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Sr. ICT Specialist (Financial and Treasury Systems)

Rome

  • Organization: IFAD - International Fund for Agricultural Development
  • Location: Rome
  • Grade: Mid level - P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Operations and Administrations
    • Banking and Finance
    • Information Technology and Computer Science
  • Closing Date: 2023-02-05

Organizational Setting

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is an international financial institution and a specialized United Nations agency dedicated to eradicating rural poverty and hunger. It does so by investing in rural people. IFAD finances programmes and projects that increase agricultural productivity and raise rural incomes, and advocates at the local, national and international level for policies that contribute to rural transformation.

 

The Corporate Services Department (CSD), led by the Associate Vice-President, CSD, provides IFAD with the human resources, administrative services, safety and security, information technology resources  and medical support services required to allow IFAD to meet its objectives of enabling rural people overcome poverty. The work of the CSD is undertaken by three divisions (i) Human Resources Division (HRD) (ii) Administrative Services Division (ADM) and (iii) Information and Communications Technology Division (ICT) and three units: (a) Front Office CSD (b) Field Support Unit and (c) Medical Services Unit.

The Information & Communications Technology Division (ICT) delivers secure, reliable, and integrated technology solutions which enable delivery of business value and provide IFAD with a strategic advantage through technical innovation and agile ICT services, and by streamlining corporate processes using effective ICT solutions. It facilitates access to information, ensures reliable and secure availability of information and communication means, provides a sustainable and secure digital environment and offers standard ICT services.

Senior ICT Specialists work under the overall strategic, policy and management guidance as well as direct supervision of the Director or Manager, Information and Communications Technology Division (ICT). They are typically accountable for unit work plan establishment and supervision of a team of ICT Specialists, Associates and/or Assistants.

 

The incumbent works under the direct supervision of Director, ICT or ICT Manager.

Job Role

Senior Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Specialists at this level are senior specialists assigned leadership and management of technology design, development and maintenance work that involves interface with users and coordination of other ICT specialists. The role of ICT Senior ICT Specialist is a key role within ICT. The incumbent is required to understand technical requirements and develop in-depth knowledge of IFAD processes, systems and infrastructure. They are typically accountable for unit work plan establishment and supervision of a team of ICT Specialists, Associates and/or Assistants.

Position specific:

  1. Provide strategic direction for Financial systems at IFAD in particular in terms of organizational needs and medium-term strategic plans, technology landscape and trends, security considerations and risks.
  2. Ensure a robust architecture for Financial systems at IFAD ensuring solutions for scalability, adaptability and integration.  To facilitate process and data integration, this oversight should align all stakeholders to common understandings of key activities and processes
  3. Manage projects on the implementation, extension or upgrade of financial systems, including the management of third party vendors, internal resources and corporate stakeholders. 
  4. Work with relevant stakeholders to establish a consistent and shared data model for IFAD Finance is used across IFAD Financial systems to facilitate integrations of data and processes
  5. Ensure that data needs in the area of Finance are supported, both from internal and external sources.  This requires close work with infrastructure, data, application and business teams to agree on data classifications, data quality thresholds and checks and data availability.  
  6. Investigate and explore emerging technologies in the FinTech space to provide an informed point of view for ICT and Senior Management
  7. Ensure IT and Cyber security guidelines are enforced and provide advice on opportunities for improvement with respect to Financial systems
  8. Ensure oversight with sufficient monitoring on performance of Financial systems
  9. Ensure management of hosting arrangements with third parties
  10. Work closely with  Financial Operations to identify needs, solutions, address issues and improve the service provided by ICT in this area
  11. Manage the pipeline of demand from Financial Operations to support IT planning including resourcing
  12. Advise on all aspects of budget management and budget planning within the area of centrally managed Financial systems  

Key Functions and Results

1. ICT PRACTICE LEADER: Senior ICT Specialists at this level are typically accountable for technical leadership in their occupational area at the corporate level with accountability for conceptualization, design, development, implementation and maintenance of major and complex information systems and applications to meet the evolving needs of the Fund. They typically accomplish the assigned activities through supervision of an ICT unit comprised of other professional (P) and general service (GS) staff and through technical guidance and work product validation of external ICT consultants.

