Save the Children Programme Operations Manager Job in Nairobi Kenya

Save the Children

Job Title: Programme Operations Manager

Team / Programme: Kenya Country Office

Grade:  As per Kenya salary scale

Duty station: Nairobi with regular field visits

Post Type: National

Child Safeguarding: Level 3 – the responsibilities of the post may require the post holder to have regular contact with or access to children or young people.

Role Purpose: As a member of the Extended Senior Management Team, the Programme Operations Manager (POM) shares in the overall responsibility for leadership and management of the Kenya Country Office.

The POM is responsible for supporting operations management of field offices and quality implementation of Save the Children’s programmes in Kenya including the ongoing Drought response.

The POM will provide cover for the APM role and will provide the necessary technical support and mentoring.

The POM will also cover as acting Director of Programme Operations as required and will support Save the Children to prepare for and effectively respond to emergencies and humanitarian crises.

Scope of Role:

Reports to: Deputy Country Director Programme Operations

Staff directly reporting to this post:  To be confirmed

Dimensions: Save the Children has been operational in Kenya since the 1950s, providing support to children through developmental and humanitarian relief programs delivered both directly and through local partners.

Current programming focuses on child protection, child rights governance, education, health, HIV/AIDS, livelihoods, nutrition and WASH.

In 2012, as part of a global reorganization process, Save the Children combined the programs of SC UK, SC Canada and SC Finland to create a single operation in Kenya.

In Feb 2014, we completed a second transition, which saw us join forces with the British INGO, Merlin, and merge their health and nutrition programs with our own.

Save the Children now has an operational presence in Bungoma, Dadaab Refugee Camp, Garissa, Mandera, Turkana and Wajir and we work through partners in many other parts of the country.

In 2016, Save the Children established a new project office in Madagascar whose operations are managed by the Kenya CO.

In total, we employ around 250 staff in both countries and had an operating annual budget in 2016 of approximately US$17.5million.

Key Areas of Accountability:

As a member of the Extended Senior Management Team:

  • To practice behaviors that is consistent with Save the Children’s Mission, Vision and Values and ensures their broader application by staff across the Kenya programme.
  • To support development and the implementation of the strategic direction of Kenya Programme, its objectives, priorities and strategies, in alignment with our Theory of Change.
  • To promote Save the Children’s culture and values, create a positive working environment and celebrate success.
  • Help establish, maintain, and improve active and regular working relationships with: host government authorities at central and county level, donors, partner agencies including major institutional donors, and local and international NGOs.
  • Support the development of an organisational culture that reflects our full spectrum values, promotes accountability and high performance, encourages a team culture of learning, creativity and innovation, and frees up our people to deliver outstanding results for children and excellent customer service for our Members and donors.

Oversight and Management of Programme Operations

  • Responsible for supporting field level programme operations and field delivery of high quality programming in line with the objectives of the Country Strategic Plan 2016-18.
  • Participate in programme proposal processes and ensure that all programmes are implemented in accordance with award agreements and are completed within time and on budget.
  • Serve as delegated budget holder for all programming at field level; manage and support budget holders for individual projects and awards.
  • Ensure programmes are implemented in ways responsive to the communities and children in line with Save the Children principles, values and strategic plan and following Save the Children compliance procedures. This includes working with government and national NGO-partners to strengthen national capacity.
  • Ensure preparation of timely and high quality progress reports, programme reports, and donor reports in coordination with Technical Specialists, Finance Reporting staff and Awards team.
  • Provide support and mentorship to the Area Programme Managers of field offices within Kenya, as well as to other posts specified above.
  • Ensure field offices have the right operations capacity to deliver timely quality programmes
  • Provide Cover for the APM role in their absence and stand in as acting Programmes Operations Director as required with authorities specified in the scheme of delegation.

Humanitarian Response Management

  • Strengthen the field offices readiness to respond to emergencies in line with global SCI’s humanitarian goals and benchmarks.
  • Support the field offices to review their EPPs and to implement humanitarian preparedness actions, drawing on CO input and resources.
  • Support appropriate and timely responses at scale to all categorized emergencies consistent with established benchmarks, plans and organizational policies, and in close cooperation with incoming surge teams.

Staff Safety and Security

  • Work with the APMs to ensure that the staff and assets of Save the Children Kenya are safe and secure as guided by Safety and Security Manager.
  • Ensure that all safety and security minimum operating standards and in country guidelines and procedures are met by area offices.
  • Work closely with the Safety and Security Manager to promote a culture of security awareness and duty of care amongst staff in area teams including strict adherence to all Standard Operating Procedures on a daily basis.

