Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

Senior Consultant (Records and Archives)

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

Job Description

The Corporate Services Department is responsible for ensuring that the administrative and financial policies and practices of FAO are effective and efficient in supporting the Organization’ s strategic framework. Specifically, CS provides services to FAO employees and FAO members in the areas of finance, procurement, travel and other administrative areas. It has recently been entrusted with the function of Records and archives.

Reporting Lines

Under the general guidance of the Director-general" id="link" class="link">Assistant Director-general Corporate Services Department and the direct supervision of the Senior Programme Coordinator of the Corporate Services Department, in consultation with steering committee members from CIO, DDN, LEG, OCC, OSD, PS the consultant shall undertake the following activities:

Tasks and responsibilities Records
  • Carry out an initial review of MS 601 (FAO Administrative Manual) and related procedures and practices in the light of the ISO 15489 standard and the findings and recommendations in AUD1219 (including how R&A management fits within the broader framework of Knowledge Management in FAO);

  • Review externally triggered records management obligations (e.g. the EU requiring supporting documentation for approval of financial reports, the US requiring 3 year retention of records);

  • Interview key stakeholders including all Regional Offices and selected other decentralized offices;

  • Review UN best practices and interview selected agencies on their approaches and strategies for ensuring modern and fit for purpose records and archives management practices;

  • On the basis of (1),  (2), (3) and (4) propose an actionable ISO-compliant definition of “record” and a corresponding fit-for-purpose record management cycle;

  • Propose reorganization of the corporate records and archives function in FAO, based on the concept of Office of Primary Responsibility (OPR), i.e. a centralized records management system in which Records Management Centers (RMCs) are given responsibility for keeping the Organization’s master set of a particular type of record;

  • Provide a definition of roles and responsibilities, in consultation with the OPR, RMCs and other stakeholders;

  • Identify, catalogue and make an inventory of all FAO record generation processes including systems (GRMS, PIRES, FPMIS, etc) and tools (FAO Handbook);

  • Review and work in full cognizance of other on-going corporate projects with which synergies, linkages and actual data exchange will be necessary. Such projects include the ERP upgrade, PROMYS and the area of Data Protection;

  • Provide a draft proposal for a comprehensive Records Management System;

  • Propose a suitable periodic review mechanism of the corporate records management infrastructure (policies and tools) bearing in mind the constant evolution of record generation technology in a knowledge management organization.

  • Propose strategic plan and operational arrangements for archival services and facilities indicating adequate strategies for digitalization and knowledge management requirements ;

  • Advise on optimum archive storage conditions for long-term protection with full intellectual control and access to contents.

  • Develop a R&A training programme for OPR, RMC and other staff for due compliance with new policies and procedures.

  • Based on the above analyses and proposals for both records and archives functions, prepare a comprehensive update of MS  601.

  • University degree in Library and Information Science, Information Management or archival sciences or related field

  • Ten years of proven experience in Records and Archives management in writing records and archives policy or guidance (please provide samples)  and in digital records and archives management.

  • Working knowledge of English, French or Spanish and limited knowledge of one of the other two or Arabic, Chinese, Russian. 

FAO Core Competencies
  • Results Focus

  • Teamwork

  • Communication

  • Building Effective Relationships

  • Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Technical/Functional Skills
  • Work experience in more than one location or area of work

  • Extent and relevance of experience in records and archives management in large organizations

  • Extent and relevance of experience in working in the field of Records and Archives management for the United Nations

  • Familiarity with ISO 15489

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