International Labour Organization (ILO)

Technical Specialist (SME Enabling Environment)

International Labour Organization (ILO)

Job Description

Grade: P4 Vacancy no.: RAPS/1/2021/ENTERPRISES/02 Publication date: 26 May 2021 Application deadline (midnight Geneva time): 28 June 2021 Job ID: 5587 Department: ENTERPRISES Organization Unit: ENTERPRISES Location: Geneva Contract type: Fixed Term The following are eligible to apply:
  • ILO Internal candidates in accordance with paragraphs 31 and 32 of Annex I of the ILO Staff Regulations.
  • External candidates.
Staff members with at least five years of continuous service with the Office are encouraged to apply.

Applications from officials who have reached their age of retirement as defined in Article 11.3 of the Staff Regulations on or before 31 December 2017, or who have already separated from ILO service upon retirement or early retirement, will not be considered.

The ILO values diversity among its staff and welcomes applications from qualified female candidates. We also encourage applicants with disabilities. If you are unable to complete our online application form due to a disability, please send an email to

The ILO welcomes applicants with experience in working within ILO constituents (governments, employers’ and business membership organizations, and workers’ organizations).

Applicants from non- or under-represented member States, or from those member States which staffing forecasts indicate will become non- or under-represented in the near future would be particularly welcome. A list of these countries can be found here: In addition to the interviews and tests that any candidate may be required to take, successful completion of the ILO Assessment Centre is required for all external candidates and any internal candidate applying to a higher category.

Notwithstanding the general considerations set out in the ILO Staff Regulations, this vacancy announcement is the only authoritative document pertaining to the qualifications required for this position. The minimum required qualifications were determined in view of the specific duties and responsibilities of this position.

The specific language requirements for this position are detailed hereunder. However, candidates applying for the professional category vacancies who have not already successfully completed their probationary period within the ILO and whose mother tongue is not one of the working languages of the Office (English, French and Spanish), shall be required to possess a fully satisfactory working knowledge of at least one of the ILO working languages. If appointed they may be required to acquire a knowledge of a second working language of the Office during their initial years of service.


The position is located in the Small and Medium Enterprises Unit (SME) of the ILO’s Enterprises Department (ENTERPRISES). Within the Department’s mandate to promote sustainable enterprises, the SME unit seeks to unlock the potential of creating more and better jobs in small businesses - a sector which provides the bulk of all employment. The unit is working with governments, social partners, the private sector as well as other relevant stakeholders and partners on fostering entrepreneurship and productivity in SMEs, through improving the enabling environment and the inclusivity of markets (for more details see

The enabling environment for sustainable enterprises’ team, as part of the SME Unit, leads the work on policy, legal and regulatory framework, institutional strengthening, with a focus on small and medium enterprises. In the 2019 ILO Centenary Declaration on The Future of Work, member states reiterated the “importance of the enabling environment to ensure supporting the role of the private sector as a principal source of economic growth and job creation by promoting an enabling environment for entrepreneurship and sustainable enterprises, in particular micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as cooperatives and the social and solidarity economy, in order to generate decent work, productive employment and improved living standards for all”. The work of the team contributes directly to the Output 4.1. “Increased capacity of member States to create an enabling environment for entrepreneurship and sustainable enterprises” in the Programme and Framework of the ILO for 2020/2021 and 2022/23.

This position will contribute to implementing the ILO’s Decent Work Country Programmes, the Conclusions concerning the promotion of sustainable enterprises adopted by the International Labour Conference in 2007 and the Transition from the Informal to the Formal Economy Recommendation, 2015 (No. 204), through applied research and technical advice, the delivery of training and other support to ILO constituents, practitioners and policy makers.

Specific Duties

  1. Develop evidence-based recommendations to policy makers and social partners on how to improve the enabling environment for sustainable enterprises, in particular for SMEs. This includes: assessing the policy environment, undertaking and organizing research, translating findings into policy advice, proposing implementation strategies, contributing to evidence based advocacy and delivering related Capacity Building.
  2. Provide support in the implementation of plans of actions related to the improvement of the enabling environment for sustainable enterprises, in particular for SMEs. This includes specific Technical Support on productivity policies, entrepreneurship promotion at policy level which can be delivered in particular through integrated enterprise Development Projects in cooperation with enterprise field specialists and other ENTERPRISES units.
  3. Contribute to the work of the enabling environment team in developing the knowledge base on the linkages between the enabling environment, productivity and entrepreneurship promotion. This includes collaborating with the other SME teams working on delivering assistance to enterprises (e.g. entrepreneurship development); cooperate with other technical units within and beyond ENTERPRISES; evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of interventions on the enabling environment and share knowledge on effective enabling environment interventions.
  4. Play an active role in identifying specific opportunities for resource mobilization and contribute to formulating development cooperation project proposals for submission to public and private donors. Maintain relations with partners and follow up on joint activities.
  5. Contribute to monitoring the implementation of support in particular in the area of enabling environment,; collect and disseminate information on the impact of interventions related to business environment via different channels (such as website, publications, international fora).
  6. Generate and share knowledge on enabling environment in cooperation with the ILO’s Global Enterprise Team, other ILO units at headquarters and offices in the field as well as other technical agencies at global , regional and country levels.
  7. Perform other relevant duties as assigned.
These specific duties are aligned with the relevant ILO generic job description.