2. ICT BUSINESS PARTNER: Senior ICT Specialists are credible, trusted partners to client offices served and the Division where assigned, serving as responsive and constructive service providers with a focus on results. They contribute directly to the development of the Fund’s ICT strategy and plans as well as model a commitment to data and systems integrity. Senior ICT Specialists provide authoritative advice and guidance to ICT colleagues and the Division Director on cross-division systems / applications interfaces as well as   requirements for modifications or enhancements / extensions.

3. ICT MANAGEMENT: Senior ICT Specialists are accountable for conceptual work and technical leadership in the development, design, implementation and management of original systems/applications and ensure their interface with existing applications and/or major ICT systems. Representative accountabilities/key results include (a) identifying the need for new applications/systems, conducting feasibility studies and translating user needs into systems and applications that can be integrated with existing systems/technology; (b) conducting and/or leading systems analysis, determining costs of development and eventual operations of the system(s)/applications; (c) defining application/system requirements and developing technical and functional specifications; (d) overseeing the development of file and database architecture, configuration and record formats ensuring relevant internal control and security mechanisms are established; (e) planning, scheduling and launching implementation work and systems testing; (f) identifying, testing, assessing and evaluating new products and technologies and proposing strategies and implementation plans; (g) collaborating on defining and resolving problems of the Fund’s systems integration (intra/inter- organizational); and (h) leading the preparation of technical and user documentation for entire systems and interdependent applications as well as training materials and detailed technical presentations; conducting courses for users.

4. AGENT OF CHANGE: Senior ICT Specialists understand and apply the principles of change management and proactively serve as a role model for transformation and capacity for acceptance of change. They use a seasoned knowledge of information technology to develop, analyze and promote acceptance of new methods of work and automated workflows. Senior Specialists manage change through technical leadership in identifying systems/applications that support change and outreach to client offices to build understanding of and to ensure open and regular communications pertaining to current and planned changes in the Fund’s information and communications technology strategy, standards, regulations and rules.

5. MANAGERIAL FUNCTIONS: Senior ICT Specialists are typically team leaders with accountability for integrity, transparency, and equity in the management of IFAD technology. This includes: (a) People Management through work plan development, recruitment, performance and career management of P and GS staff as well as learning management establishing learning plans and ensuring supervised staff  meet their development needs while meeting the needs of IFAD; (b) Resource Management by providing strategic and data inputs into the divisional budget preparation exercises; (c) Knowledge and Content Management by ensuring (i) knowledge content within functional areas is continuously updated and available to colleagues and clients (ii) best practices are continuously identified, documented and distributed and (iii) appropriate and up-to-date information and learning tools are available to the Fund’s managers, supervisors and staff; and Information Technology Management through leveraging ERP functionality for improved business results, simplification of transaction and reporting processes and improved client services.

Position specifics:

6. Technical & functional management: of Financial Systems at IFAD and related data management and oversight.  

7. Relationship management: Manage relationships with key stakeholders with the FOD department.  Build network with peers within the IFI/UN network in particular to share knowledge and leverage pertinent experiences and lessons learned.

8. Vendor management: Close technical management of vendors supporting IFADs financial architecture to ensure that the fund is kept informed of all changes and product pipeline updates and well as optimizing cost management and licencing arrangements.

Key Performance Indicators

The work of Senior ICT Specialists involves leading the design, configurationa, implementation, maintenance and improvement of the  critical technology operations of the Fund, adapting processes as necessary to achieve full functionality and interface with existing systems. Thus work at this level impacts on the overall design and continuity of major systems/applications and indirectly impacts the accomplishment of the Fund’s objectives, goals and functions.  As a foundation for the Fund’s administrative and programme operations technical decisions are taken on the feasibility of technology proposals and specifications for systems / applications. They provide authoritative advice to the Division Director and Senior IFAD Management, which leads to both technical decisions as well as resource commitments.

The key performance indicators for Senior ICT Specialists include technical leadershipand team leadership

Working Relationships

Internally Senior ICT Specialists are responsible for overall coordination with users on all aspects and/or during all phases of development as well as the provision of authoritative technical guidance to others involved in interrelated technology activities. The acceptance of modification to specifications and work processes is accomplished through negotiations. They provide authoritative technical advice to the ICT Division Director on the design and implementation of technology applications and systems as well as IFAD senior management/decision-makers.

