Project Manager, IICA-2, Port Moresby PNG

Closing date

** Background Information - UNOPS

UNOPS supports the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to serve people in need by expanding the ability of the United Nations, Governments and other partners to manage projects, infrastructure and procurement in a sustainable and efficient manner. Working in some of the world’s most challenging environments, our vision is to advance sustainable implementation practices, always satisfying or surpassing our partners’ expectations. With over 7,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, wherever they need it. A flexible structure and global reach means that we can quickly respond to our partners' needs, while offering the benefits of economies of scale.

** Background Information - Job-specific


Background on Thailand Multi Country Office (THMCO)

The Thailand Multi Country Office (THMCO) is a UNOPS business unit under the UNOPS Asia Regional Office. The Hub was established to better support, develop and oversee the UNOPS portfolio of projects in South East Asia and the Pacific.

The Thailand Multi Country Office (THMCO), established in 2017, supports, develops and oversees the UNOPS portfolio of projects in South East Asia and Pacific. With its head office in Bangkok, the Hub comprises three main offices: THOH Thailand, THOH Indonesia and the THOH Pacific Cluster and and provides a wide range of services including Project Management, Transactional HR, Financial, and Procurement to clients that include other UN entities, INGOs and governments/government agencies donors.

Background on THMCO Pacific Cluster

The THMCO Pacific Cluster, established in early 2018, was formed to support the implementation of infrastructure design, procurement, construction of infrastructure, training, programme management, and facilitate access to funding sources across 12 Pacific Small Islands Developing States (PSIDS), including: Palau; Federated States of Micronesia; Marshall Islands; Nauru; Kiribati; Papua New Guinea; Solomon Islands; Tuvalu; Vanuatu; Fiji; Tonga; Western Samoa.

Background on the THMCO Pacific Cluster Project

The PNG WASH Project is a EU funded initiative to be jointly implemented by UNICEF, Water PNG and UNOPS. The project budget for the UNOPS and UNICEF work is USD 12 M.

In line with the Papua New Guinea National Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Policy (WaSH) 2015 - 2030, the proposed Action aims to contribute towards improving the quality of life of Papua New Guineans through increased access to and utilization of safe, adequate and sustainable water supply, sanitation and improved hygiene practices in locations with high population concentrations (hospitals, schools, and major market places). The Action aims for: increased equitable access to safe, convenient and sustainable water supply and sanitation and improved hygiene practices; as well as long-term hygiene behavior change at the personal, household, community and institutional levels particular to urban areas that are currently under-served, in line with the national WaSH policy.

The overall objective of the proposed 5-year Action (60 months) is to increase access to clean water through safe and sustainable water supply, improve sanitation, and promote good hygiene practices, which are essential for survival and development of children and women. It will do so by primarily targeting urban locations with higher population densities, with a focus on schools, health centres/hospitals and markets, which are more prone to the spread of water-borne diseases. Ultimately, the Action aims to support decreasing the occurrence and spread of diarrhea, reduce child stunting, improve livelihoods, improve income-earning opportunities, reduce gender-based violence, strengthen COVID-19 response efforts, and support progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals.

The project expects to achieve the following results/outcomes:

  • Result 1 - Outcome 1: Improved equitable access to safe and sustainable drinking water and sanitation services in community facilities, targeting urban schools, health centres and marketplaces;

  • Result 2 - Outcome 2: Sustained use of safe water and sanitation services and adoption of improved hygiene practices among people living in targeted urban towns at personal, household, community and institutional levels, including people affected by humanitarian situations (i.e. COVID-19);

  • Result 3 - Outcome 3: Improved WaSH sector governance and enabling environment for quality service delivery in targeted urban towns.

The project has a lifespan of 5 years and is split into two phases; inception and implementation. The inception phase is due to commence in March 2021 and is expected to last six months. The intention is to commence the 54 months implementation phase towards the end of 2021. The primary component of the inception phase is the feasibility study. The objective of the feasibility study is to work with Water PNG on the identification of the target district town(s) within which the WASH services will be delivered. Following the feasibility study there will be a three month period during which the concept design of the water supply and sanitation services will be carried out and planning for the implementation phase finalised.

UNOPS, as the project technical implementing partner, will be responsible, during the inception phase, for the following activities:

  • Support the technical elements of the feasibility study;

  • Support Water PNG in the review of their earlier preliminary technical designs and cost estimates for the four towns being considered;

  • Support to the project team on the analysis and identification of infrastructure solutions including design, construction, compliance, asset management and O&M requirements;

  • Working with UNICEF and in consultation with Water PNG, the District Development Authorities and national government departments assess, evaluate and select the town(s) to be included in this project based on a set of objective and transparent criteria, including the factors originally used by Water PNG;

  • Support the preparation of the concept design and cost estimates for the WASH services during the inception phase;

  • Support the preparation of the feasibility study report that will inform the project inception phase report.

