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Program Director (Re-announcement)


Opportunity Deadline


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Job Description

  • Location: Afghanistan
  • Organization: Search for Common Ground
  • Salary: 3200-4500 USD
  • Vacancy No: SFCG-KBL-2023-10
  • No of Vacancies: 1
  • Gender: Both
  • Deadline: 9 December 2023

About Search for Common Ground:

Search is an international non-profit organization that promotes the peaceful resolution of conflicts. With headquarters in Washington, DC, and Brussels, Belgium, Search’s mission is to transform how individuals, organizations, and governments deal with conflict away from destructive approaches toward cooperative solutions. With more than 900 staff worldwide, Search implements projects in more than 37 countries across the world. Search designs and implements multifaceted, culturally appropriate, and conflict-sensitive programs using a diverse range of tools, including media and training, to promote dialogue, increase knowledge, and determine a positive shift in behaviors. In mid-2019, Search opened its office in Afghanistan and was registered as an International NGO with the Afghan government.

Job Description:

Purpose of the Position:

To better manage the expanding portfolio of Search Afghanistan, the organization is hiring an enthusiastic leader with attention to detail to fill the position of Program Director. The Program Director will play an active role in the business development, manage grants, and oversee program implementation to deliver high-impact programs that are compliant with both internal and donor regulations. The Program Director will build and lead a strong program team that will manage the day-to-day activities of the country office.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • The leadership of the program(s) within the country office
  • Leads risk management and mitigation in program implementation.
  • Develops policies, tools, and templates for program implementation.
  • Provides program implementation technical support.
  • Leadership for capacity development and training of the Program team.


Program Implementation: Oversee it; ensure program teams have the capacities needed for quality implementation; coordinate the development of inter-project synergies; provide strategic input and guidance on implementation strategies/approaches

Compliance: Monitor internal policy and donor compliance; address serious compliance issues when raised; lead program team capacity building on compliance issues

Financial management: Review costed work plans and Budget versus Actuals (BvAs); review budget realignments

Sub-award management: Ensure sub-awards are managed according to Search and donor policies; oversee partnerships strategies and selection processes; address and problem-solve partnership management issues when raised

Reporting: Ensure project reporting is completed according to established timeline and requirements; contribute to the country’s Quarterly Management Report (QMR); coordinate drafting of the country’s annual report

Personnel management:

  • Supervise and provide leadership for Managers
  • Support Managers’ capacity building in people management
  • Monitor team management and address management issues
  • Participate in Manager-level recruitments
  • Ensure the Development and Evaluation Process (DEP) is followed by all Managers

External engagement:

  • Lead coordination and partnership building with Inter- and Non-Governmental Organizations I/NGOs
  • Support government engagement and relationship-building
  • Represent Search at national events

Program management, quality, and project design:

  • Ensure program quality, reflection, and learning initiatives take place in coordination with the Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E) team
  • Technical review of outcomes
  • Ensure implementation of adaptive measures in response to findings
  • Participate in new project design
  • Coordinate input from program teams for new project design and proposal development
  • Participate in proposal review teams
  • Review the new project budget

Operational management:

  • Member of the Senior Management Team (SMT)
  • Member of the Leadership Management Team (LMT) at the conflict geography level
  • Provide inputs to strategy development and planning
  • Contribute to country Objectives and Key Results (OKR) development
  • Ensure projects support strategy implementation
  • Ensure strategy is supported by operational structures and across functional areas
  • Infuses organizational values into all work
  • Other duties that are broadly in line with the above key contributions as assigned.


Remain alert and responsive to any child safeguarding risks, acquire relevant knowledge and skills that will enable you to promote strong safeguarding practices, understand the child safeguarding policy and procedures, and conduct yourself in a manner consistent with the Child Safeguarding Policy.

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.

Job Requirements:

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree in legal studies, justice sector, Media and communication, international development, peace and conflict studies, social sciences, social inclusion, public diplomacy, conflict prevention, and crisis response, or equivalent

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

  • 13+ years of relevant experience in international and national organizations.
  • Proven program management skills, including budget monitoring, activity planning, evaluating, and managing human and other resources
  • Existing relationships with relevant stakeholders such as civil society organizations, legal aid advocates, or government actors in Afghanistan.
  • Strong interpersonal and networking skills, including the ability to build relationships internally and externally
  • Cross-cultural sensitivity & experience
  • Experience contributing to the development of technical proposals
  • Computer literate and experienced in using MS Office packages
  • Strong critical thinking and creative problem-solving skills with the ability to make sound judgment
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills with the ability to write reports in English
  • Excellent knowledge of the local language
  • Proactive, results-oriented, and service-oriented
  • Ability to travel within and outside Afghanistan independently
  • Ability to communicate with and manage multiple relationships with multiple partners and skills in coordinating diverse activities
  • Thorough understanding of global security trends, national efforts on peace and conflict management, network with existing peace institutions, and understanding of the national legal and peace policy framework

Behavioral Competencies

  • Working with People:  The ability to respect the views and contributions of other team members; show empathy, listen, and support; consult others and share information and expertise, build team spirit, and adapt to the team.
  • Flexibility:  The ability to adapt to changing circumstances and priorities, tolerate ambiguity, and adapt personal style to different people and situations.
  • Drive for Results and Efficiency:  The ability to set quality standards, monitor, and maintain quality of work, and set goals to achieve continuous improvement.
  • Relationship Management:  The ability to manage interactions, provide service, and support the organization while building an effective internal and external network.
  • Consultation (for managers and up):  The ability to provide guidance to organizational stakeholders while applying creative problem-solving to address business needs.
  • Leadership and Navigation:   The ability to manage and contribute to initiatives and processes within the organization while making progress toward change and continuous improvement.
  • Communication:  The ability to effectively exchange information with others, effectively deliver critical information, gather information, and communicate with others.
  • Global and Cultural Effectiveness:   The ability to value and consider the perspectives and backgrounds of all parties and be able to work cross-culturally.
  • Ethical Practice:   The ability to integrate Search vision, mission and core values, integrity, and accountability throughout all organizational and business practices.
  • Critical Evaluation (for managers and up):   The ability to interpret information to make business decisions and recommendations based on keen analysis, best practices, and an understanding of preferred outcomes.
  • Business Acumen:   The ability to understand and apply information to contribute to the organization’s strategic plan.
  • Developing others (for people managers): The ability to provide support to enhance performance and professional growth.

Commitment to Search Values and Safeguarding Policy:

All Search Employees must adhere to the values: Collaboration- Audacity – Tenacity – Empathy – Results.  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. Search is committed to safeguarding the interests, rights, and well-being of children, youth, and vulnerable adults with whom it is in contact and to conducting its programs and operations in a manner that is safe for children, youth, and vulnerable adults.

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