Partnership Coordinator

  • Contract
  • Amman Jordan
  • Closing date: 11 May 2022


The Syria crisis is often described as the worst humanitarian catastrophe since the end of the Cold War. Today, 13.4 million people in Syria – more than half of the country’s population – are in need of humanitarian assistance with needs increasingly being exacerbated by economic decline. Of these, 6.8 million are refugees and asylum-seekers who have fled the country. This is no short-term humanitarian episode. The devastating human consequences to huge numbers of people will endure for decades. The destruction of relationships, communities, livelihoods, homes and infrastructure will take years to repair.

IRC is offering a robust humanitarian response to the Syria crisis a rapidly expanding portfolio, supported by more than 1000+ staff in Syria Country Program. IRC is undertaking programs in Syria and the neighboring countries of Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and Jordan in the fields of health, child protection, early childhood development, education, women’s protection and empowerment, non-food items and food distribution, cash assistance, water and sanitation, protection and rule of law, and livelihood programming. Our work in these challenging settings gives rise to some of the most pressing issues facing contemporary humanitarian action, including questions of access, security, funding and coordination.

Job Overview/Summary

The Partnership Coordinator is responsible for the management and implementation of IRC’s approach to partnering with local and national civil society organizations in Syria, establishing IRC as a leader in its engagement with Syrian civil society to produce better outcomes for the people we serve.

Under the guidance of the Deputy Directors of Program (DDPs) for the Northwest and Northeast Syria hubs, and in close collaboration with the senior management teams (SMTs), the Partnership Coordinator will lead the Syria Partnership Department to ensure strong, collaborative partnerships that deliver effective and efficient program outcomes in accordance with IRC Strategy 100 (S100) and IRC Syria’s Strategic Action Plans. The Partnership Coordinator will oversee the implementation of IRC’s partnership management system (PEERS), ensuring that IRC identifies, appropriately allocates and effectively mitigates programmatic, operational, financial and reputational risk, establishing a strong foundation for strategic partnerships that extend beyond program implementation to incorporate mutual capacity strengthening and broader collaboration. The Partnership Coordinator will be key in fostering and promoting a culture, attitudes, values and skills conducive to collaborative partnerships throughout the Syria teams, based on a clear and shared understanding of IRC’s strategy, role and approach, and core partnership principles.


Promote Effective Partnerships
• In collaboration with DDPs, facilitate the definition of IRC’s Strategic Action Plans in Syria as they relate to partnerships with civil society organizations, collaborating with SMTs to integrate effective partnership approaches into sectoral strategies, taking into account gender equality at every step.
• In collaboration with DDP and Programs, responsibility for the effective implementation of IRC’s SAPs, particularly with respect to partnerships.
• Collaborate with DDPs and technical coordinators (TCs) to drive processes that ensure IRC develops and maintains a detailed working knowledge of the civil society landscape in Syria, and establishes, builds and maintains a network of strategic partner relationships, including with women-led organizations as per IRC’s S100.
• Collaborate with TCs to proactively identify potential partnerships with civil society organizations.
• Work with the DDPs, TCs, and the Grants Coordinators to ensure that partnership is appropriately integrated into all new business development and support the development of new business development concepts that prioritize partnerships.
• Define and contribute to learning opportunities with respect to local partnership
• Lead in IRC’s engagement in CSO, INGO and UN partnership networks and coordination forums, and promoting the localization of the Syria response. This together with the NES Grants and Partnership Co in NES
• Support the DDPs to advocate with donors to promote approaches and requirements that are responsive to the priorities and realities of local partners, and that promote the localization of the Syria response.
• Actively engage in and help drive IRC regional partnership initiatives, including participating in working groups and thematic meetings on partnership approaches and practices, identifying opportunities for systems improvements, and coordinating to ensure a coherent, efficient and effective joint approach to partnerships.

Partnership Accountability and Results
• Serve as a technical resource for partnership-focused staff in sector teams to promote an effective, responsive and coherent approach.
• Foster and promote a culture, attitudes and values conducive to collaborative partnerships throughout the Syria teams, based on a clear and shared understanding of IRC’s strategy, role and approach, and IRC’s core partnership principles.
• Support DDP in facilitating a process that defines clear roles, responsibilities and management structures in the Syria country programs to ensure efficient and responsive processes with respect to sub-award partnerships, consistent with PEERS.
• Chair the IRC Syria partnership working groups to promote a coherent, strategic and coordinated approach to local partnerships. In NES this is done in partnership with the NES Grants and Partnership Co
• Collaborate with Syria SMTs to ensure that IRC includes key partnership competencies in recruitment for relevant technical and operational positions; provides staff with necessary support for skills development for core partnership skills (mentoring, negotiation, etc.); and includes performance objectives for relevant positions that incentivize effective partnerships.

