Location: Pakistan (Islamabad)
Closing date: 01 Jun 2008
Job Description

Responsible To: Regional Programmes Manager

Working With: All Merlin Pakistan staff; Non-Merlin Pakistan Partners (e.g., Government of Pakistan Ministries, Donors, UN agencies, National NGOs, etc)

Location: Islamabad with frequent travel to field sites

Start Date: As soon as possible

Duration: 2 years

Salary: £22,990 - £25,956 per annum dependent on relevant experience plus an annual cost of living allowance of £4,647, insurance cover, return flights and separate accommodation.

Additional Bonus: £1,000 payable on successful completion of probationary period.

Only short-listed applicants will be contacted. Due to the urgency of this position, applications will be short listed on a regular basis and we may offer this post before the closing date.

Merlin International Profile

Merlin is the only UK specialist agency, founded in 1993, which responds worldwide, with vital healthcare and medical relief for vulnerable people affected by natural disasters, conflict and healthcare collapse. Each year, Merlin assists more than 15 million people, in up to 20 countries, through working with local healthcare actors including government, community groups and NGOs.

Merlin Pakistan Profile

This is an interesting and exciting time for the Pakistan programme as it starts to plan and implement two five year programmes, working in four provinces across the country.

Merlin originally began operations in Azad & Jammu Kashmir in response to the earthquake in 2005. Merlin continues to operate in the earthquake affected area, providing primary health care and supporting the repatriation process, but is now rolling out programmes in Balochistan, North West Frontier Province and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).

In June 2007, in response to Cyclone Yemyin, Merlin began working in Baluchistan, addressing the essential PHC needs of the flood affected population in Jhal Magsi District through mobile medical camps. Merlin remains in Baluchistan and is about to begin 3 new projects. Merlin is providing mobile and static health clinics and nutritional support in remote areas. Merlin has also recently become a recipient of the Global Fund for Malaria, providing diagnostic facilities, treatment and support across Balochistan, areas of NWFP and FATA. Activities are scheduled to begin in May 2008 and will continue for a possible 5 years.

Merlin is also now beginning to work in FATA implementing a Livelihoods Programme. Merlin is working as part of a consortium as the lead partner in health, supporting health facilities and training health workers amongst other activities. This programme began in March 2008.

In Azad & Jammu Kashmir Merlin remains one of the main stakeholders supporting the district health authorities in the provision of primary health care services for the population in the rural areas of Muzaffarabad and Neelum districts. Merlin is currently running five tented facilities and supporting 11 other health facilities in the Neelum Valley. Additionally, in collaboration with the Muzaffarabad District Health Office, Merlin is in charge of the provision of essential health services for IDP transitional camps in Muzaffarabad District. Merlin is currently involved with the return of IDP’s and the repatriation programme, working with the District Health Office. Merlin provides pre-departure medical screening and care, including vaccination and public health campaigns.

Main purpose of the role

As the Country Director you will have the overall responsibility for the Programme, including Logistics, Finance, Security and Human Resource elements of the programme. You will also ensure that the programme objectives are met, that the programme continues to improve and play a key role in contributing to Merlin’s development in Pakistan.

Duties and Responsibilities

- Develop and maintain a coherent country programme strategy that contributes to Merlin's global objectives
- Coordinate and manage the overall planning and direction of Merlin's operations and health activities at country level
- Create a shared vision, among all staff, of Merlin's programme's aims and their role in achieving these.

Programme Development
- Develop and secure long-term funding for new programmes based on identified needs
- Ensure effective coordination of relevant departments (e.g. health, logistics, etc.) in proposal development
- Maintain Merlin's emergency preparedness capacity as relevant to the geo-political and humanitarian situation in Pakistan.
- Organise and/or undertake needs assessments as necessary.
- Develop and maintain productive working relationships with donors and undertake all in-country negotiation related to programming and contracts

Programme Support
- Ensure that projects remain within the remit of their initial design, budget and propose and prepare any amendments when necessary.
- Support field sites in the fulfilment of their duties according to programme design
- Ensure that appropriate systems and plans are in place for dealing with emergencies, and provide leadership for staff and volunteers in emergencies
- Establish systems and standards for assessment and monitoring/evaluation of programmes against their strategic aims
- Ensure there is a regular, documented forum / meeting for all key staff to discuss and plan programme objectives and plans.