Externally work relationships require collaboration and coordination to ensure vendors, service providers, collaborators and external ICT consultants meet established contractual terms and conditions, as well as coordination with other organizations to establish compatibility of systems/application interface (Borrowers and Contributing institutions).

Job Profile Requirements

Organizational Competencies:

Level 2:

  • Strategic thinking and organizational development: Strategic leadership
  • Demonstrating Leadership: Leads by example; initiates and supports change
  • Learning, sharing knowledge and innovating: Challenges, innovates and contributes to a learning culture
  • Focusing on clients: Contributes to a client-focused culture
  • Problem solving and decision making: Solves complex problems and makes decisions that have wider corporate impact
  • Managing time, resources and information: Coordinates wider use of time, information and/or resources
  • Team Work: Fosters a cohesive team environment
  • Communicating and negotiating: Acquires and uses a wide range of communication styles and skills
  • Building relationships and partnerships: Builds and maintains strategic partnerships internally and externally
  • Managing performance and developing staff: Manages staff and teams effectively

Education:

  • Level – Advanced university degree from an accredited institution in a technically relevant area. In lieu of an advanced university degree, a first university degree (Bachelor or equivalent) plus at least four (4) additional years of relevant professional experience over and above the minimum number of years of experience requirement may be considered;;
  • Areas - Computer science, information technology, mathematics or other job related field
  • Degree must be an accredited institution listed on https://www.whed.net/home.php 

Languages:

  • Required English (4 – Excellent)
  • Desirable: French, Spanish, and/or Arabic (3 – Good)

Experience:

  • At least eight (8) years of progressively responsible professional experience in planning, design, development, implementation and maintenance of information technology, in any of the following roles: infrastructure, system administration, application management, network administration, security management, coding or  agile development;
  • Two (2) years experience in a multi-lateral or national organization providing support on a global scope;

    Position-specific experience:
  • At least five (8) years working on Financial systems preferably within a Financial Instituion, with at least 4 years experience in Oracle Flexcube;
  • At least two (2) years of experience with cloud technologies is desirable;
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively in a diverse organization tailoring language, tone, style and format to match audience.
  • Any experience of compliance or financial standards would be advantageous
  • Extensive and demonstrable technical experience of financial and banking business processes with a deep knowledge of supporting systems ranging to the full suite of finance, from back office to middle office, and to treasury management related systems
  • Project management experience including delivery of large-scale financial implementations and major upgrades from inception to production.
  • Ability to communicate effectively at all levels both internally and externally and to engage and lead multi-stakeholder implementations, ability to see the bigger picture, providing leadership and overall direction through product development roadmaps as well as encouraging buy-in from clients, peers and partners
  • Expert knowledge of financial system integration and data flow across applications with attention to the eventual downstream use of data though visualization and analytics, as well as integrations between financial systems, data repositories and ERPs
  • Understanding of financial regulations in terms of applicability in financial systems
  • Ability to manage all procurement aspects of project implementation including tenders and contract negotiations, with a focus on the financial systems vendors and ecosystem, as well as management of 3rd parties on shore and off shore
  • Ability to manage a team through workload planning and articulation, mentoring of team members and providing overall guidance and development opportunities
  • Awareness and knowledge of emerging technologies and trends, identifying and incorporating new technologies where there is value in terms of outputs and efficiencies, as well fintech trends and practices
  • Demonstrates cyber security awareness and builds this into project planning and execution to ensure data integrity and auditability and their applicability in financial systems
  • Hands-on technical experience with Oracle Flexcube is a must, and experiences with Treasury Systems is a strong asset

Skills:

