Level   15

Reports to (Hierarchical)

Cell based Operational Manager/Programme Manager

Reports to (Functional)

Cell based Operational Manager/Programme Manager

Job Family


Relations: Internal

Members of the Mission cell (HQ), All staff in the mission

Relations: External

Other NGOs, UN and other intl agencies, media, MSF sections and partners, civil and military authorities, international donors.

Main Purpose

Being responsible for MSF’s operational response in the Mission. In collaboration with the operational cell, defining the mission operational strategy. Coordinating MSF’s program execution, identifying humanitarian challenges, representing MSF’s interests before third parties. Ensuring compliance to MSF’s charter, ethical standards and policies as well as international and national laws and regulations, in order to realize organizational objectives and reach quality targets for the Mission.


  • Initiating and leading the mission-wide operational strategy; including country policy, annual plan, budget and policy frameworks. Leading the management team translating the strategic objectives into operational activities. Monitoring developments in MSF’s general policies and strategies and adapting the annual plan of the mission accordingly.
  • Monitoring and analyzing the political, humanitarian and medical situation in the country and in the region. Identifying potential fields of intervention and determining response strategies.
  • Representing MSF towards external actors (national authorities, NGO’s, donors, military organizations, media, etc.) to create commitment and negotiate terms and conditions for field operations.
    • Integrating an internal and external communication policy for the mission to advocate for change.
  • Leading the implementation of medical-humanitarian activities in the mission.
    • Coordinating with other MSF sections to initiate, coordinate and develop short- and long-term strategies in-country.
    • Evaluating the progress and outcomes of activities to ensure that objectives are achieved and reporting to Headquarters
  • Being responsible for the planning and coordination of all human, material and financial resources to ensure the overall performance of the mission
  • Leading the mission and its staff, providing a clear vision for the direction of the mission and bringing staff together across functional and geographical lines to achieve the mission’s objectives
    • Managing, coaching and developing direct reports in line with human resource policies
    • Implementing Human Resources-policy and ensuring that MSF acts as a responsible employer in terms of working conditions and reduction of security and health risks.
    • Ensuring staff and management team are aware of mission strategies, ambitions and implementation plans
    • Ensuring the associative character of MSF is reflected in the briefing of all MSF staff.
  • Ensuring the internal and external flow of information.
    • keeping staff and HQ informed and updated of context and security related issues.
    • producing all required planning and program performance reports in line with the HQ reporting cycle.
  • Being responsible for all security aspects of the mission.
    • Defining and ensuring the implementation of the security framework in the country, in order to ensure safety of staff and visitors across the mission.
    • Ensuring the implementation of the Inter-operational directorate Security Agreement (ISA) in the mission, both in spirit and letter, promoting a culture of pro-active information sharing and collaboration.”


  • University degree. Particularly in medicine, public health or paramedical or the field of international relations is a plus.
  • For OCBA: Desirable degree in project management or HR management.


  • At least two years in management positions in humanitarian aid.
  • Essential experience with MSF or other NGOs
  • Essential working experience in developing countries.

Language Level Description

C1  Proficient User

Effective Operational Proficiency or advanced

  • Can understand a wide range of demanding, longer texts, and recognise implicit meaning.
  • Can express ideas fluently and spontaneously without much obvious searching for expressions.
  • Can use language flexibly and effectively for social, academic and professional purposes.
  • Can produce clear, well-structured, detailed text on complex subjects, showing controlled use of organisational patterns, connectors and cohesive devices.

Technical Skills

This job doesn't have technical skills.

Transversal Competencies

Cross-cultural Awareness

Develops actions which stimulate integrating behaviours

  • Organises events which promote openness, respect for and interest in different environments. 
  • Ensures that each member of his/her team has an equal right to self-expression. 
  • Promotes and encourages diversity in his/her team by incorporating people with cultural differences. 
  • Openly defends the value of diversity in his/her speech and/or shows it through his/her active behaviour.

Strategic Vision

Plans actions geared towards achieving objectives

  • Understands trends beyond the most evident and draws up models to tackle specific situations.
  • Prioritises the activities of his/her team according to MSF’s strategic objectives.
  • Defines and/or adapts plans and objectives for his/her team according to the medium-term strategy* of MSF.
  • Analyses the context from an overall perspective in order to detect medium-term action opportunities.
  • Makes strategic proposals taking into account the evolution of the context 


Encourages, engages and motivates people

  • Creates an atmosphere of enthusiasm among the team. Is approachable.
  • Creates a space for participation in a group of people.
  • Leads people to achieve MSF’s objectives.
  • Takes responsibility for the end results.
  • Takes the initiative to bring people together.
  • Gives meaning and context to decisions.
  • Is able to use different styles (instructive, coaching, directive, participative) appropriately in different situations.
  • Signals bottlenecks and opportunities and proposes improvements or actively participates in the discussion to identify steps forward. 

Networking and Building Relationships

Optimises interaction between MSF and its environment

  • Develops new tools to optimise the interaction between MSF and its environment.
  • Facilitates a sustainable network (which is not dependent on one person’s/group’s charisma) for the needs of the beneficiaries. 

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