Mercy Corps Deputy Chief of Party (PROGRESS Program) Job in Nairobi, Kenya


Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible.

In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.

We are looking for committed and dynamic individual to take up the following position:

Position: Deputy Chief of Party

Location: Nairobi, Kenya

Program / Department Summary: Mercy Corps and its consortium partners seeks to implement a five-year USAID/Food for Peace funded program entitled Program for Resilient Systems (PROGRESS) in Turkana and Samburu Counties of Kenya.

The program aims to sustainably reduce persistent acute malnutrition in the two counties over a five-year period. PROGRESS will dedicate the first two years (Phase 1) to implementing an action research agenda to inform the program design to achieve the program’s goal in the remaining three years (Phase 2).

The consortium’s collaborative co-design process will also lead to the county governments of Turkana and Samburu providing overall leadership and vision for PROGRESS as well as sustaining results beyond the program period.

General Position Summary: The Deputy Chief of Party (DCoP) will be responsible for the implementation of day-to-day activities of the program. The DCoP will support the Chief of Party (CoP) in program oversight, technical and operational management aspects of the program and ensure that all appropriate reporting requirements are met. S/he will work directly with partner agencies both national and international and county governments to achieve the objectives of the program.

The DCoP will work closely with different departments and support functions to ensure effective program coordination and implementation, monitoring and evaluation, research and learning, quality assurance, accountability and identify sustainability and exit strategies for program interventions.

S/he will be an experienced master coordinator to drive impact in a broad spectrum of technical focus areas that include nutrition, food security, health, governance, gender, youth, climate change adaptation, resilience, market systems development, financial inclusion, and institutional capacity building, with responsibility for establishing and managing systems to ensure cohesion across all aspects of the program.

Essential Job Responsibilities:

Strategy and Technical Leadership

  • Support the Chief of Party (CoP) in providing leadership, vision and strategy to the program’s overall direction and implementation.
  • Recognize opportunities for innovative action and create an environment where alternative viewpoints are welcomed; promote and model a culture of learning and adaptive management.
  • Ensure that cross-cutting aspects of the program such as gender equality, social inclusion, youth, climate adaptation, and resilience are included and well integrated into the program strategy.
  • Set direction by prioritizing and organizing actions and resources to achieve objectives that contribute to the program’s overall purpose of reducing persistent acute malnutrition sustainability.
  • Coordinate different program components including research, implementation, M&E and learning to drive overall effectiveness and coherence of program strategy within and between Phase 1 and 2.
  • Oversee performance of consortium partners and sub-grantees.

Program Management and Implementation

  • Work with the CoP to coordinate program startup and ongoing program management of teams across the various technical areas of focus and field locations.
  • Support the CoP in the establishment of a program and consortium structure that favors integration across research streams, activities, and partners.
  • Lead the development of detailed implementation plans, flowing from annual strategic work- plans, and ensure the delivery of the same and ensure implementation plan reflect MEL, Research and CLA (collaborate, learn and adapt) activities.
  • Create and follow effective stakeholder management plans, ensuring sound and proactive communications between Mercy Corps Kenya, partner organizations, Mercy Corps headquarters, USAID, private sector, government authorities, and implementing agencies.
  • Ensure that program implementation is responsive to communities and partners and consistent with Mercy Corps’ relevant program guidelines, principles, values, quality standards and strategic plan.
  • Work with the CoP, Research and Design lead and Strategic Learning lead to refine the Phase 1 research agenda to ensure its relevance to the overall program objective and maximize its utility to inform design decisions for Phase 2 activities
  • Ensure that the design and iteration of interventions during Phase 2, including participant targeting and engagement, is based on the evidence and learnings from research and assessments from Phase 1 by actively supporting ongoing documentation, learning, and knowledge exchange during Phase 1, culminating in a design workshop at the end of Phase 1.
  • Develop consortium partners’ MoUs and contracts and oversee a training program for program partners.
  • Provide overall technical guidance and leadership, mentoring, quality control and coordination to strengthen program outcomes.
  • Lead the socialization of the program with Government stakeholders, USAID, Technical Steering Committee ensuring necessary approvals and collaboration as required.
  • Ensure research and program implementation is on time, target and budget, using effective Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) systems to reach desired impacts.
  • Create and maintain systems ensuring effective and transparent use of financial resources for timely and informative reporting in line with donor and Mercy Corps policies and procedures.
  • Fulfill Mercy Corps’ Program Management Minimum Standards and MEL Standards based on the organization-wide guide.
  • Ensure all interventions adhere to Mercy Corps’ Gender Policy, Do No Harm principles, and beneficiary accountability standards.
  • Liaise with Mercy Corps’ support departments (Finance, Operations, HR etc.) for operational support of the program.

