDF and the UN system and/or the donor community.

Leadership and Autonomy

  • Focuses on the outcome for the client and reacts positively to the criticisms received.
  • Always adopts a dynamic, positive and constructive attitude at work.
  • Remains calm, self-possessed and in a good mood, even under pressure.
  • Demonstrates openness to change and the ability to handle complex situations.
  • Interacts with others in a professional, respectful and friendly manner.

Communicates clearly and convincingly.

Required Skills and Experience

Academic Qualification

  • Master’s degree in international development, communication, journalism, marketing, social sciences or a related discipline


  • Minimum of five (5) years of progressively responsible experience in communication or public relation or another relevant area.
  • Minimum of three (3) years of experience in event management is desired.
  • Minimum of three (3) years of experience in managing communications for a programme.
  • Minimum of two (2) years of experience working with international organizations, developing country governments, donor agencies and/or NGOs and other civil society groups involved in various sectors of international development.
  • Existing network with international media groups and other related industry associations is a plus.
  • Previous experience with a UN organization/agency would be a plus.


Fluent in English, both written and oral

Application Process

Interested individuals must submit the documents mentioned below in order to demonstrate their qualifications (Note: the system does not allow multiple uploads of documents.) 

The following documents are to be uploaded in one PDF file:

  • Brief description of why the individual considers him/herself as the most suitable for the assignment, and a methodology, if applicable, on how they will approach the assignment.
  • Personal CV indicating all past experience from similar projects, as well as the contact details (email and telephone number) of the Candidate and at least three (3) professional references;

The following document is to be sent by email to

Incomplete applications may not be considered. Please make sure you have provided all requested documents.

Evaluation Method

Applicants will be evaluated based on the following methodology:

  • Preliminary Evaluation - Step I: Screening;
  • Technical Evaluation Weight - 70% x (Step II: Desk review 20 points + Step III: Interview 80 points = 100 Points);
  • Financial Evaluation Weight - 30% (Step IV).

Step I: Screening

Applications will be screened and only applicants meeting the following minimum criteria will progress to the pool for shortlisting:

  • A Master’s degree in international development, communication, journalism, marketing, social sciences or a related discipline.
  • Minimum of five (5) years of progressively responsible experience in communication or public relation or another relevant area.

Step II: Desk Review

A desk review will be conducted to produce a shortlist of applicants according to the criteria listed below. Only applicants who obtain 70 points at this stage shall be invited for the next step.

  • Minimum of five (5) years of progressively responsible experience in communication or public relation or another relevant area. – 40 points
  • Minimum of three (3) years of experience in event management is desired. – 20 points
  • Minimum of three (3) years of experience in managing communications for a programme. – 20 points
  • Minimum of two (2) years of experience working with international organizations, developing country governments, donor agencies and/or NGOs and other civil society groups involved in various sectors of international development. – 10 points
  • Previous experience with a UN organization/agency. – 10 points

Step III: Interview

The top 4 candidates who obtain 70 points and above at the desk review shall be invited to a panel interview. They will be assessed on the following:

  • Relevant experience
  • Sector knowledge 
  • Communication skills

Only applicants who obtain a minimum of 70% on the total of Steps II (20 points) + III (80 points) will be considered as technically-qualified and will be reviewed further for financial evaluation.

Step IV: Financial Evaluation

The following formula will be used for evaluation of financial proposals:

Lowest priced proposal / Price of the proposal being evaluated x 30

Award Criteria

The contract shall be awarded to the applicant whose offer have been evaluated and determined as:

  • Responsive/compliant/acceptable; and
  • Having received the highest combined score: Technical (desk review and interview) 70% + Financial 30% = 100%.

Both individual consultants and individuals employed by a company or institution are welcome to apply. Any individual employed by a company or institution who would like to submit an offer in response to a Procurement Notice for individual consultant must do so in their individual capacity by providing a CV so that their qualifications may be judged accordingly. Women candidates or women-owned businesses are strongly encouraged to apply.



If you are experiencing difficulties with online job applications, please contact

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme