Program Administrative Officer, Latin America Program

Open Society Foundations
  • Location
    Mexico City, Australia
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Nov 17

Position description

Program Administrative Officer, Latin America Program, Latin America Program, Mexico City, Deadline: 12/11/2018

The Open Society Foundations seeks a Program Administrative Officer for its recently opened Mexico City office.

The Fund for Policy Reform (FPR) is part of the Open Society Foundations (OSF) network, which works to build vibrant and tolerant societies whose governments are accountable to thein citizens. The Latin America Program (LAP) of OSF has established regional offices in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Bogotá (Colombia) and Mexico City (Mexico), to support its mission in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The responsibilities of the Program Administrative Officer (PAO) for the Mexico City Office fall under two categories:

1. Regional Office Administration (85-90% of time)

The Program Administrative Officer operates with significant independence and with a high degree of responsibility to manage the administration and operations of the Regional Office. The PAO independently liaises with all central departments within OSF (Legal, Finance, Human Resources, IT and Facilities), as well as serves as the primary point of contact with local operations partners (accounting/payroll firm, landlord, local counsel, IT support consultant, office maintenance vendors and service providers). He/she will have both wide and deep responsibilities for the regional office and must operate with a high degree of responsibility and minimal supervision. The PAO coordinates among OSF central departments, LAP staff based in the regional office, LAP operations staff and OSF guests visiting the office. Depending on the stage of the Regional Office, the PAO may focus more on operations set-up vs. ongoing operations administration.

2. Collaborative work in projects/activities within the LAP Operations Division (10-15% of time)

The PAO is an integral member of the LAP Operations Division that supports LAP strategy in part through developing and implementing efficient systems and processes. The PAO leads or participates in different projects to ensure effective support to LAP strategy, including but not limited to the LAP annual budgeting process, organizing logistics for team meetings and complex events/convenings (including bi-annual LAP retreats and Advisory Board Meetings), and facilitating information-sharing among regional offices. The PAO may lead or participate in other specific operational or program initiatives related to effective management and creative problem solving within the LAP program.

The role may include any or all of the following and/or similar activities:

1. Regional Office Administration

  • Financial Management Coordinate local payments including vendor invoices, corporate credit cards, benefits, payroll, social security and monthly taxes, according to an operations payment schedule developed by the local accounting firm.
  • Review and approve vendor invoice payments in NetSuite (the NY-based accounting system). For other payments, liaise and seek approval from the relevant approver.
  • Provide cash flow oversight support and assist with funds transfers from US office to representative office as needed.
  • Coordinate requests related with local corporate credit cards with the local bank, NY-Finance, NY-Legal, the local accounting firm and LAP staff.
  • Maintain accounting operations workflows for local financial transactions.
  • Participate in weekly calls between the local accounting firm and NY-Finance to track local accounting firm implementation of NY-based accounting system.
  • Provide trainings to staff, and maintain updated processes for expense reports and travel arrangements/payment for locally based staff.

Human Resources
  • Support new employees with their orientation to the office. Facilitate their enrollment in payroll, social security and benefits according to the instructions/guidance provided by NY-HR (on OSF policies) and the local payroll firm (on local practices and requirements).
  • Keep records updated for regional office staff leave (vacation & sick days)
  • Report payroll adjustments to the local payroll firm (monthly), request approval of the payroll and social security information to LAP staff, and coordinate payment with the local payroll firm and NY-Finance.
  • Coordinate processing of voluntary staff benefit contributions with the local payroll firm and NY-Finance.
  • Coordinate processing of leave, such as parental, medical, unpaid, with NY-HR, LAP managers and staff, and the local payroll firm.
  • Serve as liaison for NY-HR as well as one or more third party consultants who will provide assistance to the regional office on employment compliance and related matters.

Information Technology (IT)
  • Assist NY-IT and local IT consultant to resolve issues related to connectivity or local IT systems.
  • Coordinate the purchase of small IT items (headsets, cables, laptop cameras, etc.).
  • Support the occasional acquisition of and payment for IT equipment, in coordination with NY-IT staff and the local IT consultant.
  • Supervise the regional office IT equipment inventory.
  • Provide input to NY-IT regarding the local IT consultant performance and customer service. Participate in calls between them as needed.

  • Obtain authorized signatory approvals and signatures for contracts, vendor agreements and other legal documentation, as requested by NY-Legal.
  • Provide administrative support to NY-Legal for the implementation of a compliance plan, based on a compliance memo developed by FPR's local counsel.
  • Maintain a secure physical and digital archive of legal documents relevant to the representative office, according to NY-Legal instructions and guidance.

Facilities and event management
  • Coordinate office space issues including the purchase, maintenance and repair of equipment, furniture, supplies and materials.
  • Coordinate office building issues with the landlord and building administrator.
  • Receive and orient OSF visitors to the Bogota office. Keep up-to-date a brief communication of office general and security information to share with visitors to the office.
  • Oversee and renew as needed, local facilities vendor agreements for ongoing maintenance.
  • Oversee any significant facilities-related project, such as office space upgrades, furniture and fixture procurement.
  • Oversee, coordinate, and keep guidelines updated for local visitor and event management procedures.

2. LAP Operations Division

  • Develop the regional office annual budget and input into OSF budget system.
  • Organize logistics for team meetings and complex events/convenings including bi-annual LAP retreats and Advisory Board Meetings.
  • Keep up-to-date office manuals for LAP regional offices.
  • Participate in Operations team retreats to improve alignment and integration within the unit.
  • Collaborate and share information with the other LAP regional office administrators.
  • PAO may be asked to lead or participate in other specific operational or program initiatives related to effective management and creative problem solving within the LAP program.

Candidate Profile

  • 5-7 years of work experience in a situation relevant to the duties of this role, sufficient to develop demonstrable competence in skills as indicated above.
  • Experience working with an international organization, NGO, foundation or related social enterprises is preferred.
  • Extensive experience writing effective policies, procedures, and standard operating procedures; demonstrated familiarity with planning for and creating and maintaining administrative systems.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in databases (e.g. Excel, Salesforce, NetSuite) and strong data collection and analytical skills
  • Demonstrated ability to set up processes, systems, and workflows and ensure adherence and follow-up.
  • Experience with record keeping, budgeting management, and finance administration.
  • Demonstrated success and experience in making improvements to internal systems and applying best practices.
  • Proven ability to build and maintain relationships with a wide array of people with diverse backgrounds throughout a complex organization.
  • Proven ability to work efficiently in a fast-paced environment; to troubleshoot and follow projects through to completion, consistently on schedule, without loss of attention to detail.
  • Experience making administrative, operational and procedural judgments on sensitive and confidential issues, with an understanding of when to consult superiors for more effective decision-making.
  • Familiarity with complex administrative policies and procedures, and operating within them and ability to quickly understand and use policies and procedures.
  • Professional-level fluency in Spanish and English (strong written and verbal skills), Portuguese a plus.
  • Commitment to the values and goals of the Open Society Foundations
  • International travel is required, generally 5-10% of annual time

Competitive rates of pay apply.

We are strengthened by the diversity of our colleagues across the Open Society Foundations. We welcome applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and are committed to providing reasonable adjustments so that colleagues with disabilities are able to fulfill the essential functions of the job.
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