Background on the Position description

The UNOPS country project team comprises the Country Manager based in Port Moresby, the Project Manager based in Bangkok and the Programme Manager based in Bangkok. To support the planning and implementation of the above project responsibilities UNOPS is hiring a Project Manager for the country office to manage the project during the inception and implementation phases. The Project Manager will become a member of the country project team and provide technical support in their field of infrastructure Project Management.

Under the direct supervision of the Country Manager/ Programme Management Advisor based in the country office, the Project Manager will be responsible for carrying out the activities listed under the functional areas, during the inception and implementation phases.

The Project Manager will be expected to liaise with all country and regional office personnel. The overall purpose of the role is to support the technical team, in particular the Country Manager and Regional Project Manager, by performing a range of activities to ensure the completion of the project’s work packages and deliverables.

The Project Manager is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the project and provides services to the different donors, partners and beneficiaries. The Project Manager acts on behalf of the Project Board to manage the project on an ongoing basis during the Implementation Stage. The main responsibility of a Project Manager is to ensure that the project outputs are delivered within the specified project tolerances of time, cost, quality, scope, risk and benefits. He/she is expected to meet the organization’s performance and delivery goals.

The Project Manager has the authority to assign, as per the Project Plan, work packages to Team Managers and approve deliverables produced by them.

The Project Manager is responsible for creating the Implementation Plan, using the Project Initiation Document (PID), Legal Agreement and having a thorough understanding of the terms, conditions, and the respective roles and responsibilities of the partners/stakeholders, to ensure the project outputs are capable of meeting the business cases for both UNOPS and the partner. Success of the project and hence of the Project Manager will be based on the defined Success Criteria.


** Functional Responsibilities

Functional Responsibilities:

Under the overall direction of the Programme Management Advisor/Country Manager based in the country office, the incumbent’s functions/ key results expected, will include but not be limited to the following summary of functions;

  1. Project Delivery and Performance

  2. Procedures

  3. Monitoring and reporting

  4. Stakeholder engagement

  5. Quality assurance

  6. Knowledge management and innovation

  7. Personnel management

Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Project Delivery and Performance

Inception phase

  • Develop, complete and update inception and implementation plans;

  • Implement the approved plans (including the establishment of milestones) within tolerances set by the Project Board;

  • Consider gender equality, stakeholder participation, labour standards, biodiversity, cultural heritage, environmental sustainability and climate change adaptation during the project lifespan;

  • Manage the production of the required outputs, taking responsibility for overall progress and use of resources and initiating corrective action where necessary;

  • Ensure that quality of work packages and deliverables complies with the quality requirements defined in the Inception and Implementation Plans;

Implementation phase

  • Oversee the adoption of safety in design principles during the infrastructure design process;

  • Oversee the environmental, health and safety specialists with the writing of the health, safety and environmental management specifications for the physical works contract;

  • Manage goods, services or works delivered by suppliers;

  • Identify, and anticipate in a timely manner, potential design and construction risks and issues; develop mitigating measures for the Country Manager and Senior Board so that maximum benefit to partner(s) and other stakeholders is achieved;

  • Manage the Country Office design review process as directed by the UNOPS head office Design Review Manager;

  • Develop and manage the procurement strategy;

  • Provide specialist advice to the procurement team during the assessment of the contractor’s health, safety and environmental plan as part of the tender evaluation process;

  • Act as the Employer’s Representative within the FIDIC works contracts;

  • Liaise with any external suppliers and account managers;

  • Manage acceptance and delivery of work packages;

  • Monitor project progress ensuring that work packages are being executed properly;

  • Control project and work packages changes;

  • Lead contract management duties including supplier performance evaluation;

  • Identify and report to the Country Manager potential business opportunities for UNOPS; 2. Procedures

  • Comply with all organizational policy and specifically the Project Management Manual;

  • Prepare/adapt all relevant plans for approval by the Project Board;

  • Manage the reporting obligations defined in the Legal Agreement(s) and in the Implementation Plan;

  • Draft the requirements definitions for procurement processes; approve requisitions and requests for non-purchase order payments and evaluate submissions received from contractors and suppliers;

  • Ensure maintenance of the project files and lessons learned are recorded;

  • Ensure the development and implementation of project financial management guidelines and control mechanisms, in conformity with UNOPS rules and regulations;

  • Manage budgets, cash flow and obligations to ensure that deliverables are met and payments to contractors and personnel are received on time;

  • Understand and manage UNOPS overheads, allocable charges, and related corporate charges as they apply to the project;

  • Understand the unique structures of the UN and budget appropriately for personnel;

  • Manage expenditures against the budget (based on accurate financial reports);

  • For project closure purposes, provide a formal handover of the project to the closure manager;

  • Support project audit activities, including planning, preparation and coordination during the audits and follow up on audit observations/recommendations.

