Job Description

Grade: NOB Vacancy no.: DC/COLOMBO/NOB/2021/01 Publication date: 21 JANUARY 2021 Application deadline (midnight local time): 12 FEBRUARY 2021 Job ID: 5226 Department: RO-Asia and The Pacific Organization Unit: CO-Colombo Location: Colombo Contract type: Fixed Term Contract duration: One Year Under article 4.2, paragraph (e) of the Staff Regulations, the filling of vacancies in technical cooperation projects does not fall under Annex I of the Staff Regulations and is made by direct selection by the Director-General.

In order to support the best informed process in the filling of the above-mentioned vacancy by direct selection, the ILO invites interested candidates to submit their application online by the above date.

The following are eligible to apply:
  • ILO Internal candidates in accordance with paragraphs 31 and 32 of Annex I of the Staff Regulations.
  • External candidates*
*The recruitment process for National Officer positions is subject to specific local recruitment and eligibility criteria.

Technical cooperation appointments are not expected to lead to a career in the ILO and they do not carry any expectation of renewal or conversion to any other type of appointment in the Organization. A one-year fixed-term contract will be given. Extensions of technical cooperation contracts are subject to various elements including the following: availability of funds, continuing need of the functions and satisfactory conduct and performance.

*Conditions of employment for external candidates: In conformity with existing ILO practice, the appointment of an external candidate will normally be made at the first step of this grade.


Since the end of the civil war, Sri Lanka has been exploring new opportunities for social and economic development. The country is a lower middle-income country and on the path to progressively achieve the SDGs.  Nevertheless, there are still significant disparities remaining between regions and social groups. A quarter of the population is still considered nearly poor and vulnerable to shocks that can push them back into poverty.  Climate related disasters are one of these drivers, with a recurrent occurrence of floods, landslides and droughts affecting particularly the impoverished sectors living in high-risk conditions and with limited ability for recovery.

The Northern Province, forming the major part of the programme area, remains the poorest in the country with the highest numbers of vulnerable households.  Local communities in this region were highly affected by the war, and are still struggling to find sufficient productive employment and income after being interned during the war and later resettled in new locations where they need to build new livelihoods.  This challenge is further compounded by the fact that the region comprises the dry lands of Sri Lanka with regular droughts and water shortages.

The ILO launched in 2011 a comprehensive sustainable livelihoods development programme. The programme was highly successful and has now received funding for a new phase. The new phase is focusing on the promotion and integration of women and people with disabilities into all levels of the local cooperatives. The new phase is also focussing on engaging at the policy level to allow the project to move from direct interventions and support to cooperatives to, support institutions which can in turn provide support to developing and strengthening cooperatives and institutionalising innovative LEED+ principles. . A key element is also the replication of the LEED activities in other provinces and the creation of an enabling environment for MSMEs and Cooperatives in the Northern Province. It is particularly to ensure implementation of the last element that a position as national project officer has been created.

The National Project Officer will work under the overall leadership of the Country Director of ILO Sri Lanka and the direct supervision of the Chief Technical Advisor of the Jobs for Peace and Resilience Programme.

Main duties and responsibilities

The Project Officer will focus on the realization of project objectives related to policy dialogue and promotion of an enabling environment for business and cooperatives in the Northern Province as well as promotion of the project’s approach in selected provinces of Sri Lanka. S/he will play a lead role in liaison with the national level authorities, tri-partite constituents, key private sector actors, relevant UN agencies and relevant academic institutions, NGOs and the media community. S/he will take the overall responsibility for planning, designing, monitoring, and reporting of project activities related to the policy dialogue and sustainability/continuity of key project components. S/he will ensure quality technical input, assist with reporting to the ILO and its donors; and compilation of project experiences and lessons learned.

The Project Officer will liaise closely with the National Project Coordinator in Kilinochchi to ensure coherence of initiatives and linkages between project interventions, especially in relation to policy dialogue. The Project Officer will also provide direct support to the intervention in the north, primarily through engagement with companies based in the Western Province. The Project Officer will also work closely with the Capacity Development Officer based in Jaffna.

Description of Duties

  • Support the implementation of the policy development and dialogue component of the LEED+ project, including supervising consultants and organization of meetings, in line with the ILO policy, rules and regulations, and in close collaboration with the NPC.
  •  As part of the policy dialogue, engage with provincial and national institutions to develop systems of support for the replication and scaling up of the LEED model for strengthening of cooperatives and MSMEs including through the creation of an enabling environment.
  •  Under the delegated authority of the Chief Technical Advisor and in collaboration with the National Project Coordinator participate on behalf of the ILO in various fora.
  •  Implement the work under preparing ILO constituents on ratifying the (ILO) Convention 188 on Work in Fishing, this work may include studies, consultative workshops and advocacy campaigns.
  •  Provide input into periodic and ad hoc reports on programme planning and implementation progress.
  •  Ensure that gender and PWD issues are integrated in the planning of activities and their implementation and evaluation as well as in research, awareness raising and political dialogue.
  •  In the context of the activities undertaken, promote ILO policies regarding decent work, equality of opportunity and treatment for women and men, and the relevant International Labour Standards.
  •  Obtain services from consultants and other relevant individuals and organizations to carry out studies and surveys in relation to policy dialogue and scaling up and replication of the LEED model.
  •  Organize training workshops and meetings for the tripartite partners, NGOs, target groups and stakeholders as appropriate.
  •  Carry out other duties as may be assigned.

Managerial duties

  • Oversee the development and approval process of sub-contracts, monitor the performance of sub-contractors, and consultants, and ensure timely implementation of sub-contracts in relation to policy dialogue and LEED replication in other provinces.
  • Ensure that implementation of the project component on policy dialogue takes place in accordance with ILO guidelines, rules and regulations.


University degree in  social sciences, or related field and strong knowledge on development issues particularly in norther and central provinces of Sri Lanka.


At least three years of work experience with a minimum of three (3) years’ experience in managing development co-operation, project management and in implementing development programmes in the field of labour and employment, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise development and cooperative development.

Previous experience with the ILO would be a strong advantage.


Excellent knowledge of the English language and a good knowledge of at least one of the local language.


  • Good knowledge of social, economic development structures and trends in Sri Lanka.
  • Good knowledge of one or more of the following issues: labour, MSMEs, Cooperatives and good knowledge of gender, International Human Rights and Climate Change mitigation.
  • Ability to understand and effectively work with Government, workers and employers organizations, non-government organizations and UN agencies.
  • Ability to write analytical technical reports in English.
  • Ability to conduct policy discussion and engage in high-level political processes.
  • Clear commitment to mainstream gender into project activities.
  • Ability to work under time pressure and meet deadlines.
  • Ability to work independently with a minimum of supervision.
  • Ability to work in a multicultural environment and gender-sensitive behaviour and attitudes are also required.
Recruitment process

Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application form. To apply, please visit the ILO Jobs website. The system provides instructions for online application procedures.

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