Country Director

International Rescue Committee
  • Location
    Amman, Jordan
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career / Advanced
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Jan 10

Position description

Founded in 1933, the International Rescue Committee responds to the world's worst humanitarian crises, helping to restore health, safety, education, economic well-being and power to people devastated by conflict and disaster.

Across northern Jordan and southern Syria, IRC assists Syrian refugees and Jordanian host communities in achieving improvements in economic well-being, health, and safety. IRC operates in Amman, Mafraq, Zarqa and Irbid governorates, with offices in Amman and Mafraq; programming includes women's protection and empowerment, livelihoods, and primary and reproductive health care. IRC also operates specialized child protection programs for unaccompanied and separated children in the country's two largest Syrian refugee camps, Za'atari and Azraq. IRC also operates an extensive cross-border program in southern Syria from Jordan, supporting health facilities with staff salaries, running costs and medical commodities, including pharmaceuticals, as well as cash assistance and protection programming. IRC Jordan's portfolio currently exceeds $38 million.

The IRC Country Director in Jordan is responsible for overall leadership and supervisory management of IRC personnel, programming, and operations in the country, including stewardship of resources, staff safety and security, program quality and accountability, and performance management. The Country Director is IRC's principal representative to Jordanian government officials, donors, international organizations, Jordanian civil society, other NGOs and the media. The Country Director is expected manage responsive and effective humanitarian programs implemented directly and with Syrian and Jordanian partner organizations. The Country Director will lead country program staff in pursuing the outcomes identified in the strategy action plan for 2016-2020, bringing them together to deliver high-quality, cost-effective programming results with high levels of account ability.

Success in this position requires an individual with exemplary demonstrated leadership abilities who deploys strong communications and interpersonal skills effectively, both internally and externally. The successful candidate will enjoy developing networks to build partnerships and diversify program resources. S/he will be directly responsible for the overall coordination and strategic direction of the country program; providing oversight and coaching for directly supervised senior managers; leading country program teams to identify, design and deliver responsive, high-quality programs; ensuring efficient management of public grants and private funds for results, compliance, and focused, timely reporting; and oversight of financial management and compliance systems.

Based in Amman and reporting to the Regional Director, the Country Director receives support from regional and headquarters staff in the areas of program quality, monitoring and evaluation, context analysis, new business development, safety and security management, finance, human resources, operations management, technology for programming, and public affairs. The Country Director is additionally expected to actively participate in defining the IRC's public advocacy positions. The Country Director directly supervises eight positions in a country program of approximately 380 staff. This position is fully accompanied and requires regular in country and occasional regional travel.

The overall security situation in Jordan is relatively calm, but conditions vary from one IRC operating area to another. The Jordanian government is stable, and civil unrest is largely peaceful. However, Jordan's generosity in hosting refugees from Palestine, Iraq and now Syria have created huge strains on the country's economy and infrastructure. In southern Syria, IRC operates in the governorates of Dar'a, Rural Damascus and Quneitra, which see very dynamic levels of conflict that require constant monitoring. Currently, areas of operation are under opposition control but this is subject to change.


Leadership and Representation

  • Lead the country program by maintaining open and professional relations with colleagues, promoting a strong team spirit and providing guidance, oversight and resources to enable staff to perform successfully.
  • Develop and carry out strategies that result in strong representation with: Jordanian Government ministries at various levels; UN OCHA; donors including OFDA, USAID , DFID, BPRM, ECHO, UNHCR, UNICEF and other international organizations; international and local NGOs; and networks such as the Jordan INGO Forum, ICVA and SIRF.
  • Ensure that IRC remains a partner of choice for major international donors.
  • Develop and maintain a high level of understanding of donor priorities and planned funding streams.
  • Initiate and sustain strong, mutually beneficial and authentic partnerships with local organizations.
  • Seek out and pursue opportunities to raise the profile of the work of IRC and its partners, as well as the lives and the needs of the people IRC seeks to serve.
  • Play a leadership role in efforts to improve humanitarian coordination in Jordan and southern Syria.
  • Lead country program collaboration with colleagues in IRC's Syria Response Region to deliver regional programming and advocacy.

