Senior Program Manager – Francophone Africa

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International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES)

Senior Program Manager – Francophone Africa 2

Position description

About the International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES): IFES advances democracy for a better future. We collaborate with civil society, public institutions and the private sector to build resilient democracies that deliver for everyone. As the global leader in the promotion and protection of democracy, our technical assistance and applied research develops trusted electoral bodies capable of conducting credible elections; effective and accountable governing institutions; civic and political processes in which all people can safely and equally participate; and innovative ways in which technology and data can positively serve elections and democracy. Since1987, IFES has worked in more than 145 countries, from developing to mature democracies.


The greatest assets of IFES are our team members. IFES offers competitive benefits and pay, as well as the opportunity to work in a dynamic and collaborative environment. Every member of the IFES team is responsible for carrying out the mission of IFES and integrating IFES values into their work every day: Commitment to Excellence, Effective Communication, High Quality Decision-Making, Accountability, Teamwork and Collaboration.



The Senior Program Manager is the mid-level management position to program work at IFES providing management support to Francophone Africa and the program division. Specific duties will include program and business development and technical, administrative, and financial management support including briefings, covering when senior management is on travel and mentoring staff.



  • Responsible for design, implementation, evaluation, quality control, course corrections and overall management of Francophone Africa project portfolio.
  • Take the lead in developing program priorities and initiatives for countries/regions under her/his
  • Participate in development of the division’s strategic plan and seek out business development opportunities within the overall strategic development plan of the division.
  • Serve as technical lead for assigned project in conjunction with technical specialists, providing technical support and advice to Francophone program teams.
  • Serve as team lead for programmatic and donor outreach and development efforts, including proposal development and concept papers.
  • Responsible for financial oversight and reporting on projects and guide development of project budgets with relevant HQ team.
  • Ensure contractual compliance for department managed projects, including quality and timeliness of project deliverables.
  • Work with country offices and Monitoring, Evaluation and Survey Research (MEASURE) team to design and determine indicators, monitor to ensure programs are meeting indicators and share experience with regional teams.
  • Evaluate project progress and performance including review of deliverables and make recommendations where project activities may need to be adjusted based on
  • Establish, maintain, and further develop relationships with field offices, peers, subordinates, HQ staff, funder community and consultants at large for the purpose of business development and information dissemination.
  • Travel to field offices on a regular basis to oversee/monitor project activities; and meet and strengthen relationship with donors and local partners representing both government and the non-governmental community.
  • Direct staff in the regular and timely development and final production of reports to funders that directly highlight program impact.
  • Serve as team manager. Provide professional developmental opportunities for, and performance of, program staff under his/her management. May exercise formal actions pertaining to employee relations.
  • Alert division management of programmatic concerns, challenges, and difficulties in a timely fashion.
  • Lead and/or contribute to written technical reports, briefing papers, and IFES thought pieces.
  • Oversee recruiting, interviewing, and hiring of domestic and country office staff and consultants
  • Lead on program portfolio including briefing directors, senior management and board members on specific implementation or development challenges and successes. Serve as a resource on elections and political processes in and ready to brief members of Congress, administration, other key persons.
  • Perform other duties as



EDUCATION: Bachelor’s degree required in relevant field; master’s degree in international relations, political science, international development preferred.



  • At least 10 years’ relevant experience in international development or related field.
  • Experience with budget management and oversight of multiple projects.
  • Strong experience in democracy and governance programming and/or another relevant technical field.
  • Experience in functional specializations, including voter registration, electoral dispute resolution, legal frameworks, civic and voter education, etc.
  • Experience with people management and managing teams, external representation and with international donors and partners mandatory.
  • Fluency in French and work experience in Francophone Africa required.


  • Highly proficient with Microsoft Excel, Word and PowerPoint required.
  • Highly knowledgeable and experienced managing USAID funding mechanisms, with strong knowledge of USAID regulations, and procedures and other international donors.
  • Proven track record with democracy and governance work in developing countries.
  • Detailed oriented and organized.
  • Ability to prioritize and meet deadlines, sound judgement, problem solving and decision making.
  • Strong verbal and written communicator. Collaborative, team- oriented individual.

LANGUAGE SKILLS: Fluency in English and French required.

TRAVEL: Travel up to 20% of the time or more.

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS/WORK ENVIRONMENT: Standard office work environment with occasional field travel. Reasonable accommodation may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.

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