International Labour Organization (ILO)

Senior Programme Assistant

International Labour Organization (ILO)

Job Description

Grade: GS6 Publication date: 26 January 2021 Application deadline (midnight local time): 09 February 2021 Vacancy no.: RB/SUVA/GS6/2021/01 Job ID: 5261 Department: RO- Asia & Pacific Organization Unit: CO-Suva Location: Suva Contract type: Fixed Term with possibility of Extension The recruitment process for General Service positions is subject to local recruitment regulations and Article 4.3 of the ILO Staff Regulations.

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
*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.

Organizational Setting

This position is located in the Programme Team of the Country Office - Suva (CO-Suva). This work unit works with all units of the Country Office, the Asia/Pacific regional office and Headquarters to develop and implement the Decent work Country Programme (DWCP) for each Member State.

  • DWCPs are the primary framework for ILO support to constituents at the country level and they comprise integrated and balanced strategies to meet the ILO’s strategic objectives around priorities identified by national tripartite constituents. The Outcomes and Outputs is grouped in the country-specific context, responding to contemporary challenges at the heart of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. The Programme Team provides guidance on supporting the 2030 Agenda objectives through the DWCPs, including their integration into a new generation of country level United Nations Sustainable Development Frameworks and endorsed by the UN Resident Coordinator. The Programme Team aligns its work in the DWCPs to the ILO’s Strategic Plan, the biennial Programme and Budget and the Programme Implementation Report through the global IT system of IRIS (Integrated Resource Information System).
  • Support the development of the ILO constituents’ capacities in the Decent Work Agenda with its four strategic objectives – employment, social security, social dialogue and fundamental principles and rights at work. The DW Agenda provides the organizing framework for the ILO to support its Members at the country level.

optional section (only if needed)

  • Promote the ILO’s constitutional principle of tripartite governance. Being the only tripartite UN agency, the ILO brings together governments, employers’ and workers’ organizations to set labour standards, develop policies and devise programmes promoting decent work for all women and men. This implies that ILO constituents need to be fully involved in the development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of DWCPs. It also means that the policies set by the Organization – including international labour standards, resolutions and conclusions adopted by the International Labour Conference and decisions of the ILO’s Governing Body – guide the priorities and procedures of DWCPs.

Main Purpose

As a team member, the incumbent provides senior level programming support and is responsible for performing, completing and/or overseeing specialized programming services related to implementation of the Office’s work programme. The incumbent works in an efficient, effective and client-oriented manner in performing a range of administrative actions related to the design, planning, management, monitoring and evaluation of activities. Work involves using the enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. The incumbent applies the principles of Results-based Management (RBM) and ensures the correct application of established rules, regulations, policies, procedures and guidelines. The incumbent evaluates and provides inputs into the design and development of improved programming services and delivery processes.

The incumbent works under the supervision of the CO-Suva Country Director. Supervision received is focused on facilitating service delivery, ensuring that agreed results are achieved and that work is coordinated and integrated with related services. Work assignments are generally carried out under minimum supervision with the incumbent operating with a high degree of independence, particularly on operational delivery matters. Work is reviewed for feasibility of recommendations and correctness of results. Work involving the handling of complex and intricate programming matters including those affecting other related activities of the work unit is also reviewed.

Working Relationships

Internal contacts are with staff and managers in field offices, project locations and headquarters to provide programme and administrative support and guidance for the resolution of complex issues in compliance with applicable standards. The incumbent regularly liaises with and receives guidance from the Regional Programming Unit.

External contacts are primarily with counterparts in Government, employers’ and workers’ organizations, United Nations (UN) agencies and other international organizations and donors related to the Coordination of joint activities. The incumbent shares information and collaborates on the integration of processes or activities, and anticipates and contributes to resolving complex administrative and programming support matters.

Key Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Provide specialized programming support for the formulation of the Office’s work programme and the identification of initiatives, ensuring that required information is included in terms of proposed activities. Conduct searches for information on defined subjects related to assigned country programme outcomes. Perform preliminary Analysis of information, including the identification of priority issues and potential technical assistance needs, for possible inclusion in country briefs and reports.
  2. Provides support for the effective coordination of UN outcome group meetings.
  3. When required, undertake missions to countries covered by CO-Suva for delivery of programme and project activities.
  4. Undertakes discussions in coordination with National and Project Officers to update Country Priority Outcomes (CPO’s) and support in regular reporting.
  5. Provides support in the drafting of DWCP’s and other country programmes.
  6. Compile, analyse and disseminate data and other information for programme and budget preparation and for the review of financial and Human Resource requirements. Coordinate submissions of programme proposals and budget estimates and propose adjustments as required.
  7. Serve as focal point for programme and/or project administrative matters. Initiate requests, prepare standard terms of reference (TOR) in relation to programme and/or project objectives, obtain necessary clearances, process and follow up on administrative actions and resolve issues related to programme and/or project implementation. Liaise with external partners and attend meetings to provide and gather information.
8.  Review reports, proposals and expenditure data received from implementing partners to ensure that financial transactions, commitments and authorizations are in conformity with financial   rules and regulations. Prepare reports on Budget Performance comparing approved budgets against actual expenditures and indicating any discrepancies.

9. Maintain and update databases.

10. Respond to, or redirect to the most appropriate source, complex administrative queries on programme and budget. Draft correspondence and communications related to all aspects of programme and/or project Administration.

11. Keep abreast of changes to programme-related policies, procedures, guidelines and processes, provide guidance, and deliver training to staff with the view to building knowledge. Oversee and guide the work of programming and other support staff as required.

12. Evaluate and propose improvements to work methods and processes. Assess the impact of changes and make recommendations on follow-up actions. Liaise closely with other administrative areas to ensure effective and smooth service design and delivery, recommending improvements on interrelated processes.

13. Provide administrative support for the organization of seminars, workshops, meetings and other events.  Participate in missions to provide programming and administrative support, as required.

14. Perform other relevant duties as assigned.

Minimum Requirements


Completion of secondary school education. Training in programme and/or project administration.


Minimum of six years of office support work experience, the majority of which in programme and budget support work and project administration. Experience of working with an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, in particular programme monitoring and management modules.


Excellent command of an official language (English, French, Spanish) of the Organization.  Working knowledge of another official language of the Organization or an official national language of the duty station.

Knowledge and Competencies (technical/behavioural)

Good knowledge of programme and/or project administration.

Good knowledge of results-based management (RBM).

Knowledge and understanding of the substantive nature of ILO programmes and activities.

Knowledge of methods and techniques for assessing quality and efficiency of process execution.

Good knowledge of PC software (including word processor, spreadsheet and presentation software) such as Microsoft Office.

In addition to the ILO core competencies [Integrity and transparency, Sensitivity to diversity, Orientation to learning and knowledge sharing, Client orientation, Communication, Orientation to change, Takes responsibility for performance, Quality orientation, Collaboration], this position requires: Ability to interpret and work within the applicable rules, regulations, policies and procedures.

Ability to adapt quickly to new software and systems.

Drafting skills.

Analytical skills and attention to detail.

Ability to coordinate the work of support staff.

Ability to work in a multicultural environment and to demonstrate gender-sensitive and non-discriminatory behaviour and attitudes.

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.

Fraud warning

The ILO does not charge any fee at any stage of the recruitment process whether at the application, interview, processing or training stage. Messages originating from a non ILO e-mail account - - should be disregarded. In addition, the ILO does not require or need to know any information relating to the bank account details of applicants.

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