Mercy Corps

Program Cost Efficiency Analyst

Mercy Corps

Job Description


Location: Any Mercy Corps Office location in Africa or Europe
Position Status: Full-time, Exempt.

This is an 18-month, program-based position with the possibility of extension should the program be extended.

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse, and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

The Department

The Program Performance and Quality Unit (PaQ) is an integrated Unit consisting of the Program Standards Team; the Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL) Team; the Strategic Leadership Team; and the Infrastructure Team. The purpose of PaQ is to support effective, efficient, and equitable program performance through a culture of quality management, to achieve results for those that matter most -- our program participants.

The MEL Team aims to promote and harness a strong organizational culture of data-driven decision making (DDDM) at the program, country/ portfolio, regional and HQ levels by strengthening systems and capacity for tracking, demonstrating, and using evidence for programmatic and organizational learning. The MEL team pursues this goal through the objectives of: 1) Integrating MEL minimum standards within programs; 2) Ensuring that institutional structures, mechanisms and agreements are in place that facilitate the development of outcome-driven MEL systems; and, 3) Strengthening the culture of M&E data utilization to enhance DDDM and effective program adaptation.

Mercy Corps is a member of the International Rescue Committee (IRC)-led Dioptra consortium to promote a harmonized system and procedures for rigorous, rapid cost efficiency Analysis. The consortium is launching a new initiative in Coordination with a public institutional donor and a private donor to increase the use of cost efficiency information to improve Design" id="link" class="link">Program Design. Additionally, Mercy Corps is increasingly promoting and using Value for Money (VfM) studies to help understand and improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and equity of programming.

The Position

The primary role of the incumbent is to conduct cost efficiency analyses, using the Dioptra tool, for use both by the consortium/ a public institutional donor and by Mercy Corps internally. The incumbent will also lead selected broader VfM studies and develop and deliver training materials associated with cost efficiency and VfM analysis.

Essential Responsibilities


  • Inventory Mercy Corps’ existing cost efficiency and VfM information and package this for use by the consortium as required.
  • Identify programs as targets for new cost efficiency analysis over an 18-month period.
  • Work with program, country, regional, and HQ team counterparts to gather the information required to conduct these analyses.
  • Using the Dioptra tool, directly conduct the aforementioned , providing anonymized information to the consortium and the public institutional donor.
  • Work with consortium counterparts to interpret results and the implication of these results for program design parameters, ideally in the context of broader VfM frameworks to highlight effectiveness and equity considerations.
  • Lead or contribute to 2-3 broader VfM studies on selected programs over the 18-month period.
  • Support programs with the development of VfM frameworks and integrating learning from VfM studies into program design.


  • Curate and develop Mercy Corps’ VfM Knowledge Products as needed to increase agency internal knowledge on VfM. Present findings in internal and external learning fora, and work towards integrated into the agency’s Strategy Results Measurement Report.
  • Develop a maintain a list of consultants/ consulting firms to support VfM and cost analyses in the future.
  • Develop cost efficiency analysis training materials; disseminate these internally and train team members on the use of these tools as needed.
  • Contribute to broader VfM training materials and their dissemination/ delivery.
  • Support the development of a VfM community of practice.
  • Manage consultants conducting broader VfM studies as required.

Supervisory Responsibility



Reports Directly To: Sr. MEL Advisor
Works Directly With: MEL Team, Research & Learning Team, Finance Team, Program Teams, Dioptra Consortium Counterparts

Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding International Relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Minimum Qualifications & Transferable Skills

Any skills you have gained through education, volunteer, work, or life experience that are relevant for the position will be considered. Be sure to fully explain transferable skills and success factors and how they apply to this position in your cover letter.

  • BA/S or equivalent in a relevant field is required; MA/S in a relevant field is preferred.
  • 5+ years’ experience with Value for Money and/ or cost efficiency analyses, including demonstrated experience applying these directly in the context of programs.
  • Proven ability to prioritize multiple competing requests, tasks, and deadlines.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • The ability to develop compelling training materials.
  • Experience with Microsoft 365 and Program Management software.
  • Fluency in English; French and/or Arabic ability an advantage.

Success Factors

The successful position-holder will have a sound understanding of financial and statistical analysis in the context of humanitarian and development programs, will be flexible and results-oriented, and will be well-organized, responsive, and detail-oriented.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

[Depends on location]

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. We will not tolerate Child Abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual bas

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