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Pacific Island Language Service Officer


  • Organization: SPC - Pacific Community
  • Location: Nouméa
  • Grade: Level not specified - Level not specified
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Maritime
    • Translations and Languages
  • Closing Date: Closed
  • Noumea-based position
  • Attractive expatriate package
  • Join the principal development organisation in the region



The Pacific Community (SPC) is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 27 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our unique organisation works across more than 25 sectors. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health surveillance, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The Operations and Management Directorate (OMD) provides corporate services to all SPC Divisions and Programmes. It consists of three key departments: Finance, Human Resources and Information Services. OMD is focused on improving the effectiveness of systems, policies and management to provide high-quality customer-oriented services.


The role – the Pacific Island Language Service Officer will have the following key responsibilities.

Building a network of Pacific Language professionals for SPC Divisions and other partners as relevant

  • Consult with SPC Divisions to identify their needs for Pacific language providers for outreach products and identify target languages to be prioritised.
  • Establish a roster of language professionals for Pacific languages, for one or more activities as follows: translation, editing, reviewing documents drafted by SPC technical staff, producing text in native languages that could be reviewed by technical staff, proofreading laid-out documents, voice recording for audio/video products
  • Develop brief country factsheets as reference for divisions, including details on target languages, context, and linguistic usages
  • Socialise the network with SPC Divisions and other partners

Managing the procurement process to source Pacific Island Language Service Providers

  • In consultation with the Noumea Procurement Team, select the appropriate procurement process for sourcing Pacific Island Language specialists
  • Under the supervision of the Translation Coordinator, draft the Terms of Reference for the procurement process, in consultation with relevant contact points within divisions
  • Take part in the evaluation committee to assess applications
  • Define the list of selected providers and appropriate control mechanisms

Developing quality control and monitoring mechanism and tools to update the list of Pacific language service providers in the future

  • List contact points within SPC Divisions
  • Define criteria to help contact points within divisions ensure quality control of products delivered
  • Define a process to enable yearly/ad hoc review of the list of selected providers to ensure they still meet SPC requirements

Acquiring core skills in translation and editing processes

  • Take part in flagship projects of the Translation Team in cooperation with the Publishing Team, for the job holder to learn about translation processes and document publishing cycle at SPC
  • Build the job holder’s capacities in translation and publishing through best practices workshops with the experts from the SPC Translation and Publishing Teams
  • Gain knowledge on SPC translation tools, such as the terminology base SPCTerm

Acquiring marketable and transferable practical skills and knowledge that can be applied in a diverse range of settings

  • Build capacities in corporate/organisational procurement processes and rules
  • Build and maintain relationships with internal and external contact points
  • Support the development of thorough quality control processes

For a more detailed account of the key responsibilities, please refer to the online job description.


Key selection criteria


  • Degree in anthropology, development studies, Pacific Studies, Pacific Island languages and/or linguistics or Pacific Island cultures, preferably with a translation component, in Social Sciences with a focus on the Pacific Islands, OR in related area

Technical expertise

  • At least 7-8 years of experience in cultural management, teaching Pacific Studies/Languages in a tertiary institution, working as an academic specialised in Pacific cultures or languages, OR working as a high-level consultant in Pacific cultures
  • Excellent command of English
  • Knowledge of (a) Pacific language/languages
  • Very good knowledge of Pacific context and cultures
  • Good knowledge of the Microsoft Office suite
  • Ability to work quickly and efficiently under pressure
  • Ability and willingness to learn and adapt to new technologies and methodologies

Language skills

  • Excellent command of English or French

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

  • A team player, with the ability to work in a multi-diverse and multi-cultural environment.


Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration – This vacant position is budgeted until 31st of December 2023.

Remuneration – the Pacific Island Language Service Officer is a band 9 position in SPC’s 2022 salary scale, with a starting salary range of 3,140–3,829 SDR (special drawing rights) per month, which currently converts to approximately XPF 449,687–548,326 (USD 4,491–5,476; EUR 3,768–4,595). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration being given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale is based on annual performance reviews. SPC salaries are not presently subject to income tax in New Caledonia.

Benefits for international staff employees based in New Caledonia – SPC provides subsidised housing in Noumea and will reimburse excess accompanied luggage of up to two additional bags. Airfares, medical and life insurance are available for eligible employees. Employees are entitled to 25 days of annual leave per year of contract and access to SPC’s Provident Fund (contributing 8% of salary, to which SPC adds a matching contribution).

Languages – SPC’s working languages are English and French.

Recruitment principles – SPC’s recruitment is based on merit and fairness, and candidates are competing in a selection process that is fair, transparent and non-discriminatory. SPC is an equal-opportunity employer, and is committed to cultural and gender diversity, including bilinguism, and will seek to attract and appoint candidates who respect these values. Due attention is given to gender equity and the maintenance of strong representation from Pacific Island professionals.  If two interviewed candidates are ranked equal by the selection panel, preference will begiven to the Pacific Islander. Applicants will be assured of complete confidentiality in line with SPC’s private policy.


Application procedure

Closing date: 29 January 2023 – 11:00 pm (Noumea time)

Job Reference: SH000231

Applicants must apply online at

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:

  • an updated resume with contact details for three professional referees
  • a cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this position
  • responses to all screening questions

Your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage if all the above documents are not provided. Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference. Please ensure your documents are in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

SPC does not charge a fee to consider your application and will never ask for your banking or financial information during the recruitment process.


Screening questions (maximum of 2,000 characters per question):

  1. Please give an example of a project in the area of Pacific Island languages or cultures that you implemented from end to end. What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?
  2. What avenues will you pursue and methods will you use to identify service providers in Pacific Island languages (drafting, translation, etc.)?
  3. What are the features of efficient teamwork and how do you maintain a good relationship with all stakeholders in a project setting?


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