Senior Project Manager at UNOPS

Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

Summary of key responsibilities:

The Senior Project Manager will be responsible for, but not limited to, the following functions and responsibilities:

Programme Management and Coordination:

  • Determines project resource requirements in conjunction with the AFCO Head of Programme, other managers, and the Programme Management Office;
  • Defines the project’s governance framework (resource management, monitoring and control, quality and risk management, stakeholder engagement and benefits management);
  • Maintains overall integrity and coherence of the project, and develops and maintains the project environment to support each individual activity within it.
  • Handles the day-to-day management of the project and oversees the delivery of all activities in the project, monitoring delivery in terms of quality, costs and time;
  • Ensures the delivery of new outputs or services meets the project’s requirements;
  • Ensures security considerations are assessed and implicated in project conception;
  • Mentors and assists project staff in planning, execution and delivery of activities, ensuring best practice project management processes are incorporated;
  • Ensures maximum efficiency in the allocation of resources and skills within the project;
  • Works closely with project staff to identify potential project-cost overruns, time delays or quality deficiencies, and implements actions for rectification;
  • Analyses project results, and interprets these results into recommendations for the Head of Programme to assist him/her in the development of UNOPS as the service provider of choice in Afghanistan;
  • Ensures clear communication and good relationships are developed and maintained within the project, with internal THRCP support units (PMT Human Resources, Procurement, Logistics, etc. and CSU) and with external parties such as donors, the Government, etc.;
  • Plans, develops, coordinates, communicates and directs the internal policies and procedures of the IC project;
  • Effectively and efficiently delegates responsibility and authority to subordinate staff for the delivery of agreed outputs while ensuring accountability;
  • Provides timely and accurate project tracking, analysis of outputs, and reporting;
  • Develops and drives a culture of excellence, continuous improvement and performance optimization across all activities in the project;
  • Establishes performance objectives with appropriate measures for project technical staff and in collaboration with them, for other project staff;
  • Initiates activities and other management interventions wherever gaps in the project are identified or issues arise.

Fiscal Responsibilities:

  • Has responsibility for project budgeting and resource planning;
  • Implements UNOPS pricing strategies, with a disciplined approach to business case development and pricing models which balances revenues and capacity development, within the mandate and spirit of the United Nations;
  • Prepares and submits for approval, revenue and expenditure forecasts based on established financial goals;
  • Supports the Head of Programme in the development of the business model for AFCO in Afghanistan assessing costs and revenue streams as well as margins.

Business & Corporate Development:

  • Develops (where possible) current and future growth plans for the project (1 – 3 years), ensuring that those plans conform to UNOPS overall strategic plans;
  • Supports and provides inputs to the Head of Programme in developing business opportunities in preparing and delivering complex proposals and partnerships;
  • Ensures subordinate project staff with the relevant authority are properly trained in proposal development and presentation;
  • Identifies and develops potential new business and customer opportunities;
  • Develops and maintains close working relationships with donors, the Government and other clients.

Technical Functions:

  • Plans, develops, implements and maintains appropriate standards, best practices and procedures in the project;
  • Researches, identifies and introduces appropriate new technologies for the execution of activities across the project.

Human Resource Responsibilities:

  • Assumes responsibility for all staffing issues as required by the demands of the IC project including adherence to UNOPS security regulations and guidelines;
  • Conducts staff performance reviews of project staff and other staff on the project in accordance with UNOPS HR Policies, and initiates appropriate responses;
  • In conjunction with the AFCO HR Unit, identifies, recruits and maintains appropriate project staffing capacities ;
  • Encourages and develops the technical and project management skills and attitudes of project personnel.

Communication Functions:

  • Reports to the Head of Programme with regard to all matters concerning delivery of the project within the context of the AFCO programme, including security matters;
  • Works closely with other AFCO departments to improve continuously interface processes;
  • Directs the preparation and updating of information materials used for external dissemination of AFCO activities and capacities.

Other Duties and Responsibilities:

  • The incumbent is also responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS Afghanistan;
  • Carries out any other duties as specified by the Head of Programme.

Monitoring and Project Controls

  • Puts in place and continuously implements solid reporting mechanisms in the project on a regular basis against set targets and indicators;
  • Provides reports to the Head of Programme, donors and other stakeholders on the AFCO project portfolio as required;
  • Maintains a systematic filing system of all project and support documents with off-site backup for continuity security and in line with audit requirements specific to the project agreement;
  • Ensures the UNOPS Project Management Manual (PMM) Requirements are fully integrated into the project at all levels and that OneUNOPS Projects and ERP are fully updated and complete at all times.

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  • A master’s degree in civil engineering, transport engineering, transport economics, project management or another transport sector relevant field is required. A first level university degree in a relevant field with a combination of an additional two years’ relevant work experience may be considered in lieu of the master’s degree.

Work Experience:

  • A minimum of 7 years leading projects delivering national or regional transport infrastructure projects is required.
  • Proven experience in mentoring, advising and capacity building at ministerial level is required.
  • Experience in people management and team capacity building is required.
  • Experience leading projects funded by one of the multilateral development banks, such as the World Bank or the Asian Development Bank is an asset.
  • Experience in working with government authorities for large or complex projects is required.
  • Must have certification in PRINCE2, or achieve certification within the first six months of appointment.


  • Fluency in both written and spoken English is required.

How to apply

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