MEL Manager - Sana'a or Aden, Yemen
About Mercy Corps
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 seeks to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression around the world and has worked in the Middle East since the 1980s and currently has offices in Yemen, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Turkey. In response to acute and increasing humanitarian needs in Yemen, Mercy Corps opened its office in Yemen in 2010. Primary program interventions include water, sanitation and hygiene; food security and nutrition; and livelihood support. Mercy Corps also develops value chains within the agriculture sector. Strategies to enhance the resilience of communities to the harsh environmental and social conditions in the country cut across the portfolio. The country program works to pivot its programming in response to exacerbated humanitarian need following from the airstrikes on Yemen, which began in March 2015.
During this critical period in Yemen, Mercy Corps is not only providing humanitarian assistance but also working closely with its Yemeni partners and local communities to implement programs that emphasize long-term development and resilience building. It is essential that Mercy Corps have strong systems in place to monitor, evaluate, and measure the impact of its work. Information gathered through these activities helps Mercy Corps to strengthen its programming and assists the country program to remain accountable to communities and donors alike.
General Position Summary
The Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Manager is an important position in the Mercy Corps Yemen country team. The position provides technical leadership to advance Mercy Corps’ principles, policies and best practices across country program development, program management, and monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL), through the provision of guidance, tools, resources, capacity building and strategic technology use. The Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Manager is responsible for managing country MEL staff, contributing to country strategy discussions, providing technical assistance on M&E for each programmatic sector and developing successful mechanisms for learning. S/he will be responsible for cross-cutting programmatic information management, monitoring and evaluation (including evaluation design and consultant/enumerator hiring and management), ensuring that information collected is reflected upon, used to improve ongoing programs, and is incorporated into consistently high quality reports and proposal development. The Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Manager will incorporate thoughtful MEL approaches and practices in the proposal design stage to facilitate data driven program management during implementation. In coordination with sector managers and team members, s/he will be responsible for developing, coordinating, maintaining and constantly improving the nation-wide MEL system harmonized with the Mercy Corps global frameworks and systems. The role will implement an internal M&E and ICT capacity building strategy that trains and mentors M&E staff and promotes a culture of learning.
Essential Job Responsibilities
MEL system development
- Facilitate M&E for all programs and collaborate closely with program managers in developing and strengthening the M&E system in compliance with Mercy Corps Global policy frameworks and tools
- Ensure quality M&E at the program level and build a nationwide system that captures and presents results at a national level and feeds in to Mercy Corps Global quality assurance processes as well as the annual Global Participant Count;
- Plan and coordinate the implementation of needs assessments to support design and adaptive management of programs in accordance with the strategic objectives of the country program;
- Design and maintain, in collaboration with program teams, a M&E system with utility and program quality in mind, providing managers and their teams real time information that can steer program implementation as well as informing donors and strategic program direction and that helps strategize future program interventions.;
- Closely work with the senior management to address challenges and opportunities in M&E that affect program implementation;
- Provide guidance, recommendations, supervision, and leadership to ensure that the M&E systems meet the needs of programs, managers, and senior leadership;
- Ensure program and country M&E systems are compliant with Mercy Corps Global Monitoring and Evaluation Policy;
- Ensure the country program complies with [email protected]: Apply MC’s internal program management standard procedures, ensure that the country program represents the best practice in M&E for its respective sectors (WASH, food security, nutrition, etc.) and that program indicators are consistently used to align country program design and measurement around key agency priorities.
Promote program quality and CLA practices
- Develop/adapt MEL guidelines to promote Collaborating, Learning, and Adapting (CLA) practices;
- Engage with technical staff to conduct assessments, analyze results, and collaborate with concerned programs to address identified gaps;
- Lead internal DQAs and work with teams and senior management to address identified gaps as appropriate;
- Develop and maintain comprehensive project evaluation and donor reporting plans;
- Promote/support application of Mercy Corps [email protected] policy and processes;
- Review and refine existing monitoring tools to effectively capture program performance (data collection formats, checklists, etc.);
- Implement measures that assess and verify appropriate targeting of program participants according to established criteria.
