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Head of Operations, Africa

Posted 5 years ago


We have been retained by the International Potato Center ( to fill the Head of Operations Position, Africa. Currently, we are contacting finance experts to help us locate a person who is qualified and ready for this position.

The International Potato Center (CIP) was founded in 1971 as a research-for-development organization with a focus on potato, sweet potato, and Andean roots and tubers. It delivers innovative science-based solutions to enhance access to affordable nutritious food, foster inclusive sustainable business, and employment growth, and drive the climate resilience of root and tuber agri-food systems. Headquartered in Lima, Peru, CIP has a research presence in more than 20 countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

CIP is a CGIAR research center, a global research partnership for a food-secure future. CGIAR science is dedicated to reducing poverty, enhancing food and nutrition security, and improving natural resources and ecosystem services. Its research is carried out by 15 CGIAR centers in close collaboration with hundreds of partners, including national and regional research institutes, civil society organizations, academia, development organizations, and the private sector.

The position is based at CIP Headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya.

Head of Operations, Africa

The International Potato Center (CIP) is proactively seeking to hire an experienced Head of Operations in Africa to ensure effective execution of operational services, promotes a client-oriented approach consistent with CIP rules and regulations and works in close collaboration with the operations and project staff in the region for solving operational-related issues.

The Head of Operations in Africa will report to the Regional Director for Africa. The purpose of this position is to be the partner and complement to the Regional Director to develop, implement, and to manage efficient and productive operations in Africa country offices.

Key Responsibilities

Business Management & Leadership

  • Develop, execute and monitor CIP – Sub Sahara Africa business plan based on an assessment of the key resource requirements to achieve target research outputs and outcomes.
  • Ensure implementation of operation management strategies, adapts processes and procedures focusing on achievement of results such as performance indicators, full compliance of CIP rules and regulations and follow up of audits.
  • Partner with Department in HQ: FIN, HR, IT, S&R, G&C, PMU to model standards and behaviors to build knowledge across Africa country offices.
  • Compile monthly reports on the status of operations in the region and follow up on action points from regional management team meetings
  • Create a work atmosphere conducive to professional growth and development of excellent personnel at all levels.
  • Promote accountability by conducting staff annual performance reviews with direct supervisees and ensuring that all staff members are effectively using the performance planning and management system.
  • Contribute to project team-building efforts and ensure the integration of all team members into relevant decision-making processes


Operational management

Ensure proper management of common services focusing on achieving the following results:

  • Finance and Compliance: Ensure operating costs are included in operating budgets and funding proposals and the programmatic growth or scale downs are factored into operations planning. As well, ensure that all support systems and operations teams are operating in accordance with donor compliance regulations.
  • HR: Provide leadership to the staff and administration team and ensuring the application of best practices and adherence to national and other relevant compliance regulations.
  • IT: Based on compressive needs assessments ensure that all digital data and information needs of operations and program teams are catered for.
  • Logistics: Ensure an efficient and responsive supply chain system that meets the needs of program teams.
  • Security & Risk: Ensure the highest security & risk management through participatory threat and risk analysis and the development and implementation of standard operating procedures.

Candidate Profile

We are looking for innovative and accountable team players with a great sense of integrity. He or she should have remarkable skills in people management, inspiring change, and decision-making. The successful candidate should have an MBA or comparable qualification with about 8 to 10 years of experience in project-based organizations. Other qualifications are as follows:

  • Prior work experience in achieving results on the ground in more than one world region.
  • Strong professional experience in the management of financial resources preferably in a non-profit environment.
  • Familiar with general finance and budgeting, including profit and loss, balance sheet and cash flow management.
  • Familiar with the management of high-performance multicultural teams.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills in English. Knowledge of Portuguese or French is desirable.

This is an internationally recruited position for which CIP offers: a) diverse, multicultural, equal and collegial research environment, b) generous compensation package commensurate with experience, c) competitive international insurance coverage, and attractive retirement plan. The successful candidate will be awarded a 3-year term contract with the possibility of renewal.

CIP is an equal opportunity employer. Qualified women and professionals from developing countries are particularly encouraged to apply


Applicants should send their an up-to-date CV and a cover letter illustrating their suitability for the above position against the listed qualifications, competencies, and skills with copies of the highest diploma/degree, training certificates related to the position, and names and email addresses of 3 professional referees to Ms. Auree de Carbon by email at: no later than September 6, 2019 at 18.00 CET. Please indicate in the ‘Subject’ of the email the title ‘Application for the post of ‘Head of Operations’.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview.

Apply Online

A valid phone number is required.

In the course of our Recruitment Services, we may collect the following types of information about you as a potential candidate: name, address, telephone number, e-mail address, resume information (employment history, education, professional credentials, memberships in professional organizations, skills, etc.), citizenship, information from former employers and other references, and additional information to the extent we have acquired or you have provided us with such information. We also use photos of you that you provide to us or that you make publicly available on the Internet (e.g., LinkedIn). As permitted by applicable laws, we obtain background verification information. In certain cases, we request sensitive Personal Information about you. We may use this information to ensure that our Services conform with legal requirements, including equal opportunity laws. Our assessments and surveys may include demographic survey questions like questions about gender, race, age, or country of origin. Except in these limited cases, we encourage you not to provide any other sensitive Personal Information to us, such as government identification numbers, payment card numbers, information related to racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or other beliefs, health, biometrics or genetic characteristics, criminal background, or trade union membership Personal Information can be obtained when you submit a CV/resume online or to our consultants, respond to employment opportunities, and participate in assessments as requested by our clients. Any Personal Information shared via e-mail, electronic forms, telephone or postal mail means that we have your consent to obtain, process, keep and share this information with relevant parties if necessary. If you submit any Personal Information about other people to us or to our service providers, you represent that you have the authority to do so and to permit us to use the information in accordance with this Policy. When providing our Recruitment Services we may also obtain Personal Information about you from referrals, networking activities, public databases, joint marketing partners, licensed databases, and social media platforms. The information we collect from these third parties includes information about the identity of potential candidates (e.g., an individual’s name, address, telephone number, e-mail address), information about their background and qualifications (employment history, education, professional credentials, memberships in professional organizations, skills, etc.), citizenship, information from former employers and other references. We also use photos of you that you provide to us or that you make publicly available on the Internet (e.g., LinkedIn). As permitted by applicable laws, we obtain background verification information.

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