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Head of Research, Evaluation, Accountability, Learning & Monitoring (REALM) – Somalia

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  • Full-Time

Job Description

Title:Head of Research, Evaluation, Accountability, Learning & Monitoring (REALM)

Somali National/International

Save the Children is the world’s leading independent organisation for children. We work in 120 countries. We save children’s lives; we fight for their rights; we help them fulfil their potential.

We work together, with our partners, to inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives.

We have over two million supporters worldwide and raised 1.9 billion dollars last year to reach more children than ever before, through programmes in health, nutrition, education, protection and child rights, also in times of humanitarian crises.

Following a major transition, our international programmes are now delivered through a merged operation with 15,000 staff, managed through seven regional hubs and reporting to a relatively small, central office. We’re changing to become more efficient, more aligned, a better partner, a stronger advocate, a magnet for world-class people and relevant for the 21st century.

  • Excellent planning, coordination, and reporting skills, with the ability to organise a substantial workload comprised of complex, diverse tasks and responsibilities;
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills in English, with experience working in multicultural, multi location, values driven teams;
  • Ability and willingness to dramatically change work practices and hours, and work with incoming surge teams, in the event of emergencies
  • Familiarity with REALM systems of SCI and experience in leading team on implementation of such system is preferred
  • Ability to speak Somali language and experience of working in Somalia will be considered as strong advantage

We need to keep children safe so our selection process reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse. Employment is subject to our Child protection standards including background checks and adherence to our Child Safeguarding Policy

Save the Children is an equal opportunity employer and seeks to employ and assign the best qualified talent.

Head of Research, Evaluation, Accountability, Learning & Monitoring (REALM)

Somalia Country Office

TEAM/PROGRAMME: Program Development & Quality (PDQ) LOCATION:  Somalia
GRADE:  1 POST TYPE: International
Child Safeguarding:

Level 3:  the role holder will have contact with children and/or young people either frequently (e.g. once a week or more) or intensively (e.g. four days in one month or more or overnight) because they work in country programs; or are visiting country programs; or because they are responsible for implementing the police checking/vetting process staff.


Save the Children has been working in Somalia for more than 60 years. The Country Office has seen massive growth in 2017 as a result of the drought response, and now has over 600 staff across 14 field offices (Boroma, Burao and Hargeisa in Somaliland; Bosasso, Garowe, Galkayo and Gardo in Puntland; Beletweyne, Adaado, Abudwak, Baidoa, Kismayo, Dhobley and Mogadishu in Central South Somalia). In 2019, 2.7 million people benefitted from our humanitarian and longer term development work in Health, Nutrition, Water, Sanitation & Hygiene (WASH), Education, Food Security and Livelihoods (FSL), Child Protection and Child Rights Governance. The Country Office manages more than 70 active awards totalling US$235 million from a range of governmental/institutional donors, including DFID, ECHO, EU, FFP, OFDA, and DANIDA being some of our largest.


Reports to: Director Country Director-Program Development & Quality (PDQ)

Staff directly reporting to this position: 6 direct line reports (3 x Area REALM Managers, Research & Evaluation Specialist, National MEAL Manager, Learning & Knowledge Manager)

Role purpose: The Head of REALM will take the overall responsibility of implementing the systems under REALM framework and SCI REALM approach in Somalia by ensuring strong, accurate and timely monitoring systems for all projects including indicator performance tracking, appropriate and accurate data management, use of quality benchmarking and action trackers for accountability, reporting and learning. S/He will take lead in managing consolidation of Country Office Program Quality Key Performance Indicators on REALM, contribute to quarterly and annual SCI reports for the Country Office. S/He will be responsible for developing and updating CO REALM standard operating procedures in with line SCI REALM standards. S/He will work with thematic leads/specialist to develop log-frames/results frameworks and ensure that there is consistency at different level of results, and that results lead to program goal and indicators are SMART. S/He will lead in determining and undertaking research to deliver the country office’s evidence and learning agenda to inform SCI project design and implementation to deepen the impact of our work on children’s lives, as well as position the Somalia Country Office as a thought leader and influencer on wider policy and practice around our breakthroughs in child survival, development and protection. As a member of Extended Senior Management Team (ESMT), the role will also involve analysing the data and provide input to the country leadership to inform strategic decision making.


·         Ensure effectiveness of the monitoring systems in maintaining and improving quality of services delivered by the country office.

