Portfolio Manager

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United Nations Office for Project Services




The Portfolio Manager manages  projects in the Ethiopia Country Office Transactional Unit team.  The selected candidate will work under the direct supervision of the Senior Portfolio Manager  to ensure that projects meet their intended outcomes, are implemented to the highest standard of project management practices, and meet partner satisfaction.

The Portfolio Manager is responsible for carrying out the following tasks:

Portfolio Management

  • Prepare an annual work and procurement plan for the assigned portfolio.
  • Collaborate closely within the team and with project staff and the client to review all operational aspects of the assigned portfolio and service delivery.
  • Integrate work with other team members and internal partners.
  • Take timely and appropriate actions to meet work and procurement plan objectives

Summary of functions:

  • Project Delivery and Performance
  • Procedures 
  • Monitoring and reporting
  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Quality assurance
  • Knowledge management and innovation 
  • Personnel management

Leadership, Team and Resource Management

  • Actively contributes to the implementation and further refinement of the Resources Pool Management Strategy; promoting synergies across the Transactional Unit;
  • Develops strategies and approaches that foster a common vision for maturity, and strive towards harmonizing good practices across projects in the Transactional Unit;
  • Instill a culture of excellence, best practices, continuous improvement, and lesson learning in the delivery of projects in the Project Management Team;
  • In collaboration with the Senior Portfolio Manager, take a leadership role in the implementation of the Operational Excellence Agenda; ensuring KPIs are mainstreamed into all PMs performance metrics and monitored regularly;
  • Foster a positive work environment, respectful of both men and women, and ensure that the highest standards of conduct are observed;
  • Create, foster and role model a culture of respect and zero tolerance for discrimination, abuse of authority, harassment, sexual harassment and sexual exploitation and abuse. Ensure accountability for actions and perform duties in accordance with protection mechanisms and action plans, as expected by UNOPS policies, standards and commitments.
  • Develops and establishes resource tracking systems and/ tools for use within the PM Team, complementary to UNOPS’ online tools, to ensure effective planning, forecasting and tracking of delivery across the office.

Portfolio Monitoring and Performance Oversight 

  • Providing Portfolio, Programme and Project (P3M) oversight, advice and direction in line with legal commitments to partners;
  • Oversee and assure the consistent and feasible development, completion and updates of implementation plan(s);
  • Ensure Project Managers embed sustainability dimensions including social and gender inclusion, environmental and economic aspects into project plans;
  • Ensure all projects establish effective tools to monitor and report, and identify issues related to milestones and targets throughout the project lifecycles;
  • Provide routine oversight and analysis of delivery data on the portfolio performance using the dashboard systems available;
  • Regularly review and assure status of projects evaluating performance criteria (scope, cost, schedule and quality);
  • Monitor and appraise the delivery of activities, products, and outputs/milestones against partner commitments, ensuring projects satisfy quality expectations of partners;
  • Provide guidance, support and assurance over to change management and control procedures including amendments, exception reports and planning;
  • Identify, and anticipate in a timely manner, potential risks and issues and advises mitigating measures to senior management/ Project Board so that maximum benefit to partner(s) and other stakeholders is achieved

Starting up Projects

  • Provide expertise for start-up of programmes or projects, planning and closing projects as per the organizational requirements; 
  • Ensure new projects are formally received/ taken over, from the Partnerships team ensuring all knowledge is transferred to the custodianship to the Programme Team;
  • In the absence of a dedicated PM, lead the start-up of new projects including the recruitment of the project team and preliminary activities.  Ensures thorough handover to incoming PMs upon arrival;
  • Facilitate the identification of dependencies between teams and work packages to inform the development of feasible and implementable project plans;
  • Facilitate the development of high-level programme/project plans, including the collation of sub-plans as required by both legal commitments and the UNOPS P3M requirements;

