Senior Administrative Assistant – Global Programs

Mercy Corps

Location Portland, OR USA

Position Status Full-time, Non-exempt

Starting Annualized Salary: $46,000 DOE ($22.11/hour)

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

Program / Department Summary

The Global Programs Team supports the Mercy Corps mission and works with program impact, innovation and influence at its core. The Global Programs Team reports to the Senior Vice President (SVP) of Programs and is composed of both headquarters and field-based teams. These teams are guided by our Mercy Corps Vision 2030 – the all-agency strategy – and work in close partnership with all other agency departments, to deliver the highest quality and impactful results in programs and initiatives. The SVP directs the areas of Program Strategy, Growth, Performance and Quality to deliver the most effective, efficient use of program resources in all locations. These global efforts are prioritized by teams working across units focused on Program Strategy and Leadership; Operations; Humanitarian Leadership and Response; Technical Leadership / New Initiatives; and Ventures / Innovations—as well as Regional and Country teams across the Mercy Corps world. The Global Program Leadership Team, led by the SVP of Programs, is accountable for the combined success of Programs overall, and shares our adaptive thinking, entrepreneurial spirit and community-focused solutions throughout the agency.

General Position Summary

The Senior Administrative Assistant is a key member of the Global Programs team. Their primary role is to provide general administrative support to the SVP of Programs and their direct team in maintaining excellent management systems that enable the team to perform at the highest possible level in terms of workflow, product, and creativity. This role provides an important management support function for this team and plays an important role in team communication and agency-wide information dissemination. They also work with the Programs Leadership team, the Doug Fir Group, to ensure strong internal cohesion and collaboration while proactively building relationships with other departments and field teams.

Essential Job Responsibilities

Administrative Support

  • Coordinate and maintain the SVP of Programs’ weekly schedule, including team meetings, standing check ins, presentations/briefings, work time/breaks, etc. as well as assemble all pertinent background materials for meetings and monitoring of follow-up activities.
  • Arrange travel schedules including domestic and international flights, ground transportation, and hotel logistics; compile expense reports and supporting documentation to reconcile trip expenses
  • Support the SVP of Programs with a wide array of email correspondence and account management and facilitate required follow-up.
  • Coordinate electronic and physical approvals and signatures with the Regional Program Team
  • Provide administrative and project-based support to the Senior Director of Programs, Programs Analyst and Global Programs Advisor as requested
  • Provide administrative support related to the Doug Fir Group, including scheduling and coordination of monthly and ad hoc meetings, logistical and note taking support, and maintenance of the team calendar and intranet page
  • Represent the Program team in cross-team initiatives and feedback processes as assigned by the Programs Analyst
  • Manage the SVP Programs and Program Department credit card accounts.
  • Support consultant contracting and procurement processes and transactions.

Communications & Reporting

  • Provide communications planning and support related to key Program change-management initiatives, leadership changes, and key announcements/updates
  • Help to facilitate and streamline regular communications from the SVP Programs on agency communication platforms (Workplace, The Hub, etc.)
  • Create video content for internal communication and reporting purposes, including content coordination, recording, and editing
  • Coordinate and prepare department reports for quarterly Board of Directors Meetings and special reports as requested by the SVP and Senior Director, Programs.
  • Prepare department-level presentations and visuals as requested
  • Coordinate inclusive translation, captioning and transcription support, as needed.

Knowledge Management

  • Create and maintain internal documentation and filing systems including the Global Programs shared drive, payment requests and invoices, contracts and consultancy agreements, performance reviews, the Regional Program Team tracker, newsletters, emergency contact list, email listservs, shared department calendar, personnel forms, expense reports
  • Maintain the Global Programs intranet pages as well as other agency-facing Program resources, and assist in Workplace communications as required.

Meetings and Events

  • Support Program Leadership Team retreats and workshops, including managing event agendas and logistics, and providing ideas and inputs for overall event success, working with consultants for major events as needed.
  • Coordinate new team member onboarding processes, including but not limited to equipment procurement, onboarding plans, meeting schedules and document sharing.

Supervisory Responsibility



Reports Directly To: Programs Analyst, Strategy & Operations

Works Directly With: SVP of Programs; Senior Director of Programs; Global Programs Advisor; Program Leadership Team, particularly Regional Directors; other HQ departments (programs and non-programs)

Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Minimum Qualifications & Transferable Skills

  • BA/S or equivalent.
  • 2+ years providing administrative support within a complex team environment, including but not limited to calendar management, meeting/event planning and execution, travel arrangements, and email support.
  • Proven ability to prioritize multiple competing requests, tasks, deadlines, and needs in a fast-paced work environment.
  • Well-organized, detail-oriented, and flexible/adaptable to changing priorities.
  • Outstanding communications skills, both written and verbal, with extensive experience applying those in a work setting.
  • Experience with video recording and editing
  • Proficiency with MS Office and Google Suite as well as proven business correspondence writing and editing skills is necessary.
  • Proven experience maintaining a high level of confidentiality and professional conduct with integrity.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • Experience with an INGO or internationally-oriented organization is helpful.

Success Factors

A successful Senior Administrative Assistant should have the ability to handle a high volume of administrative work quickly, efficiently, accurately, and with enthusiasm. They should be able to prioritize work while balancing efficiency with accuracy, track multiple projects, and meet tight deadlines independently. They should possess a high standard for quality of products – both content and presentation. Strong candidates will have an ability to build working relationships with people of diverse backgrounds and work styles and be a good networker. They must have flexibility and creativity in problem solving, be capable of identifying and independently addressing team needs or areas for self-improvement, and be able to handle confidential information and sensitive situations with tact. Finally, they should possess an interest and ability to understand agency and team strategy and culture. A robust sense of humor is greatly appreciated.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

The position is based in Portland, OR.

Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times.

Fostering a diverse and open workplace is an important part of Mercy Corps’ vision. Mercy Corps is an Equal Opportunity Employer regardless of background. We are committed to creating an inclusive environment.

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.

As a safeguarding measure, Mercy Corps screens all potential US-Based employees. This is done following the conclusion of recruitment and prior to assuming full employment.

Our screening process is designed to be transparent and completed in partnership with new Team Members. You will have the opportunity to disclose any prior convictions at the conclusion of the recruitment process before the check is initiated. We ask that you do not disclose any prior convictions in your application materials or during the recruitment process.

Covid-19 Vaccine Policy for US-Based Employees

Mercy Corps has determined that, in an effort to protect the health, safety, and well-being of all Mercy Corps employees working in the United States, all U.S.-based employees must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, regardless of prior COVID-19 infection status. This policy is necessary to ensure not only the safety of our workforce, but the ongoing functionality of the organization.

This policy will be revised as needed to comply with federal, state, and local requirements, and to respond to changing guidance from public health authorities.

For new employees this requirement goes into effect within 10 business days of employment. Team members that travel are expected to comply with host-country requirements, including vaccinations. Failure to comply may impact your employment. Proof of vaccination or exemption must be provided.

How to apply