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Director of Programs - Ethiopia

Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) | Ethiopia


Mercy Corps has been operating in Ethiopia since 2004 and works to catalyze change makers within the Ethiopian private sector, civil society and government to create economically dynamic, healthy and secure communities. Our work focus on building resilience and enable economic growth, improve opportunities to attain better health and nutrition. We implement programs in four regional states of Somali, Oromia, Afar, Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples– and the capital city of Addis Ababa with funding from USAID, SIDA, DFID etc.

Driven by local needs, our programs provide individuals, agencies and businesses with the tools and support they need to transform their lives, businesses, and communities. Our partners include government, development and private sector actors, and participating public.


The DoP works to lead and/or assist efforts on behalf of Mercy Corps Ethiopia to develop and implement integrated programs that add value to development efforts, achieve the greatest possible impact, and hold the agency accountable to donors, government, and communities. The DoP will also work in coordination with the Country Director and desk officers on new program development, leading and/or overseeing the process of proposal development when appropriate. The DoP is responsible for overseeing and leadership of the Monitoring, Evaluation, Learning and Communication (MELC) activities of the country programs. The DoP assists the Country Director in the development and implementation of a country wide strategic plan, preparation of annual country plans and leading senior management meetings. S/he provides leadership and mentorship to the program team, is responsible for staff development, and acts as the Country Director during his/her absence.



  • Take leadership role and provide support to ensure that programs are managed and meet the minimum standards for program management at Mercy Corps (PM@MC).
  • Ensure that programs provide overall supervision to the day-to-day implementation of activities in all program sectors.
  • Monitor and promote all aspects of integrated programming to increase overall impact and quality programming at the community, district, and national levels.
  • Provide market systems, economic and micro enterprise development technical support to all programs.


  • Ensure programs are implemented in ways that are responsive to the communities, in line with Mercy Corps principles, values and strategic planning, and follow Mercy Corps compliance procedures.
  • Directly supervise relevant program managers, Directors, Deputy Director both national and expatriate.
  • Provide overall direction to daily implementation plans, ensure programs are coordinated and create opportunities for strategic discussion from the field teams to management and vice versa on implementation issues.
  • Oversight of the development and preparation of high quality donor reports for all programs under supervision prior to submission to the donor.


  • Provide leadership for the development of a country wide strategic plan, annual Fiscal Year Plans, country level MEL system, and development of sector strategies working in close cooperation with the Country Director and COP.
  • Ensure integration and linkages within and between field offices and programs/sectors.
  • Ensure cross program communication and learning; organize and facilitate country-level senior management meetings to create a platform for nationwide strategy, learning and facilitate integration of programs.


  • Lead or mobilize team members to conduct needs or programmatic assessments in new geographic areas and/or to develop follow-on programming in existing geographic areas.
  • Assist the Country Director and lead in the process of proposal development in strategic sectoral and geographic areas that match donor requirements, local needs and Mercy Corps strategic direction.


  • With Country Director develop a structure, system and process for program quality and evidence generation.
  • Develop a communication strategy and plan for country program
  • Build an idea/innovation pipeline.
  • Ensure all new programs are developed and designed to the highest possible standards, with rigorous MEL plans and TOLA integrated from the outset.


  • Work with Senior Mercy Corps Ethiopia Staff to recruit, manage and motivate an informed, skilled and efficient national and expatriate team; incorporate staff development strategies and Performance Management systems into team building processes.
  • Ensure all program staff under DoP management have Individual Operating Plans (IOPs) and are reviewed and provided with feedback on a formal basis.
  • Mentor and contribute to an atmosphere conducive to professional growth and development for program staff in accordance with Mercy Corps' commitment to excellence and achievement; encourage a team culture of learning, creativity and innovation.


  • With guidance from the Country Director, develop and maintain both internal and external relationships to ensure optimum program success including Mercy Corps headquarters and regional offices and teams, international and local NGOs, government officials, donor community officials, diplomatic corps and embassies, private sector partners, vendors, media and the general public.
  • With Country Director develop an influence plan and strategy.


  • In partnership with the Country Director, maintain effective operational systems, including finance, logistics, security, and administration.
  • Ensure transparent use of financial resources in compliance with Mercy Corps and donor policies and procedures.


As part of Mercy Corps' agency-wide Organizational Learning Initiative, all team members are responsible for spending 5% of their work time in formal and/or non-formal professional learning activities.


Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts towards accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITY: Program Directors and Senior/Program Managers, based in or working on the various programs and other new areas as they come on line.


REPORTS DIRECTLY TO: Mercy Corps Ethiopia Country Director

WORKS DIRECTLY WITH: Finance Manager, COP, Operations Manager, Human Resource Manager, Program Managers, Project Coordinators, Program Staff


  • MA/S or equivalent in management, international development or other relevant field; some economic development studies required.
  • 5-7 years' experience administering donor grants for a variety of sectoral areas; specific experience in market systems and economic development and micro enterprise development.
  • 5-7 years' demonstrated ability to build staff capacity in cross-cultural settings as well as excellent team-building and interpersonal skills.
  • 5-7 years of field experience, in positions of increasing responsibility.
  • Verifiable record of developing successful proposals for new projects and programs from conception to submission.
  • 5-7 years' experience with donor requirements of USAID/USG, SIDA, DFID, corporations, private donors and/or foundations.
  • History of working effectively and respectfully with host country government, INGO and NGO partners.


The successful DoP will apply a strong combination of team leadership, program development and relationship building abilities along with a sense of curiosity, urgency, and joy for the work. Excellent negotiation and communications will provide for continued development of donor and partner relationships. The successful DoP will have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability and the principles of participatory community-led and market driven development. The most successful Mercy Corps staff members make effective communication a priority in all situations and maintain a sense of humor.


Addis Ababa provides a secure living environment that is suitable for families. It offers a number of individual housing options with good utilities. This is an accompanied family post. The DoP is expected to conduct regular field trips, spending up to 50% of his/her time in the field.


Apply Here

Apply Here

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: Mercy Corps
  • Location: Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) | Ethiopia
  • Grade: Senior - Internationally recruited position - Senior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Project and Programme Management
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2018-08-08

What does it mean?

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