Learning & Development Manager (Multi-Country), P4, Wcaro Dakar Senegal #117294


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, dedication

West and Central Africa offers a portrait of the world’s unfinished development agenda and many challenging humanitarian situations. Inequalities and poverty, armed conflicts or weak governance characterize many countries, leading to an environment in which children’s survival and future wellbeing face daily challenges that often overshadow the region’s achievements and great potential. To achieve better results for children, it is critical to foster a continuously learning and development workplace, including regional development and capacity building initiatives in support of programme management. The post of Learning and Development Manager, P-4, is established in the Regional Office Human Resources Section and reports to the Regional Chief of Human Resources, P-5. The post holder will directly supervise the Senior HR Associate, GS7, and occasionally individual and/or corporate consultants/contractors.

How can you make a difference?

Purpose of the job:

Under the general guidance of the Regional Chief of Human Resources, the Learning and Development Manager will be responsible for the planning, design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of organizational learning and development programmes, in alignment with West and Central Africa Regional Office’s key strategic priorities. S/he will work closely with the WCARO Senior Management, Country Offices Human Resources, and the Regional Human Resources Development Committee (RHRDC), as well as other relevant stakeholders, to conduct needs assessments and prepare learning and development strategies/plans to meet the region’s current and evolving programmatic/operational needs. This includes building internal/external partnerships to design and implement state-of-the-art learning and development programmes, including innovative approaches to learning and development, as well as designing learning programmes and curricula. S/he will also oversee the timely implementation, monitoring and reporting of global/regional learning/training activities included in WCARO’s annual learning plan.

Key functions, accountabilities and related duties/tasks:

1. Learning and Capacity Development

  • In close collaboration with the Senior Management, Country Office Human Resources Leads, and the Regional Human Resources Development Committee (RHRDC), as well as other relevant stakeholders, conduct needs assessments and prepare learning and development strategies/plans in line with the RHRDC and WCARO’s key strategic priorities to meet current and evolving programmatic/operational needs;
  • Build partnerships with academic institutions, external experts, INGOs, CSOs and other UN agencies to design and implement state-of-the-art learning and development programmes (in-person and online), including innovative approaches to learning and development; and share best practices on evolving trends on learning and development;
  • Oversee the timely implementation, monitoring and reporting of global/regional learning/training activities included in WCAR’s regional annual learning menu and plan;
  • Work closely with Management, Country Office Human Resources Leads, and Learning Focal Points to ensure an effective coordination of learning/development investments, thus preventing gaps, overlaps, duplication of efforts, and ensure that expenditures are in line with approved budgets;
  • Oversee the evaluation of learning/training programmes to ensure compliance with desired quality standards; that they contribute to meeting desired outcomes, and that lessons learned/best practices are reflected in the development of new strategies and plans. Submit/present periodic learning and development programme reports to the RHRDC and the Regional Management Team (RMT);
  • Provide expert advice/guidance and support to managers/supervisors and individual staff members in determining appropriate resources/programmes to fill specific competency/skill gaps. This may include 360-degree assessments, tailored support, coaching support etc. within the limit of available resources/budget;
  • In collaboration with Senior Management, Section Chiefs, and under the guidance of the Regional Chief of HR, develop and implement capacity building initiatives supporting Regional Office and Country Offices’ internal succession plan. Compile and analyze data on high potential employees in support of WCAR’s succession management plan;
  • Oversee the selection and supervise external technical resources, including experts and consultants (individual and institutional) to design and/or deliver specific learning/training programmes;
  • Contribute to drafting (or draft as needed) internal guidance documents and/or standard operating procedures for the efficient, effective, consistent and fair administration of learning and development activities;
  • Facilitate and/or coordinate the delivery of training/workshops/staff retreats, as appropriate; and train others to deliver training as and when needed;
  • Design learning programmes to support staff’s career and in line with the Region’s needs and priorities;
  • Advise managers and staff members on the effective application of learning policies/guidelines, and the use of various learning pedagogies, methodologies and tools to achieve desired organizational/individual needs;
  • Provide career support/counselling to staff members and/or, when appropriate, guide to/advise on available corporate resources available at Regional or Global levels.

