International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Senior Director (Compliance & Policy)

International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Job Description


Established in January 2016, the Global Awards Management Unit (AMU) is a global unit spanning New York, Washington DC, London, Berlin, Bonn, Nairobi and Amman. It has responsibility for identifying, securing and managing all funding from statutory donors, and was designed as an end-to-end business process owner and support structure for IRC’s grant lifecycle. The Unit is organized into five teams, called ‘pillars’: Strategic Partnerships & Analytics; Program & Grants Support; Compliance & Policy; Business/Program Development; and Training & Curriculum Development.

The Global AMU is a bridge between donors and the field: providing expert technical advice to the field, while maintaining portfolio-level visibility to ensure consistency and compliance, and manage risk. This unit ensures that donor compliance policies and procedures are implemented consistently, and supports all staff working across the Grants Management cycle for all restricted funding from global government sources. The unit operates within a matrix management system across the teams in the US, Germany and the UK, driving functional integration between all relevant units and staff, in collaboration with the Senior Vice President of the Global AMU and the Senior Vice President for Europe in relation to overarching issues with European donors. The matrix management structure ensures that AMU staff support the Europe strategy and work towards the pursuit of new opportunities, while IRC UK maintains accountability for European funding.

The Purpose of the Role

The Senior Director of Donor Compliance and Policy is responsible for organizational compliance with statutory donor rules and regulations. The Senior Director manages a team that helps to establish and maintains a culture of compliance by providing advice and guidance on statutory donor rules and regulations for grants and contracts, creates administrative policies, and safeguards adherence to procedures to ensure that all IRC staff, project partners, subcontractors, and sub-awardees are in compliance with Non-European and European statutory donor and local government requirements. The Senior Director provides guidance to relevant staff to improve their understanding of the terms and conditions of grants and contracts by providing donor compliance advice and training so that programs are delivered responsibly with minimized compliance risk. The role also acts as a key Advisor to the organization in areas of risk Analysis and mitigation.


Leadership (20%)

  • Serve as a key partner, relationship builder, and leader within AMU, and strengthen collaboration with IRC departments, IRC UK, IRC-Deutschland, and other European offices, and IRC's international and domestic offices.

  • Set a high standard and be accountable for field support to Crisis Response, Recovery, and Development (CRRD) and Resettlement, Integration and Asylum (RAI) offices.

  • Work with VP AMU and the UK and Germany offices to recruit and develop a high performing workforce.

  • Contribute as a member of the AMU Leaders Team to prioritization and decision-making for department-wide issues and to consistency of management standards.

  • Create and maintain a results-driven, action-oriented and empowering culture that values donor compliance and understands its benefits.

  • Develop strategies to support positive Change Management and harness the depth of knowledge and experience of the teams to champion new ways of working together.

  • Represent Compliance and Policy team, AMU and at times IRC in internal and external fora.

Compliance and Policy (40%)

  • Provide sophisticated and definitive (in conjunction, if necessary, with the Office of the General Counsel) advice on the interpretation and application of statutory donor laws, regulations, processes and procedures in IRC’s work. Converts statutory language to workable solutions.

  • Ensure robust organizational systems and controls for maintaining compliance with prime and sub-award requirements.

  • Whenever necessary, develop standard templates and terms and conditions for award documents, sub-awards, contracts and other guidance documents as needed.

  • Ensure effective and efficient operations in the areas of prime and sub-award Administration (grants, cooperative agreements and commercial contracts).

  • Monitor and update guidance when statutory rules and regulations change; lead organizational awareness and change processes for updated compliance.

  • Ensure accuracy of manual and electronic award files at all levels of the organization.

  • Develop tools and indicators to ensure quality and timeliness of all aspects of award processing and management.

  • Centralize the administration of sub-awards and develop requisite guidance to field offices to ensure its success.

  • Maintain close coordination on issues related to PVS, RAM, FFATA, IATI, and other donor requirements.

  • Support, and at times lead, communications with donors regarding compliance matters and contract negotiations.

  • Assist in trouble-shooting issues as they arise.

  • Ensure that sub-awards are being effectively monitored at different levels of the organization, as appropriate.

  • Identify gaps in organizational policies for compliance and related best practice, and lead or support the development and implementation of such policies.

Systems Development (20%)

  • Collaborate with Finance, the Ethics and Compliance Unit, the Office of the General Counsel, Operations, and IRC’s global network to promote and monitor continuity, accuracy, and adherence to key organizational processes, as well as donor rules and regulations.

  • Assist with developing and maintaining strong working relationships with donors, key partners and stakeholders, both internally and externally, within a multi-disciplinary, multi-cultural environment.

  • Lead appropriate working groups and activities aligned with the IRC Global Business Development Strategy.

Training and Capability Building (20%)

  • Lead and expand a team culture and structure of capacity strengthening and capability building in compliance and policy knowledge and practice across the organization.

  • In coordination with the Director of Training and Curriculum Design, develop and present compliance training on donor rules and regulations, and sub-award processes, to field offices and other grants staff throughout the organization.

  • Provide support to the compliance and sub-award teams to develop training and provide Capacity Building to field staff.

  • Liaise with donor relations and analytics team to disseminate changes in donor compliance practices and analyze impact.


Up to 25% of responsibilities involve international travel.



  • At least 10 years of relevant professional experience, demonstrating increasing responsibility and leadership with operations and programs, inclusive of the project management lifecycle in international NGOs or equivalent.

  • Demonstrated experience and expertise in interpreting and applying statutory and regulatory language in executing awards and contracts from statutory entities and in maintaining a current knowledge of changes in the language, application and enforcement of this language.

  • Developed understanding of professional business standards required to create a high performing and accountable environment.

  • Experience in organizational Problem Solving, operations, high performance management in complex organizations.

  • Demonstrated knowledge and prior experience working with major statutory donors, including but not limited to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), DFID, ECHO/EuropeAid, UN agencies (UNHCR, Unicef, UNOCHA), SIDA, World Bank, Global Affairs Canada, Australian Aid, and others.

  • Extensive experience with statutory donor agreements and contracts mechanisms.

  • Previous experience with international nonprofit organizations preferred.

  • Previous experience providing compliance capacity strengthening and training in a multicultural setting.

  • High level of attention to details in all aspects of work responsibilities.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills to effectively interact with all levels of staff and partners and work in and across teams.

  • Proven ability to create and maintain effective systems for managing information, and tools for making information accessible and understandable to a broad audience.

  • Able to explain complex legal, regulatory, and administrative information to a broad range of individuals from various backgrounds.

  • Proven experience and ability to motivate and manage personnel in a dynamic and growing work environment, prioritizing employee engagement and wellbeing.

  • Prior senior management experience required, preferably in a comparably sized organization.

  • Working knowledge of database applications, word processing and Excel. Experience with Enterprise Resource Planning systems a plus.

  • Rigorous and critical thinker, able to ask probing clear questions and drive toward solutions quickly.

  • Capacity to analyze complex problems and identify both quick win solutions and medium to long term strategies.

  • Strong interpersonal skills, collegial and collaborative, high energy, and creative leader.

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills

  • Experience in international contexts preferred.

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