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Under the authority of Director of the Internal Oversight Service (IOS) and the direct supervision of the Head of Internal Audit, the incumbent will undertake audits of the Organization’s activities, including field operations, to assess governance, risk management and internal control arrangements and practices, in accordance with the applicable professional standards and criteria adopted by the Organization. More specifically, the Principal Auditor will\:

  •  Conduct performance audits, as Team leader or individually, of Headquarters (HQ) functions and Field Offices by\: 
    • Assessing the governance arrangements in cases where the entity has specific governance setup; risk management practices, the adequacy of the risk management plans and its implementation and the consistent assessment of risks and the proper implementation of mitigation measures; the internal control mechanisms in place, in particular the overall control environment.

    • Appraising the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of programmes and administrative/support functions.

    • Reviewing information systems and financial transactions and performance data for accuracy and compliance with UNESCO rules, regulations and policies.

    • Monitoring follow up actions taken in response to audit findings and recommendations.  

  • Engage in moderately to highly complex performance audits, or general audits with a strong performance auditing component in Headquarters or in Field Offices.

  • Develop and/or improve audit methodologies and internal guidance for performance auditing and pilot the development and deployment of new methods, with particular emphasis on the affordability of such audits in the Field, and the achievement of required quality standards.

  • Develop audit programmes for each audit, identify the work allocation of the team in particular when any contracted or local specialist support is required and identify risks and measures. Supervise and review working papers and  reports.

  • Develop tools in the form of guidelines, techniques and criteria to be applied for performance auditing by IOS staff in conducting other audit assignments.


  • Advanced university degree (Master degree or equivalent) in Auditing, Accounting, Business or Public Administration or other related fields.
  • Professional certification from an internationally recognized accounting or audit body such as CIA, CPA, CA or equivalent.


  • Minimum 7 years of progressively responsible relevant professional experience in auditing, of which 3 years preferably acquired at the international level. 
  • Professional experience with auditing field operations.


  • Proven ability to develop audit programmes.
  • Advanced knowledge of audit theory and practice, including principles and practical implementation of enterprise risk management and corporate governance issues.
  • Excellent knowledge of internal control methods, tools and techniques.
  • Strong coordination and analytical skills with ability to collect, synthesise and analyse information.
  • Excellent communication (oral and written) skills, with proven ability to draft clearly and concisely.
  • Ability to work effectively in a team and to maintain effective working relations in  a multicultural environment.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to deal effectively with various internal/external partners on sensitive matters.
  • Strong business acumen and strategic thinking. 
  •  Ability to work independently and with minimum supervision.
  • Excellent IT skills, including knowledge of MS software (Word, Excel etc.)


  • Excellent knowledge of English and good working knowledge of French. 


  • Professional experience in the conduct of audits in a UN organization or international organization.
  • Engagement in professional auditing networks practice groups.


  • Knowledge of ERPs such as SAP, ACL (Audit Command Language), TeamMate and other audit systems.
  • Strong knowledge of UN system policies, rules, regulations and procedures.


  • Good knowledge of other official UNESCO languages (Arabic, Chinese, Russian or Spanish).
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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  • Organization: UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • Location: Paris
  • Grade: P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Accounting (Audit, Controlling)
  • Closing Date: 2018-01-21

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