MEAL Specialist at Save the Children
TEAM/PROGRAMME: Programme Development and Quality
LOCATION: Dar-es-Salaam with frequent travel to the field
Level 2 – the responsibilities of the post may require the post holder to have regular contact with or access to children or young people
The MEAL Specialist represents a crucial aspect of programme quality management within Save the Children. He/she oversees the MEAL system, manages MEAL staff, feeds into country office strategy & planning, participates in proposal development & leads on reporting to donors and Save the Children’s annual report. He/she rolls out a system for monitoring organisational progress against the Programme Quality Standards, and develops and implements a realistic MEAL dashboard of indicators to regularly feedback on quality, ensuring that such systems are institutionalised within the existing thematic programme cycle framework and country strategic plan, and that staff have the capacity to implement the systems. The MEAL Specialist also designs accountability systems for all field offices and specific programme components, ensuring that child’s participation in all feedback mechanisms is relevant and meaningful. Critical to this role is an ability to coordinate inputs (e.g. Total Reach and reporting to Save the Children) from other large projects operated independently within the country office, such as Global Fund.
SCOPE OF ROLE:
Reports to: Director of Programme Development & Quality
Dimensions: The MEAL Specialist is responsible for ensuring the country programme’s MEAL system encompasses the following key components required of Save the Children globally: culture and function; design/programming support; monitoring; evaluation and research; accountability; and, knowledge management and learning.
Staff directly reporting to this post: None.
KEY AREAS OF ACCOUNTABILITY:
System Design and Promoting MEAL
Lead on the development and oversee the roll-out of an organisational MEAL strategy (including M&E systems for Humanitarian Emergencies) in line with Save the Children’s quality standards and ensuring accountability to donors and beneficiaries.
Ensures establishment of key indicators for each project and tracking of data across projects to establish the broader impact on children from all interventions, using a regular dashboard approach for Senior Management monitoring.
Promote all aspects of MEAL to support the creation of an organisational culture which prioritises quality programming, including alignment with Save the Children’s Programme Quality Framework.
Build strong relationships with colleagues and provide support as required to ensure MEAL system is understood and supported at country office level.
Work closely with the field office teams to ensure that MEAL becomes an integral element of project implementation leading to enhanced quality, accountability, management and impact, including feeding into new proposal development and sharing lessons learned.
Designs and implements systems for sampling and verifying data quality across projects and thematic programmes.
Ensure that Technical Specialists develop thematically appropriate checklists and verification tools for standard programme activities (e.g. trainings, Children’s Council meetings, nutrition sessions).
Staff Management, Mentorship, and Development
Provide management and leadership to the MEAL team in the Tanzania country programme, forming a solid team with clear objectives around data quality, evaluation standards, accountability and learning. This requires creating cohesion with the field MEAL staff working in different geographic areas who have dotted line management by Field Managers on a day-to-day basis.
Oversee the recruitment of appropriate MEAL staff in the Tanzania Country Office.
Manage the MEAL team to ensure that the MEAL system operates effectively with the support and resources required and that there are clear links and reporting lines between field and Dar-es-Salaam level and between PDQ and other country office departments.
Support the MEAL team progress on specific projects, providing management oversight on progress and problem-solving in case of challenges, particularly for baseline/endline research, assessments and operational research.
Manage the performance of direct reports in the MEAL unit through performance management, coaching, mentoring, training and development.
At the organisational level, devise and manage a MEAL training programme with the goal of increasing capacity and awareness of MEAL for all staff aligned to the MEAL strategy. Assess training needs and engage MEAL team staff to roll-out the training programme, especially to orient new project staff and managers.
Responsible to ensure that the organisation delivers on all internal M&E requirements (including any Humanitarian Response reporting) in a timely manner and with high quality information.
Develop systems for monitoring and reporting on Save the Children global indicators and quarterly reports, total direct and indirect reach data. Develop systems for ensure monitoring of child participation and advocacy.
Receive regular field monitoring and accountability reports from MEAL staff through the dashboard approach (and other forums for data review) and circulate to the country office teams, ensuring that action plans are included and followed up and that SMT reviews reports regularly.
Ensure that the field offices manage a clear system of feedback and response from key stakeholders, particularly children, and presents the information to SMT for decision making purposes.
Promoting Learning for Strategy Development and Decision Making
Ensure that data is brought together and findings from across thematic and operational regions (through evaluations and project reviews) is consolidated and shared to allow analysis of impact and promotion of learning and strategy development for the whole organisation.