- Represent Merlin to Local & National Authorities, donors, (I)NGOs and other relevant partners both at Kinshasa as well as field level
- Develop/enhance key networking and partnership with relevant actors
- Place emphasis in raising and maintaining a high profile for Merlin for Pakistan
- Manage external/international communications with the media in consultation with the Communications section in Merlin HQ

Staff Management / HR
- Manage staff effectively, including appropriate and systematic delegation
- Co-ordinate and support/team build national and international staff teams, ensuring that the individuals work effectively together and achieve the programme objectives
- Establish and / or maintain HR management tools, e.g., organisational charts, job descriptions, salary scales, staff appraisals, etc.
- Maintain good inter-team communications, engender good team dynamics, and take suitable action when problems occur
- Develop and apply policies, guidelines, terms and conditions following both Merlin and donor policies and guidelines and national employment law(s)
- Ensure that all personnel costs are adequately funded by programme budgets in coordination with the Finance and Admin Manager (FAM)
- Take an active part in staff recruitment for the country in coordination with Merlin London HR department
- Enhance programme management skills of national team through formal and non-formal training
- Improve capacity for facility supervision and service provision of Merlin’s Pakistan team and that of Partner(s)

Administration and Logistics
- Primary responsibility to ensure that appropriate logistic, administrative and financial systems and procedures are established and/or maintained and followed in accordance with Merlin guidelines.
- Maintain regular communications with head office using the established procedures i.e. communications and other reporting procedures.
- Ensure programme activities are carried out within Merlin guidelines.
- Ensure that reports and articles for both internal and external distribution as requested by the desk and as stated in the operational contracts signed with donors, including monthly and quarterly reports.

- Ensure that appropriate security guidelines and procedures are established, maintained / updated quarterly, and adhered to by the team inline with Merlin’s Safety Guidelines.
- Manage security incidents and evacuations in cooperation with HQ
- Maintain an overall understanding of the national security situation as well as analyses in Merlin areas of operation.

Finance Management
- Oversee budget preparation, setting the parameters and the process
- Ensure that country programmes are implemented within budget allocation and according to donor procedures.
- Ensure and anticipate donor reporting schedules, including spending plan projections
- Establish and / or maintain the Merlin field accounting systems
- Ensure all finance/procurement/logistics procedures are according to donors and Merlin compliance systems and ensure systems are followed and implemented effectively.
- Oversee the completion and return to London of the monthly field accounts within the agreed deadlines.

- Carry out any other responsibilities as requested by the regional Regional Programmes Manager or Programmes Director.

Person Specifications

- Extensive experience of international development work
- Extensive overseas management experience including strategic planning and management of large and complex budgets.
- Significant experience of project/programme management in a senior capacity.
- Experience of budget management and donor compliance
- Extensive experience of creating productive donor partnerships
- Knowledge of the health sector in a developing country
- Experience in emergency programmes
- Considerable experience in working in a highly insecure environment with responsibility for security monitoring and management
- Ability to lead a diverse team
- Able to provide high quality supervision, line management and support to staff in multiple geographic locations
- Able to make and implement decisions.
- Ability to analyze information quickly and accurately
- Excellent written and spoken English
- Confident user of MS Office
- Excellent interpersonal and consultative skills, including the ability to communicate, present, negotiate and influence a variety of audiences including donors, government officials etc.
- Experience of establishing strong working relationships with colleagues from different functions and cultures
- Experience of a flexible approach to managing and prioritizing a high workload and multiple tasks in a fast paced environment with tight deadlines
- Experience of proactively identifying and addressing issues
- An understanding of and commitment to Merlin’s values

- Previous experience within the West Asia region
- A relevant qualification (post graduate level)
- Knowledge of local language e.g. Urdu

Data Protection
Please note, on submitting your application, you are agreeing to Merlin holding and using the information that you have given for the purposes of recruitment and employment – should an offer be made.

In order to process your job application, it may be necessary for your application to be sent to the Country Director (in the country you are applying for) for consideration. If you do not agree with this, please can you state so when applying.
Vacancies Contact
Please go to Merlin’s website (www.merlin.org.uk) to download an application form. This should completed and sent to applications@merlin-uk.org clearly stating the Job Title and Country and reference code in the subject box.