Operations Specialist | ReliefWeb


Background Information – PSC

Peace and Security Cluster

For over 20 years, UNOPS Peace and Security Cluster (PSC) has provided portfolio and project management services in the area of mine action and explosive hazards, that are reinforced by comprehensive management and oversight controls.

Under this umbrella, the Cluster is responsible for the implementation of projects that, through the engagement of inputs such as personnel, third parties, assets and other resources, deliver activities that produce substantive mine action outputs.

Project management is conducted in line with UNOPS Project Management Manual (PMM), which incorporates best practices in the field, as well with a view to quality and cross-cutting initiatives such as workforce and talent management; knowledge and information management; health, safety, social and environmental management; gender parity and mainstreaming; and diversity and inclusion. This comprehensive delivery platform is implemented in accordance with partner requirements and in line with UNOPS rules and regulations through the leadership of the Cluster Director, who has the overall authority and accountability for the performance of PSC on behalf of its clients.

Background Information – PSC Palestine Project Unit

The PSC Palestine Project Unit operates as an integral part of Peace and Security Cluster structure. The Head of the PSC Palestine Project Unit reports to the PSC Director who provides direction and guidance. S/he is responsible for planning, implementing, monitoring, supervising and closing all projects in the country in order to support substantive partners in delivering its mandate.

In Palestine, PSC’s partner is the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), and UNMAS’ representative in-country is the Chief of Mine Action Programme (CMAP). The CMAP is therefore the HPU’s primary stakeholder. UNOPS PSC and UNMAS have developed a delineation of responsibilities, using a RACI responsibility matrix to define who is Responsible, Accountable, Consulted and Informed. The HPU is expected to work in close cooperation with the CMAP, ensuring that, in substance, the Palestine mine action programme operates as one integrated team.

The Palestine Programme is directly aligned with UN strategies for the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT); is included within the Humanitarian Response Plans and Emergency Contingency Plans for Gaza; is integrated with the Protection Cluster strategies on protection of civilians and creating the conditions for the delivery of humanitarian assistance in the oPt. The vision of UNMAS Palestine is that the threat of explosive ordnance is minimized for vulnerable populations and the UN family in Palestine. As such, the mission of UNMAS Palestine is to help civilians and humanitarian partners mitigate the threat of explosive ordnance and empower the Palestinian Mine Action Centre to assume responsibility for mine action.

The conflict in Palestine has been characterized by intermittent escalations of hostilities, leading behind a legacy of unexploded ordnance.

Functional Responsibilities

Under the direct supervision of the Head of Project Unit (HPU), the incumbent will be responsible for the following:

Summary of key results:

  1. Operations – design and planning

  2. Operations – implementation and monitoring

  3. Stakeholder management

  4. Knowledge management and innovation

  5. People management

  6. Operations – design and planning

  7. Support the HPU in providing input to the CMAP on programme and project design documents from an operational and technical standpoint, such as:

    • Programme Strategy (e.g. vision, mission, strategic results framework, stakeholder analysis; risk analysis; resource mobilization strategy)

    • Workplan and Budget (e.g. nature of threat; technical personnel and equipment requirements, etc.)

    • Concept of Operations

    • Input into the documents above is from the operational and technical aspects encompassing mine action pillars (e.g. clearance, explosive ordnance risk education, victim assistance, advocacy and stockpile destruction)

    • Ensure that implementation plans have viable timelines, are assigned appropriate resources, and that implementation options reflect the knowledge of the context, as well as UNOPS’ mechanisms and policies; key implementation documents include:

    • UNMAS / UNOPS Project Agreements

    • Solicitation documents used to contract third-parties (i.e. contractors and grantees)

    • Human resources plans

  8. Operations – Implementation and monitoring

  9. Ensure operations are conducted in accordance with UNOPS policies and standards, such as:

    • Financial and procurement rules

    • Contract and grant management policies

    • Project management standards

    • Health, safety, social and environmental standards

    • Gender parity and mainstreaming policies

    • Information management systems and standards

    • Organizational design standards and human resources policies

  10. Ensure operations are conducted in accordance with mine action technical standards, such as:

    • International Mine Action Standards (IMAS) and corresponding National Technical Specifications and Guidelines (NTSGs)

    • International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATG)

    • Modular Small Arms Control Implementation Compendium (MOSAIC)

  11. Coordinate and monitor mine action operations and performance (both operations conducted in-house and those conducted through third-party contractors and grantees), including:

    • Conduct and monitor all operational tasking for within the project unit, including Deep Buried Bomb (DBB) clearance operations in Gaza.

    • Maintain close cooperation with the De Facto Authority (DFA) EOD Police and facilitate their activities, within resource availability and political constraints.

    • Support the EOD Police on the maintenance of the Temporary Ammunition Store in Gaza.

    • Oversee survey and clearance tasks in UN premises and UNRWA project sites to ensure safety of UN and UNRWA project staff.

    • Provide support to the UNCT, UN and UNRWA Security teams on the management of ERW incidents

    • Conduct and participate in tasking, coordination and reporting of Explosive Ordnance Risk Assessments at the request of Development Actors delivering infrastructure projects in Gaza.

    • Ensure third-party contracts and grants are delivered in accordance with contractual / grant terms and conditions, including in accordance with mine action technical, operational and quality assurance processes (Implementation Plan, SOPs, task orders issuance, accreditation).