Procedures and Assurance

  • Ensures all projects in the portfolio comply with all organizational standards, policies, procedures and tools and specifically the Project Management Manual
  • Monitor and ensure projects prepare and issue regular project reports in accordance with legal commitments to donors for reporting and internal reporting schedules;
  • Provide assurance and editorial support over Project Reports, ensuring timely and quality dissemination of reports, in line with project agreements and clients’ expectations;
  • Work with the PMO and Support Services teams to assure feasibility of project implementation plans and sub-plans;
  • Collaborate with the PMO to undertake assurance over progress against results/outputs/milestones as specified in the logical frameworks and contributions to SDGs and the UNSDCF;
  • Work with internal stakeholders to ensure projects comply with audit requirements;
  • Ensures Project Managers exercise management control over activities, products, outputs, deliverables and/or milestones;
  • Identify and anticipates in a timely manner, potential risks and issues specific to financial performance, expenditure forecasts, and advises mitigating measures to the Senior Portfolio Manager;
  • Undertake thorough review of risk and issue registers providing feedback to PMs on risk/issues identification and responses.  Ensure risk/issues responses are mainstreamed into updated plans and implementation is monitored to full task completion;

Stakeholder Engagement

  • Provides oversight and guidance to PMs in the development of stakeholder profiles and facilitates the formulation of stakeholder engagement strategies;
  • Ensures projects establish communications plans as per the identified  stakeholder ;
  • Monitor the timely and effective implementation of stakeholder engagement, communication and visibility plans throughout the lifecycle of projects including effective and early coordination with the Communications team. 

Planning, Knowledge Management, Good Practices, and Innovation

  • Actively contribute to the MCO’s maturity enhancement and innovation initiatives to continuously identify and improve operational processes relevant to project implementation;
  • Support the Senior Portfolio Manager and the Partnerships team in the development of new projects, reflecting lessons learnt from past projects that gives due consideration feasibility of project budgets, staffing resources;
  • Lead the development and implementation of common procedures and work flows to improve quality and effectiveness of projects, and monitor their full implementation.
  • Strive for consistency and standardized and harmonized practices in the execution of similar projects;
  • Facilitate and deliver capacity building activities across the Project Management team based on development needs identified;
  • Participate in, and advocate PMs’ participation in, relevant Communities of Practice;
  • Actively interact with PMs and the wider PM community to share case studies, lessons learned and best practices in the Knowledge System;
  • Proactively remain abreast of new developments, innovations and tools related to Portfolio, Programme and Project Management (P3M) practices promoting a common approach and frame of reference;
  • Coach, mentor, train and otherwise support the Programme and Project Management Teams to fulfill their objectives and potential;
  • Act as an advisory resource for other Programme Team members as appropriate;

 Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • Advanced University Degree (Masters Degree) in Project Management, Business Management, Development Studies, Procurement/Supply Chain Management or other relevant disciplines is required.
  • A Bachelor’s Degree in Project Management, Business Management, Development Studies, Procurement/Supply Chain Management in combination with an additional 2 years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the education requirements outlined above.


  • Certification in Project Management (PRINCE2, PMI or equivalent) is an asset.


  • A minimum of  five (5) years progressive demonstrated experience in a Portfolio Management, Project/Programme Management role in the delivery of development projects is required;
  • Working knowledge of project management software tools and applications is an asset;
  • Demonstrated experience managing multidisciplinary teams is an asset;
  • Experience in developing and successfully implementing stakeholder engagement plans is a distinct advantage.
  • Past experience with procurement of goods/services is a distinct advantage;
  • Knowledge of the UN system and familiarity with UNOPS procedures is an advantage;
  • Experience in the use of google software packages (Google Doc, Sheets and Slides) and experience in handling web-based management systems is an added advantage.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in written, reading and spoken English is required
  • Knowledge of another UN official language is an asset..

Source: https://jobs.unops.org/Pages/ViewVacancy/VADetails.aspx?id=28384#2




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