·         Strengthen efforts to create greater efficiency in REALM systems by continued harmonization with SCI (and other relevant) standards and use of digital technologies

·         Ensure that the organisation delivers on all internal and external REALM requirements in a timely manner and with high quality information.

·         Strengthen the REALM systems and processes to assure systematic tracking of achievements and progress towards project objectives and outcomes.

·         Work with Technical Specialist (TS) to utilize and develop sector/thematic quality benchmarks for all activities implemented within a given sector/theme including any new activities that may be introduced in the program on an ongoing basis

·         Review and advise on consistency, expected results/indicators, and other elements of log-frames/results frameworks to ensure quality

·         Ensure that data collection methodologies used at field level are standardised, enabling the specific vulnerabilities of different target groups to be captured and analysed.

·         Develop a comprehensive REALM plan (includes indicator and performance tracking table-IPTT, data collection tools, accountability plan, project quality bench marks) in collaboration with program teams at the inception phase

·         Review programs IPTT, review and oversee consolidation of Output Trackers and other humanitarian REALM requirements.

·         Guide Area REALM Managers to address any gaps in programme quality assurance and in REALM frameworks implementation.

·         Develop a tracking mechanism/system for tracking Country Office achievements against CSP milestones and targets.

·         Triangulate and analyse monitoring data to generate high level summary of REALM systems for senior leadership. Present REALM outcomes (Status on program Performance, issues emerging from Quality monitoring, issues emerging from accountability systems, research outcomes, lessons learnt) for discussion at ESMT (CO or field Office) or area level.


Research, Evidence & Learning

·         Lead on the application of SCI Theory of Change with particular focus on driving innovation through development and provision of evidence and learning for replicable breakthrough solutions to the problems facing children

·         Maintain regular and proactive dialogue with technical/thematic leads and field teams to identify critical programmatic knowledge gaps, as well as to initiate, adapt or test new practices, approaches or methodologies, that will inform our Country Office Evidence & Learning agenda with a view of improving the impact of our work in Somalia

·         Support the Research & Evaluation Specialist and in-house research team in the design, delivery and regular review of the Country Office Research, Evidence & Learning agenda

·         Participate in designing and implementation of studies, assessments and learning in coordination and cooperation with Research Specialist, Research Managers and sectors’ technical coordinators and programme staff.

·         Apply leading-edge thinking and best practice at all stages of the research process to ensure that SCI research and evaluation outputs are delivered to the highest standards, on time and on budget

·         Foster a culture of learning in the Somalia Country Office, including the systematic collection, storage and dissemination of evidence and learning that is used throughout the project cycle by all staff

·         Undertake meta-analysis and systemic reviews of SCI Somalia program evaluations and research to generate sectoral learning on trends, opportunities, risks etc and lead in-house research team to strengthen analysis and communicate programmatic learning to the wider Country Office team through document sharing, presentations, etc.

·         Scope, seek out, engage and maintain new partnerships with INGOs, UN and academic institutions to support the deliver our Evidence & Learning Agenda, including opportunities for information sharing and learning exchanges with external stakeholders

·         Support the Learning and Knowledge Management Manager in developing and implementing evidence and learning dissemination and uptake strategies.


 Accountability & Participation

·         Ensure that all staff at all levels, including senior managers and directors, fully understand and promote accountability in general and to children in particular, through training and coaching.

·         Contribute to improvements in existing policies and procedures to enhance effective accountability mechanisms.

·         Facilitate training of staff, partners and stakeholders on Accountability, core humanitarian standard (CHS), Sphere standards.

·         Develop and report against accountability and participation-related indicators and issues, and produce quarterly and annual reports on the accountability and participation work.

·         Ensure that participation activities are well documented and learning is shared with Save the Children Somalia/Somaliland programme, and Save the Children members.

·         Ensure that child participation activities are appropriately planned and budgeted for in programme design and funding applications.

·         By facilitating information sharing with key stakeholders, including beneficiaries, ensure that Save the Children promotes transparency throughout all stages of implementation.

·         Ensure that project activities are designed to promote feedback and response mechanisms and include systems to effectively manage complaints.

·         Ensure that activities are carried out to raise awareness of prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse and handling of serious complaints in line with child safeguarding policy.


