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Snap Plaza 8th floor, Bole Next to The Millennium hall. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Job Description:
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.
Program / Department Summary
Mercy Corps has been present in Ethiopia since 2004 working to drive bold and transformative ideas, working closely with government, the private sector and civil society actors to build a more resilient country, ensuring that programs are responsive to and influenced by participants and stakeholders. Our vision is to enhance the resilience of climate and conflict-affected communities through market systems development for improved livelihoods, access to food, and safe and clean water to thrive in the face of crises. Our strategy focuses on the four outcome areas of: 1) Economically marginalized populations have improved and diversified livelihoods, income, and assets; 2) Pastoralists, farmers, and households have access to sustainably produced, safe, nutritious food; 3) Social cohesion and inclusive governance processes are built in crisis-affected communities; and 4) People have equitable, sustained access to clean water and sanitation for domestic and productive use. Currently we operate in the regional states of Afar, Amhara, Gambella, Oromia, Somali, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia, Tigray and Addis Ababa city administration working with a diverse base of donors that includes United States Agency for International Development (USAID), European Union, GAC, Hilton Foundation, United Nations (UN), JOA, Sweden, EKN, and other foundations.
The USAID-funded Highland Resilience Activity (HRA) will contribute to the Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) 5’s “Big Push” initiative and has the overarching goal of strengthening resilience among vulnerable households in Ethiopia’s Highlands, resulting in 120,000 PSNP households reaching the graduation threshold. HRA will support these households in moving above the graduation threshold and to where they no longer require social safety net programming for household food security and have the capabilities and assets to withstand regular and predictable shocks. The Activity will achieve this goal by directly supporting households in increasing their on-farm, off-farm, and employment incomes while facilitating improvements in the market systems required to increase demand for goods and services in PSNP communities. HRA is a five-year program that started during October 2023.
General Position Summary
The off-farm enterprise specialist supports the productivity and sales of off-farm income generating activities. They work with relevant institutions for PSNP Households to have increased income from self and wage employment. Guides activities to promote the use of improved and appropriate skills, technology, and information services. Strengthens capacity of local partner staff that support PSNP off-farm enterprises. S/he also supports market system assessment, off farm enterprises capacity assessment, capacity building support to program targeted agribusinesses, including technical advice, mentorship and coaching; and facilitating linkages to support services for improved coverage and outreach. The Off-farm enterprise specialist will closely work with inclusive value chain specialist, on-farm enterprise specialist and financial inclusion specialist and closely coordinate with the field level technical team.
Essential Job Responsibilities

Strategy & Vision
  • Enhance strategic partnership with stakeholders and partners to advocate, promote and advance organizational issues, priorities, interests and competencies for a successful programme and program delivery.
  • Collaborate with clients, partners, and stakeholders to link and harmonize approaches and to promote common interests and achievement of results.
Program Management
  • Support the development of work plan, activities, targets, budget, standards for measuring progress and results and determine the processes, tools, and methodologies to be used to ensure effective and efficient program implementation and operations.
  • Conduct high quality market system assessments in financial services, providing the foundation for program design.
  • Design interventions Concept notes for MSD programs, using tools such as Results Chains and ‘Who Does, Who Pays?’ matrices.
  • Supports the expansion of the high potential markets for off-farm activities in target areas that could enhance the livelihood of PSNP households.
  • Facilitate capacity building interventions for community based economic organizations in organizational management and governance, business skills, IGA, climate adaptation, graduation and others as required;
  • Identify and support establish/strengthen new/existing Business Development Services providers.
  • Collaborate with TVETs and other potential training centers to introduce market driven, appropriate and contextualized training programs.
  • Capacity building of the key institutions in labor market assessment, work preparation and placement
  • Ensure gender integration and mainstreaming are incorporated into off-farm interventions.
  • Monitor progress and identify risks for timely action and early resolution.
  • Responsible for the full compliance with Mercy Corps rules and regulations and policies on financial activities, financial recording/reporting system and follow-up on audit recommendations.
  • Actively support knowledge building, sharing, and applying in the program.
  • Submission of high-quality program reports to the Livelihoods Team Lead and other relevant Mercy Corps Ethiopia team members.
Team Work
  • Ability to plan own work, manage conflicting priorities and work under pressure of tight and conflicting deadlines.
  • Work closely with team members and partners, to support capacity-building and gender integration into the programs.
  • Very good interpersonal skills and ability to establish and maintain effective partnerships and working relations.
  • Very strong leadership capacities to guide a multicultural team in difficult circumstances.
  • Support the identification of program issues, challenges and risks, appropriate recommendations and implements them.
Influence & Representation
  • Make sure to coordinate with government, development, and humanitarian actors to enhance productivity of on-farm activities.
  • Represent Mercy Corps in various platforms, networks, and coordination forums that focus on agriculture..
  • Always upholds the image and values of Mercy Corps.
Gender, Equality, Diversity, and Social Inclusion)
  • Be a thought partner in the recruitment of diverse teams and promoting inclusive and safe work environments including supporting early career team members to fulfill their professional goals.
  • Lead by example to promote a gender-equal and inclusive workplace culture in day-to-day interaction with team members, partners, and program participants.
  • Reports Directly to: Program Coordinator ( Head of Office)
  • Technical Reporting line: Livelihoods Team Lead
  • Closely work with: HRA program team, HRA consortium partners, MEL team, Finance team, Operations team, private sector partners, and government stakeholders.
  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders
Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, and other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in designing, monitoring, and evaluating our field projects.
Job Requirements:
Knowledge and Experience
  • BA degree in Economics, Business Administration, Marketing Agricultural Economics, or related Social Science fields.
  • At least 4 years work experience in agricultural value chain development, agricultural marketing, local economic development, business development and entrepreneurship interventions/programs.
  • Experience on increasing off-farm productivity including collaborating with private sector national and international actors to achieve sustainable and scalable solutions for hard-to-reach communities (preferably experience in working with the PSNP program).
  • Understanding of Markets Systems Development (MSD) approach.
  • Very good written and verbal communication skills in English.
  • Fluency in the local language is required.
 Success Factors:
A successful candidate will have a demonstrated ability to lead and communicate effectively with team members of varied work styles, follow procedures, and meet deadlines with flexibility and creativity in planning and problem solving. They will undertake innovative and creative approaches, be agile in the conceptualization of new program ideas, and will be well versed in strategic thinking and planning - including openness to test new ways to work with private sector actors in the PSNP context. They will have a proven ability to learn quickly, take initiative, and be accountable for results, understand the larger picture while remaining focused on the details, work within a complex security and political situation and to follow strict security protocols. A willingness to relocate for short-term as necessary within coverage regions, based on programmatic needs, work independently and as part of a team are essential Computer literate especially in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook).
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
The position is based in Mekele Ethiopia and it requires travel to support country programs, which may include travel to insecure locations where freedom of movement is limited and areas where amenities are limited.
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 the Interagency 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 to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct e-learning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.
Job Category:
Business DevelopmentDevelopment and Project ManagementEconomics
Business Development, Development and Project Management, Economics
Full time
Full time
Mekelle, Tigray
Mercy Corps Ethiopia Mercy Corps Ethiopia

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