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Commodity Manager (Manager Produits De Base) - Kasai, DRC
Mercy Corps
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Posted 2 months ago
Job Description

Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.

Program / Department Summary

Mercy Corps has been operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since August 2007, with a staff of around 200 people working in North and South Kivu, with the overall country goal to support vulnerable communities through crises, while fostering programs that build resilience and promote long-term change. Mercy Corps’ national office is in Goma with sub-field offices in North Kivu and South Kivu. Mercy Corps’ key programming areas include a combination of longer-term development and immediate humanitarian response programs in order to: 1) Improve water service delivery and ensuring equitable access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene services, in urban and rural areas; 2) Improve food security and nutrition; 3) Promote diversified livelihoods, economic recovery and development. Mercy Corps DRC’s humanitarian programs aim specifically to assist populations affected by the conflict and crisis in Eastern Congo. With funding from humanitarian donors including USAID, FCDO and UN-donors, the humanitarian portfolio continues to expand in order to provide multi-purpose cash assistance and emergency WASH to displaced and host populations. Mercy Corps plans to scale up and expand its humanitarian response to reach more beneficiaries with additional and varied assistance in a wider geographic area. All Mercy Corps interventions in DRC are implemented in a conflict and gender sensitive manner.


General Position Summary

The Commodity Manager is responsible for the logistical management of Title II commodities. The position plays a critical role in the management of receipt, utilization, and monitoring of the USAID commodities for a 5-year Resilience Food Security Activity (RFSA) that aims to ensure that vulnerable households and communities build and sustain food, nutrition and economic security. The Commodity Manager will plan, manage, and provide technical and operational oversight of all supply chain activities – including procurement, logistics, transportation, warehousing, distribution and reporting to ensure effective and efficient delivery of goods and services to the poor and vulnerable. S/he will have the knowledge and experience required to anticipate and manage supply chain needs and challenges and introduce solutions for improvements.

Essential Job Responsibilities

Strategy and vision

Prepare strategy for food aid program and operations, included but not limited to Annual Estimated of Requirement, Call Forward, Pipeline Analysis, partner agreements related to food aid program activities, and commodity operational plans.

Establish accurate commodity tracking systems, managing risks (including fraud and corruption), and ensuring accountability throughout the supply chain.

program and Operations Management

Manage the determination of procurement and logistics service requirements, desired specifications and delivery schedules, and how sourcing strategies are defined, ensuring proper coordination and communication.

Manage annual estimates, call forward and commodity pipeline for the entire food aid program.

Coordinate work with the freight forwarders, clearing agents, independent surveyors, and inland and cross-border carriers to ensure commodities shipments are properly handled and carried out.


Ensure accountability and transparency of all supply chain operations in compliance with donor regulations, international and local standards and requirements and Mercy Corps policy.

Manage logistical infrastructure, storage facilities and transportation resources. Oversee application of systems and procedures for inventory and commodity transportation, warehousing, and distribution, as well as for vehicle management to ensure proper handling and safeguarding of assets. Ensure related safety and security protocols are implemented.

Manage risks including fraud and corruption and ensure accountability throughout the supply chain.

Oversee inventory control and the management of comprehensive goods tracking and record keeping systems throughout the whole supply chain cycle, from time of request until time of delivery. Ensure timely preparation and submission of various reports.

Provide regular monitoring and evaluation in commodity management aspects and share recommendations for improving quality of commodity operations.

Ensure compliance to Mercy Corps Commodity Management and Accounting System by conducting periodic visits to all commodity warehouses and ensure best warehouse practices are observed, audit warehouse ledgers, carryout physical count, etc.

Ensure donor compliant reporting on commodities and that all required reports are accurately prepared and submitted.

team Management

Provide training in commodity management to commodity staff, commodity organizer, local NGO and Institutions regarding techniques of receipt, dispatch, storage and handling, distribution procedures and policy, documentation, handling loss and claims, disposal of unfit commodities, accounting and reporting associated with their program

Create and maintain a work environment based on mutual respect, where accountability is encouraged, alternative viewpoints are welcomed, the team strives for excellence, and is conducive to professional growth. Encourage a strong team spirit.

Promote and instill a focus on capacity building, deepen understanding and ownership of individual roles, and strengthen performance management systems through the implementation of a comprehensive staff training plan.

