Posted Job
over 1 year ago

Director of Program Management and Operations

Feed the Future Southern Africa Seed Trade Project

Scope of Work for: Director of Program Management and Operations

Project Background:

The Seed Trade Project is a five-year project (ends Dec 2020) funded through USAID/Southern Africa and implemented by DAI with a primary goal of improving the availability of and access to high quality seed in the SADC countries. It is designed to support SADC and member states’ leadership and provide the necessary technical assistance for harmonizing policies and regulations governing seed trade in the region. The work facilitates seed trade across the region, integrating small and isolated national markets into one larger SADC-wide market for seeds. While the primarily focus is on Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, many regional project activities benefits all 16 SADC Member.


  • The Director of Program Management and Operations oversees all project operations and human resources, including supervising staff responsible for finance, procurement, operations, and monitoring, learning and evaluation.
  • The Director of Program Management and Operations also works closely with the COP to manage the execution of the workplan and all program activities. He/She will play a pivotal role in overseeing adherence to project’s Field Operations Manual (FOM); USAID rules and regulations; contract requirements and limitations; financial, and procurement policies and procedures; internal controls and operations reporting systems; as well as ensuring that all program activities are properly budgeted and planned for, as well as executed in a timely manner.
  • He/She will be responsible for the overall compliance, financial well-being, and in conjunction with the COP for the programmatic planning of the project.


Program Management:

  • Responsible for managing and providing training, guidance and direction to all project operations staff, including remote staff, on all operational and financial procedures
  • Responsible for gaining comprehensive knowledge of project’s Field Operations Manual (FOM) and for advising project management with options and recommendations
  • Responsible for ensuring operations staff are properly maintaining documentation requirements, i.e. procurement, logistics, human resources, and inventory management records
  • Work closely with the Chief of Party to ensure all technical staff are trained on the administrative and operational requirements of their roles
  • Ensures that accounting policies and practices are carried out in accordance with GAAP standards; project internal controls are established and implemented in accordance with DAI policies, USAID rules/regulations and the terms of the contract, in close coordination with the Finance Manager
  • Coordinate with the COP and the Home Office project management team on a regular basis to ensure all forthcoming technical activities are adequately planned for and the necessary approvals secured
  • Work with program and grants staff to accurately forecast activity costs
  • Oversee the planning of all activities, including the correct submission of all required documentation and approval requests to the client
  • Attend and contribute to the weekly Home Office/Field call, addressing all required actions as discussed
  • Ensure cover for all staff during their leave of absences
  • Financial Management:
  • Oversee the Finance Manager and accounting staff
  • Keep the COP updated and submit, or provide to Home Office, reports of status of financial management activities (i.e. monthly and quarterly reporting)
  • Responsible for ensuring that any/all contractual financial reporting requirements are identified and complied with in a timely and accurate manner.
  • Approve field expense reports and bi-weekly financial reporting to Home Office
  • Provide advice and guidance to the Finance Manager as needed
  • Provide input to the pipeline, prepares accruals, as well as quarterly forecasts as applicable
  • Ensure proper segregation of duties within the Finance/Accounting Department and across all project operations.
  • Manage banking relationships and handles any updates to account signatories, account security measures, etc.

Approve bank reconciliations

  • Ensure that foreign taxes paid, if any, are tracked, recorded, and reported to USAID in accordance with ADS guidelines
  • Manages preparation of internal and external audits and supports responses and actions to internal audit comments
  • Conducts regular spot reviews of backup documentation to ensure completeness, accuracy, and full compliance with all regulations and the Field Operations Manual (FOM)
  • Grants and Procurement Management:
  • Oversee the Grants and Procurement Specialist
  • Monitor executing and documenting grantee activities, administrative actions, as necessary, and reporting
  • Review grantee proposals, applications, and budgets for cost reasonableness and adherence to grant management strategy and policies
  • Support Grant Selection Committees, ensuring that committee participants understand evaluation criteria and understand the required evaluation process
  • Oversee grant closeout procedures, including disposition plans, as applicable
  • Develop acquisition planning in coordination with the Grants and Procurement Specialist
  • Monitor procurement activities and delivery status of goods and services, and help troubleshoot issues, as necessary
  • Ensure DAI procurement policies and procedures, and USAID procurement regulations are followed and enforced
  • Ensure all staff become familiar with procurement procedures and requirements
  • Oversee solicitation bids and quotes from vendors in adherence with policies and approved requisitions, in support of quarterly procurement plans
  • Determine source selection methods for complex procurements to ensure compliance
  • Serve as a non-voting chairperson on evaluation committees, in accordance with DAI policies and thresholds
  • Oversee service level agreements, BPAs, credit agreements, local subcontracts and ICAs, dealing with amendments, anniversary/renewals and delivery and performance reviews and issues as necessary