    • Review all performance reports and populate internal monitoring and reporting mechanisms (i.e. grant and contract management plans) to inform the monthly payment process.

    • Ensure that the United Nations Gender guidelines for Mine Action is actioned and timely implemented and that the objectives in the gender and diversity strategy are mainstreamed within the Operations department.

    • Implement and oversee a robust quality management and information management system.

    • Maintain a risk management system focused on problem solving which ties into contract management awareness; maintain and utilize risk and issues logs.

    • Organize debriefing with the grantee/contractor to provide feedback on performance against deliverables and if necessary, discuss corrective actions to be taken in following months, recommend liquidated damages and/or lead dispute resolutions if necessary.

  12. Advise the HPU on potential technical and operational issues that may impact the achievement of programme / project outcomes and appropriate solutions.

  13. Lead Boards of Inquiry as relevant.

  14. Ensure operational plans are cost effective and reviewed regularly.

  15. In support of the HPU, contribute to monitoring budgets/expenditure for over/under spend and adjust planning accordingly.

  16. In support of the HPU, ensure that the security management system is aligned to UN safety and security requirements relevant to mine action operations, including medical standards; keep abreast of relevant security environment

3. Stakeholder management

  • In support of the HPU, manage relationships with the CMAP and other direct UNOPS stakeholders, particularly around operational and technical issues

  • In support of the HPU, upon request from the CMAP, engage national mine action authorities and/or relevant Government ministries for purposes of coordination as requested, specifically relating to review/implementation of National Technical Standards and Guidelines and/or International Mine Action Standards and other relevant international standards as well as treaty implementation/obligations

  • Provide input to the CMAP during the development of resource mobilization documents such as concept notes, proposals and other communications materials for key stakeholders, particularly related to operational aspects.

  • Coordinate with the Senior EORE adviser to ensure regular meetings of the Protection Cluster’s Mine Action sub-Working Group in Gaza, ensuring coordination of reporting of mine action activities and linking local mine actors with the Global Mine Action Area of Responsibility (MA AoR).

4. Knowledge management and innovation

  • Ensure records of operations-related files are well maintained.

  • Liaise with the Information Management Associate and Programme Officer to ensure that IMSMA, the IM dashboard are up to date and accurate.

  • Implement relevant tools and templates to effectively manage efficient and effective operations

  • Keep abreast of and incorporate latest/best practices, approaches and technology to enhance operational results

  • Initiate and undertake lessons learned exercises, including the sharing, effective filing, and incorporation into future operational plans and ensure information sharing

5. People management

  • Manage the Gaza Operations Support team (EOD operators, medics, operations assistants, data associate and drivers). Tasks include day-to-day task management, monitoring attendance and leave plans, and timely completion of Performance Evaluation Reports (PERs).

  • Support in recruitment, train, guide, empower and develop the operations team, with consideration for individual training and development needs

  • Manage operations personnel in planning, execution and delivery of allocated projects, ensuring incorporation of best operational processes.

  • Promote teamwork, collaboration and diversity by providing the Operations team with clear direction, objectives and guidance to enable them to perform their duties responsibly, effectively and efficiently.

  • Manage national and international UNOPS personnel in a multicultural team, ensuring a professional, ethical and well-managed operations team.

  • Foster a positive and enabling work environment, respectful of both men and women, and ensure that the highest standards of conduct are observed.

  • Ensure that regular performance reviews are conducted, and any issues are immediately addressed.

Impact of Results
The effective and successful performance by the Head of Operations directly impacts the achievement of UNOPS project deliverables and UNMAS programme results and consequently reinforces the visibility and image of UNMAS Palestine Programme as it delivers on its mandated strategic objectives.

** Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • Advanced University Degree (Master Degree or equivalent) with a minimum of 5 years of relevant experience is required OR

  • First Level University Degree (Bachelor degree or equivalent) with a minimum of 7 years of relevant experience OR

  • Military or police experience with a minimum of 11 years of relevant experience


  • Relevant experience is defined as experience in the management of humanitarian mine action operations, which must include experience managing / implementing explosive ordnance disposal in single, multiple and bulk demolitions and rendering safe air-dropped/guided munitions

  • Knowledge of the International Mine Action Standards (IMAS) and experience in implementing a quality management system is required

  • Experience in writing and reviewing reports is required

  • Knowledge of and experience working with information management systems such as Information Management System for Mine Action (IMSMA) is desired

  • Understanding of Health and Safety measures is desired

  • Experience working in a developing country is desired


  • EOD Level 3+ certification is required. EOD qualifications should be from international military organizations that train and educate EOD specialists in accordance with NATO standards. In case of non-military awarded qualifications, the individual is responsible for providing proof of competence and curriculum of courses attended.
  • Security Certified Program (SCP) Certification is desired

  • Fluency in English (reading, writing, and speaking) is required

** 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.**(for levels IICA-2, IICA-3, LICA Specialist- 10, LICA Specialist-11, NOC, NOD, P3, P4 and above)**

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.

** 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
  • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (around 4 hours) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS.
  • 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.

** Contract type, level and duration

Contract type: ICA

Contract level: I-ICA 2
Contract duration: Open-ended, subject to organizational requirements, availability of funds and satisfactory performance

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

** Background Information – UNOPS

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.


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