Generic Duties

  1. Design and promote a wide range of special subject-matter-related programmes, This involves: re-Analysis of complex or conflicting data, statistics and information or policy guidelines, in a manner requiring the advanced application of principles of a recognised technical specialisation.
  2. Develop and review an institutional framework, in which social partners can best improve, implement and evaluate efficient and equitable ILO action programmes.
  3. Provide policy advice to ILO’s constituents on institutional strengthening, the application of ILO standards and the promotion of development cooperation activities.
  4. Formulate and submit project proposals and seek funding.
  5. Evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of the project activities.
  6. Undertake technical advisory missions independently or in collaboration with other specialists.
  7. Conduct seminars, workshops and technical meetings and Training Courses.
  8. Prepare draft recommendations and guidelines for discussion and adoption as ILO Recommendations or Conventions on related technical fields.
  9. Write manuals and/or training guides on related topics.
  10. Disseminate information on programmes through publications and, press releases, as well as ensuring representation at donors’ meetings, international, regional and national fora and advocacy campaigns.
  11. Monitor and coordinate research carried out by junior technical officers and external collaborators.
  12. Provide technical inputs to office documents (sectoral meetings, technical committees, regional meetings and conference reports).
  13. Participate in tripartite reviews on development cooperation activities and international meetings and conferences.

Required qualifications


Advanced university degree in Economics with demonstrated expertise in the field of enterprise development.


Eight years’ experience in the field of enterprise and private sector development at the national level or five years at the international level. Experience in SME policy development. Experience in the area of SME productivity would be an advantage.


Excellent command of one official language (English, French or Spanish) of the Organization and a working knowledge of a second.


In addition to the ILO core competencies, this position requires: Technical

Ability to: synthesize research and reach empirically based conclusions on related subjects; provide seasoned advice on best practices, to address broader issues outside the field of specialization; formulate new concepts and methodologies; develop training materials, alternative courses of action, project proposals, policy, procedural matters and present them at high-level meetings; design and synthesize strategies for programme development in member States; produce reports (e.g. reports for regional conferences and ILC, technical publications, training manuals and draft resolutions) and evaluate and monitor development cooperation activities and projects. Monitoring and evaluation skills, excellent writing, communication, negotiation and presentation skills.


Strong orientation to learning and knowledge sharing ability to make authoritative judgments; strong relational skills to ensure effective Coordination with partners from different sectors and countries. Ability to work in a multicultural environment and to demonstrate gender-sensitive and non-discriminatory behaviour and attitudes.

Conditions of employment

  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to ILO Staff Regulations and other relevant internal rules. Any offer of employment with the ILO is conditional upon certification by the ILO Medical Adviser that the person concerned is medically fit to perform the specific inherent requirements of the position offered. In order to confirm an offer from the ILO the successful candidate will be required to undergo a medical examination.
  • The first contract will be issued for a twenty-four month period.
  • A successful external candidate will be on probation for the first two years of assignment.
  • Any extension of contract beyond the probation period is subject to satisfactory conduct and performance.
For more information on conditions of employment, please visit: Important Information

Any officials of the General Service category interested in applying to this position are hereby informed that, if selected, they will be offered the salary and allowances applicable to the grade of the position applied for, which may result in substantial changes in their take-home remuneration. In accordance with Article 3.4 of the Staff Regulations, the salary of an official, upon promotion, shall in no case be greater than the maximum salary of the grade to which he or she was promoted. For any questions or clarifications, please contact your HR partner at Recruitment process

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

Evaluation (which may include one or several written tests and a pre-interview competency-based assessment centre) and the interviews will tentatively take place during the 3 to 4 months following the application deadline. Candidates are requested to ensure their availability should they be short listed for further consideration.

Depending on the location and availability of candidates, assessors and interview panel members, the ILO may use communication technologies such as Skype, Video or teleconference, e-mail, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates at the different stages of the recruitment process, including assessment centres, technical tests or interviews.

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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