  Job role specific

  • Data analysis/architecture, know-how in the analysis and interpretation of data needs and sources taking into account its operational context, using systems and models to disseminate ensuring integrity, availability to meet reporting and business analytics needs;
  • Basic ICT & digital fluency, Expertise relevant to the specific role (e.g. in-depth computer information systems, including micro-computer operating systems software, hardware and applications software and other office technology equipment), end-user computing configuration management;
  • Emerging technologies expertise to evaluate and identify business and technical opportunities in emerging technologies including methodologies, tools, systems and applications (including  Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Predictive Analytics and Machine Learning, Virtual Reality, Robotics, GIS Analytics, etc.) ;
  • Cybersecurity, expertise specific to cybersecurity principles, tools, systems and applications;   
  • Project/Programme Management, identification of key priorities, ability to structure work to meet deadlines and adjustment of workplan/resource allocation when needed; Programme management: overall management of portfolio of work (including PMO interaction) with expertise to identify dependencies or bottlenecks between projects, managing changes and risks;
  • Agile ICT services, usingvarious agile methods, such as daily stand-ups, sprints and hackathons, to generate end products early on;
  • User experience, Strong focus on the delivery of a positive and intuitive user experience, building on a proactive clarification of user needs and requirements;   
  • User technology enablement and support, Advanced configuration and endpoint management, digital mobile communication, seam IT monitoring and backup, incident response and endpoint management;  
  • Devops, Expertise in continuous integration, configuration management, deployment automation, infrastructure orchestration and monitoring and analytics; 
  • Network and Infrastructure Administration, Expertise in the provisioning, configuration, management, tuning and performance monitoring of the IFAD network and the infrastructure of the IFAD datacentre;
  • System and Database Administration, Expertise in the provisioning, configuration, management, tuning and performance monitoring of systems and databases;
  • Technical enablement of data analytics and data mining tools, Expertise in the design, development, deployment, maintenance and management of Data Warehouse, data visualization, data analysis, data mining and reporting tools;  3IT Vendor and Contract Management (incl. cloud),  Expertise in contract and vendor management of IT Software, hardware and services (including cloud);  
  • Analytical skills, Outstanding  ability to analyse and synthesize qualitative and/or quantitative information from a variety of sources and filter out key insights and recommendations;
  • Data Management, Data collection, cleaning, transformation and consolidation ; database architecture & development ; data presentation; 
  • Strategy implementation, Ability to lead and manage the development and implementation of medium to longer-term strategies for IFAD / for respective divisions; 
  • Client Orientation, Strong critical thinking combined with communication skills to liaise between the business and technologies to understand business problems and needs, document requirements and identify solutions; 
  • Leadership, Group  Leader, sought out by others and providing mentorship and effective guidance to others; Ability to build trust, inside and outside the organization by acting as a role model for IFAD’s core values and competencies, and to provide a clear sense of direction, mentorship and effective guidance to the team, strategizing  IFAD’s goals, providing vision, empowering the team and ensuring a positive environment for all;
  • Change management, Role modelling, anticipation of key risks and conflicts and formulation of contingency plans/solutions, action-oriented; 
  • Planning, know-how in the planning of human, financial and material management of IFAD resources; 
  • HR systems, know-how in the design and management of HR systems and tools (e.g. learning platforms, performance platforms, etc.)
  • Financial data integrity and financial systems, know-how in systems interface control, core banking system management, data mining and analytics;
  • Budgeting, resource management, know-how in budget administration and accounting, resource allocation and planning at divisional level;   
  • Procurement, know-how in the application of the procurement policies, rules and regulations applicable to IFAD HQ and/or Country Programmes/Projects, including for complex individual cases

    Other Information

    IFAD staff members are international civil servants subject to the authority of the President of IFAD. In accordance with IFAD's Human Resources Policy, the President can decide to assign them to any of the activities of the Fund. All International Professional staff members are required to be geographically mobile and positions in the professional category are subject to changes in location at any time in line with strategic priorities and reform initiatives in IFAD.

    IFAD is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of ethnic, social or political background, colour, nationality, religion, age, gender, disability, marital status, family size or sexual orientation.

    Please be aware of fraudulent job offers. IFAD does not charge any fees at any stage of the recruitment process. Official communication from IFAD will always come from e-mails ending in @ifad.org.

    In the interest of making most cost-effective use of funds and resources, we are only able to respond to applicants who are short-listed for interview. Candidates who do not receive any feedback within three months should consider their application unsuccessful.

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    Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
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