Re - Advert: Technical Advisor to the Informal Sector Unit
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Brief Project Description:
As part of the response to the effects of COVID-19, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) supported the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI) and the Local Enterprise Authority (LEA) develop an Informal Sector Recovery Plan (ISRP) for the informal sector in Botswana. The recovery plan is intended to ensure channelling of the necessary and targeted support to the informal sector which is likely to be inadvertently overlooked by the numerous support programmes that benefit the formal sector businesses. Among the key areas that the recovery plan covers, is the identification of the informal sector businesses, highlighting who they are, what they do, where they are and their challenges and emerging opportunities amid COVID-19.
The recovery plan is not and cannot be a stand-alone plan but seeks to complement the other post-COVID-19 national economic recovery response initiatives, including the Economic Recovery and Transformation Plan (ERTP) that was developed by the Government of Botswana. It will also be implemented amid other recovery plans, especially the Private Sector Recovery Plan (PSRP) whose objectives are complementary and their achievement will be supportive to those of this recovery plan. The ERTP has been made an addendum of the mid-term review of the National Development Plan 11 and Government has committed to supporting its implementation as part of the response to the effects of COVID-19 to the different sectors of the economy, including the informal sector. The implementation of the PRSP has commenced with the engagement of a Project Manager to provide coordination and leadership to enhance the achievement of the objectives of the plan.
The advent of COVID-19 has revealed the dire conditions which the informal sector businesses were facing even prior to this pandemic. These are entities that are not formally registered as businesses and hence are not able to benefit from available services and opportunities that are availed to formal businesses. As a result, proper targeting of these informal sector businesses is also made difficult by failure to easily define and locate them. The findings from the situation analysis of the informal sector during the development of this ISRP has found that the sector is predominantly female and highly vulnerable to economic shocks. A significant proportion of these informal sector businesses lost income during the first national lockdown in April 2020, to the extent about half of them made zero income during the period. This confirms that the COVID-19 pandemic has further exacerbated the fragility of these informal sector businesses.
The ISRP proposes that the needs of the informal sector businesses be addressed in the short and medium terms, to ensure these needs are prioritised through the establishment of dedicated support structures, as well as delineate measures intended to build economic resilience among this group to cushion the sector against future shocks in the post-COVID-19 era. In the short-term, the ISRP seeks to achieve the establishment of informal sector facilitation structures within the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the medium-term, through the plan, the economic revitalisation of the informal sector will be pursued. The plan proposes interventions that provide for an investment in the future capability of the informal sector and closely align with the country’s National Entrepreneurship Policy and Vision 2036.
Among the intended achievements is the promotion of the transition of the informal sector businesses to the formal sector. The efforts towards achieving this intention are already underway in that through LEA, unregistered SMMEs are encouraged to come forth to register and receive a financial grant of P1,000.00 to help them recover from the effects of COVID-19 and build back their businesses. In the medium-term, measures will be put in place to enable the informal sector businesses to make productive use of innovative solutions, including digital platforms to facilitate them to stay in business by making contactless purchases and sales amid COVID-19 restrictions and beyond. The plan also seeks to develop market access centres, whether new-built or in existing malls, to capacitate informal sector businesses to grow and access vital marketing, financial, ICT and other services, from in-house support.
The ISRP sets out an ambitious programme for the economic recovery of Botswana’s informal sector. It seeks to enhance the contribution of the informal sector to the overall national economic objective of achieving a high-income status. It emphasises the need to recognise that a sustainable and resilient recovery requires the involvement of all players, both micro and macro-contributors, in the economic landscape. The recommendations presented in the ISRP seek to ensure that the contributions of informal sector participants to the national economy are recognised and supported.
Government of Botswana, through the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry has requested support from UNDP for the recruitment of a Technical Advisor to support the implementation of the Informal Sector Recovery Plan (ISRP).
Duties and Responsibilities
UNDP Botswana is looking to recruit a dynamic, seasoned professional to manage and coordinate the implementation of the Informal Sector Recovery Plan (ISRP). In this highly strategic role, the Technical Advisor, (TA) will provide technical advice, leadership, direction and strategy for the implementation of the relevant actions in the ISRP and will be responsible for working closely with the CEO or designated officer of the Local Enterprise Authority (LEA) to ensure that the proposed actions in the plan are implemented. S/he will be responsible for providing support to the informal sector businesses through their associations to derive maximum benefit from the actions of the plan. The TA will support LEA to implement, monitor and report progress on the ISRP activities. The TA will also be responsible for overseeing the research and innovation actions, including the ICT and digital solutions of the ISRP. S/he will create new partnerships at national, regional and global levels to assist in the implementation of the ISRP. S/he will play a lead role in carrying out the resource mobilization activities for the ISRP. The TA will also provide leadership in ensuring the high visibility of the activities of the plan during its implementation.
The Technical Advisor will work under the overall guidance of UNDP’s Programme Specialist – Economic Diversification and Inclusive Growth (EDIG) and the day-to-day supervision of the Local Enterprise Authority CEO or his/her designated officer. S/he will be based at the Local Enterprise Authority and will be expected to collaborate accordingly with the Local Enterprise Authority senior managers, delegated by the Local Enterprise Authority CEO, as part of the support team in implementing the ISRP, The Technical Advisor will work in consultation with the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry (MITI), other Government ministries and departments as well as other key stakeholders.
