By continuing to browse this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Read our privacy policy

HR & Portfolio Intern, Multiple positions

Geneva (Switzerland)

  • Organization: UNOPS - United Nations Office for Project Services
  • Location: Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Grade: Internship
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Human Resources
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2020-01-22

Click "SAVE JOB" to save this job description for later.

Sign up for free to be able to save this job for later.

Background information- ECR

Based in Geneva, the Europe and Central Asia Regional Office (ECR) supports UNOPS offices throughout the region through: management, financial and programmatic oversight of global and country-specific portfolios, clusters and operations centres, including hosting services; fund and management advisory services; project implementation; procuring goods and services; and managing human resources.

ECR ensures that projects are executed to the highest standards, providing a shared knowledge base and ensuring that best practices and lessons learned are disseminated between business units and projects across the entire region.

 ECR strategy is to:

  • Strengthen UNOPS role in operationalizing the Sustainable Development Goals with particular emphasis on health, environment and economic development.
  • Position UNOPS in the Balkan sub-region, the Caucasus and Central Asia.
  • Strengthen the implementation of ECR global and regional programmes, with revitalized partnerships in infrastructure, procurement and project management.

ECR operates global portfolios from offices in Geneva, Brussels and New York, and country-specific programmes from its operations and project centres located in Eastern Europe and Central Asian countries.

Functional Responsibilities

Make sure to choose what internship you are interested at the end of your application

Within the ECR office of UNOPS, we have several Portfolio Management Teams that deal and manage operations for different hosted entities: Stop TB Partnership; Roll Back Malaria; WSSCC; etc. With this Vacancy Announcement, we are looking for individuals who would be willing to experience and work in a UN fast paced environment and be exposed to all areas of management within a portfolio: Procurement; Grants Management; HR; Travel; and Project Management.

Currently, we are looking for an individual with true passion to learn and become a great HR professional and at the same time, another champion who would like to start a career within UN operations and management.  

The HR Intern Will:
Under the direct supervision of the HR Specialist within the Portfolio Management Team, the intern will be exposed to all UNOPS' HR functions and will be supporting the HR specialist providing HR services and advice to the hosted entity (Stop TB Partnership, Scaling Up Nutrition, WSSCC, among others). 

The key functions of the HR intern will be:
1. Provides support to recruitment, focusing on achievement of the following results:
  • Support to outreach efforts
  • Assistance in longlisting and shortlisting
  • Assistance with the administration of written assessments
  • Administrative and logistical support to general recruitment processes
  • Participation in interview panels and minutes taking
2. Ensures efficient HR support to the portfolio Team, focusing on:
  • Administration of contracts within UNOPS' ERP system
  • Research and contribution to the competency-based interview questions library.
  • Coordination and monitoring of payments for retainers.
  • Supporting the HR specialist on a daily basis facilitating HR policy advise to the portfolio and/or hosted entity personnel. 
  • Contribution to other research projects
3. Ensures facilitation of knowledge building and knowledge sharing and contribution to product/process efficiency, focusing on achievement of the following results:
  • Contributions to knowledge management projects;
  • Provide suggestions for policy improvements;
  • Support process efficiency initiatives;
  • Provide input to the development and maintenance of corporate systems and tools.
Training opportunities for the HR intern
  • The intern will be trained in Competency Based Interview Methodology.
  • The intern will be trained in the use of UNOPS ERP system. 
  • The intern will gain an understanding of the different contract modalities within UNOPS. 
  • The intern will also be exposed to different hiring processes and to all the different policies and regulations related to the HR function in UNOPS.
The Portfolio Intern will:

Under the direct supervision of one of the Senior Portfolio Officers and in close collaboration with the other Portfolio Team members, the intern will assist with the functions of a Portfolio/Operations Assistant. The intern will be exposed to various functional areas in accordance to the service lines performed in the Portfolio;
The key functions of the Portfolio intern will be:

1. Support with the Procurement of goods and services:

  • Participate in planning and organization of the events (meetings, conferences etc.) for project partners.
  • Support to the drafting of Terms of Reference for subcontractors.
  • Conduct market research to identify best suitable suppliers.
  • Evaluation of proposals received and draft recommendations for contract awards.
  • Negotiations with successful bidder, for approval within the team.

2. Travel assistance:

  • Liaise with project partners on travel arrangements. 
  • Process of travel requests in accordance to the requirements, policies and procedures.
  • Support to administration of the travel related documentation. 
  • Contributions to knowledge networks and communities of practice.

3. Support with Grants management: 

  • Assist in the establishment of new grant agreements and in the management of existing grants.
  • Support with projects’ financial transactions; facilitate approval of service payments, purchase orders and other disbursements for the projects.
  • Review of the operational aspects of the proposed projects, to meet operational objectives under the supervision of the Portfolio Manager and in collaboration with project personnel and UNOPS teams.
  • Establish and maintain working files for the projects under his/her responsibility.

5. Administrative Support

  • Administrative and logistics support with conferences, workshops and retreats.
  • Support with the maintenance of Admin hard copy and electronic records for filing and retrieval of information materials.
  • Prepare assets’ inventories and related reports.
  • Maintain files and records relevant to assets’ management.

The Intern will be given the following training components and learning elements:

The intern will be part of a team and will be learning on the job on a daily basis. The supervisor will allocate dedicated time in order to improve the intern’s understanding of the functioning of UNOPS and the UN development agency world in general. The proximity of other UN agencies and UNOG offers opportunities for numerous briefings and presentations.

Training in ERP system OneUNOPS, travel management and simple HR and procurement procedures.

The intern will be able to participate in other different training offered by UNOPS, including online language and project management courses. Other opportunities will be discussed with the intern upon arrival. No travel missions are foreseen from the outset.


A first level University Degree in Business Administration, HR, Psychology, Political Sciences, Law, International Relations or related area would be ideal.
Applicants should be enrolled in a university programme such as Bachelor, Masters or Ph.D. (or the equivalent) or have graduated from such studies within three (3) years prior to the application's date of the internship.


While no previous work experience is required for the internship, it will be considered an asset if the applicant has:
  • Some work experience in an international environment, specially within an HR/Operations unit.
  • Excellent English writing skills.
  • Experience in the usage of computers and office software packages and experience in handling of web-based systems (Applicant Tracking Systems, Performance review systems, etc.).


Fluency in written and oral English required.  Knowledge of a second UN working language is highly desirable.


Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.
Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.
Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).
Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.
Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.
Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.
Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Additional Considerations

  • Please note, this position is based in Geneva, Switzerland and therefore, the selected incumbent will have to register with the Swiss authorities and comply with local regulations, including but not limited to - Taxation and Social Security. Additionally, the incumbent will have to purchase a Swiss based insurance (LaMal) within the first three months on contract, UNOPS will help subsidize the cost of this insurance, upon show of proof and for an amount up to 120 USD.  
  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns. Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

Contract type, level and duration - Internship

Contract type: Internship
Contract level: N/A
Contract duration: 6 months with the possibility to extend upon available budget and satisfactory performance. 

This internship is not designed to lead to a staff position with UNOPS. Therefore, there should be no expectation of employment at the end of the internship.

Interns may be eligible for a monthly stipend  from UNOPS (1,242 USD per month) provided that they do not receive funds from other institutions. Further, UNOPS may provide a one time travel lumpsum after having completed at least 2 months in the internship. However, they must make their own arrangements for accommodation, travel and necessary visa arrangements.

For more details about UNOPS internships please follow this link:

Background Information - UNOPS

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
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.

What does it mean?

Click "SAVE JOB" to save this job description for later.

Sign up for free to be able to save this job for later.