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Finance and Planning Officer - Panama
International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA)
Grade: Unspecified
Close on 8 Jul 2021
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Added 1 week ago
Job Description
The International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance — The International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA) is an intergovernmental organization with a mission to advance democracy worldwide, as a universal human aspiration and an enabler of sustainable development, through support to the building, strengthening and safeguarding of democratic political institutions and processes at all levels.

We believe that democracy is a universal human aspiration and an experience that is pursued and lived in different ways around the world. Beyond the basic tenets of citizens’ choice and citizens’ political equality, the critical choices are best made and the quality of democracy is best gauged by those directly concerned: the citizens themselves. We systematically nurture an open and pluralistic understanding of democracy. This is respectful of the national context, and is in line with our non-prescriptive and non-intrusive approach, as well as with the priorities set by national actors.

International IDEA produces, shares and enables the use of comparative knowledge in its key areas of expertise: electoral processes, constitution building processes, political participation and representation, as well as on democracy as it relates to gender and inclusion, conflict sensitivity and sustainable development.

It has its headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden, and offices in the Africa and West Asia, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean and Europe regions. International IDEA is a Permanent Observer to the United Nations.

Finance and Planning Officer - Panama

On February 1, 2021 the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean was established in Panamá. From there we work with democratic institutions throughout Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region to increase the effectiveness and legitimacy of democracy, its institutions and to support gender equality in politics. Based on a geographic approach, our LAC programme responds to requests of regional, sub-regional and national actors, builds capacity through technical assistance, comparative applied knowledge resources and provides spaces for dialogue. The LAC programme is a significant partner and an agenda setter in many countries where it provides expert technical assistance.


The Finance and Planning Officer provides project management support, both financial/contractual and strategic planning for the Regional Office. The post holder supports a portfolio of projects and is a focal point for advice on the management of grants, budgets, contracts and procurement. The Finance and Planning Officer facilitates the annual strategic planning process, consolidates quarterly project/narrative reports and facilitates the risk management process.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Supports the Director Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) Region in fundraising efforts, including the monitoring of call for proposals and opportunities, communication with donors and elaboration of project proposals;
  • Ensures the submission of quality and timely work plans, financial reports, concept papers/funding proposals etc. from the LAC offices;
  • Contributes to the design of LAC programmes/projects, work plans and budgets according to International IDEA policies, procedures and frameworks;
  • Promotes application of International IDEA’s project management framework within LAC offices;
  • Ensures project proposals and funding requests are prepared in conformity with International IDEA’s internal policies and procedures, including adequate costing of activities, human resource needs and administrative tasks;
  • Tracks the financial progress of projects, providing project analysis, highlighting project expense and budget deviation;
  • Monitors adherence to client agreement requirements within the framework of International IDEA’s internal policies and procedures, ensuring focus is on delivery of reporting, invoicing, and disbursement timelines;
  • Guides overall compliance and quality control; arranges independent audits;
  • Provides advice and support on matters related to public tendering and intellectual property;
  • Reviews draft partnership agreements and consultant/supplier contracts; ensures compliance with International IDEA policies and procedures;
  • Provides guidance and support to financial officers from national offices in respect to the management of grants, budgets, contracts, and procurement; Provides training and induction on International IDEA’s policies and procedures;
  • Supports financial officers in the preparation of project expenditure reports for donors;
  • Contributes to the design and implementation of LAC Programme work plans and budgets according to International IDEA procedures;
  • Oversees compliance with Panama Government’s requirements derived from International IDEA’s status as an international organization;
  • Serves as a liaison between LAC´s national offices and the Regional Office and between the Regional Office and Headquarters.

General Profile

  • Will contribute to assigned projects throughout the project life cycle, i.e., from project design and funding to project assessment; Will contribute to meetings and discussions, providing relevant input;
  • Analyzes performance and identifies issues and trends affecting project funding; recommends the use of appropriate programme tools and strategies;
  • Develops financial proposals and technical tools to address identified programme needs in the specialized area of project funds accounting;
  • Is recognized as a knowledge resource in his/her broad professional community;
  • Can work with minimal guidance and supervision;
  • Adds value to team-based activities in his/her unit; collaborates with other entities of the Institute;
  • Acts as a model or mentor for less experienced colleagues;
  • Can be expected to travel globally to any geographical area involved in his/her projects;
  • Follows internal procedures to ensure high standards of performance and compliance with Institutional guidelines;
  • Integrates a gender and diversity perspective in all activities;
  • Acts in accordance with International IDEA’s core values; Respect, Integrity and Professionalism.

Reporting Line

  • Director Latin America and the Caribbean Region.

Programmatic Knowledge

  • Has in-depth knowledge in own discipline and a good understanding of related disciplines to be able to approach programmatic issues in a holistic manner.

Operational Knowledge, skills and experience

  • Collaborates with internal Project Managers and external donor finance functions to align financial and technical reporting to ensure the integrity of the project/programme;
  • Advises programme staff in the development of technical proposals of new projects, preparation of reports and project briefs, and other activities related to resource mobilization and partnership building;
  • Integrates a results-based approach into the design, management and evaluation of all his/her activities;
  • Has a good understanding of relevant programmatic issues in the key geographical zone where his/her work is implemented – which may imply field experience at some point;
  • Illustrates integrity, a collaborative spirit, a sense of achievement, and an understanding of risk management in past experiences.


  • No people management responsibility over permanent staff;
  • Acts as a model and resource for more junior colleagues;
  • May assume project management responsibilities.

Problem Solving

  • Identifies and resolves complex problems, approaches issues with new perspectives, analyses situations from a multitude of intervening factors.


  • Has a clear impact on the development and delivery of projects and programmes;
  • Can also impact other teams and projects in related fields.

Communication and Interpersonal Skills

  • Liaises to all internal and external stakeholders involved in his/her portfolio; Acts and is perceived as an initiator of relevant communication to solve issues;
  • Drives projects and assignments through communicative, personal energy and engagement;
  • Translates financial concepts to and effectively collaborates with colleagues who do not necessarily have finance backgrounds;
  • Can explain sensitive information with diplomacy and build consensus;
  • Fluency in written and oral English and Spanish is required; Any other widely spoken language in an International IDEA priority region would also be an asset.

Education and Experience

  • University degree in financial management, business management or other relevant discipline;
  • A minimum of five (5) years of relevant professional experience in supporting programme/project design, finance, administration, and grant management functions, including planning, budgeting, costing, monitoring, implementation, and evaluation;
  • Knowledge of award and contract regulations and reporting requirements of major donors advantageous;
  • Experience of working in an international context, e.g., in an intergovernmental organization, is considered an advantage.

Terms of Contract:

  • International Post
  • One (1) year fixed term appointment
  • Remuneration - EUR 4 581 NET per month + benefits

Applying for this position:

  • Applications should be submitted no later than 23:59 (CET) 08 July 2021. Please note that all applications must be made in English.
  • You may apply directly by pressing the Send Application button.

International IDEA is an equal opportunity employer which seeks to further diversify its staff in terms of gender, culture and nationality.

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