Field Director

Closing date

Inside Syria, 6.2 million people are internally displaced and 11.7 million are in need of humanitarian assistance, with 5 million in acute need. There are 5.3 million Syrian refugees in neighboring countries. This is no short-term humanitarian episode. The devastating human consequences to huge numbers of people will endure for decades. The destruction of relationships, communities, livelihoods, homes and infrastructure will take years to repair.

IRC is offering a robust humanitarian response to the Syria crisis with an annual budget in excess of $140 million and a rapidly expanding portfolio, supported by more than 1,250 staff in the region. IRC is undertaking programs in Syria and the neighboring countries Iraq, Lebanon and Jordan in the fields of health, child protection, education, women’s protection and empowerment, NFI and food distribution, cash assistance, water and sanitation, and livelihood programming. Our work in these challenging settings gives rise to some of the most pressing issues facing contemporary humanitarian action, including questions of access, security, funding and coordination.

Within Northeast Syria, IRC’s fiscal year 2020 portfolio is 28 million USD with an additional 10 million USD in the pipeline. IRC provides services across all three governorates in Northeast Syria—Al Hasakeh, Ar-Raqqa and Deir ez Zoir—focusing on basic health services, food and non-food items, livelihoods assistance, and protection services for vulnerable populations including women and girls, unaccompanied and separated children, the elderly and the disabled. IRC provides health services in static and mobile facilities, and conducts community outreach, within camp and non-camp settings.

Job Overview/Summary

The Field Director for Northeast Syria (NES) will report to the Deputy Director of Operations (DDO) of Syria Country Program (SCP) and will oversee all field management of IRC’s work in NES and managing in partnership senior operations staff. He/she will work closely with the SCP team to ensure that the field operations are operationally functional, and programs are of a consistently high quality. In close coordination with the DDO, he/she will actively participate in the design of IRC programs in Syria from an operational and feasibility perspective and lead the implementation of the programs in an integrated approach during regular and emergency implementation. He/she will represent IRC in cluster and working group meetings held in NES and promote coordination among field-based staff and colleagues based in Jordan offices.


1. Operational Support and Finance

In close cooperation with the Deputy Director of Operations, relevant support departments and input from the Field manager(s):

• Actively participates in the development of local policies related to Supply Chain, Admin and IT and adaption of IRC global policies to local context and ensures cohesion in policies and practices between different regions of Syria with consideration for context differences.

• Ensures that all policies, procedures, and practices comply with IRC, donor, and national requirements.

• Manage the operational field budgets (OADF) for all Syria grants, including liaising closely with Finance department to develop field support budgets, monitoring cash flow, reviewing BVAs and tracking program spending as per guidance from the DDO.

• Oversees large procurements inside Syria as part of the tender committee in close cooperation with Supply Chain staff.

• Promotes team spirit, cohesion, respect, and the IRC Way Standards for Professional Conduct among staff in Syria in close cooperation with Human Resources.

• Partners in investigations of misconduct when required and actively collaborates with DDO and Human Resources Director if disciplinary measures are required, taking into consideration safety and security of IRC staff, programs, and assets in Syria.

• In close cooperation with the Humanitarian Access department and DDO, promotes safety and security practices and adherence to IRC global security principles; supports in development and review of Field Security Management Plan for each region in NES.

• In close cooperation with the security department, advises and oversees security and humanitarian access assessments for new areas of program implementation and IRC response.

• In close cooperation with IT department, promotes and ensures compliant use of IRC equipment and communication resources, including adherence to BIS licenses, confidentiality, and storage of data and similar.

• In coordination with Finance, oversee the development and submission of the consolidated monthly spending plan for the field activities.

• In coordination with Finance, Supply Chain, and programs, leads the communications with the Hawala service provider to secure the required liquidity for covering IRC activities in the field.

• Oversees the processing of the field payments among the supply chain and the finance departments to ensure smooth and timely delivery of payments.

2. Program support

• Serves as point person for operational support to programs inside NES and in coordination with the DDO, provides strategic leadership to overall programming in the designated area of operations in Syria.

• Oversees the field managers, the Field Coordinator, and the work of the relevant field teams during the preparatory work, assessments, technical requirements, and selection of external entities in support of the specific projects/program.

• In coordination with the DDO, ensures full compliance with project/grant agreements and with statutory and technical legislation issued by appropriate government authorities.

• In coordination with the DDO, supports the work of the Technical and M&E teams using appropriate IRC-developed tools and resources to maximize project impact on beneficiaries.

• Works closely with Program Technical Coordinators to identify programming technical needs and take the lead in implementation and follow up as appropriate and in close coordination with the program sector leads and guidance from the DDO.

• Promotes strong linkages and exchange between operations and program teams, including in the field, Jordan, and other offices, to ensure the sharing of best practices and expertise.

• Closely monitors events in current and potential operational areas within Syria (humanitarian situation, politics, and security, etc.), to identify other possible programming areas and supports in identifying new (strategic) partners for IRC in close coordination with the DDO.

• Advises the DDO about strategic programming directions, opportunities, and issues affecting project implementation, or key local issues affecting future grants/projects developments.