- Hire, orient, supervise, and manage the performance of MEL team members.
- Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback via regular performance reviews.
- Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
- Provide team members with information, tools and other resources to improve performance and reach objectives.
- Contribute to country team-building efforts, help team members identify problem-solving options and ensure the integration of all team members into relevant decision-making processes.
Capacity building, training and technical support
- Provide technical assistance to ensure that newly developed or redesigned projects reflect Mercy Corp’s program principles, policies, project standards and are able to measure results. Engagement will include full participation in the project design process, participation in development of assessment design, tools and surveys, analysis of data, and provision of recommendations based on analysis results;
- Provide training assistance to develop staff skills in participatory and qualitative design, monitoring and evaluation approaches;
- Promote participatory qualitative and quantitative assessment and evaluation/review approaches to project evaluations;
- Provide support/guidance in the selection of evaluators and enumerators, development of terms of reference and scope of work for evaluation teams;
- Develop/adopt training materials and conduct training programs to relevant staff of field offices;
- Actively participate in processing, analyzing and/or reviewing evaluation findings;
- Orient, train, and coach staff.
Grants/ Reports Management
- Regularly conduct project site visits to provide hands-on training to field staff on how to capture and organize information for accurate documentation and reporting;
- Assist the program implementation team in timely and accurate reporting to donors;
- Coordinate with a variety of teams, HQ, Grants and Reporting, Finance, and Program Directors and Country Director to ensure that reports are timely, high-quality, and responsive to donors.
- The MEL Manager will lead a team comprising MEL Officers and Assistants
Reports Directly to: Deputy Country Director
Works Directly with: MEL Team, Program Managers, Grant and Reporting team, CARM team
Coordinates with: Regional and HQ Program Performance and Quality Unit and the relevant Technical Support Units.
Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders
Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
Knowledge and Experience
- BA/S or equivalent in International Development or a related field required; coursework in research and evaluation methodologies and statistical analysis is preferred.
- At least 5 years of active M&E work experience in a multi-sector humanitarian programming context.
- A strong experience with research and evaluation methodologies in M&E and skilled in qualitative and quantitative M&E methodologies and techniques including rapid appraisal techniques and remote monitoring of projects in environments with limited to no access.
- Substantial experience developing and implementing baseline studies, needs and market assessments, KAP surveys, post distribution monitoring exercises, and evaluations, particularly in humanitarian emergency contexts required.
- Strong knowledge of statistical analysis computer programs typically used for data analysis and reporting – SPSS, Excel, Access, or other statistical packages.
- Experience conducting Data Quality Assessments
- Previous experience living and working in challenging or insecure environments.
- Significant experience in training and capacity building of international, national staff and implementing partner agencies.
- Experience, including grant reporting, with a range of institutional donors such as USAID (BHA/OFDA/FFP), WFP, ECHO, GAC, OCHA, and DFID.
- Experience with digital data collection preferred.
- Knowledge of Sphere standards and other training in humanitarian response preferred.
- Fluency in spoken and written English. Arabic language skills a plus.
Ability to work closely with a diverse team of individuals in a highly intense and fluid work and security environment. Ability to communicate and manage effectively in a situation that relies primarily on remote management. Strict adherence to Mercy Corps security policies and procedure. Capacity to spark innovative and entrepreneurial approaches to programming and to inspire groups to collaborate closely to implement high-quality programs. Desire and ability to learn and grow, both personally and professionally. S/he will work independently, take initiative, and spend time in environments with significant restrictions to personal movement and operating risks.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
This unaccompanied position is based in Sana’a or Aden, Yemen, and is eligible for a hardship allowance and R&R breaks. It requires travel up to 60% of the time to other field offices, as security allows. When traveling around the country strict adherence to Mercy Corps security policies and procedures will be required as will respect for local cultural norms and traditions. Security conditions in the country are variable, with a range of violence and insecurity, requiring close monitoring and vigilance. Conflict and corruption have also badly damaged the country’s infrastructure. Candidates must be able to work in an environment with energy, transportation and communication challenges.
In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
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.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.
We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.
Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and
values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.