Promote accountability, communicate expectations, and provide constructive feedback through regular individual interviews and performance reviews.

Structure, recruit, and induct team members, working to ensure that team structure and staffing reflect the project's vision for gender equality and ensuring that staff are prepared to succeed and familiar with agency systems, procedures, and protocols.

Provide ongoing supervision, leadership, support, guidance and mentoring directly to program staff.

Support the development of national staff in line with program goals, so that national staff increasingly make decisions and take on management roles.

Finance, Operation and Compliance Management

Collaborate with program, finance and administrative staff.

Ensure that program resources are used efficiently, effectively, and transparently towards meeting desired results.

Management and bi-weekly monitoring of the budget and control of coherence of spending.

Monitor adherence to grant and sub grants agreements, Mercy Corps’ policies and procedures and relevant external rules and regulations, including those of the government of DRC.

Influence & Representation

Participate actively in coordination meetings with relevant clusters and working groups in Kasai province

Demonstrate flexibility, resilience and ability to maintain positive relationships and composure.

Maintain high ethical standards and treat people with respect and dignity.

S/he will be responsible for coordinating activities with the local government, potential local partners, key stakeholders, and other international NGOs.

Organizational Learning

As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve, we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.

Provide in-country and remote training and support for Mercy Corps team members, partners, and others.

Accountability to Beneficiaries

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.


Supervises Directly: Commodities Team

Reports Directly to: Deputy Chief of Party

Works Directly with: Purpose Leads, Strategic Learning Advisor, M&E Lead, Gender, Youth and Social Inclusion Lead, Activity team members, PaQ team, finance, administration and operations teams, HQ Regional Program Team, HQ Technical Support Unit and partner organizations

Knowledge and Experience

Bachelor’s degree in a relevant academic area – e.g., supply chain management, food science, etc and seven years of relevant work experience. At least five years of experience must be field-based.

Extensive experience managing in-kind food commodity supply chains from point of origin through to food distribution points and end recipients in fragile contexts.

Experience maintaining commodity quality and safety, managing warehouses (including fumigation and testing), coordinating transportation (port, road, rail, etc), monitoring, and reporting.

Experience specific to Title II is highly desired.

Demonstrated ability to network and engage with necessary stakeholders to manage food commodity supply chains.

Experience working in the DRC is preferred.

Effective verbal and written communication, multi-tasking, organizational and prioritization skills.

Fluent oral and written French skills required.

Professional proficiency in English and Tshiluba is preferred.

Experience with USAID and US government regulations and program administration, management and reporting procedures and systems is preferred.

Ability to work effectively with an ethnically diverse team in a sensitive environment.

Success Factors

The successful Commodity Manager will have strong consultative skills, and a high degree of comfort in discussing agricultural techniques and livelihood issues, often in complex scenarios. This person will develop trust easily with field teams, other Mercy Corps leadership and external partners. This person should be an excellent written and verbal communicator able to represent Mercy Corps at public events. This person should be extremely well organized and capable of tracking multiple competing priorities. The successful person will be skilled at reducing complexities to clear and understandable non-technical terms with a focus on practical next steps. The most successful Mercy Corps staff members have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and changing environments.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

Mercy Corps offers a competitive benefits package for positions based in the Kasai province, which is an unaccompanied duty station. Tshikapa is the capital of the Kasai Province, a lively rural city of 971,000 inhabitants where humanitarian actors are present. In the city center water and power are quite stable thanks to the cash power system and hotels, small restaurants, shops and banks are reasonably accessible. There are 3 main hospitals which provide adequate health care services, with evacuation options to Kinshasa or surrounding areas as required. Telephone landlines, internet and mobile network capacity exist but are frequently at a less than optimal level. The temperature is often between 30-35 degrees.

Mercy Corps' sub-offices experience variable levels of insecurity, with the situation closely monitored by UN peacekeepers. Air travel is necessary to get from one end of the country to the other. Mobile phones and cellular service are widely available. Internet is available in all Mercy Corps offices. Travel to field sites will be required where living conditions are clean and secure, but basic. There are a number of health services available with evacuation options for serious illnesses. There’s reasonable access to most consumer goods, although they can be expensive.

Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and Mercy Corps' policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Mercy Corps Diversity Statement

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.

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