Human Resources:

  • Identify and screen qualified candidates, participate in interviews, and make hiring recommendations.
  • Coordinate with candidates on required testing and notify applicants of the results of the selection process.
  • Check professional references and prepare job offers
  • Ensure recruitment and personnel actions are compliant with DAI policies and procedures, contract requirements, and USAID regulations
  • Ensure applicants and new hires are provided with information about the job, including onboarding requirements
  • Maintain calendar and process for completing annual and probationary employee performance evaluations
  • Ensure that all hard and soft copy personnel files are created and maintained in DAI systems
  • Carry out performance reviews and goal setting for all direct reports, and advise all other supervisors on how to correctly perform these duties
  • Supervise staff review of timesheets and leave balance tracker on a monthly basis
  • Manage termination procedures, including arranging exit interviews, and collection of all equipment and termination documents
  • Facilities and Administration:
  • Oversee administrative support staff
  • Oversee the IT Service provider and be the point person for IT and system issues for the project
  • Work with Home Office IT support and locally contracted IT to resolve all IT issues
  • Oversee the continued customization of the Field Operations Manual
  • Oversee and coordinate the resolution of all technical issues related to DAI’s administrative systems TAMIS and TAMIS Pro
  • Oversee the management of the asset management system and the annual reporting of inventory
  • Perform spot checks on inventory in TAMIS, and ensure that asset labels are affixed to all tracked property
  • Ensure office management systems run smoothly
  • Provide responses and oversee actions to internal audit comments
  • Conduct regular spot reviews of backup documentation to ensure completeness, accuracy, and full compliance with all regulations and the Field Operations Manual (FOM)

Monitoring and Evaluation:

  • Manage the M&E Specialist
  • Ensure internal, external and grantee Data Quality Assessments are planned for and executed as necessary
  • Oversee the timely submission of MEL reporting data to the client on client platforms as required, including the Feed the Future Management System (FTF MS), TraiNet, AidTracker Plus, TAMIS, and the Performance based system on a quarterly basis.
  • Oversee updates to the AMEP (Activity Monitoring and Evaluation Plan)
  • Oversee timely preparation of progress reports on a weekly, monthly and quarterly basis
  • Other duties:
  • Performs any other duties as assigned
  • Place of Performance and Reporting:
  • The position will be based in the Seed Trade Project’s main office in Lusaka, Zambia and will report to the Chief of Party.
  • There may be some travel to project activities to support management of these activities. Project activities generally take place in, but are not limited to, Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi, Zimbabwe and South Africa.


  • Master’s degree in business, finance, planning or a related field
  • 7+ years of relevant experience and progressive responsibility, including experience in finance and project operations
  • Minimum 3 years’ experience in a senior management position on USAID funded projects
  • Experience leading and managing the operational aspects of USAID projects, including a demonstrated understanding of applicable finance, procurement, grants, and HR-related USG contracting regulations
  • Accuracy in working with large amounts of data
  • Experience supervising staff
  • Ability to respond effectively to the most sensitive inquiries or complaints
  • Demonstrated knowledge of internal controls and audit processes (e.g. procurement, local subcontract agreements, etc.)
  • An articulate individual who possesses excellent communications and personnel management skills and who can relate to people at all levels of an organization
  • An energetic, forward-thinking and creative individual with high ethical standards and appropriate professional image
  • An extremely well organized and self-directed individual with sound technical skills, analytical ability, good judgment, and strong operational focus
  • Fluency in English is required

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