International Value for Money (VFM) Consultant Job at the United Nations Children’s Fund
UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.
We are recruiting to fill the position below:
Job Title: International Value for Money (VFM) Consultant
Job Number: 517977
Work Type : Consultancy
Purpose of Assignment
The purpose of the position is to provide technical guidance and analysis for UNICEF Nigeria to demonstrate and improve on how it delivers good Value for Money (VFM) and accurate financial forecasting and reporting for DFID and non-DFID funded projects and activities.The consultant will provide technical support to the country office with a focus on DFID and Educate A Child (EAC) funded Girls Education Project Phase 3 (GEP3) on Value for Money (VfM) approaches and financial projections and reporting through a process of analysis, understanding of donors VFM and financial reporting requirements and guidance to UNICEF staff as needed.The consultant will be responsible for ensuring that the projects VFM and financial reporting to the donors are accurate and consolidated according to the donor guidelines, agreed standardized approaches, methods, templates and regular schedules (monthly, quarterly, annually).
UNICEF Nigeria Country office is implementing the Girls Education Project Phase 3 (GEP3), a DFID-funded multi-year project from 2012 to 2020 aimed at contributing to improved social and economic opportunity for girls in northern Nigeria and supporting 1 million additional girls to go to school. Specifically, the goal of GEP3 is to contribute to more girls in six target states in northern Nigeria (Bauchi, Kano, Katsina, Niger, Sokoto and Zamfara) accessing and completing basic education and acquiring skills for life such as literacy.
As an extension of GEP3 project, UNICEF is also implementing an Educate A Child (EAC) funded multi-year project called “More Out-of-School Children in School to reduce number of out-of-school” children in 4 states northern Nigeria (Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara). GEP3 is implemented through the Federal Ministry of Education, State Ministries of Education and other Implementing Partners (IPs) who have experience in project implementation and monitoring.
Both GEP3 and EAC projects align with the Government of Nigeria as strategic education plan. A GEP3 overall target is achieved through the following program outputs:
Increased enrolment and retention for girls in basic education (Access),Improved capacity of teachers to deliver effective learning for girls (Quality)Improved governance to strengthen girls education (Governance).
Value for Money (VfM) is about striking the best balance between the three E’s – economy, efficiency and effectiveness. It is a way of thinking about using resources to maximise results, rather than a specific methodology. In the UK, the National Audit Office has been carrying out value for money reviews on areas of government expenditure since 1990s. The Department for International Development introduced the Value for Money agenda to UK Aid funded programmes in 2010. A DFID’s approach to Value for Money is about maximising the impact of each pound spent to improve poor people’s lives. This does not mean choosing the cheapest options, but improved measurement and understanding of relative costs and benefits, to achieve the desired results, including quality and sustainability, at the lowest price. Equity is added to reflect the importance of this principle in a development context.
Previously, performance in the development sector has been assessed against how much is spent rather than what funds have achieved. There has been a shift in emphasis away from utilisation of funds towards demonstrating the achievement of measurable results. Value for money builds on the Aid Effectiveness agenda which aims to eliminate duplication and implement cost-effective activities. Existing agendas within aid agencies of transparency and accountability have also advocated for clearer evidence of what money is spent on and what it has achieved.
Developing and embedding a value for money framework is a key donor requirement for DFID funded programmes. UNICEF Nigeria currently has three DFID funded programmes (GEP3, SHAWN2, WINNN) that have been monitoring and reporting VFM, and been assessed on VFM annually, since 2012. UNICEF Nigeria is committed to delivering programmes that are good value for money and have applied the approach, tools and analysis beyond just DFID funded programmes.
As well as improving UNICEF’s practice of planning, budgeting, forecasting, monitoring and VFM and financial reporting, VFM analysis (e.g. unit cost analysis and cost effective/cost benefit analysis) is useful for developing other funding applications as well as managing contracts with third parties delivering activities within a programme. In the current GEP3 project, delivering value for money has become critical.
Technical inputs and support on VFM, unit costs, budgeting and forecasting of outputs and interventions to GEP3 Manager and Output leads for GEP3/EAC workplans and budgets during monthly, quarterly, 6-monthly and annual review points. GEP3/EAC workplans and budgets are revisited monthly, quarterly, 6-monthly and annually as per this schedule: monthly (Jan-June 2019 GEP3), quarterly (Dec 2018/Jan 2019 GEP3, March/April 2019 GEP3), 6-monthly (Dec 2018/Jan 2019 EAC, June 2019 EAC) and annually (Feb/March 2019 GEP3).VFM analysis donor updates and reports to DFID quarterly (in January and April 2019) and annually (May/June 2019), and providing monthly updates to GEP3 Manager and donor.Financial updates and reports to the donors as per donor reporting schedules and agreed financial reporting templates: 1. monthly utilisation/expenditure updates to DFID, 2. quarterly progress report to DFID in January and April 2019, 3. 6-monthly financial report to EAC in January 2019, and annual report to DFID in May/June 2019.Guidance and capacity development to UNICEF staff, GEP3 teams on VFM and financial reporting, particularly to new Kano GEP3 team and new GEP3 team members in other states.
Qualifications or Specialized Knowledge/Experience Required
University degree in Economics, Statistics or a related technical field with background in value for money analysis, financial analysis, management of complex projects/programmes. Studies related to Education are of advantage.
Able to work effectively in a multi-cultural environment, sets high standards for quality of work and consistently achieve project goals.Communicates effectively, both orally and in writing to varied audiences.Familiarity working in Nigeria, with UNICEF Education programmes and DFID/EAC -funded projects is an advantage.Minimum four years of relevant professional work experience.Demonstrated experience in Value for Money analysis of complex projects, including financial analysis, projections and reporting, especially for DFID and/or EAC funded projects.
Fluency in English language and writing skills.This consultancy is for a 6 months duration.
Application Deadline 30th November, 2018.
Applicants should quote an all inclusive fee.UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.