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Executive Assistant - Technology and Innovation

Job Summary

Under the direction of the Director, the Director’s Assistant provides operational and administrative assistance to the Director, performs a variety of administrative, research, coordinating and logistical services in support of the operations of the Director’s office and assists with information management functions within the Program Area.

This includes keeping up an in-depth knowledge of IDRC and of the current activities of the Technology and InnovationProgram Area, responding to general external and internal requests for information, electronic communication and facilitation, liaison with staff from the Program Area, the Branch and other Centre branches, regional offices, and representatives from other institutions.

Primary Duties or Responsibilities

Director’s Office

  • Manages the day-to-day operational and administrative activities of the Director by organizing the incoming flow of work, prioritizing incoming requests, maintaining a control system, and following‑up to ensure timely response;
  • Sets and monitors the Director’s schedule by arranging appointments, budgeting time, preparation of meetings;
  • Screens correspondence, responds to requests for non-technical information by correspondence and on the phone, drafts correspondence on general inquiries for the Director’s signature, assembles and summarizes information necessary for preparing a reply by the Director. Answers and screens telephone calls, provides routine and general information, redirects calls and correspondence to the appropriate person, as required;
  • Obtains, compiles and extracts information from files, publications, Centre Library, Centre databases, and other sources, on her own initiative or as requested by the supervisor, to prepare documents and briefing papers.  Undertakes research to provide information to internal and external audiences, often on an urgent basis, using Centre databases and/or the Internet;
  • Maintains confidential records for the Director. Uses available information technologies to prepare confidential correspondence relating to personnel and other sensitive matters within the Program Area/Division, distributes it to those assigned to receive it, ensuring reception, especially by those recipients in the regional offices;
  • Coordinates the Performance Review and Assessment System (PRAS) annual exercise within the Program Area/Division by being the contact point for all PRAS documentation in the Program Area/Division (including regional program staff), organizing meetings for Director with the staff reporting directly to him, preparing the documentation and tables of preliminary ratings based on the evaluators’ comments to provide them to the Coordinator of the PRAS Review Committee;
  • Records administrative actions and decisions on the files which the Director manages, filing documents in hard copy and/or electronically, maintaining control system;
  • Audits travel expenses of those staff members (4-20) who report directly to the Director for the Director’s signature and forwards to Finance for processing;
  • Proofreads documents produced by Director and other staff within Program Area/Division;
  • Makes necessary arrangements for meetings called for by the Director, books rooms, drafts agenda, compiles, distributes background documentation, and acts as recording secretary for such meetings as required by taking, synthesizing, preparing and disseminating notes and maintaining committee files;
  • Participates on behalf of the Director in meetings when he is unable to attend in person and takes notes on decisions taken and follow-up action required by supervisor;
  • Organizes workshops, conferences, seminars and other special meetings, including but not limited to making initial contact with participants, prepares documentation to be distributed, and deals with participants’ particular requests, as needed. In close collaboration with the Grants Administration Division personnel prepares consultancy contracts and travel letters. Coordinates administrative and logistical arrangements for visitors, setting up appointments and presentations to Centre staff, compiling and providing information and briefing materials;
  • Organizes the Director’s travel within Canada and abroad by requesting tentative itineraries, ticket price information and visas directly at the consulates; contacts hosts in their countries and arranges hotel accommodation, appointments, prepares travel authorities and processes travel expenses; and
  • Liaises with Program Area / Division staff sharing relevant information, coordinating staff meetings and other activities.

Responsibilities as a member of the Technology and Innovation Program Area

  • Participates on a regular basis in meetings of the Program Area and Branch Management and other committees as required. Makes necessary arrangements for meetings, drafts agenda, compiles and distributes background documentation;
  • Maintains budgetary information and processes relating to Program Area by using available information technologies for preparing worksheets and tracking;
  • Coordinates recruitment process for positions falling under the direct supervision of the Director by initiating staffing requests, liaising with the selection panel and Human Resources Division, arranging distribution of Curriculum Vitaes (CVs) to be reviewed by selection panel, organizing meetings of selection panel, contacting candidates to be invited for interviews, making travel and hotel arrangements for them, scheduling interviews and booking rooms for interviews;
  • Provides administrative and logistical support to the Senior Research Fellows attached to the Program Area;
  • Provides orientation, guidance and assistance to new Program Area staff members by informing them on Centre programs and procedures, computer systems and programs, arranging appointments with key Centre staff and redirecting questions to appropriate contact person within the Centre, and arranges for email and phone accounts;
  • Audits and distributes telephone reports to those reporting directly to the Director.Ensures that report reflects names of current staff by liaising with Administration;
  • Maintains an inventory of advertising and promotional material for the Program Area;
  • Manages electronic discussion and distribution lists on behalf of the Program Area and/or Branch Management, adding and removing subscribers, following up on delivery errors, informing subscribers of configuration changes; and
  • Performs other duties on her own initiative or in accordance with instructions from the Director B sharing workload with program assistants within the Program Area and other Director’s Assistants within the Branch, developing team methods, and procedures, etc.

Branch responsibilities exercised in collaboration with other staff in the Branch

  • Assists the Branch management team under the direction of the Director and/or Branch Management with overall Branch activities and performs other related duties in accordance with instructions, working in a tight team with the Branch Director’s Assistants and the Branch Management Research Officer, sharing information and workload, and carrying out special assignments such as:
    • scheduling and coordination of Director of Program Area/Regional Director (DPA/RD) meetings,
    • organization of Open Programme Meeting,
    • working jointly with Research Officer and Executive Assistant to Vice President of the Branch assigned as webmaster in the maintenance of the Branch intranet site, by converting documentation into http, requesting the webmaster to publish it and ensuring that the overall information is retrievable, current and complete,
    • monitoring activity reports of all Branch staff.
  • Makes recommendations to Branch Directors for their approval regarding assignments and reassignments of office space and new computers, and makes arrangements as required for moves;
  • Distributes taxi chits to Branch staff; and
  • Works with colleagues in facilitating the schedule and coordination of the Branch’s work and updates information regarding supervisor’s planned travel and meetings.