 2. Management of Unit

  • Support the Regional Chief of Human Resources in establishing the annual work plan, setting priorities/targets and performance measurements using a result-based management approach;
  • Monitor work progress and ensure results are achieved according to schedule and performance standards;
  • Establish clear individual performance objectives, goals and timelines; and provide timely guidance to enable the learning and development team to perform their duties responsibly and efficiently.

3. Technical HR Leadership

  • Provide technical leadership and sound guidance/advice in all aspects of learning and development; ensuring compliance with principles and concepts, policies, regulations and rules;
  • Implement and monitor the interpretation and application of new human resources policies, practices and procedures in learning and development to meet the evolving needs of the Region, including formulating the position of the region on policies; and determining the appropriate application of rules and regulations to highly sensitive or contentious individual cases having implications for other HR systems and the Organization as a whole.

4. Strategic Human Resources

  • Liaise with the relevant HQ Sections to support and contribute to corporate HR strategy formulation and global implementation. Provide feedback and make recommendations on the establishment and improvement of HR systems, policies and processes;
  • Keep abreast of new research, benchmarks, standards, as well as best and cutting-edge practices in learning and development and evaluate their applicability/adaptability in WCAR context;
  • Establish partnerships with leading academic institutions and organizations to design/develop innovative learning and development solutions to meet the evolving needs of WCAR, and with the potential of scaling them up within the Region or the Organization;
  • Contribute to the design of organizational and staffing structures, including the evaluation of capacity building and change management initiatives required for their effective implementation.

5. HR Data Analytics

  • Compile, interpret and analyze data/reports to help inform decision making on learning and development strategies;
  • Develop data collection systems to optimize the quality of metrics, analytics and report.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have: 


  • An Advanced University Degree in human resource management, business administration, organizational development, social sciences, international relations, psychology or another related field is required.
  • Professional certification/additional training in the field of learning and development or related field is desirable.


  • At least eight (8) years of professional work experience in learning and development in a global/international organization is required.
  • Strong facilitation skills and track records in learning needs assessment and in the design and implementation of learning and development strategies, including learning impact assessment is required.
  • Good understanding of how adults acquire and use knowledge, including individual and cultural differences in learning; and the ability to develop effective training/learning curricula for adult learners, especially for organizational development and behavior change is an asset.
  • Experience in change management and in developing and sourcing learning programmes for Human Resources is an asset.
  • Knowledge of group and organizational psychology is an asset.
  • Prior experience in executive coaching is desirable.
  • Practical experience in HR Information Systems and e-Learning

Language requirements: 

  • Fluency in French and English, especially excellent writing skills, is required.
  • Knowledge of Spanish and/or Portuguese is considered an asset.



  • The ability to allocate appropriate time and resources for successful achievement of goals and foresee risks and allow for contingencies when planning.
  • Ability to implement clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies, identify priority activities and assignments, adjust priorities as required.


  • Experience and ability to help design and implement targeted and innovative human resources strategies to address clients’ people-related needs.
  • Ability to help design and implement innovative learning and development programs within a fast-paced, evolving, and wide organizational setting.


  • Authoritative technical knowledge of the principles and concepts of learning and development.
  • Capacity to adapt policies, approaches and models to meet emerging needs.
  • Ability to identify and analyze systemic issues, formulate opinions and make conclusions and recommendations to resolve same.
  • Excellent knowledge of organizational and HR information technology systems and tools.

Interpersonal and Communication

  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively in a diverse organization tailoring language, tone, style and format to match audience.
  • Ability to empathize with client managers, supervisors and staff while advocating for consistent and equitable applications of promulgated HR regulations and rules, as well as policies.

For every Child, you demonstrate: 

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA).

The UNICEF competencies required for this post are: 

  • Nurtures, Leads and Manages People (2) 
  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (2) 
  • Works Collaboratively with others (2) 
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships (2) 
  • Innovates and Embraces Change (2) 
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically (2) 
  • Drive to achieve impactful results (2) 
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity (2) 

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

The selected candidate is expected to be based and work from Dakar, Senegal, the duty station.