Information Management and Reporting

  • In coordination with the country/program M&E team and technical team, set program targets, monitor the implementation of Phase 1 and Phase 2 activities through regular field visits and assessments to ensure program quality and impact.
  • Facilitate the achievement of performance-based targets and outcomes and lead efforts to design effective, proactive, and iterative M&E systems following the program’s theory of change and results chain measurement.
  • Support the development of the scope of work, deliverables and overall quality of work of any internal or external evaluation or research partners.
  • Ensure that research and evaluation partners have a detailed plan for disseminating findings to targeted stakeholders and in coordination with CLA lead capture program adaptation
  • Oversee the scheduling and production of formal and informal reports on all aspects of the program in a timely and efficient manner.
  • Ensure program data is analyzed and is used for learning and decision making
  • In coordination with CLA lead organizer semi-annual and annual program workshops with all program partners to discuss lessons learned, review TOC and make necessary adaptations
  • Document achievements/impact, lessons learned and challenges of innovative program components of the program.
  • Work with M&E team and all program team members to ensure that the program is generating relevant information that is being used for ongoing learning, program analysis and decision-making while also capturing results at the output and impact level.
  • Produce written reports on program activities, capturing the impacts of activities.

Team Management

  • Oversee the program implementation team, ensuring that all staff and consortium members are following work plans, activities are on schedule, and project deliverables are completed as planned.
  • Develop the capacity of the team, deepen understanding of their roles and support with their career development in order to promote a culture of learning through reflection of research findings, M&E data, and lessons learned.
  • Assist team members with information, tools and resources to improve performance and achieve objectives.
  • Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback informally and formally via regular one on ones and performance reviews.
  • Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
  • Hire, orient and lead team members as necessary.

Finance and Compliance Management

  • Ensure compliance and transparent use of resources in line with donor and Mercy Corps policies.
  • Monitor program activities to ensure adherence to grant agreements, Mercy Corps’ policies and procedures and other relevant regulations, including those of the Government of Kenya.
  • Work closely with support functions in Kenya, regional and headquarters to ensure highest compliance and program performance.
  • Review budgets and program expenses based on approval authority limits.
  • Work with Program Team on proper budget management, including forecasting and procurement planning.

Influence, Representation/Internal and External Coordination

  • Contribute to program visibility and advocacy work by assisting in the dissemination of program research and learning information. Represent Mercy Corps in forums with the broader humanitarian and development community.
  • Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships with consortium partners, sub-grantees, donors, local governments and other stakeholders.
  • Actively contribute and collaborate with regional and global counterparts to promote best practices within the program.
  • Communicate effectively across teams and partners to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are met.


  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
  • Work closely with the country team’s security focal point to develop and maintain systems that promote the safety and security of all team members.
  • Ensure that programs are designed and implemented with a clear analysis and understanding of security.

Supervisory Responsibility: Samburu Director of Program Delivery, Turkana Director of Program Delivery, Technical Managers/advisors, other team members, as assigned.


Reports Directly To: Chief of Party

Works Directly With: Chief of Party, Country Director, Strategic Learning Lead, Research Design Lead, Institutional Strengthening Lead, the M&E team, partner agencies, local government, USAID and support departments (Finance, HR and Operations). Coordinates with HQ Program Performance team and the Technical Support

Knowledge and Experience

  • Master’s degree or equivalent experience in a relevant field such as social sciences, development studies, nutrition, public health, food security, agriculture, agribusiness, agricultural economics etc.
  • At least seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience in the successful implementation of international development activities working on programs of a similar scope and scale, with preference given to Food for Peace or Livelihoods programs. At least three (3) years must be in senior program management, including direct supervision of technical and support staff.
  • Strong budget management experience is a must.
  • Seasoned partnership management experience is required.
  • Demonstrated excellent team management skills are required.
  • A strong passion for innovation, influence and sustainable impact to scale.
  • Demonstrated systems thinker and ability to think outside of the box in the implementation of a unique program with experience in adaptive management and using research as part of program implementation.
  • Prior experience working on USAID-funded programs preferred.
  • Prior experience in awarding and managing sub-grants to local organizations to promote Nutrition, governance and gender goals.
  • Demonstrated technical understanding of resilience and climate change adaptation, and the practical relevance to the program’s aim of sustainably reducing persistent acute malnutrition.
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate with a wide range of stakeholders, and to liaise with donors and HQ.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English.

Success Factors: A successful DCoP will be a master coordinator with the ability to manage and bring all program aspects to part in order to drive impact. S/he will have demonstrated ability to lead and communicate effectively with team members of varied work styles and cultures, follow procedures, and meet deadlines with flexibility and creativity in planning and problem solving.

S/he will have a proven ability to learn quickly, multi-task, prioritize, take initiative, and be accountable for results, understand the larger picture while remaining focused on the details within a complex and sensitive setting.

The most successful Mercy Corps team members have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and changing environments and make effective written and verbal communication a priority in all situations.

Application Procedure:

Interested candidates who meet the above required qualifications and experience should submit a Cover Letter and detailed Curriculum Vitae (CV) listing three professional references (including a recent supervisor).

Please do not attach any certificates. Applications should be sent to: on or before 3rd October, 2019.

The email subject line must clearly indicate the job title for the position.

Applications will be reviewed by the hiring team on a rolling basis. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for interviews.

NB: We do not charge any fees at any stage of the recruitment process

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Nairobi, Kenya

Nairobi County

Agriculture and Agribusiness, Community Development, Health and Medical, NGO and UN
Updated: September 20, 2019 — 9:33 pm