United States of America: OTI Senior Transition Specialist 

Organization: US Agency for International Development
Country: United States of America
Closing date: 07 Sep 2018

he OTI Senior Transition Specialist is a full-time Personal Services Contract (PSC) position at the GS-14 equivalent level and located in Washington D.C. Applications for this position are due no later than September 7, 2018 at 1:00pm Eastern Time. For full information about this position, as well as instructions on how to apply, please read the entire solicitation at www.OTIjobs.net.


As part of the Program Learning and Innovation Division, OTI’s Program Office provides strategic guidance on country-level and office-level budgeting, strategy and program performance issues, and increases key stakeholder awareness of and support for OTI as a key instrument in carrying out U.S. foreign policy objectives. The Program Office maintains technical oversight of the Support Which Implements Fast Transitions (SWIFT) Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract and other key mechanisms, and manages coordination of programming within the Foreign Assistance (F) framework. The Program Office plays a key role in country budget and program procurement planning and execution, and managing implementing partner relations. The Program Office also provides support to ongoing country programs through managing country budgeting decisions and allocation of resources, and setting standards and providing guidance on strategic planning, decision-making, and implementation. In addition, the Program Office provides reports on country activities for DCHA, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Department of State, and Congress. The Senior Transition Specialist will provide regular guidance and leadership for the OTI Program Office staff, including management and supervision.

The Senior Transition Specialist must be an established subject matter expert in the field of political transition and/or stabilization programming overseas, and must be able to articulate OTI’s vision and business model to a wide range of audiences including new OTI and USAID staff, implementing partners, other U.S. Government agencies, non-governmental organizations including non-profit and for-profit entities, host government officials, and various individuals and grassroots organizations overseas. The Senior Transition Specialist must possess an in-depth understanding of all aspects of political transition and/or stabilization programming, including grants under contracts and an understanding of in-kind assistance, to design (as necessary), advise, lead and achieve successful transition/stabilization programs.

The successful offeror will possess the program, project management and budgetary skills to help ensure successful OTI country program start-ups, management, and closeouts. The complex demands of this position require that the incumbent be able to travel overseas with short notice, and be able to immediately respond to the challenging demands often faced by OTI programs. The proper execution of OTI programs requires a Senior Transition Specialist with a high level of managerial and operational skills, preferably having worked previously with/on both acquisition and assistance mechanisms. The Senior Transition Specialist must be prepared to work or collaborate with senior officials from other international organizations, bilateral donors, contractors and non-governmental organizations, and representatives from the USG foreign affairs interagency who may be important to OTI’s programs and objectives, and must have an in-depth knowledge of international relations. The Senior Transition Specialist may also be required to supervise staff for a portion of or the duration of the contract, and is expected to lead, manage, motivate, mentor and train staff to ensure that they meet the requirements of their positions, effectively support OTI’s mission, and are provided with professional development opportunities.


  • Lead office process of budget development and management, guide Senior Management and Team Leads in budgeting reviews and decisions, and ensure appropriate resource allocation among OTI field offices and implementing partners;

  • Advise Senior Leadership and Team Leader, including the Program Office Team Leader, on budget processes and reviews, in coordination with Program Office budget analysts;

  • Coordinate closely with OTI’s three divisions (Operations and Management Division; Field Programs Division; and Program, Learning and Innovation Division) as well as the OTI Senior Leadership Team. Attend the respective team meetings, providing leadership and support on behalf of the Program Office. Ensure that priorities are shared with other divisions and teams;

  • Liaise with the Office of Acquisition and Assistance (OAA) and other Offices (such as mission contracting officers, implementing partner staff) to conceptualize, design, and manage the award process for acquisition and assistance mechanisms. Provide post-award administration support to OTI teams and ensure that current procurement policies, procedures, and regulations are appropriately applied throughout the startup, implementation, and closeout phases of OTI country programs;

  • Advise and/or assist with resolving compliance questions in support of OTI country programs. This will require coordinating and communicating with the Program Office team, OAA staff, implementing partners and other OTI staff, on the resolution of regular and special procurement needs associated with waiver requests, budget modifications, local procurement issues, design and development of large or complex grant activities or subcontracts to be implemented in the field, and other issues related to program startup, implementation, and closeout;

  • Update and revise program management guides, including strategic planning and field operations materials;

  • Provide training and mentoring on OTI program implementation for OTI staff both in Washington and the field;

  • Serve as a liaison with other DCHA offices, other USAID divisions and the State Department on program and policy direction;

  • Represent and articulate OTI’s mission and global programs to visitors, senior officials from international organizations, bilateral donors and national and local foreign government officials;

  • Support the conceptualization and design of country program strategies and objectives in close coordination with OTI staff, USAID domestic and worldwide staff, and U.S. Department of State personnel, and other governmental and non-governmental actors, based on political analysis and U.S. Government policy. Assist in refining strategic objectives and advocate on behalf of new programmatic approaches in-country, possibly linked to neighboring country programs;

  • Assist with the development of information management products and improved business practices for OTI based on research and personal field experience and lessons learned;

  • Advise and/or assist drafting document and outlining the vision and future plans for the development and implementation of OTI programs;

  • Assist in developing and improving country program monitoring and evaluation systems, providing guidance on designing and managing final evaluations;

  • Negotiate, within the guidelines provided by the OTI supervisor, or his/her designee, program and project agreements with governmental and non-governmental counterparts;

  • Identify or seek out NGOs, international donors, U.S. Government (USG) agencies and other organizations of importance to OTI programs in Washington and the field, and develop and maintain professional relationships with them;

  • Conduct, in collaboration with the relevant OTI regional team, assessments for possible new country programs, and visits to field sites in areas where OTI conducts business;

  • Act as OTI Division Chief, or in other team and bureau roles;

  • Fill critical program design, oversight, and management staffing needs in both the Washington, and the field offices including the provision of ad hoc support to new OTI country program start-ups and on-call technical assistance, not limited to providing supervisory support;

  • Supervise staff as delegated by the OTI supervisor (e.g. Deputy Team Leader, Program Advisors, Technical Advisors, Procurement Analysts, Program Managers, Program Assistants and Administrative Program Assistants). Provide orientation, training and mentoring for OTI staff supervised; assign work, explain how duties are to be performed to meet expectations, and communicate how the successful performance of those duties will be measured; evaluate staff performance; recognize good performance; communicate where performance needs to be improved; resolved complaints; and approve leave requests and timesheets as well as training, travel and program and operations requests;

  • Perform services under this scope of work outside Washington OTI headquarters, and other USAID offices, bureaus or other USG agencies for a period not to exceed six months.


  • A Master’s Degree with seven (7) years of work experience;


  • A Bachelor’s Degree with nine (9) years of work experience;


  • Six (6) years of project management experience with a U.S. Government foreign affairs agency, international or domestic assistance organization, or non-governmental organization in community development, economic development, mediation/arbitration, conflict resolution, democracy and governance, international law, human rights activities, and/or political analysis.

  • Two (2) years of overseas field experience working in a developing country, of which One (1) must include experience in a country undergoing political transition.

  • Four (4) years of supervisory experience (including mentoring, training, and/or guiding staff).

Please direct questions about this position or the application process to the OTI Recruitment Team at otijobs@usaid.gov.

How to apply:

For full information about this position, as well as instructions on how to apply, please visit www.OTIjobs.net.