3. Monitoring and Reporting

  • Prepare and issue regular project and/or financial reports in accordance with Partner and UNOPS requirements for reporting;

  • Regularly review project status, evaluating performance criteria (scope, cost, schedule and quality);

  • Maintain diaries and progress reports as required by the organization’s standard procedures;

  • Provide routine oversight and analysis of delivery data within the dashboard system;

  • Ensure all project team members track and regularly update milestones and targets for the duration of projects' life span.

4. Stakeholder Engagement

  • Develop stakeholder profiles and facilitate the formulation of stakeholder engagement strategies;

  • Establish solid working relationships with the Project Board (Executive, Senior Users and Senior Suppliers), client and key stakeholders;

  • Enable the formulation of project communications plans. Coordinate internal project communications. Monitor the effectiveness of project communications;

  • Coordinate stakeholder engagement and communication, ensuring effective timing and interdependency management of communications. Ensure stakeholders are aware of project activities, progress, exceptions and are in a position to accept handover outputs;

5. Quality Assurance

  • Work with internal stakeholders to ensure projects comply with audit requirements;

  • Work with procurement/purchasing staff to ensure effective interface with suppliers' quality systems;

  • Coordinate quality reviews of project documents and deliverables;

  • Provide quality control for management outputs (project documents, reports, etc.).

6. Knowledge Management and Innovation

  • Take personal responsibility for engaging in continued professional development (CPD);

  • Encourage routine and effective capacity building activities are conducted in order to build the long-term and sustainable capacity of staff.

  • Actively interact with other Project Managers and the wider PM community to share case studies, lessons learned and best practices

  • Contribute to the oversight of lessons learned procedures, ensuring that lessons learnt are shared in a timely and appropriate manner. Participate in the relevant Communities of Practice

  • Research and logging of lessons learned throughout the project life span.

  • Provide feedback to Practice Groups on policy, supporting guidance with an aim towards continuous improvement of UNOPS policies

7. Personnel Management

  • Lead and motivate the project management team;

  • Supervise the technical team;

  • Ensure that behavioural expectations of team members are established;

  • Ensure that performance reviews are conducted fairly, accurately and timely;

  • Select, recruit and train the team as required and take into account gender parity and diversity objectives;

  • Ensure safety and security for all project personnel and comply with UNDSS standards;

  • Create, foster and role model a culture of respect and zero tolerance for discrimination, abuse of authority, harrasement, sexual harrasement and sexual exploitation and abuse. Ensure accountability for actions and perform duties in accordance with protection mechanisms and action plans, as expected by UNOPS policies, standards and commitments.

Impact of Results

The Project Manager directly impacts on achievement of project results by adhering to project management methods and strategies, reducing risks, cutting costs and improving success rates. This consequently reinforces the visibility and image of UNOPS as an effective service provider in project services and management and strengthens its competitive position as a partner of choice in sustainable development and project services

** Competencies

Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization.

Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.

Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.

Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).

Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.

Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.

Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.

Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

** Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • Postgraduate (Advanced) accredited university degree (master or equivalent) in a relevant technical discipline related to water supply and sanitation infrastructure development is required.
  • Undergraduate university degree (4 year bachelor honours) or equivalent in civil engineering from an accredited university with additional two years of experience may be accepted.


  • Professional licence or registration from a recognised professional body or institution is an asset.

  • Membership of and Institution of Engineers is an asset.

  • Project Management certification such as PRINCE2 Practitioner, PMI Project Management Professional or other internationally recognised certification is required.


  • A minimum of five (5) years' of relevant practical, post graduation, project management experience with at least two (2) years of specific experience in the practice area of water supply and sanitation infrastructure is required.
  • A minimum of three (3) years experience working on international and local projects in developing countries or post conflict environments is required;
  • Experience in writing technical reports, performing data analysis and writing technical specifications is required;
  • Experience in structural engineering, including seismic design and design review is an asset;
  • Experience working with UNOPS, UN or other humanitarian/development agencies is an asset;
  • Experience working on urban WASH projects is desirable
  • Experience in using a recognized project management software is required.
  • Familiarity with Google Workspace (formally G Suite) is desirable.
  • Familiarity with civil engineering modelling software relevant to water supply and wastewater engineering; the use of remote monitoring software is desirable.


  • Fluency in English is required.
  • Working knowledge of Tok Pisin is an asset.
  • Knowledge of another UN language is an asset.

** Contract type, level and duration

Contract type: International Individual Contractor Agreement (IICA)

Contract level: ICS 10, IICA-2
Contract duration: Open-ended

The position is based in a family duty station

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link:

** Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
  • Work life harmonization - UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns.
Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

How to apply

Click this link to apply: