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

Head, Security Unit


  • Organization: ILO - International Labour Organization
  • Location: Geneva
  • Grade: P-5, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Security and Safety
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2022-06-06

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

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


Grade: P5  

Vacancy no.: RAPS/1/2022/INTSERV/01
Publication date: 5 May 2022
Application deadline (midnight Geneva time): 6 June 2022


Job ID: 8103 
Department: INTSERV 
Organization Unit: SECURITY 
Location: Geneva   
Contract type: Fixed Term 


The following are eligible to apply:

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


Staff members with at least five years of continuous service with the Office are encouraged to apply.


Applications from officials who have reached their age of retirement as defined in Article 11.3 of the Staff Regulations on or before 31 December 2017, or who have already separated from ILO service upon retirement or early retirement, will not be considered.


The ILO values diversity among its staff and welcomes applications from qualified female candidates. We also encourage applicants with disabilities. If you are unable to complete our online application form due to a disability, please send an email to [email protected].


The ILO welcomes applicants with experience in working within ILO constituents (governments, employers’ and business membership organizations, and workers’ organizations).


Applicants 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:


In addition to the interviews and tests that any candidate may be required to take, successful completion of the ILO Assessment Centre is required for all external candidates and any internal candidate applying to a higher category.


Notwithstanding the general considerations set out in the ILO Staff Regulations, this vacancy announcement is the only authoritative document pertaining to the qualifications required for this position. The minimum required qualifications were determined in view of the specific duties and responsibilities of this position.


The specific language requirements for this position are detailed hereunder. However, candidates applying for the professional category vacancies who have not already successfully completed their probationary period within the ILO and whose mother tongue is not one of the working languages of the Office (English, French and Spanish), shall be required to possess a fully satisfactory working knowledge of at least one of the ILO working languages. If appointed they may be required to acquire a knowledge of a second working language of the Office during their initial years of service.


The position is located in the Security Unit (SECURITY) within the Internal Services and Administration Department (INTSERV). INTSERV is responsible for the general management of facilities, environmental sustainability, safety and security, logistics and services, including printing, publishing and distribution, mail handling, and diplomatic privileges. 


The position will be responsible for leading and managing SECURITY and for the worldwide coordination of all aspects regarding safety and security of ILO personnel, programmes, premises and assets. The portfolio of ILO offices consists of the headquarters building in Geneva and approximately 61 locations outside Geneva and around 144 project offices. The position will serve as the principal security adviser to senior management and the Department Director on security risk management, including security risk analysis, risk mitigation, emergency planning and security-related crisis management. 


The position will report to the Director of INTSERV. 

Specific Duties

1.Prepare conceptual, policy and strategy papers for senior management in conformity with the United Nations Security Management System (UNSMS) policies, and prepare a global security strategy and action plan aimed at establishing and maintaining a robust and cohesive security management system and a sustainable security culture in the ILO.  Oversee the implementation of the Security Risk Management Process and provide expert technical advice to senior management on safety and security for headquarters and field locations, emergency preparedness, and crisis management. Prepare and update internal governance documents, security plans and security notices for headquarters and field offices. 
2.Plan, manage and coordinate the work of SECURITY. Establish priorities, develop work plans, assign performance parameters and monitor progress against these parameters. Provide guidance, feedback and coaching to staff. Oversee complex security-related projects, prioritize work to meet deadlines and follow defined processes, policies, procedures and guidance, foster alignment, and collaboration with colleagues and across the Organization. 
3.Manage the development and implementation of the procedural and human resources components complementing the physical security and technological components as defined in the new security concept for headquarters and ensure an integrated security system. Ensure that security and safety of headquarters premises, staff, visitors, and events are compliant with the required UNSMS standards in the most effective and efficient manner.  
4.Manage and monitor the effective and efficient use of resources and assets allocated to SECURITY and advise on minimum security resource requirements for field locations and programmes.  Determine staffing requirements, equipment and security tools and systems and review funding requests for security requirements. 
5.Lead the development and maintenance of security and emergency plans for headquarters; monitor and report on the situation in field and project offices and initiate appropriate action.  
6.Supervise and guide the work of the field security officers. Ensure timely delivery of security appraisals for development cooperation projects, the timely implementation of Security Risk Assessments and security advice and the coordination with regional and country security focal points, regional directors, country directors and programme managers. Implement the assessment and monitoring of the ILO security measures in field and project offices, the level of compliance with UNSMS policy provisions and with the measures as defined in the local Security Risk Management and Residential Security Risk Management.


7.Monitor the proper registration of all security incidents in an ILO database and the United Nations Safety and Security Incident Recording System (UN SSIRS). Provide regular reporting and ensure follow-up of the reported incident and the provisioning of appropriate support and services that may be required. 

8.Monitor developments globally and report on those that may impact the security of ILO staff and programme delivery. Manage security-related aspects in emergency and crisis situations and provide timely information, analysis and advice related to the security of staff and impact on programme implementation to enable senior management to take timely decisions.  Participate in the ILO’s Country Crisis Cell meetings and provide its members with regular security updates. Participate in the United Nations Department for Safety and Security (UNDSS) crisis and emergency coordination when required.  
9.Develop, implement and maintain a staff security training strategy that increases skills, security awareness and security knowledge of all personnel across the Organization. Collaborate with the UNDSS Training and Development Section and with other UNSMS organisations on the planning and organisation of trainings. 

10.Collaborate as the owner of the core element “safety and security of personnel, premises and assets” on the implementation of the UN Organisational Resilience Management System policy in the ILO with the various stakeholders responsible for other core elements.  

11.Collaborate with headquarters and the field on the development and implementation of office-wide security related policies and procedures and with heads of units in the INTSERV Department and other relevant departments on headquarters specific procedures and projects.   

12.Collaborate and coordinate with UNDSS other UNSMS entities and security representatives as appropriate to establish efficient collaboration and channels for the collection and analysis of security information, intelligence and threat analysis. Act as the Security Focal Point of the ILO as defined in the UN Framework of Accountability and represent the ILO in the Inter Agency Security Management Network.    

13.Perform other relevant duties as required.

These specific duties are aligned with the relevant ILO generic job description, which includes the following generic duties:

Generic Duties

  1. Provide leadership and vision for the work unit.
  2. Responsible for programme development and evaluation. Establish priorities and objectives for the work unit and organise resources to achieve the objectives.
  3. Formulate the Programme and Budget proposals, and implement decisions that impact upon the cost-effective management of the department, programme or sector. Develop a variety of criteria to measure programme effectiveness. Supervise administrative services for a large department or sector.
  4. Contribute as a strategic member of the management team and prepare documents of a conceptual, strategic and policy nature. Conceptualise, design and develop a range of services, tools and related support activities. Plan, organise and supervise the preparation and production of technical and administrative documents and/or major publications.
  5. Provide policy advice on a broad range of matters including cooperative arrangements involving work activities between programmes, departments or sectors; personnel and financial matters; and quality control. Identify, analyse and document experienced gained from delivery of services, implementation of development cooperation and other developmental activities undertaken.
  6. Plan and coordinate activities with other organisations and/or institutions.
  7. Assess needs, design and implement activities in coordination with the field and constituents. Evaluate activities undertaken in the field and provide feedback. Coordinate development cooperation activities for a large department or sector.
  8. Represent the work unit and the office in internal and external meetings as regards policy questions.    
  9. Manage and coordinate large meetings or special events.

Required qualifications


Advanced university degree in international relations, business or public administration, law, disaster or emergency management, law enforcement,  security management, or a related field. A relevant first level university degree in combination with three years of qualifying experience in security management in addition to the ten years minimum experience mentioned below will be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.


Possession of an UNDSS certification “Security Certification Programme” is an asset.


At least ten years of progressively responsible experience in security risk management, law enforcement, military service of which at least seven at the international level. Relevant work experience in or concerning several geographic regions.  At least five years of significant managerial responsibility supervising both internal staff and external contractors.  Formal training and experience in security risk management.  Experience in the design and implementation of security strategies and plans.  Demonstrated ability and experience in providing security services alongside other services in an integrated and coordinated manner.


Excellent command of English and a working knowledge of French. Knowledge of Spanish is considered an asset.


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


Technical Competencies:  


Excellent knowledge of security risk management methodology and tools, including security risk analysis. Knowledge of physical security systems and technologies and management of security operations.  Ability to communicate verbally and in writing on complex and technical subjects in a clear and structured manner.  Proven ability in contract management, budgeting and procurement activities.  Excellent project management skills. Strong analytical skills, decision making and problem-solving skills. Ability to identify priority activities and assignments, to adjust priorities as required, to foresee risks and plan for contingencies.  Ability to develop and manage a strategic direction and transform it into a results-oriented work programme. Demonstrated ability to manage complex problems or programmes.  Knowledge of UN security management policies, procedures and regulations would be considered an asset.  

Excellent knowledge of financial rules and regulations. Seasoned knowledge of office’s policies, administrative procedures and practices. Excellent skills in programme development, execution, monitoring and evaluation. Proven skills and ability in advising and guiding staff on policies, procedures and practices. Demonstrated skills and ability in coordinating activities and formulating guidelines and policies. Excellent writing skills. Excellent communication and presentation skills. Negotiation skills. Computer skills.  Excellent supervisory, organizational and management skills. Demonstrated ability to develop, seek funding, implement and evaluate activities of the work unit/ programme or project. Tact and persuasiveness in dealing with people. Seasoned knowledge of the broad
range of technical subject areas dealt with by the work unit/ programme. Demonstrated ability to effectively monitor and evaluate work programme and resources.


Behavioural Competencies

High standard of integrity. Strong Leadership skills. Demonstrate effective interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence, including self-awareness and contextual intelligence. Ability to develop and maintain effective partnerships and working relations. Communicate effectively and appropriately with staff, management and external stakeholders. Role models effective client oriented behaviour; positively promotes the need to respect clients and work in a client-centric manner. Shows persistence when faced with difficult situations or challenges and remains calm in stressful situations.  Actively promotes collaboration and fosters teamwork and communication within the Unit/Department and with other departments at headquarters and with field and project offices. Ability to work in a multi-cultural environment and to demonstrate gender-sensitive and non-discriminatory behaviour and attitudes.



Conditions of employment

  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to ILO Staff Regulations and other relevant internal rules. Any offer of employment with the ILO is conditional upon certification by the ILO Medical Adviser that the person concerned is medically fit to perform the specific inherent requirements of the position offered. In order to confirm an offer from the ILO the successful candidate will be required to undergo a medical examination.
  • The first contract will be issued for a twenty-four month period.
  • A successful external candidate will be on probation for the first two years of assignment.
  • Any extension of contract beyond the probation period is subject to satisfactory conduct and performance.

For more information on conditions of employment, please visit:


Important Information

Any officials of the General Service category interested in applying to this position are hereby informed that, if selected, they will be offered the salary and allowances applicable to the grade of the position applied for, which may result in substantial changes in their take-home remuneration. In accordance with Article 3.4 of the Staff Regulations, the salary of an official, upon promotion, shall in no case be greater than the maximum salary of the grade to which he or she was promoted. For any questions or clarifications, please contact your HR partner at [email protected]


Recruitment process

Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application form. To apply, please visit the ILO Jobs website at 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 3 to 4 months 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.

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.