Partnership Management
• Oversee all aspects of partnership management (in NES in collaboration with NES Grants and Partnership Co) – from due diligence vetting, project and agreement development, sub-award management, monitoring and accountability, through to closure – coordinating all program, operations and finance components.
• Facilitate and lead the development of the structure and approach to individual partner relationships – including the selection of the appropriate funding mechanism and the development of appropriate reporting, monitoring and advance terms – based on the findings of the pre-award due diligence and in line with IRC policy, appropriately analyzing and mitigating risks, in collaboration with SMTs and TCs.
• Ensure that IRC’s approach to sub-award management, monitoring and accountability during the sub-award period prioritizes the best possible outcomes for clients, while effectively mitigating and managing risk, and promoting the core partnership principles.
• Facilitate systematic partner feedback on IRC’s management of and performance in partnerships, as well as appropriate action in response to the feedback.
• Supervise the Senior Partnership Finance Manager to ensure appropriate financial documentation in compliance with IRC and donor regulations, and to facilitate timely processing of all partnership payments according to schedule.
• Support effective sub-award close out processes, incorporating reflection and lessons learned.

Partner Support and Capacity Sharing
• Ensure all partners have collaboratively developed project support plans in place and oversee the delivery of timely and effective support, in close collaboration with the SMTs and with NES Grants and Partnership Co for NES.
• Ensure IRC understands the capacity strengthening priorities of its partners, including through Organizational Capacity Assessment processes where appropriate, and identify opportunities for IRC to support partner capacity strengthening efforts where aligned with prime award objectives.
• Oversee and facilitate IRC’s delivery of organizational capacity strengthening support, appropriately coordinated and integrated with technical capacity strengthening support.
• Work with the Regional Gender Advisor to ensure alignment with IRC’s approach as a feminist organization and its commitment to gender equality under S100
• Work with M&E Coordinator and Senior Capacity Sharing Manager to ensure that the impact of IRC’s support to partners is effectively tracked and measured.

Staff Performance Management, Learning & Development
• Direct management oversight of the Syria Partnership Department for NWS and in MIP with the Grants and Partnership Co for NES, including ensuring that the unit is appropriately resourced and structured, and the recruitment, performance management, and professional development of all unit staff. Supervise the Senior Partnership Manager, Senior Partnership Finance Manager, and Senior Capacity Sharing Manager
• Hire, supervise, and build the capacity of team members in relevant technical and management competencies.
• Develop and implement remote management capacity building approaches to build the strengths the teams teams in Syria.
• Coach, train, supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting annual performance objectives, providing regular and timely positive and constructive performance feedback, and providing documented semi-annual performance reviews.
• Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions.
• Approve and manage time, attendance and leave requests to ensure adequate departmental coverage; ensure monthly, accurate timesheet submission and carry out probationary reviews.
• Hold high-quality meetings with each direct report on a regular and predictable basis, minimally on a monthly basis.
• Provide a measurable development plan including on-the-job learning with the aim of strengthening technical capacity, exchanging knowledge within the team and providing guidance on career paths.
• As required, identify staff performance issues and work with Human Resources to document and address these in accordance with the National Staff Employment Policies.
• Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions.
• Promote and monitor staff care and well-being. Model healthy work-life balance practices. Support appropriate interventions in response to identified staff care needs of both national and international staff.
• Look for opportunities to support staff in their career growth, where appropriate. As part of succession plan and nationalization goals, identify, train and develop capability and capacity of national staff to successfully transition role and responsibilities, by the end of assignment.

