Job Opening

Posting Title: Chief, Interpretation Section, P5
Department/Office: United Nations Office at Vienna
Duty Station: VIENNA
Posting Period: 05 December 2017 - 18 January 2018
Job Opening Number: 17-Language-UNOV-89045-R-Vienna (L)
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 Interpretation Section (IS) of the Conference Management Service (CMS) of the Division for Management (DM) of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV). The Chief of the Interpretation Section reports to the Chief, Conference Management Service.


Within delegated authority, the Chief, Interpretation Section, will be responsible for the following duties:
•Provide policy guidance to the Chief of Service on conceptual strategy development and management of the implementation of overall strategies and intra and inter-divisional/departmental policies and procedures regarding interpretation as well as on relevant rules of the International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC).
•Plan and oversee the management of activities undertaken by the Section; ensure that substantive work programmes and programmed activities are carried out in a timely fashion.
•Manage, supervise and carry out the work programme of the Interpretation Section. Coordinate diverse projects carried out by the Section.
•Contribute to the reporting to intergovernmental bodies on budget/programme performance or on programmatic/ substantive issues, as appropriate, particularly those presented in biannual and/or annual reports by providing substantive input in the preparation of position papers and reports for presentation to intergovernmental bodies such as the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budget Questions, Committee for Programme Coordination, Economic and Social Council, the General Assembly and other policy-making organs, as appropriate.
•Ensure that the outputs produced by the Section maintain high-quality standards, in compliance with the relevant mandates.
•Prepare inputs for the work programme of the Service, determining priorities, and allocating resources for the completion of outputs and their timely delivery.
•Carry out programmatic/administrative tasks necessary for the functioning of the Section, including preparation of budget estimates and cost estimates for individual meeting/conferences as required, assigning interpreters and team leaders to meetings, assigning and monitoring of performance parameters and critical indicators, reporting on budget/programme performance, preparation of inputs for results-based budgeting, evaluation of staff performance (e-Performance) as first- (for the Chiefs of booth) or second reporting officer.
•Recruit staff for the Section taking due account of geographical and gender balance and other institutional values. Recruit regular and freelance staff for the Section in a timely manner, taking into account language combinations for meetings and keeping abreast of the development of a meeting/session to plan for additions or modifications of staffing tables. Monitor the state and evolution of the freelance market and actively seek to increase the pool of competent local freelancers.
•Coordinate with counterparts at other duty stations under the Integrated Global Management with a view to optimizing the utilization of interpretation capacity, and liaise with relevant secretariats in the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV)/ United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), advising them on the optimum use of interpretation resources.
•Manage, guide, develop and train staff under his/her supervision.
•Foster teamwork and communication among staff in the Section and across organizational boundaries.
•Participate in international, regional or national meetings and provide programmatic/substantive expertise on an issue, or hold programmatic/substantive and organizational discussions with representatives of other institutions.
•Represent the Organization at inter-agency meetings: International Annual Meeting on Language Arrangements, Documentation and Publications (IAMLADP), seminars, etc., on issues related to the work of the Interpretation Section.
•Carry out other duties as assigned, including acting as officer-in-charge of the Service in the absence of the Chief.



•Professionalism: Has profound knowledge of the substantive field of work in general and of specific areas being supervised. Is able to produce reports and papers on technical issues and to review and edit the work of others. Is able to apply UN rules, regulations, policies and guidelines in work situations. 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.
•Planning & 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.
•Accountability: Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules; supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments; takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable.

Managerial Competencies
•Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.
•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.


An advanced degree from a university or an institution of equivalent status, preferably from an internationally recognized interpretation school, or equivalent qualifications. (Candidates for this position must have passed the United Nations Competitive Examination for Interpreters.)

Work Experience

A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in conference servicing/interpretation as well as in planning and budgeting is required. Demonstrated management and leadership experience is required. Considerable experience and knowledge of the worldwide and local freelance interpretation market are required.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English, i.e. oral and written proficiency, is required. Knowledge of additional official and other languages is desirable.


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

Special Notice

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her.

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

Vienna is classified as an H and family duty station.

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, including but not limited to, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to, whether they have committed or are alleged to have committed criminal offences or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

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 At-a-Glance on "The Application Process" and the Instructional Manual for the Applicants, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The screening and 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, including but not limited to, their education, work experience, and language skills, according to the instructions provided on inspira. Applicants will be disqualified from consideration if they do not demonstrate in their application that they meet the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations. Applicants are solely responsible for providing complete and accurate information at the time of application: 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 a reference-checking process to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at midnight (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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