Regional Program Manager – West Africa Region

Africa – West – Flexibility to work from an office in Search West Region, N/A

Position Summary

The Program Manager aims to ensure excellence in performance in all areas of program implementation in full compliance with SFCG and donor rules and regulations. By supporting the country team and measuring their performance using specific and agreed-upon program implementation and quality measurement tools, the Program Manager shares a diagnosis of country programs’ strengths and weaknesses with the Regional Director. This diagnosis will be based on the efficacy and effort by the country team in utilizing organizational tools.

Based on this diagnosis, priorities for each country program are set with the Regional Director. This is done in a manner which consistently builds capacity, strengthens lines of accountability, and enables and inspires talent at all levels within the country program. Accountability of the performance in managing the awards remains with the Country Director, who is supervised by the Regional Director. The Regional Director thus focuses more so on strategic development, new business development, and management of the senior country team.

Key Responsibilities

Roles and responsibilities include:

Program Implementation

Under the supervision of the Regional Director, the Program Manager supports in the timely, effective and compliant implementation of projects in country. Areas of focus will be dependent on the strengths and weaknesses of each country program as determined by the Regional Director and the Program Manager, but will include the following:

  • Ensure that basic SFCG program implementation tools are being used and shared, including start-up and close-out protocols, costed work plans, operational budgets, BvA meetings, and quarterly work plans.
  • Encourage standards of excellence, a reflective, learning and adaptive culture, with the strengthening of capacities and systems to enable this culture;
  • Support programs in using organizational best practices in the use of tools and methodologies to implement the program activities, and identify capacity building needs for in-country staff; provide technical inputs on projects when applicable and appropriate, and/or mobilize technical support on key areas (eg. Training tools, media products, etc)
  • Support programs to speak to results, encouraging an implementation logic that focuses on the objectives of a project and seeks to capture the change as per the theory of change. Facilitating collaboration with ILT when needed.
  • Based on a sharing of the reports between the PM and the Business Development team (including in-country Program Associates), review and edit reports of country programs prior to submission. Use Quarterly Report Scorecard to track ongoing improvements in staff capacity in reporting; design coaching and capacity building to improve capacity.
  • Liaise with any of Search’s HQ departments when appropriate to facilitate collaboration and trouble shoot issues; Collaborate with the Institutional Learning Team, the Communications Team and the IT department, to assist in their provision of pertinent and timely support to programs where they have direct budgets;
  • Quickly identify obstacles to timely delivery of quality programs and work with country teams and Regional Director and Regional Finance Manager (RFM) to solve obstacles creatively and rapidly. This includes assessing the risks related to overall program performance, as well as efficacy of SFCG procedures, tools and guidelines.
  • Mobilize and monitor short term consultants when appropriate and delegated by the Regional Director.
  • Travel to field offices to provide in-country support as needed. Participate in key project and program launch and close out meetings, key program events and workshops.

Grants and Operations Management

  • Track the performance of each country management teams in their implementation of grants, achievement of program and spending targets, and meeting of reporting deadlines for feedback to the RD. Ongoing coaching of the teams to improve performance in all of these areas.
  • In collaboration with Country Directors, Finance Managers, and Project Managers actively monitor burn rates to ensure that grants are spent out to 90% according to grant agreements and SFCG’s grant management policy.
  • Work in collaboration with specific units in HQ to ensure complete grant documentation, agreement review and signing, budget realignments, cost extensions, etc. as well as grant closure.
  • Engage support of other departments as needed to solve problems and provide support to country teams in addressing grant management challenges.
  • Contribute to ongoing improvement of grant management tools, including grant status tracking, donor requirements and regulations, burn rate monitoring, report compilation and collection, and SFCG policy and donor regulations.
  • Assume interim leadership roles in country programs when appropriate and timely.

Program Strategy

  • Although the Program Manager is not the lead in the business development, the Program Manager will at times be delegated to take on specific pieces of large and strategic proposals, such as engaging and negotiating with local or international partners in the development of a consortium.

External relations, communications & visibility

  • Be a focal point where delegated on donor communications, working together with the team to clarify information, follow-through on requests;
  • Liaise with ILT, GAP, and Communications to enhance the visibility of the region, through back-stopping on success stories and other data reflecting the change and transformation of our work.

As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the position holder may be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key responsibilities.


You meet the following qualifications:


  • Bachelor’s Degree in relevant field.


  • Minimum of 5 years of experience in working in implementation and/or program support, with a preference for focus on conflict transformation and/or international development
  • Experience with grants management, including with EU, DFID, USG, or UN;
  • Experience in relevant region;

Skills and Competencies

  • Willingness to travel on a regular basis (up to 50%) and live in challenging contexts;
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively work with a diverse team, with attention to mentorship and professional development of staff;
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills in English and French required;
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills.

This position will close on January 6th, 2019

To apply

To apply, interested candidates should send the following items  to our employment portal here:

  • current resume
  • cover letter

Only applicants invited for an interview will be contacted. No phone calls please. Please see our website for full details of our work.

All Search Employees must adhere to the values: Shared Humanity – Empathy – Impartiality – Inclusivity – Courage – Hope – Humility – Audacity. In accordance with these values, Search enforces compliance with the Code of Conduct and related policies on Anti Workplace Harassment, Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Conflict of Interest and Anti-fraud.

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