Required Experience/qualification/Skills:

• At least 5-7 years of progressively responsible professional experience managing a partnership or grants portfolio in development or humanitarian context required.
• Previous experience in an emergency or conflict-afflicted setting is required.
• BA degree or equivalent in International Development or Affairs or related field; advanced degree an asset.
• Significant experience managing a sub-award portfolio of at least $5m in value required.
• Experience and proven ability to work effectively with national and local civil society organizations required; experience working in local or diaspora CSOs is highly desirable.
• Experience working in the Middle East, with Syria response experience highly desired.
• Demonstrated knowledge of U.S. Government rules and regulations required; experience working with FCDO, ECHO and other European donors preferred.
• Familiarity with IRC’s core programming areas in Syria, including Protection, Health, Economic Recovery and Development, and Early Childhood Development
• Proven experience in project proposal development with partners
• Experience and skills in reading and reviewing financial reports.
• Ability to respond to multiple priorities in a timely manner, producing high-quality outcomes.
• Excellent oral and written communication skills, with ability to express ideas and concepts clearly and persuasively with senior internal and external stakeholders.
• Demonstrated capacity to deal with ambiguity in stressful situations.
• Proven ability to work well in and promote teamwork, thrive in a multi-cultural environment, be flexible and handle pressure with professional grace.
• Proven ability to design and lead training engagements with staff and partners to enhance skills and adapt to changing program demands.
• Experience managing staff and a commitment to team building, mentoring and staff development.

Demonstrated Skills and Competencies:
• A commitment to IRC’s mission, vision, values and IRC Way – Professional Code of Conduct.
• Credible written, presentation and verbal communication skills; ability to convey information effectively and solid experience providing training and staff development
• Validated sense of professional discretion, integrity, and ability to handle complex situations diplomatically and to effective resolution.
• Excellent management and interpersonal skills and a solid ability to promote harmonious/cohesive teamwork, in a cross-cultural context.
• Validated ability to plan long-term, organize priorities and work under administrative and programmatic pressures with detail orientation and professional patience.
• Highly collaborative and resourceful; ability to establish positive working relationships with senior level management and all other partners to maximize cooperation and productivity.
• Curiosity, a desire to continually learn and develop and a sense of humor is a must.
• Analytical ability in creating effective solutions to complex matters while adhering to labor laws and internal policies.

• English is required, Arabic is desired.
• Travel: 40% to field sites as well as attending regional and global workshops and meetings.

Key Working Relationships:
Position Reports to: Deputy Director of Programs – Syria country Program
Position directly supervises: Senior Partnership Manager, Senior Capacity Sharing Manager, Senior Partnership Finance Manager. Manages NES partnership team
Indirect Reporting (If applicable): N/A
Key Internal Contacts: Technical Coordinators, Deputy Directors of Finance, Grants Coordinators, M&E Coordinators, Regional Partnership Director, Partnership Supply Chain Coordinator, Regional Gender Advisor.
Key External Contacts: Syrian NGOs, INGO and UN actors with respect to partnerships, as well as donors.

Professional Standards: IRC staff must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Accountability and Equality. In accordance with these values, IRC operates and carries out policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti-Workplace Harassment, Respect at Work Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.

Returning National Candidates: We strongly encourage national or returning national candidates to apply for this position. If you are a citizen of the Country in which this position is based and are currently located outside of your home country and possess over two years of international work experience, the Middle East Region has introduced an attractive remuneration package. The package includes competitive compensation, return flight to post, shipping allowance, temporary housing and a relocation allowance. Certain restrictions may apply. IRC strives to attract, motivate and retain qualified national staff in our programs.

Accountability to Clients: IRC staff must adhere to the commitment of contributing to the sustainability and development of its (CR) Client Responsiveness Mechanisms, preserving the culture of prioritizing the needs of our clients and affected communities by systematically listening to their perspectives and using their feedback to make programmatic decisions and give them greater influence over program design and delivery.

Gender Equality: IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances.

Diversity and Inclusion: at IRC MENA, we are passionate about creating an inclusive workplace that promotes and values diversity. Organizations that are diverse in age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, nationality, and perspective are validated to be better organizations. More importantly, creating a safe workspace environment where everyone, from any background, can do their best is the right thing to do. So, bring your whole self to work.

IRC is committed to creating a diverse, inclusive, respectful and safe work environment where all persons are treated fairly, with dignity and respect. In keeping with our core values of Integrity, Service, Accountability and Equality, IRC strives to maintain a work environment built on mutual respect in which all individuals treat each other professionally, and free of bias, prejudice, and harassment. IRC expressly prohibits and will not tolerate discrimination, harassment, retaliation, or bullying of IRC Persons in any work setting. All IRC staff, wherever they are located, are accountable for creating an environment free of discrimination, harassment, bullying, and retaliation.

How to apply