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Senior Relations Specialist, Employers' Activities


  • Organization: ILO - International Labour Organization
  • Location: Geneva
  • Grade: Senior level - P-5, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
  • Closing Date: Closed


Grade: P5 

Vacancy no.: CALL/P/2024/21
Publication date: 5 June 2024
Application deadline (midnight Geneva time): 8 July 2024


Job ID: 12022 
Department: ACT/EMP 
Organization Unit: ACT/EMP 
Location: Geneva   
Contract type: Fixed Term 


The ILO is issuing a call for expression of interest for the above position. The selection process is not subject to the rules and procedures defined in Annex I of the ILO Staff Regulations


The following are eligible to apply:

  • Internal candidates in accordance with paragraphs 31 and 32 of Annex I of the Staff Regulations. 
  • External candidates


The ILO values diversity among its staff. We welcome applications from qualified women and men, including those with disabilities. If you are unable to complete our online application form due to a disability, please send an email to


Applications from qualified candidates 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: ILO Jobs: Non- and under-represented Member States


The position is located in the Bureau for Employers’ Activities (ACT/EMP).   ACT/EMP is a global team, consisting of a small team of Senior Relations and Senior Technical Specialists in ILO headquarters in Geneva, and a network of Senior Employer Specialists in each of the ILO Decent Work Teams in the different regions. ACT/EMP’s principal work is to manage the relationship between the ILO and Employer and Business Membership Organizations (EBMOs), as well as the wider business community, to promote mutual understanding, shared values, and a desire to work together. This is done in close cooperation with the Secretariat of the Employers' Group of the ILO. Additionally, through its programme of development cooperation, ACT/EMP seeks to build the capacity of EBMOs to be strong, independent, and representative, and to increase their value to their members and potential members.

The main role of the position is to represent ACT/EMP as the technical expert on international labour standards, international labour law, and labour relations both internally and externally.  The incumbent will provide technical support on ILO standards and legal issues to the Employers’ Group, including during the International Labour Conference (ILC) and the Governing Body (GB). The incumbent will have senior level contacts with ILO officials, employer constituents, including Governing Body members, and the Secretariat of the Employers’ Group.

The incumbent works under the direct supervision of the Director of the Bureau for Employers’ Activities.

Specific duties

1.    Plan, organise, coordinate and monitor the work of an ACT/EMP policy team.  In discussion with ACT/EMP management, determine priorities for the team, schedule and coordinate work items with team members in order to ensure policy coverage, deliver products, and meet agreed objectives and deadlines.

2.    Provide advice to senior ILO officials on matters of concern to the Employers’ Group and represent ACT/EMP at official meetings and conferences.

3.    Provide advice to senior ILO officials on current policy priorities of EBMOs.  Ensure inputs reflecting these priorities are inserted into relevant policy documents, GB and ILC documents, proposals for development cooperation, etc.

4.    Provide technical support to the Employers’ Group during the GB and the ILC, regional and sectoral meetings, and ensure that the discussion process is supported.  Liaise with Secretariat of the Employers’ Group on issues under discussion.

5.    Provide support and advice, in coordination with the ACT/EMP Director, to the EMBOs in the area of international labour standards, international labour law and labour relations.

6.    Conceptualize, write and coordinate substantive research, technical papers, study materials and publications on substantive topics and other issues related to the work of ACT/EMP and which are of relevance for EBMOs and tripartite constituents. These will include relevant matters such as labour relations, international labour standards as well a wide range of issues for publications and for consideration of the GB or the ILC.

7.    As Desk officer for a region, provide policy and technical advice and guidance to the Senior Employer Specialists in the region.  Check, control and verify work plans, coordinate the production of required reports, recommend action to management, approve expenditures against agreed work plan deliverables, and undertake missions in connection with development cooperation activities.  Provide advice to senior officials on EBMOs in the region, including their structures, priorities and concerns.

8.    Perform other relevant duties as assigned.

Generic duties

1.    Plan, organise, coordinate, and monitor the relations work of a unit providing this service. Determine priorities for the unit, plan, schedule and allocate work to staff in order to meet objectives and deadlines and supervise the performance of staff in the unit.

2.     Provide advice to senior officials on matters of concern to the relevant constituent group and represent the unit or the Organization at official meetings and conferences.

3.     Provide advice to senior officials on current policies and views, as well as on the development of general policies for relations with organisations, including employers’ and workers’ organisations and ensure the consistent application of such policies. Organise and ensure the preparation of policy- related documents.

4.     Coordinate the servicing of the various groups of the Governing Body, the International Labour Conference, regional and sectoral meetings, and other official or specialised meetings and ensure that the discussion process is supported. Coordinate representation of the Organization at official meetings and brief ILO representatives at such meetings.

5.     Review major ILO reports and documents, provide comments and suggestions to reflect relevant concerns and interests and approve documents, communications, and press releases.

6.     Undertake missions to Member States to improve relations with relevant organisations to discuss and review their situation, and to provide advice and information on the Organization’s policies and activities. 

7.     Recommend action on personnel, budgetary, procedural, and other matters relating to the efficient operations of the unit.

8.     Conceptualise, formulate, and prepare development cooperation projects for submission to donors. Discuss possible projects with donors and obtain their approval, providing justification and explanation as required. Negotiate objectives, design, content, and cost of development cooperation activities, and assume responsibility for the management and implementation of projects as well as for the quality of work performed and donor reporting.

9.     Provide policy and technical advice and guidance to Senior Employer Specialists in Latin America and external consultants. Check, control and verify their work, plan and coordinate the preparation and presentation of technical reports, approve expenditures and undertake missions in connection with development cooperation.

Required qualifications


Advanced degree in law, labour law or other relevant field.  A first-level university degree (Bachelor’s or equivalent) in law or other relevant field with an additional two years of relevant experience, in addition to the experience stated below, will be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.


Minimum of ten years of professional experience including at the international level in labour law and in dealing with the issues pertaining to relations, actions, and programmes of employers’ organisations, including experience in a senior-level position.


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


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

In-depth knowledge of the work of the Organization, its policies, programmes and procedures.
Excellent knowledge and understanding of employers’ and of labour-related programmes, issues, practices and processes.  Political insight and sound judgement.  Ability to present and advocate policy changes in difficult circumstances.  Ability to make authoritative judgements and to assume managerial, administrative and supervisory responsibilities.  Ability to advise senior-level officials, executive management and constituents and to negotiate and discuss sensitive matters with tact, discretion and authority.  Ability to take initiatives, plan and organise work.  Excellent analytical skills to undertake complex policy analysis and to produce relevant reports.  Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing.  Ability to advise senior-level officials and constituents and discuss sensitive matters.  Discretion and high sense of responsibility, judgement and diplomacy. Ability to deliver speeches and to represent the Organization in a tripartite environment.  Knowledge of and experience in using computers including word processing software.  Excellent leadership and management skills. 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 ILO People. 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 2 to 4 weeks 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.

This vacancy is now closed.