Senior Advisor Learning & Accountability, Strategy Realization Unit – UK, NL or US job at Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps

Location: Edinburgh, London, UK, NL or US

**Position Status: Full-Time, open term

Salary range: London: circa 47K – 55K; Edinburgh : circa 41K- 47K, NL: circa 47K – 54K – local benchmark for US

Apply with CV and Cover Letter by September 10th

The applicant must have the independent right to live and work at the location of assignment (ie., not require visa sponsorship)**

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

The Team

The Strategy Realization Unit ensures that Mercy Corps has the strategies and vision that will enable it to be a world-class, cutting-edge humanitarian and development organization creating transformational change in the world. The Strategy Realization Unit’s goal is to drive forward the agency’s 10-year strategy – Pathway to Possibility – providing a unifying vision while also enabling teams to be adaptive. The underlying intention is to create clarity and focus to enhance decision-making at all levels and locations of the organization. Though its mandate and scope are still evolving, it is anticipated that the Strategy Realization Unit will:

● Provide oversight and coordination for the Pathway to Possibility

● Serve as an ‘incubator’ for strategic initiatives, such as localization or climate

● Advise decision-makers on strategic and organizational priorities for effective realization

● Facilitate the right working groups / accountability structures to move initiatives forward

● Track progress on various initiatives, identifying any overlapping work and helping remove roadblocks

● Design and implement the governance and accountability measures for the strategy -including the 3As – in collaboration with others

● Support the change management process by working with various teams and leaders to deliver on the aspirations outlined in Pathway to Possibility

The Strategy Realization Unit is accountable to the CEO via a Vice President that sits on Mercy Corps’ Executive Team; the Unit also works closely with leadership across the organization, including with Regional Directors, Country Directors, HLR and TSU senior leaders, HQ Function Leads, Department Heads, and others.

The Position

The SRU Senior Advisor will lead internal learning for the Strategy Realization Unit and organizational learning around the Pathway to Possibility in three ways:

1. Strategy Accountability, Evidence & Learning: Lead the creation and roll out of an agency-wide Pathway to Possibility metrics dashboard and the development of a reporting and analysis process;

2. Strategy Realization Unit Cohesion & Coordination: Facilitate a reflection and learning process that helps the team understand and analyze the adoption of the strategy across the agency, and adapt and improve our work and support to teams accordingly;

3. Support special projects: As needed, support SRU leads and other internal stakeholders on special projects linked to strategy and to Mercy Corps’ strategic priorities.

The Senior Advisor will take the lead in collating and analyzing data within the team, and in disseminating and sharing what we are learning with the broader organization, ensuring that we are effectively using data to inform adoption of the strategy, drive effective change management efforts, and help ensure accountability. This position will also provide support and thought leadership to SRU priority leads (e.g. GDI, localization, climate change) for their respective learning agendas and inclusive global team engagement activities.

The Senior Advisor will also serve as a thought partner to the VP for Strategy Realization, a facilitator of SRU team cohesion, and a coordinator with internal stakeholders across the broader organization, helping to ensure accountability and alignment within the team and synergy across complementary agency efforts.

Essential Responsibilities


Pathway to Possibility Metrics Dashboard

● In close partnership with the VP for Strategy Realization and other key stakeholders, lead the development of an agency-wide strategy metrics dashboard

● Develop a data collection process with key agency stakeholders that will feed into the agency wide strategy metrics dashboard

● Develop communications products for transparently and consistently sharing progress on strategy metrics dashboard with a wide variety of internal stakeholders at different locations and elevations of the organization

● Work closely with the VP for Strategy Realization and other SRU team leads to ensure that data / information from the dashboard is utilized in decision making and course correction both within the SRU and across the wider organization

● Contribute to or produce reports and share relevant data with the CEO’s Office, Executive Team members, and other decision-makers as needed

SRU Team Learning

● Lead the development of an internal learning process and metrics for the SRU team to understand to what extent Pathway to Possibility is being adopted across the agency, effective approaches to facilitating agency-wide adoption of the strategy, and areas of growth

● Set up and help operationalize meaningful processes for collecting data and evidence per the SRU’s learning agenda, working with key internal stakeholders to maximize efficiencies across on-going data collection processes

● Lead the process of collating and analyzing SRU learning agenda-related data, pulling together key insights in partnership with SRU team

● Ensure there are data and insights to share learning and lead efforts to disseminate evidence, share learnings, and tell the story of the SRU and Mercy Corps’ strategic journey, including the development of materials and products that will help with the application of lessons learned and uptake of promising practices

● Support SRU priority leads (such as climate, GDI) with developing learning agendas, metrics, and plans for their respective priority areas, linking to the strategy dashboard when relevant

● Take a ‘user centered’ approach by ensuring representation of or consultation with team members at different elevations and across different geographies where relevant