Lead on technical support, including formation of TOR and selection of consultants, for evaluations and provide technical review of progress and final reports. Synthesise this information to improve organisatonal performance and impact for children.
Communicate top level learning / analysis reports and monitoring data to ensure that management is able to make informed decisions on a timely basis to scale up and face operational challenges.
Organise all project evaluation and review in-brief and debrief sessions, with lessons learned shared, in collaboration with the respective project manager.
Support the Director of PDQ to analyse progress against organisational objectives and strategies.
External Reporting and Representation
Ensure external accountability to donors through the implementation of timely and quality MEAL activities leading to timely and accurate reporting
Ensure that high quality analysis reports demonstrating Save the Children’s impact and assessment findings are produced, including evidence of good practice and replicable programmes, and that they are communicated at appropriate events.
Ensure that Save the Children is represented at relevant inter-NGO and government level meetings (related to MEAL) to enhance inter-agency best practices sharing and learning.
Programme Design and MEAL Resources
Ensure that MEAL is an integral part of the programme design stage and features in all proposal development.
Reviews and approves all questionnaires and sampling plans for baseline/endline with consultants and relevant staff.
Maintains databases and data analysis software usage and storage with ICT.
Ensure that MEAL resources are included in proposal development and work creatively to secure funding from diverse sources, to ensure that MEAL is integrated in emergency and development programmes in a sustainable way.
Initiate operations research to test new innovations, identifying better opportunities and approaches and roll out into Country Office programmes.
Test and integrated Save the Children Programme Quality Framework elements into programme design, delivery and evaluation.
Ensure that child participation and child safeguarding is integrated into solid design and delivery.
Participate in PDQ meetings, quarterly review meetings, planning and other country office forums, as requested.
SKILLS AND BEHAVIOURS (our Values in Practice)
Holds self accountable for making decisions, managing resources efficiently, achieving and role modelling Save the Children values
Holds the team and partners accountable to deliver on their responsibilities – giving them the freedom to deliver in the best way they see fit, providing the necessary development to improve performance and applying appropriate consequences when results are not achieved
Holds the organisation accountable to children through the development of effective accountability and feedback systems
Sets ambitious and challenging goals for themselves (and their team), takes responsibility for their own personal development and encourages others to do the same
Widely shares their personal vision for Save the Children, engages and motivates others
Future orientated, thinks strategically
Builds and maintains effective relationships, with their team, colleagues, members and external partners and supporters
Values diversity, sees it as a source of competitive strength
Approachable, good listener, easy to talk to
Develops and encourages new and innovative solutions
Willing to take disciplined risks
Demonstrates flexibility and new thinking in the MEAL activities and planning
Honest, encourages openness and transparency
Ensures quality of data and methods through recommended practices and policies
QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE
Masters degree in an area of social development or equivalent.
Recommended a minimum of five years experience working in MEAL roles including in a senior management position, preferably with solid experience in more than one of the Save the Children priority sectors: education, protection, child rights governance, health and nutrition.
Experience of working on all elements of MEAL including designing, rolling out and managing systems.
Experience of securing resources from donors for MEAL activities/staffing and budget management.
Proven experience in designing Terms of Reference and managing large-scale evaluations. Ability to design and review evaluation tools and approaches, including operations research.
Awareness of international quality standards (Red Cross Code of Conduct, SPHERE Standard, HAP Standard) and proven experience of using these standards in practical ways to promote quality and accountable programming.
Direct experience of working with communities in participatory activities, including confidence in working with children and an understanding of child-friendly participatory methodologies.
Proven success in managing a team and dedication to staff development.
Highly developed interpersonal and communication skills including influencing, negotiation and coaching.
Highly developed cultural awareness and ability to work well in an international environment with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures.
Strong results orientation, with the ability to challenge existing mindsets
Experience of solving complex issues through analysis, definition of a clear way forward and ensuring buy in
Ability to present complex information in a succinct and compelling manner
Ability to travel to the field approximately 20-25% as well as travel to participate in regional meetings and learning events
Ability and willingness to dramatically change work practices and hours, and work with incoming surge teams, in the event of emergencies
Fluency in English, both verbal and written, required. Swahili preferred.
Commitment to Save the Children values, including willingness to abide by and enforce the Child Safeguarding policy.
Date advertised: 15 Aug 2019
Closing date: 18 Aug 2019 – 23:59 EAT
Location: Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, United Republic of
Department: Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning
Type: Fixed-term contract