Summary of Key Functions:
In this role, the Technical Advisor will support the LEA CEO and the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry to implement the planned activities in the ISRP. The Technical Advisor will also facilitate engagement with the informal sector representative bodies/associations in the implementation of the actions of the ISRP.
The TA is expected to carry out the following functions
- Project planning and execution
- Promote, facilitate and manage new partnerships
- Oversee the research and innovation component of ISRP
- Oversee monitoring promotion of visibility of the ISRP implementation
1. Function/Expected Results: Project planning and execution of the ISRP activities
- Managing the UNDP support to the ISRP.
- Develop a management plan for each of the 2 Strategic Goals of the ISRP.
- Define clearly how each Strategic Goal and its Strategic Objectives will be implemented and the roles of all key implementing partners, with clear timelines and budgets.
- Clearly define where resources will come from for each action.
- Pro-actively, on a daily basis, support the informal sector bodies/associations to productively participate in the implementation of the plan’s activities.
NOTE: The main target for the implementation of the ISRP is the informal sector businesses. The active and productive participation of these businesses in the implementation of the plan will be extremely important for the achievement of the objectives of the plan. It will be required of the Technical Advisor to be proactive, very dynamic and have excellent initiation, convening and facilitation skills and willing to give extensive time to thinking through new innovative ways on how to meaningfully bring on board the informal sector in the implementation of the plan’s activities. Further, the implementation of the ISRP is to be led by LEA in close collaboration with Government through the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry. Furthermore, the ISRP will be implemented alongside other recovery plans, especially the Private Sector Recovery Plan which target mostly formal businesses. The two plans, however, have some areas that will benefit from collaborative efforts. The Technical Advisor, will therefore, be expected to conduct regular meetings with senior management representatives in government, parastatal institutions and the private sector to discuss the implementation of the actions.
2. Function/Expected Results: Promote, Facilitate and Manage new Partnerships
- Advise, guide and provide support to creating new partnerships at national, regional and global levels to enhance the implementation of ISRP.
- Mobilize and strengthen strategic partnerships with other UN agencies, and other relevant multilateral organizations to advance and support the project.
- Foster and enhance collaboration with relevant Government bodies by working closely with Government counterparts and national partners.
- Establish strong ties with national programmes and relevant government ministries.
3. Function/Expected Results: Oversee the Research and Innovation Component of ISRP
- Facilitate the undertaking of research activities in the ISRP as well as identify, as necessary, new research areas to enhance the implementation of the ISRP for the benefit of the informal sector businesses and stakeholders.
- Support and guide policy and strategy development initiatives for the informal sector.
- Identify Partners who may be willing to undertake research as part of partnership with LEA, Government and Informal Sector Associations.
- Develop TOR for research and policy development consultancies.
- Oversee the management of the research consultancies.
- Proactively engage in resource mobilisation for research together with the CEO of LEA.
- Facilitate the implementation of the innovative solutions, including digital solutions in the ISRP for the benefit of the informal sector businesses and the stakeholders.
- Identify and pursue partnerships for the delivery of innovative solutions in the informal sector.
4. Function/Expected Results: Oversee Monitoring and visibility of the ISRP implementation
- Develop and implement a detailed monitoring and evaluation plan for the ISRP.
- Lead quarterly review meetings and annual project reviews by monitoring the progress of project implementation, assessing results and identifying areas of weaknesses to ensure the project achieves the planned results in accordance with relevant plans.
- Prepare a detailed costed visibility plan for the implementation of the ISRP and seek funds for its implementation
- Manage the implementation of the visibility plan according to the deadlines.
Job Knowledge and Technical Expertise:
- Excellent project management, leadership, organizational, research, consultation and delegation skills.
- Flexibility and the ability to prioritize among competing demands.
- The ability to communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing, including drafting strategic project briefs, and reports, as well as activity update reports tailored appropriately for different audiences/stakeholders.
- Broad knowledge of best management practices, defines objectives and workflows, positions reporting relationships in such a way as to obtain maximum effectiveness for the project;
- Abreast of new developments in areas of professional discipline and job knowledge and seeks to develop her/himself personally;
- Comprehensive knowledge of information and communications technology (ICT) and applies it in all work assignments;
- Flexible & positive response to change through active involvement;
- Excellent work/project planning skills;
- Openness to change and ability to manage complex, ever-changing environments;
- Ability to lead implementation and monitoring of informal sector development programmes; and
- Ability to formulate and manage budgets
Building Strategic Partnerships:
- Demonstrates experience of working with government counterparts, and private sector, especially on building successful partnerships;
- Creates networks and promotes initiatives with partner organizations, and
- Has strong networking capabilities and ability to associate him/herself with a broad range of actors with a view to build relationships and facilitate links.
Required Skills and Experience
The candidate should possess a minimum of Masters’ Degree, or Professional Qualification, in; Business Administration, Entrepreneurship, Economics, Project Management or any Business-Related Field necessary to undertake the assignment.
He/ She must have at least 5 years of working experience with focus on private (and informal) sector development, competitiveness enhancement of SMEs, market development with project management, institutional development and capacity building in private sector/public sector institutions as core areas of expertise. Working knowledge and skills in ICT is a prerequisite.
Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English.
Women are strongly encouraged to apply. The selection process will be fair and transparent.