Staff Management, Mentorship, and Development

  • Support the programme operations team; define expectations, provide leadership and technical support as needed, and evaluate direct reports regularly.
  • Support the recruitment, training, and promotion of operations staff, including area office staff, and ensure the availability of appropriate professional development opportunities for staff.
  • Incorporate staff development strategies and Performance Management Systems into team building process.
  • Support the establishment of a result based system and ensure follow up and promote culture of holding staff accountable.
  • Ensure that all staff understand and are able to perform their role in an emergency.
  • Manage the performance of staff in the program operations work area through:
    o    The effective use of the Performance Management System, including the establishment of clear, measureable objectives, ongoing feedback, periodic reviews and fair and unbiased evaluations.
    o    Coaching, mentoring and other developmental opportunities.
    o    Recognition and rewards for outstanding performance.
    o    Documentation of less than satisfactory performance, with appropriate performance improvement plans or work plans.

Skills and Behaviours

Demonstrate and be a role model for our organizational Values:


  • Holds self accountable for making decisions, managing resources efficiently, achieving and role modelling Save the Children values
  • Holds the team and partners accountable to deliver on their responsibilities – giving them the freedom to deliver in the best way they see fit, providing the necessary development to improve performance and applying appropriate consequences when results are not achieved


  • Sets ambitious and challenging goals for themselves (and their team), takes responsibility for their own personal development and encourages others to do the same
  • Widely shares their personal vision for Save the Children, engages and motivates others
  • Future orientated, thinks strategically


  • Builds and maintains effective relationships, with their team, colleagues, members and external partners and supporters
  • Values diversity, sees it as a source of competitive strength
  • Approachable, good listener, easy to talk to


  • Develops and encourages new and innovative solutions
  • Willing to take disciplined risks


  • Honest, encourages openness and transparency

Qualifications and Experience


  • A minimum of 5 years management experience in a corporate or an NGO environment, in a range of cultures including significant field operations experience, preferably running both emergency and development programmes.
  • University degree in development  or  other  social  sciences (Masters degree desired)
  • Strong leadership and programme management organizational skills.
  • Successful experience of working in a large-scale programme and matrix management structure.
  • Demonstrable ability to lead, motivate and develop teams and individuals to achieve outstanding performance.
  • A very good understanding of at least three of the sectoral programmes and a working knowledge of the programme priorities of the Country Office.
  • Good knowledge of logistics, including procurement, supply chain, fleet management and inventory.
  • Substantial and proven experience and knowledge of effective financial and budgetary control and securing and managing awards from major institutional donors.
  • Solid project management skills related to organisational development projects and international, cross-functional teams with a proven history of delivering results.
  • Ability to analyze information, evaluate options and to think and plan strategically.
  • An in-depth understanding of national and international development issues in particular in relation to children.
  • Previous experience of managing and developing a team and the ability to lead, motivate and develop others.
  • Flexibility and willingness to adapt work practices to respond to organisational priorities, including emergency humanitarian crisis responses.
  • Commitment to and understanding of Save the Children’s aims, values and principles, including rights-based approaches.
  • Ability to think creatively to solve problems and find effective and efficient ways to accomplish goals.
  • Ability to make decisions, work under pressure on a number of competing tasks and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent interpersonal, communication and presentation skills.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English.
  • Excellent personal organisational skills, including time management, and ability to meet deadlines and work under pressure.


  • Experience in, and/or knowledge of Kenya and local languages.

Child Safeguarding Policy:

  • All staff have an obligation to ensure they fully understand the provisions of the Child Safeguarding Policy, the Code of Conduct and related policies. They must conduct themselves in accordance with the rules of the Child Safeguarding Policy, in their personal and professional lives – which includes reporting suspicions of child abuse.
  • All staff must ensure the way they are carrying out their work is not putting children at risk (or further risk).
  • Any employee, consultant, contractor or the supplier undertaking an activity on behalf of SCI must sign the Child Safeguarding – Declaration of Acceptance  Form and comply with the SCI’s Child Safeguarding Policy which is a statement of SCI’s commitment to preventing abuse and protecting children with whom it comes into contact.
  • This extends not only to children with whom SCI and its partners work directly, but also includes children whom staffs are responsible for.  SCI believes that the situation of children must be improved through the promotion of their rights supported and demonstrated by all members of staff. Save the Children International’s Code of Conduct sets out the standards which all staff members must adhere to.

How to Apply

To  apply for this position send your CV and cover letter to indicating the Position Title on the subject line, deadline is on 28th April 2017 COB.

The system allows CV & Cover letter as One(1) document.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Save the Children International does not charge any kind of fee at whichever stage of the recruitment process and does not act through recruitment agents.

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Community Development and Humanitarian, NGO and UN, Project Management

Updated: April 12, 2017 — 11:04 pm
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