Belgium: Grant Writer

Organization: Search for Common Ground
Country: Belgium
Closing date: 31 Mar 2017

The Organization

Search for Common Ground (SFCG) is an international non-profit organization which promotes peaceful resolution of conflict. With headquarters in Washington, DC and in Brussels, Search’s mission is to transform how individuals, organizations, and governments deal with conflict – away from adversarial approaches and toward cooperative solutions. Search seeks to help conflicting parties understand their differences and act on their commonalities.

For over three decades, Search has been a leader in implementing innovative conflict transformation programs in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East, and in documenting its experiences and evidence for the broader field. With approximately 700 Staff, and offices in 60 cities and in 49 countries around the world, we are a global organization which draws on local insight and in-depth knowledge. Nearly 90% of our Staff work in their home countries, and many more work in their home regions. Search’s programs are organized into both geographic regional programs and technical units focused on thematic issues (Media, Youth, Research & Learning, etc.).

The organization is an exciting and rewarding place in which to work, with dedicated and enthusiastic Staff, who are committed to its mission and values. You will be joining a highly motivated team with a good team spirit.

Search in Brussels

Search for Common Ground’s Brussels headquarters is a highly effective presence for the organization in the heart of the European Union (EU), the primary purpose of which is to help advance Search’s organizational priorities by engaging with, influencing, and fundraising from, the EU and European bilateral governments, which compose Search’s largest funding base.

Summary of Position

Search for Common Ground (SFCG) seeks a Grants Manager to be a member of the SFCG Global Finance team. The position holder will work closely with the Brussels office, Washington-based divisions and field-based teams within Search for Common Ground. The position reports to the Controller based in Washington, DC, and will support the work of the Executive Vice President, based in Brussels, Belgium. The purpose of the position is to perform financial management and accounting in a professional, efficient, effective, and compliant manner to maintain and strengthen the effectiveness of the award management life cycle and continue to earn the confidence of donors. The position-holder will assist in managing grants and contracts from the proposal stage to final award close-out, with the primary focus on grants from the European Commission and other multilaterals and European entities. This will include supporting the program teams to design proposal budgets; the preparation of periodic grant financial reports and invoices; ensuring proper management of grants and contracts throughout project implementation, including monitoring burn-rates and cash flow, and providing guidance on how to avoid disallowed costs; monitoring timing and completion of project audits and working with the program implementers to continuously improve the financial grants management and resolve any identified findings; monitoring compliance by reviewing supporting documentation for all project costs, both for corporate and field-based program expenses; and, in addition, will handle special projects as assigned from time to time by the Executive Vice President.


  • Manage the assigned portfolio of grants and contracts from the proposal stage to final close-out;
  • Play the role of a team leader in working with the finance, grants, and program teams in the country field offices to ensure successful project implementation;
  • Contribute to the building of international relationships with internal and external partners;
  • Coordinate the designing of grant and contract budgets with field offices, ensuring compliance and financial accuracy and reasonableness, and submit them with recommendations for approval to the Controller;
  • Prepare accurate financial reports for timely submission to donors in compliance with the financial reporting requirements of the donor;
  • Maintain up-to-date data on the SharePoint Finance portal relating to all proposals and awards in the assigned portfolio;
  • Upload final award budgets into the system and manage budget revisions from time to time;
  • Manage exchange rate fluctuations proactively with the project managers;
  • Monitor spending in relation to budgets within donor specified line-item flexibility;
  • Ensure full compliance with corporate policy and donor regulations and stipulations;
  • Provide guidance to field offices on contractual and accounting matters;
  • Work directly with Regional Finance Managers and Project Finance Managers in Headquarters to ensure accurate and complete accounting on awards;
  • Monitor receivables, drawdowns, invoicing and collections from donors on awards in the portfolio;
  • Monitor audit requirements and support field offices as needed during the audit engagements;
  • Liaise (in consultation with the Project Finance Managers and Controller) with external auditors on the verification of supporting documents for program financial audits;
  • Support the Controller and Regional Finance Managers in capacity-building activities for field offices;
  • Mentor the Country Finance Managers in EU reporting and grant management skills.
  • Develop expertise and train on EU and European government regulations, specifically in the areas of financial policies and transfer knowledge to program and finance staff at Country level.
  • Prepare a Field Financial Grants Management Manual for Field Offices on EU grant policies and procedures;
  • Work closely with the Washington-based project and finance staff to ensure capture of and proper recordation of Brussels-based office costs into the organizational accounting system;
  • Process local payments for the Brussels office running costs under the direction of the Director, Financial Reporting, as may be required;
  • Assist with the Belgian regulatory review and support DC and Belgian annual audits, as may be required; and
  • Other special projects and duties as assigned from time to time. As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the position holder may be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key duties.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting, auditing, or related field;
  • Minimum of five years progressive financial and/or grants management experience with an NGO in a similar job capacity;
  • Minimum of two years of direct work experience in financial grants management under the regulations of the European Commission, as well as other Multilaterals and Belgian and/or other European Donors;
  • Strong grasp of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and experience in compliance with International Accounting Standards (IAS) and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS);
  • Experience with US Government grants and contracts management is a plus;
  • Ability to efficiently and effectively prepare budgets using Microsoft Excel;
  • Ability to monitor and report on project budgets, effectively communicate compliance with donor rules and regulations and aptly liaise with auditors on accounting and grants management issues;
  • Solid leadership and strong oral and written communication skills;
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to meet deadlines;
  • Ability to work well under pressure with strong attention to detail;
  • English fluency and French proficiency (including written);
  • Ability to travel overseas to SFCG country offices on short notice; and
  • Eligibility to work in Belgium.


Commensurate with experience and education, with excellent benefits

How to apply:

To Apply:

Please send cover letter and resume through our Application System. No phone calls please. Please visit our website for full details of our work. This position will remain open until filled.

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