Process Coordination & Policy Officer

Primary Duties or Responsibilities

Policy Development and Maintenance

The incumbent is responsible for maintaining all project administration policies in the Management Policy Manuals. All policies under the Division’s responsibilities must be regularly reviewed to ensure their continued relevance. The incumbent must also keep up-to-date amounts and thresholds contained in the policies as well as directives derived from the policies — where such directives are under the purview of a person specified in the policies, the incumbent must prompt the person in question to bring the policy up-to-date.

When a policy requires updating, the applicable level of management will provide the incumbent with operational and other relevant information; the incumbent will provide Division management with information on current trends and the results of research. Together they will develop the parameters for the policy work that needs to be done.

The incumbent is responsible for developing new policies where and when they are needed. When a new policy is needed, the incumbent carries out the necessary research, benchmarking against other organizations, internal consultations and drafting required to move towards a final policy. Critical to the process is the very close liaison with Divisional managers, Regional Controllers, the Divisional Director, the Vice-President Resources, counterparts in other Resources Branch divisions and with other parts of the organization, whenever required. Such liaison aims to ensure that the operational aspects and requirements are taken into account.

After policies are approved (whether new or revised), the incumbent must ensure their translation and publication, ensuring proper version control and archiving of obsolete policies. The incumbent also coordinates any of the related transitional measures in the context of the overall change management effort (see below). While Divisional managers are responsible for the interpretation and application of policies, the incumbent remains available to assist with interpretation.

Business Process Coordination and Change Management

The incumbent is responsible for coordinating the review, assessment and, where warranted, redesign of business processes associated with the activities of the Division. One of the principal goals of the review is always to seek economy, efficiency and effectiveness of processes. In this role, the incumbent is expected to liaise with the Director, all divisional managers, Regional Controllers and Grant Administration Officers to:

  • compile, at the appropriate level, and maintain up-to-date the inventory of business processes (would include but not limited to grant administration procedures, standard forms and templates, country procedures, frequently asked questions, etc.) followed by Centre-wide grant administration and other staff in the discharge of their responsibilities;
  • assess the soundness, efficiency and effectiveness of business processes under review and to identify areas for improvement — this requires considerable knowledge of both manual and computerized control processes as well as a high level of understanding of computerized grant and project management systems; and
  • carry out project management duties in support of policy changes, process changes or any other significant divisional initiative identified by divisional management.

The incumbent is responsible for documenting all key business processes and the corresponding procedures, which must also be linked to project administration policies. Procedures and business processes are documented on the Grant Administration site on the Intranet. The incumbent must see to the translation, publication, versioning and archiving of obsolete procedures. The incumbent is responsible for the organization of the procedure manual that contains all Grant Administration procedures.

How this is achieved

  • The incumbent uses a number of techniques to map business processes — interviews, documentary reviews, narrative descriptions, flowcharting, etc.
  • He or she must clearly identify, amongst other things, the main steps, the individuals involved, the deliverables and the control points (both manual and system-driven) associated with the process.
  • In order to suggest alternatives to the existing process, the incumbent is required to remain current with industry practices and trends.

es in procedures can vary significantly in scope. Bigger changes are handled as projects, complete with a communication and change management strategy. The incumbent will work closely with Divisional managers, Director and the Regional Controllers to define the scope of projects, to confirm the resource requirements (internal and external) and to provide the necessary support to ensure that the project or initiative is completed in a timely and successful manner. In discharge of his/her duties, the incumbent must demonstrate sound understanding of grant administration function at IDRC which is designed to ensure the stewardship of IDRC resources and provides a service that brings together three inter-related determinants: project modality, legal agreements and the financial control framework (representing substance management, relationship management and accountability).

Project management work may involve securing external resources to supplement IDRC staff in conducting the project activities. Such work would include but not be limited to the preparation of a statement of work, the administration of a competitive process with the Procurement and Material Management unit of the Finance and Administration Division and, eventually, the management of the supplier contract.

Together with the appropriate divisional Manager and Regional Controllers, the incumbent will organize the necessary training sessions with a view to adequately informing staff of policy or procedure changes needed and have the tools to incorporate said changes to their day-to-day activities. Prepares and issues change management communiqués to IDRC staff as appropriate.

Management of IDRC Grants

The incumbent is responsible for doing all the ground work (monitoring and analysis) that allows the Director to establish the Research Project Expense targets; he or she is also responsible for monitoring the Centre’s project financial performance in relation to the established targets, for identifying trends and anomalies and for summarising results, on a periodical basis. This includes but not limited to:

  • regular follow up with program leaders and managers about the performance of their respective portfolios in the areas of allocations, commitments and expenses;
  • predict trends, identify and investigate discrepancies, anomalies and potential problems and suggest solutions, preventive and corrective actions to management;
  • summarize, analyze and interpret Research Project Expense results and prepare a monthly executive briefing for the Director; and
  • prepare debriefing sessions held by the Director for senior program managers and provide, when necessary, in-depth explanations of the results and supporting evidence / documents.

The incumbent collaborates with the Grant Information System Manager for the development of reports used in the management of Research Project Expenses.

With respect to monitoring and reporting on Centre-wide Grant Administration performance, the incumbent:

  • monitors and analyzes periodically each office’s grant administration performance against various indicators in order to provide the Director with current and accurate information;

  • compiles and distributes a report across IDRC to inform grant administration staff of their compliance with respect to grant administration policies and procedures;

  • provides the Director and regional controllers and their extended management teams actual performance metrics, data summaries and reports on a quarterly basis; and

  • liaises with the Resources Management Officer at the Office of the Vice-President Resources and the Senior Program Advisor at the Office of the Vice-President Programs and Partnerships, on all matters concerning the performance of grant administration functions, including the provision of briefing material to the Vice-presidents.

Division Management

The incumbent is part of the Division management team. He or she liaises with the Director in preparation of the annual work plan and coordinating the update of the Division’s work plan by all managers; participates in the Divisional management and extended management meetings; coordinating and organizing on-the-job training activities within the Division; and coordinates subject matter expert meetings with the regional offices when they take place.

Occasionally, the incumbent may be asked to participate in meetings and committees outside the Division.