Strategic Direction, Program Quality and Growth

  • Set the strategic vision and direction of the country program to serve more people with responsive, high-quality and accountable programming, and secure the resources necessary for realization.
  • Align programming to the strategy action plan, sectoral expertise and technical standards.
  • Ensure program quality through consistent use throughout the country program of: rigorous assessment, design, and proposal development and review processes; comprehensive monitoring & evaluation, accountability and learning systems; staff development investments; and partner organization capacity strengthening.
  • Remain current on national and regional issues impacting the country program and partners, and develop responsive strategies to changing contexts.
  • Ensure country program alignment with and involvement in meeting regional objectives.
  • Identify opportunities for appropriate expansion and growth of programs, supported by the acquisition of and investment in human resources.

Safety and Security Management

  • Take primary responsibility for overall management of safety and security for the country program.
  • Oversee the management of all security issues, including appropriate response to emergency situations as they arise.
  • Maintain a culture of safety and security throughout the country program, including trainings and briefings that prepare all country program staff for security incident prevention and response.
  • Keep security, evacuation and contingency plans current and accessible to country program staff.
  • Maintain close coordination and communication with the Regional Safety and Security Advisor on safety and security concerns and evolving issues that could adversely affect IRC staff or operations.

Staff Performance Management and Development

  • Supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting performance objectives, providing regular and timely performance feedback, and leading documented semi-annual performance reviews.
  • Provide constructive feedback and counsel on appropriate career paths and professional development for IRC staff.
  • Oversee the management, coaching and development of national and international staff to build a cadre of skilled, committed and motivated personnel.
  • Continue to pursue nationalization of senior and second-level management 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.
  • Offer leadership support for successful adherence by all staff to IRC's Global HR Operating Policies and Procedures.
  • Work with regional HR staff to identify and implement recruitment and retention strategies.
  • Undertake regular reviews of labor and salary markets in Jordan for the purpose of enhancing the competitiveness of the IRC's overall compensation package for national staff.

Stewardship and Operational Management

  • Drive operational excellence to achieve optimal efficiency and cost-effectiveness in all functions and operations of the country program.
  • Oversee the development, deployment and utilization of financial and operational policies, procedures, and systems to deliver compliance with IRC and donor requirements.
  • Ensure responsiveness and appropriate levels of in-person and remote support to all offices, especially in the areas of HR, finance and supply chain.
  • Provide timely and effective oversight of the Jordan country program's financial position.
  • Maintain effective and coordinated budget monitoring processes for grant funds and discretionary funds.
  • Seek opportunities to introduce efficiencies and eliminate redundancies in existing business processes.


  • Model and encourage active practice of the principles of the "IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct" throughout the Jordan country program.
  • Maintain a healthy and empowering office environment that encourages open, honest and productive communication among IRC staff and with partner organizations.
  • Maintain open communications with regional management staff, regional technical advisors, and HQ departmental staff.

Supervisory Responsibilities: 8 direct reports, including the Deputy Director for Programs - Jordan, Deputy Director for Programs – Cross Border, Deputy Director for Operations, HR Coordinator, Finance Controller, Compliance Coordinator, Advocacy Manager and Communications Manager.


  • Graduate degree in a relevant field is preferred, with significant additional professional experience considered in lieu
  • At least ten years of progressively responsible international work experience, including leadership at the Country Director level of multi-site, multi-sectoral operations in a complex operating environment
  • Experience of building personal networks at a senior level, resulting in securing new opportunities for the organization
  • Demonstrated successful leadership and management experience with a multi-disciplinary team in a cross-cultural setting, including active mentoring and coaching
  • Proven experience delivering appropriate levels oversight of a portfolio consisting of a variety of complex, high-value donor-funded projects
  • Extensive representation and fundraising success, including prior experience with European, US and international donors
  • Superior communications skills, verbal and written, in English
  • Experience of managing security in a complex and rapidly changing security context
  • Proven ability to negotiate and work with partner organizations. Experience with organizational capacity strengthening and partnership building helpful
  • Strong budget and fiscal oversight capacities
  • Established capacity to deal with stressful situations
  • Ability to respond to multiple priorities in a timely manner, producing high-quality outcomes
  • A keen understanding of political complexities in the Middle East region
  • Arabic language skills a definite advantage

This position is based in Amman and is fully accompanied, with an estimated one-fourth of the Country Director's time spent in other locations in Jordan and elsewhere in the region.

Attention Returning National Candidates : We strongly encourage national or returning national candidates to apply for this position. If you are a national 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 Syria Response 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.

Application instructions

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