ETHIOPIAN AGRICULTURAL TRANSFORMATION AGENCY
Position : Senior Technical Expert II- Research, Extension & Farmer Clustering , Amhara RBoA Technical Support Unit
Term of Employment : One year with a possibility of extension
Duty Station (s): Amhara Bureau of Agriculture, Bahir Dar
Required Number: One
Salary & Benefits : Competitive
Application Deadline : January 31, 2021
The Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) is a strategy and delivery-oriented government agency created to help accelerate the growth and transformation of the country’s agriculture sector. The ATA envisions that, by 2025, smallholder farmers are commercialized with greater incomes, inclusiveness, resilience, and sustainability, contributing to Ethiopia’s achievement of middle-income country status.
The ATA focuses on two primary national approaches to catalyze agricultural transformation. First, we support the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), its affiliate institutions, and other partners to identify and address systemic bottlenecks within an Agricultural Transformation Agenda. Second, we support Regional Governments to accelerate the development of high-priority commodity value chains in clearly defined geographic clusters, through the Agricultural Commercialization Clusters (ACC) Initiative and other programs.
ATA is currently in the process of launching a Technical Support Unit (TSU) along with a Delivery Unit in the Amhara Bureau of Agriculture (BoA) to enhance the bureau’s technical capabilities in selected priority areas. The unit’s responsibilities include providing targeted technical support during planning, implementation, and performance management, providing policy and strategy support/advisory, building the capacity of the implementation owners, and providing other strategic support on senior leadership’s high priority requests.
The Senior Technical Expert (STEII) – Research, Extension & Farmer Clustering will report to the Technical Support Unit Head and will work in close collaboration with RBoA leadership, the Delivery Unit, and other colleagues at the RBoA and Affiliated institutions to provide technical support to implementation owners for priority work related to Research, Extension & Farmer Clustering . The Senior Technical Expert will also provide policy and strategy advisory and other strategic support to senior leadership on high priority requests. He/she will also work to ensure meaningful planning and target setting, timely and accurate reporting, and rigorous and practical problem-solving.
The person in this role will further work to strengthen the technical, project management, and analytical capacity of priority agenda owners in the Regional Bureau of Agriculture (RBoA). The successful candidate for this role will have the technical expertise to effectively drive the interventions in his/her area of assignment, strong analytical and critical thinking skills, experience influencing others in large organizations to simplify, focus and have urgency, and a passion for both results and capacity building. We are applying private-sector style rigor to major social issues that can transform Ethiopian society.
Related to her/his specific area of assignment the Research, Extension & Farmer Clustering Senior Technical Expert performs the following:
- Provide technical support, advisory and critical inputs to RBoA leadership and staff to ensure they have adequate technical capabilities for designing, planning, implementing and managing the performance of priorities to achieve intended results.
- Drive effective prioritization and planning working jointly with implementation owners to ensure priority goals are defined, targets and indicators are set, and clear accountabilities are assigned.
o Provide expert advice to focus area owners to ensure timing, resources, and sequencing of the work efforts are aligned to produce the desired results.
- Support leadership on maintaining focus on priorities by ensuring implementers understand how their work relates to the overall strategy and the relevant performance indicators.
- Work with implementation owners on ensuring ongoing performance management to enable achievement of outcomes, with the support of the DU when required. Which includes ensuring:
o Data on performance indicators are being effectively collected and analysed.
o Team routines are set internally between implementation owners to arrive at a shared view of progress and agree on a corrective measure to ensure progress is on track.
o A deeper review is conducted for areas of strengths and weakness to understand what is happening on the ground and develop specific and actionable recommendations.
- Ensure robust, timely, and accurate reporting to create visibility to RBoA leadership and facilitate decision-making required for accelerating progress.
- Proactively identify and solve technical issues working with implementation owners to drive execution:
o Identify and prioritize critical technical, strategic, and operational issues hindering achievement of targets together with implementers.
o Jointly work with implementation owners, involving the Delivery Unit, the ATA, and other external partners, to develop high-impact and feasible solutions for addressing identified technical issues.
o Collaborate with internal and external experts or consultants as needed to solve more complex issues.
- Provide technical advisory or support in the development and/or implementation of policies and strategies related to the area of expertise.
- Contribute to ToRs, concept notes, studies, workshops, and training materials in areas related to assigned focus.
- Build the capacity of RBoA leadership and staff to ensure sustainable improvement in the system:
o Strengthen implementation owner’s technical, project management, and problem-solving capabilities thorough day-to-day on the job coaching and support.
o Identify capacity gaps, develop training materials, and provide training to RBoA leadership and staff – working with the Delivery Unit as needed
- Develop, cultivate, and manage relationships with RBoA leadership and staff to ensure successful implementation.
- Work with the TSU Head to provide technical/strategic support on high-priority requests by RBoA Senior Leadership
- Carry out other related activities as may be requested by the Technical Support Unit Head.
- At least BSc/BA or MSc/MA degree required in the following areas: Research, Extension & Farmer Clustering and other related Agricultural fields, Business Management, Business Administration, Project Management, Economics, Statistics, Development Studies, or related fields.
- At least 10 years of experience with a BSc/BA or 8 years with MSc/MA degree, working in Research, Extension & Farmer Clustering and Project Management, Strategy development, Policy Advisory, Project Design, Management Consulting, or other relevant fields.
- Navigate and achieve change in the agriculture sector – has knowledge or experience of operating in a political environment and driving reforms through public-sector decision-making processes such as budget setting, legislating, and procurement.
- Strong understanding of public and development sector issues and organizational culture, and ability to effectively liaise with senior and mid-level leadership in government organizations.
- Understanding of the Agricultural Sector and its various challenges and possibilities with a broad perspective on how the entire system operates and how the public, private and non-government organizations operate.
- Good experience of working at regional government offices and civil society or private sector sectors.
- Proven record of structuring and delivering challenging projects, with data analysis, regular reporting, and independent troubleshooting and problem-solving.
- Excellent critical-thinking and analytical skills, with experience applying these for both strategy and implementation/operations.
- Strong team player with excellent relationship management, capacity building, facilitation, training and presentation skills, and a passion for change and delivery
- Self-starter with strong motivation, ownership, and commitment to drive transformation.
- Can act as a champion for change and can effectively support change management efforts.
- Strong desire and humility to learn.
- Strong knowledge and skills in Microsoft Office Suite, and various program / project management and data and reporting systems.
- Fluency in English and Amharic required.
How to Apply
We invite all candidates meeting the required qualifications to submit (i) a cover letter and (ii) CV (maximum 3 pages) to https://apply.ata.gov.et by mentioning the position title on the subject line.
Please DO NOT submit scans of certificates with your application.
Women are highly encouraged to apply.
Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.