Job Opening

Posting Title: Senior Public Information Officer, P5
Job Code Title: SENIOR PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER
Department/Office: Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Duty Station: NEW YORK
Posting Period: 29 July 2019 - 27 August 2019
Job Opening Number: 19-Public Information-OCHA-120902-R-New York (X)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Strategic Communications Branch (SCB) of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

OCHA is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies and natural disasters. OCHA also ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response effort. OCHA's mission is to mobilize and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention and facilitate sustainable solutions.

The Senior Public Information Officer (Spokesperson for the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator) reports to the Chief of the Strategic Communications Branch and works as a key member of the Under-Secretary-General's team.

Responsibilities

Within delegated authority, the Senior Public Information Officer (Spokesperson) will be responsible for the following duties:

• Serves as lead spokesperson for the Under-Secretary-General and OCHA; provides technical and policy advice on highly complex public information and communications issues; develops and disseminates best practices.
• Oversees the drafting of press releases, Secretary-General statements on humanitarian affairs and development of noon lines for proactive use or on an ‘if asked’ basis at the UN noon briefing.
• Leads and directs a team of public information officers; plans and allocates work assignments; coaches, mentors, and evaluates staff; participates in recruitment and selection of new staff and in the development of training programs.
• Conducts sensitive political liaison work on behalf of the Under-Secretary-General; creates and maintains networks of high-level communications contacts with broadcast media, the press, governmental agencies, international institutions and other groups and organizations in civil society (non-governmental organizations); represents the Organization in important meetings, conferences, events, etc.; promotes joint public relations ventures.
• Contributes to development of institutional public relations policies.
• Assesses the overall effectiveness of OCHA's public information plan and proactive outreaches for positive coverage of OCHA’s role as part of the overall communications strategy and makes needed changes in approach and technique.
• Provides or oversees the production of diverse materials (briefings, questions and answers, messaging, speeches, guidance, talking points) for use by the Under-Secretary-General and other OCHA senior officials, sets quality and production standards for information dissemination.

Results Expected:

Efficient planning, development, implementation and monitoring of the unit’s overall public information programme to ensure timely and cost-effective results that ensure the best interests of the organization. Effective utilization, supervision and development of staff. Sound and innovative advice on a wide range of public information and communications issues and problems. Establishment of effective collaboration and partnerships with officials at all levels inside and outside the organization.

Competencies

• PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of different aspects of public information and communication. Ability to address a range of issues in the context of political developments, public attitudes and local conditions. Ability to advise on high profile and sensitive communication challenges. Ability to assess world-wide communication environments, develop communication strategies and manage implementation of public information campaigns with various promotional and publicity techniques. Ability to produce a variety of written communications products in a clear, concise style. Ability to present and defend difficult positions to senior officials. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations.

• COMMUNICATION: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

• PLANNING AND ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.

Managerial competencies:

• LEADERSHIP: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: empowers others to translate vision into results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; drives for change and improvements; does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

• JUDGEMENT/DECISION-MAKING: Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.

Education

Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in communication, journalism, international relations, or related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with an additional two years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in public information, journalism, international relations, public administration or related area is required. Experience with media relations and crisis communications in a humanitarian affairs context is required. Experience as a spokesperson in an international organization operating in emergency contexts is desirable.

Qualifying years of experience are calculated following the receipt of the first-level university degree recognised by the United Nations.

Languages

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is an advantage.

Assessment

Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This extra-budgetary position is funded for a finite period of one year. Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and availability of funds. Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfil the lateral move requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral moves in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover letter.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

An impeccable record for integrity and professional ethical standards is essential.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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