Job: Director, Africa Region, Evidence Action

Director, Africa Region

General Management – Nairobi, Kenya


About Evidence Action

Evidence Action scales proven development solutions to benefit millions of people around the world. We fill the gap between knowing ‘what works’ and having impact at scale. We implement cost-effective interventions whose efficacy is backed by substantial rigorous evidence. We identify innovative, appropriate financing mechanisms and build best-practice operational models. We voraciously self-evaluate, learn, and improve our models for scaling with a commitment to transparency on progress, impact, and value for money.  Our two flagship programs reached over 200 million people this year. One of them, the Deworm the World Initiative, was again selected by GiveWell as one of only seven Top Charities on the planet.

About the position

Evidence Action’s Director, Africa region will be overall in-charge of Evidence Action’s program delivery, at-scale monitoring and evaluation, compliance, people management, budget management, government and donor relations, and back-end operations in Africa. S/he will be inspired by Evidence Action’s mission to bring proven interventions to scale, and will have enormous opportunity to contribute to improved lives for millions of people around the world.

The Director, Africa region will lead a team culture characterized by high achievement and strong professional development through living and inculcating Evidence Action’s values.

The Director, Africa region will be a seasoned professional with at least eight years’ work experience, including five or more years of program leadership and management experience and an interest in expanding their horizons within a mission-driven organization committed to impact at scale. The ideal candidate has experience leading program implementation in developing countries, particularly within Africa…

The Director, Africa region focuses on giving strategic inputs for the region’s programs in coordination with program leads. S/he will provide inputs for leading incubation and development of new programs in the region, strengthening and expanding existing programs, mobilizing resources toward programs, and coordinating the organization’s matrixed functions (e.g., Finance and Administration; monitoring, learning, and information systems and human resources).

Responsibilities

Lead Evidence Action’s operations and corporate presence in Africa

  •  Provide substantive input, engagement, and agreement on regional strategic direction
  •  Represent the organization’s corporate presence in all African countries where Evidence Action operates; deliver on policies and standard operating procedures that have significant implications for associated financial, legal, reputational, and other types of institutional risk
  • Serve as a strategic thinker for Evidence Action’s senior management
  • Develop regional goals in alignment with overall organizational goals

Deliver world-class programs which impact the lives of millions at scale

  • Ultimate responsibility and accountability for operations of mature programs in the region including meeting service delivery targets, managing government relations, developing and operationalizing budgets and financial plans
  •  Ensure program teams engage effectively in the organization’s matrixed structure, maximizing  engagement with and value from MLIS and Finance & Admin teams
  •  Develop strategic service delivery targets with global and in-country program leads
  •  Coordinate with Regional Finance lead to ensure that budgetary data can be rapidly, accurately  linked with outcome data for reporting

Ensure a high-performing team environment and a strong professional development culture

  • Attract, develop and retain excellent team members and support program leads to do the same
  • Maintain and develop a regional culture of excellent people management consistent with high quality decision practice and Evidence Action values
  • Provide inputs for and overall responsible for HR policy and practice for the region in alignment with organizational policies

Qualifications and skills

  • At least eight years’ experience, with 5 or more in program implementation and management
  • Proven experience leading programs in Africa with demonstrated success in problem-solving, collaboration, and working on / managing cross-cultural teams desirable
  • A master’s degree in development, business or economics
  • Ability to operate effectively with ambiguity, and to lead within evolving, dynamic environments
  • Strong critical, analytical, and process-oriented thinking, with a willingness to form and adjust opinions based on evidence
  • Experience leading scale-focused work with a major operations component – building systems, bringing together organizational functions and developing highly efficient teams
  • Knowledge and capability to thoughtfully cultivate a culture and management systems which enable team members to achieve their best and develop professionally
  • Significant experience applying data and quantitative analysis to drive decision making and information systems to improve service delivery; past experience managing M&E functions will be a major advantage
  • Experience with complex budget management, including multiple donors, restricted funds and meeting donor compliance requirements
  • A strong commitment to evidence-based practice and policy in the development field
  • Experience independently managing complex work streams/projects
  • Experience successfully managing external relationships in multi-cultural environments
  • Ability to be effective in high-pressure situations
  • High level of proficiency in Microsoft Office, particularly Excel, PowerPoint, and Word
  • Experience living or working in developing countries
  • Availability for 30% international and regional travel
  • A sense of humor and excitement to be part of an engaged and intellectually stimulating work environment

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted by phone and email for an interview.  Applicants are encouraged to apply early, as applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Evidence Action is an Equal Opportunity Employer with a commitment to diversity.  All individuals, regardless of personal characteristics, are encouraged to apply.

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