People Management & Development

·         Provide leadership to the REALM team, including strategic vision and direction, team cohesion and team building and an enabling environment where staff can develop to their full potential

·         Lead, in coordination with HR, the recruitment, professional development and promotion of direct line reports as appropriate, including the identification of development opportunities, such as coaching/training/stretch assignments to build and maintain technical skills and competencies required for leading first class programmes

·         Provide day-to-day direct line management, including: manage and define expectations; delegation of roles, responsibilities and tasks among the team; provide technical guidance and support to the team as needed.

·         Provide technical supportive supervision of the field-based REALM staff through regular contact, field visits and meetings.

·         Enhance Country Office capability in REALM, especially research and evaluation, through assessing capacity gaps in collaboration with line managers, designing and implementing effective capacity building measures and development and maintaining an institutionalised knowledge base.

·         Undertake performance management, including setting of annual goals and quarterly deliverables, undertaking quarterly reviews, and provision of feedback to ensure delivery of results

·         Support the development of an organisational culture that reflects our dual mandate values, promotes accountability and high performance, encourages a team culture of learning, creativity and innovation, and frees up our people to deliver outstanding results for children and excellent customer service for our members and donors.  



Applying Technical and Professional Expertise:

·         Makes decisions based on professional expertise and experience without deferring unnecessarily to others

·         Shares knowledge and best practice on technical solutions so that others can make best use of that expertise

·         Actively seeks new ways to develop the application of technical and professional standards within the team

Developing self and others:

·         Gives regular positive and constructive feedback to others

·         Identifies clear development needs and development

·         plans through regular constructive reviews of their own performance (and their team’s where appropriate)

·         Creates space for others to learn and provides challenging and stretching tasks and assignments when people are ready for them

·         Coaches others to learn from their experiences on the job and to use the resources available to them

Problem Solving and Decision Making:

·         Gathers the right information and uses critical thinking to make effective and timely decisions

·         Knows when to involve others in a decision

·         Demonstrates awareness of the wider external influences that impact on decision making

·         Analyses and exercises judgment in challenging situations in the absence of specific guidance or knowledge of the full facts

·         Evaluates the opportunities and risks of each idea and solution to make informed strategic decisions

Working effectively with others

  • Actively listens to new and different perspectives and experiences of those they work with
  • Proactively supports team members and trusts their capabilities
  • Demonstrates understanding of their skills and how they complement those of others within diverse teams and groups

·         Clarifies their role and responsibilities within the team to maximise impact

Delivering Results

  • Delivers timely and appropriate results using available resources
  • Takes responsibility for their work and its impact on others
  • Plans, prioritises and performs tasks well without needing direct supervision
  • Understands the link between their work and the organisation’s objectives



  • Minimum of advance degree (MSc) in an area of social development, economics, statistics or other relevant discipline.
  • Minimum five years of practical experience in M&E system coordination/implementation in an international non-governmental organisation
  • Demonstrable track-record in data tracking and evaluation, with the ability to support staff and partners on M&E methodology, and analyse and disseminate complex information to a range of audiences.
  • Conversant with impact evaluation methods as well as other established evaluation criteria (such as DEC)
  • Practical knowledge or experience of working in humanitarian response and recovery at a technical senior level position.
  • Excellent writing skills to present assessment and project reports in English
  • Computer literacy, particularly in Microsoft Office, any statistical package like STATA and digital data management systems
  • Excellent planning, coordination, and reporting skills, with the ability to organise a substantial workload comprised of complex, diverse tasks and responsibilities;
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills in English, with experience working in multicultural, multi location, values driven teams;
  • Ability and willingness to dramatically change work practices and hours, and work with incoming surge teams, in the event of emergencies
  • Familiarity with REALM systems of SCI and experience in leading team on implementation of such system is preferred
  • Ability to speak Somali language and experience of working in Somalia will be considered as strong advantage



Because Save the Children’s work is based on deeply held values and principles, it is essential that our commitment to children’s rights and humanitarian principles is supported and demonstrated by all members of staff. Save the Children’s Code of Conduct sets out the standards which all staff members must adhere to.

Save the Children is an equal opportunity employer and seeks to employ and

 assign the best qualified talent.


Interested and qualified applicants can view the profile and apply for this position through the below URLs:- https://stcuk.taleo.net/careersection/ex/jobdetail.ftl?job=200001VI&lang=en

Closing Date will be 28th March 2020



Save the Children International does not charge any kind of fee at whichever stage of the recruitment process and does not act through recruitment agents

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