SRU Vision & Planning

● Support the VP for Strategy Realization and her team in developing an SRU team vision and high-level goals

● Facilitate the development of an SRU-wide workplan in close partnership with VP for Strategy Realization and other team members

● Support course correction and adaptive management through the facilitation of regular learning and reflection activities for the SRU around the team vision, goals, and work plan

● Contribute to regular dialogue and accountability with the SRU team and relevant internal stakeholders to review progress towards SRU goals and revise or course correct as necessary

● Design, facilitate and/ or document team meetings, workshops, and other efforts to incorporate learning, evidence, and data into SRU decision-making, work planning, or reporting processes

SRU Team Cohesion & Coordination

● Support the VP for Strategy Realization with building cohesion and alignment within and across the SRU priority areas and workstreams through proactive communication and timely information sharing

● Develop, review and revise SRU data collection and communication tools, templates and processes to ensure visibility into SRU initiatives and help identify synergies or greater efficiencies for maximum impact

● Lead the internal communications strategy for the SRU team to make sure team members are aware of and engaged in SRU activities, helping drive synergies and make connections across different workstreams

● Help ensure that various SRU workstreams are aligned with and leverage one another and that the SRU team’s collaboration with others is harmonized,consistent, and appropriately sequenced for maximum impact

● Support the VP for Strategy Realization in the development of team cohesion-related activities (e.g. supporting PwP and PwP refreshers, team learning activities, GDI diagnostic-related efforts, etc.)

● Support the deepening of partnerships between the SRU and Global Programs Team and Global Support functions to ensure connectivity between the SRU’s goals and workstreams and the rest of the agency, such as ensuring SRU participation in relevant cross-functional working groups

● Support and help facilitate SRU-led activities, meetings, or workshops with key internal stakeholders; document and share outputs as needed


● Represent the VP for Strategy Realization, members of the SRU, and Mercy Corps as requested at key internal stakeholder and leadership meetings.

● Communicate effectively to SRU members and other internal stakeholder groups to ensure they are equipped with necessary data, evidence, and learning to contribute to decision-making around and overall engagement with the strategy

● Liaise with and maintain productive relationships with all stakeholders, including Executive Team, country teams, other headquarters functions, and donors; build mutually rewarding professional relationships inside Mercy Corps at all levels.


● Consistently strives to exceed expectations; demonstrates flexibility, resilience and the ability to maintain positive relationships and composure, even under difficult circumstances.

● Maintains high ethical standards and treats people with respect and dignity.

● Demonstrates an awareness of his/her personal strengths and development needs, modeling non-defensive behavior and openness to feedback; builds a culture of feedback and learning.

Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Minimum Qualifications and Transferable Skills

  • BA/S or equivalent in a relevant field
  • 5+ years’ program experience at an international NGO, non-profit organization, or other relevant entity
  • Strong organizational skills and ability manage time efficiently, meet deadlines, and work both independently and as a part of a team
  • Demonstrated ability to develop, coordinate, and deliver cross-functional/ multi-team work plans in a consultative or participatory way
  • Past experience setting targets, developing indicators, and developing processes for data collection and visualization required; experience with cross-functional dashboards a plus
  • Strong analytical and visualization skills and ability to synthesize data into concise digestible formatsExperience developing and conducting learning agendas, producing reports to share learning, and communicating evidence and results to drive decision-making
  • Critical thinking skills and proven ability to problem solve and follow up appropriately; calm, adaptable and resourceful, able to deliver under pressure
  • Strong facilitation skills, excellent writing skills, and ability to pay close attention to detail while also seeing the big picture; ability to produce compelling, polished, professional documents and presentations for a variety of audiences
  • Ability to multi-task and work in a fast paced, multi-cultural environment; comfort with ambiguity and complexity
  • Proven excellence in interpersonal skills and a high level of personal initiative
  • Proficiency in Arabic, Spanish, or French preferred


Reports Directly To: VP for Strategy Realization

Works Directly With: SRU team members

Coordinates With: a variety of internal stakeholders engaged in strategic planning, strategy realization, and organizational learning

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

The position is based in Uk or NL or US and it requires occasional travel, which may include travel to insecure locations where freedom of movement is limited and areas where amenities are limited. Housing for this role is in individual housing and staff will have access to good medical services and the living situation is of a high standard.

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to theInteragency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere toMercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct elearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.

As a safeguarding measure, Mercy Corps screens all potential US-Based employees. This is done following the conclusion of recruitment and prior to assuming full employment.

Our screening process is designed to be transparent and completed in partnership with new Team Members. You will have the opportunity to disclose any prior convictions at the conclusion of the recruitment process before the check is initiated. We ask that you do not disclose any prior convictions in your application materials or during the recruitment process.

How to apply

Learn more here and apply: