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Finance and Administration Assistant

  • Harare, Zimbabwe
  • Due Date: April 25, 2024
Finance and Administration Assistant

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Introduction

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) is an integrated set of activities funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and is intended to provide timely, accurate, evidence-based, and transparent food security early warning information and analysis. Created in 1985 in response to famines in East and West Africa, FEWS NET provides global coverage through a mix of presence and remote monitoring. FEWS NET’s work is implemented across several pillars by a team of partners that includes the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the United States Department of Agriculture, the United States Geological Survey, the University of California-Santa Barbara’s Climate Hazards Center, American Institutes for Research, and Chemonics International (Chemonics). Chemonics houses FEWS NET’s Early Warning Team (EWT), a team charged with integrated emergency food insecurity analysis through a Washington-based technical office and more than 20 FEWS NET offices. 

Based on an in-depth understanding of local livelihoods, the EWT monitors information and data on factors that affect food security, such as weather conditions and climate, crops, pasture, markets and trade, and nutrition. The FEWS NET EWT produces regular reports, including Food Security Outlooks and Outlook Updates, emergency alerts, market and price updates, and global weather hazards analyses. FEWS NET makes reports available at www.fews.net and distributes them globally to governments, relief agencies, and other organizations engaged in humanitarian response and development programs. 

The seventh phase of FEWS NET began in 2019. The work of FEWS NET EWT relies on close collaboration with international, regional, and national partners on food security data and information gathering and analysis. Major activities include joint monitoring and assessments, data exchanges, collaborative analysis and reporting, and technical capacity strengthening. FEWS NET supports local and regional food security networks to contribute to achieving the global objective of food security for all. 

Position Description 

The Finance and Administration Assistant will serve as a member of the Operations, Finance, and Grants component, and will report to the Country Representative. The Finance and Administration Assistant will assist in performing all aspects of the project accounting and financial administration as well as being responsible for all daily administrative work and needs. 

 

Responsibilities 

The main responsibilities of the Finance and Administration Assistant include, but are not limited to:

Financial:

  • Provide support for all aspects of project financial management, ensuring that all expenses are recorded appropriately; that Chemonics home office, project office, and USAID rules and regulations are followed; and that all project funds are used appropriately as outlined in the project contract.
  • Maintain ABACUS and prepare monthly project locals according to project guidelines. 
  • Review all payment requests generated by the project office, ensuring that all backup documentation and approvals are available for transactions.
  • Review project staff travel advances and expense reports for accuracy. 
  • Process travel advances to project staff and follow-up on outstanding balances. 
  • Review travel-related expenditures and expense reports to ensure the necessary back-up documentation is in order and on file.
  • Supervise and manage financial and accounting operations including, but not limited to, preparing payment vouchers, maintaining or verifying petty cash transactions, and reconciling petty cash balances, at least once a week.
  • Maintaining bank balances up-to-date and reconcile accounts on a monthly basis.
  • Request funds through wire transfers from home office.
  • Assist the technical departments with the financial monitoring of activities in the field according to established procedures and calendars, as needed.
  • Contribute to the preparation of contractually required financial reports, as well as any other financial reports required by Chemonics International.
  •  Upon financial audit, provide the necessary support to the auditors conducting the audit and assure the implementation of any audit-based recommendations.
  • Develop and maintain efficient filing systems for both physical and electronic documents.
  • Track VAT and reconciliation processes.
  • Assist home office field accounting and project management staff in reconciling intercompany accounts.
  • Respond without delays to home office accounting questions or concerns.

Administrative: 

  • Coordinate logistics for project activities, including travel arrangements, visa applications, and events planning.
  • Manage and ensure saving of travel records and maintain travel trackers including ticket reservations and visa process.
  • Oversee the purchase of office supplies and related items.
  • Manage office space, equipment, and inventory, and arrange for maintenance as necessary.
  • Maintain project personnel files, maintain personnel trackers, and ensure leave is tracked in accordance with office policy. 
  • Develop and maintain efficient filing systems for both physical and electronic documents.
  • Serve as a liaison between the field office and the project headquarters, ensuring clear communication and timely information exchange.
  • Coordinate with donors and other stakeholders on administrative and financial matters as needed.
  • Prepare all necessary administrative forms for project-related items.
  • Liaise with other support staff to meet the administrative needs of the office.
  • Perform other administrative tasks assigned by the supervisor to ensure efficient and smooth support of the project.

Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance, or a similar field;
  • Minimum of two years of experience preferably working on donor-funded projects in a related role and with demonstrated financial skills experience;
  • Demonstrated experience in assisting technical teams in day-to-day program operations, basic financial modeling and analysis, and report writing;
  • Knowledge of USAID, or other donors preferred;
  • Excellent/fluent written and spoken English;
  • Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Office specifically Excel.

Location and Reporting

The Finance and Administration Assistant will be based in Harare, Zimbabwe, and is directly supervised by the Country Representative.
 

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