Senior Finance Officer / Head of Unit

  • 89 742 EUROS (Annual Salary)
  • Paris, Ile-de-France, France Paris Ile-de-France FR
  • Contract, Full time
  • UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • 20 Apr 18 2018-04-20

UNESCO Core Values: Commitment to the Organization, Integrity, Respect for Diversity, Professionalism

The Financial Policy and Compliance Section (FPC), in the Bureau of Financial Management (BFM) contributes to strengthening the internal
control framework of the Organization and financial risk management through contributions towards policy direction/formulation/application, guidance and training and regular management and financial indicators preparation based on established monitoring mechanism.

The policy development and audit coordination functions of this post are part of the Organization's overall internal control and accountability framework. Under the overall authority of the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and direct supervision from the Chief of Section, the incumbent will be responsible for the following key functions:

  • Act as a Senior Finance Officer/Head of Unit for UNESCO’s financial policies and processes; be responsible for elaborating policy, guidance, training and technical assistance in areas under his/her purview, namely all financial management processes, excluding procurement.
  • Coordinate and review BFM responses to internal audits, Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) or related audits and reviews, as well as lead the donor accreditation processes; oversee responses to external audit recommendations, ensuring that these are complete and coherent.
  • Follow up on outcomes of audit/verification recommendations as well as requests from Governing Bodies; identify financial risk levels and prepare remedial action plans which include training, policy and guidance material development, as well as process simplification or re-design; follow up on the implementation.
  • Define “standard financial management training needs” and coordinate the development of standard financial management training packages.
  • Contribute to the knowledge sharing in areas under his/her purview, namely in areas of financial management and promote “best practices” internally and externally where required.
  • Supervise and monitor the work of the administrative Manual Secretariat
  • Act as UNESCO representative in related inter-agency networks and working groups and multi-agency business seminars as and when necessary.



A successfull candidate will be required to demonstrate the following competencies:

Core Competencies

  • Accountability
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Results focus
  • Planning and organizing
  • Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement

Managerial Competencies

  • Driving and managing change
  • Strategic thinking
  • Making quality decisions
  • Building partnerships
  • Leading and empowering others
  • Managing performance

For detailed information please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework



  • Advanced university degree (Masters or equivalent degree) in finance, business administration or accounting or related fields.
  • Professional certification from an internationally recognized accounting body or Membership of a recognized professional accounting body.


  • A minimum of 7 years of progressively responsible, relevant professional experience in the field of financial management, financial policy making, programme and budget management or accounting, of which at least 3 years acquired at international level.
  • Experience in formulating policies and processes, in coordinating outcomes and elaborating trainings.


  • Ability to communicate and provide advice on technical issues to a non-specialist audience.
  • Proven ability to analyze processes in the context of quality and risk management and identify opportunities for system and structural improvement, as well as to improve current practices and policies.
  • Good knowledge of contracting procedures and framework.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, with proven ability to produce high quality, clear and concise documents and reports in English and/or French.
  • Ability to manage multicultural and multidisciplinary teams.
  • Demonstrated organizational, coordination and interpersonal skills, with ability to take initiative, establish plans and priorities and implement them effectively
  • Ability to deal effectively and engage with various internal/external partners.
  • Ability to manage heavy work load, to work under pressure and to meet tight deadlines, paying close attention to details and quality of work.
  • Excellent IT skills.


  • Excellent knowledge (written and spoken) of English or French and good knowledge of the other language.


  • Knowledge of financial accounting as applied to International Public Organizations.


  • Professional experience in an international organization/institution or in the UN System.
  • Experience within an audit service or finance department in the UN System.


  • Good knowledge of another official language of UNESCO (Arabic, Chinese, Russian or Spanish).


UNESCO's salaries are calculated in US dollars. They consist of a basic salary and a post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station and exchange rate.

Other benefits include: 30 days annual leave, family allowance, home travel, education grant for dependent children, pension plan and medical insurance. More details can be found on the ICSCWebsite.

Please note that UNESCO is a non-smoking Organization.



UNESCO is committed to promoting geographical distribution ( last update) and gender equality within its Secretariat. Therefore, women candidates are strongly encouraged to apply, as well as nationals from non- and und er-represented Member States. Persons with disabilities are also encouraged to apply. Worldwide mobility is required for staff members appointed to international posts . UNESCO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process.