3. Emergency Response Support:

• Closely monitors the context developments in the field to identify any significant movement of the IDPs in the areas of IRC operations.

• Supports SMT decision to initiate an emergency response when the situation requires.

• Collaborates with program focal points to tailor the IRC emergency response plan.

• Co-lead the emergency response meetings.

• Leads the coordination with the field emergency response team and ensures that clear plans are set and communicated to the field team and supports the field team in addressing any implementation challenges.

• Collaborates with program focal points to issue Situational Reports.

• Support the DDO in updating and revising the emergency and contingency plans.

4. Coordination and Representation


• Develops and maintains effective working relationships with all stakeholders - including community leaders, NGOs, government ministries/authorities and UN agencies, to enhance cooperation and coordination between organizations. (remotely and in person)

• Actively participates in various camp and field working group meetings.


• Ensures various sector teams are integrated and there is collaboration and coordination amongst the teams.

• Supports the DDO in the coordination of timely and accurate reporting to donors, government and IRC headquarters as needed.

• Supports the DDO in providing critical input for the Grants Unit for use in developing proposals and preparing consolidated reporting.

5. Staff Performance Management, Learning & Development

• Hire, supervise, and build the capacity of team members in relevant technical and management competencies.

• Develop and implement remote management capacity building approaches to build the strengths of Field Management teams in NW Syria.

• Coach, train, supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting annual performance objectives, providing regular and timely positive and constructive performance feedback, and providing documented semi-annual performance reviews.

• Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions.

• Approve and manage time, attendance and leave requests to ensure adequate departmental coverage; ensure monthly, accurate timesheet submission and carry out probationary reviews.

• Regularly conducts one-to-one meetings with direct reports, to assess work environment and provide support where appropriate, minimally monthly.

• Provide a measurable development plan including on-the-job learning with the aim of strengthening technical capacity, exchanging knowledge within the team, and providing guidance on career paths.

• As required, identify staff performance issues and work with Human Resources to document and address these in accordance with the National Staff Employment Policies.

• Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions.

• Promote and monitor staff care and well-being. Model healthy work-life balance practices. Support appropriate interventions in response to identified staff care needs of both national and international staff.

• Look for opportunities to support staff in their career growth, where appropriate. As part of succession plan and nationalization goals, identify, train, and develop capability and capacity of national staff to successfully transition role and responsibilities, by the end of assignment.

• Adhere to and act in accordance with the IRC Global HR Policies and Procedures and communicates through word and example a high standard of compliance with all applicable policies and regulations.

Job Qualifications


• Bachelor’s Degree required.

Work Experience:

• 5 – 7 years minimum successful management experience in a humanitarian and/or development context; at least 2 years managing field programs, especially in remote and hard-to-reach areas.

• Work/living experience in Northeast Syria (Al Hassakeh, Deir El Zor and Al Raqqa Governorates) is a strong advantage.

• Experience living and working in complex, unstable environments, while maintaining a focus on program outcomes.

Demonstrated Skills and Competencies:

• A commitment to IRC’s mission, vision, values and IRC Way – Professional Code of Conduct.

• Credible written, presentation and verbal communication skills; ability to convey information effectively and solid experience providing training and staff development in English and Arabic.

• Validated sense of professional discretion, integrity, and ability to handle complex situations diplomatically and to effective resolution.

• Excellent management and interpersonal skills and a solid ability to promote harmonious/cohesive teamwork, in a cross cultural context.

• Validated ability to plan long-term, organize priorities and work under administrative and programmatic pressures with detail orientation and professional patience.

• Highly collaborative and resourceful; ability to establish positive working relationships with senior level management and all other partners to maximize cooperation and productivity.

• Curiosity, a desire to continually learn and develop and a sense of humor is a must.

• Analytical ability in creating effective solutions to complex matters while adhering to labor laws and internal policies;


• English is required, while Arabic is desired.

• Travel: frequent travel in NES governorates, and 15% to Jordan to attend regional and global workshops and meetings.

Work Environment

The position will be based in Derek - Al-Hasakeh governorate with travel to field offices within Northeast Syria. Accommodation will be in shared housing, which includes basic amenities including internet and electricity.

Professional Standards: IRC staff must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Accountability and Equality. In accordance with these values, IRC operates and carries out policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti-Workplace Harassment, Respect at Work Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.

Returning National Candidates: We strongly encourage national or returning national candidates to apply for this position. If you are a citizen of the Country in which this position is based and are currently located outside of your home country and possess over two years of international work experience, the Middle East Region has introduced an attractive remuneration package. The package includes competitive compensation, return flight to post, shipping allowance, temporary housing and a relocation allowance. Certain restrictions may apply. IRC strives to attract, motivate and retain qualified national staff in our programs.

Gender Equality: IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances.

Diversity and Inclusion: at IRC MENA, we are passionate about creating an inclusive workplace that promotes and values diversity. Organizations that are diverse in age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, nationality, and perspective are validated to be better organizations. More importantly, creating a safe workspace environment where everyone, from any background, can do their best is the right thing to do. So, bring your whole self to work.

How to apply