Project Manager

Oorja Development Solutions Limited India, Delhi/Mumbai, India

Job Description

About Oorja

Oorja is an award-winning social enterprise based in New Delhi, tackling some of the most pressing
challenges in the off-grid energy sector today: renewable energy expansion and energy poverty.
Oorja's focus is on powering beneficial appliances that help users to generate stable incomes, create jobs,
and mitigate carbon emissions. Despite the urgent need, around 90% of marginal farmers cannot afford to
invest in solar technology for their farms. Oorja wants to close this gap. We install, operate, and maintain
decentralized solar energy systems for community use and sell irrigation, milling, and refrigeration as
affordable services on a pay-per-use basis to marginal farmers, without any upfront cost to them. We
operate in rural areas of northern India where farmers are currently reliant on polluting and expensive
diesel motors for their energy needs.
Our core strengths are our inclusive, customer-centered business model and a diverse and driven team
with a shared passion for sustainable development. We are determined to scale up access to solar power
among the most marginalized communities. Some of our supporters and partners in this mission are: Echoing Green, CISCO, Villgro, MIT Technology Review, and CLEAN

Role Background

  • Oorja is seeking a Project Manager with 4–5 years’ experience in the social sector. The Project Manager
  • will be responsible for fostering and maintaining partnerships, grant fundraising, and impact management.
  • The Project Manager will also lead research, strategy development, and implementation for new services
  • and offerings including market linkages and regional and international expansion. He/she/they will also
  • manage all organizational communications and donor and investor reporting. The ideal candidate brings
  • experience managing relationships with different stakeholders, impeccable written English proficiency and
  • strong organizational skills. You should have a proven track record of achievement of targets with strict
  • deadlines in a similar role. You should also be comfortable working in a mission-driven start-up
  • environment, be adept at multitasking, and able to communicate effectively at all levels of the organization.

Key Duties

  •  Lead grant fundraising efforts: application and proposal writing, preparing and presenting
  •  Partnership building and relationship management (funders, corporate entities, local/grassroots NGOs, FPCs, etc.)
  •  Oversee quantitative and qualitative impact management and measurement efforts based on M&E framework
  •  Strategy development and implementation of market linkage and agri-business value chain for farmers’ produce
  •  Research and identification of opportunities and partners for expansion into new geographies and markets
  •  Strategy development and implementation of new farmers services (inputs, training, advisory, finance, etc.)
  •  Oversee corporate communications and grant funder and investor reporting
  • Fellowship program design and management

Roles and Responsibilities

The Project Manager’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

 Grant fundraising: drafting, reviewing, and submitting applications or proposals for fundraising
from foundations, DFIs, business competitions, and other donors; preparing and presenting
proposals to grant funders and donors; conducting preliminary calls and liaising with them
throughout the engagement

  • Partnership development and management for (1) funders, investors and corporate entities, and (2) local/grassroots partnerships (farmer associations, cooperatives, FPCs, FPOs, NGOs, buyers, retailers, etc.) in current and new geographies within India, including eastern Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha, Jharkhand, and Chhattisgarh
  • Assess and select new partner organizations; negotiate roles and finalize MoUs; liaise with existing partners; develop and implement new collaborative projects; translate insights gained from partner meetings into recommendations and plans
  • Impact management and measurement: implementation of the M&E framework; supervision of collection of baseline and periodic impact data using standardized surveys; oversee data collection, cleaning, storage, and management; data analysis and visualization in Excel, Tableau, or another suitable format; calculation and presentation of key impact metrics and SROI
  •  Report writing for internal and external audiences: project reports; performance and impact reports; annual reports; reporting to investors and donors in the designated format
  •  Oversee development of training and capacity building modules to strengthen farmers’ agricultural livelihoods in conjunction with energy services being delivered by Oorja (crop and input selection, cultivation practices for field and horticultural crops, intercropping, multi-cropping, yield enhancement, plant and soil health, pest and disease control, effective irrigation, post-harvest storage, and processing, agronomy, sustainable agricultural practices, agricultural innovations, etc.)
  • Oversee the implementation of farmer training and capacity building programs (and eventually advisory services): review video and print material, oversee the organization and delivery of participatory workshops, review monthly training reports sent by field staff to track farmers’ reached and trained and link this to the services provided
  •  Lead corporate communications to raise the organization’s profile among different circles and attract the attention of potential funders and collaborators: monthly newsletters, blogs, contributions to publications, media, and conferences
  • Research, strategy development, and overseeing the implementation of market linkages to bring farmers’ fresh and processed products to markets in northern and eastern India; finding institutional buyers; prospects for contract farming; formation of FPOs and FPCs; building the agribusiness value chain for high-value commodities
  •  Research and strategy development for aggregation and procurement of produce from the company’s customers; potential for processing, packaging, branding, and selling through B2B and B2C channels
  •  Research, strategy development, and overseeing the implementation of new service offerings for farmers including advisory services, quality inputs (seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, etc.), small farm equipment rental, etc.
  • Research and identify partners for expansion into new geographies and markets: conduct desk research to identify, analyze and select target geographies in South/Southeast Asia and subSaharan Africa; identify potential collaborators; research and develop market entry strategy; oversee the seamless execution and monitoring of pilot projects
  • Support with strategy development in other areas of the business, including the launch of new agricultural energy services, advisory services, rental services, product sales, etc.
  • Design, development, implementation, and management of a Fellowship program to offer young people the opportunity to learn on the job while they contribute their knowledge and skills in adding value to the company’s mission

Qualifications

  • • 4+ years’ experience in the social development sector, with a strong interest in agriculture, livelihoods and energy issues
  •  Post-graduate degree in a relevant discipline
  •  Development professional with experience managing partnerships and grant writing; experience
  • working with an agribusiness, farmer collectives or a clean energy company would be a plus Competencies and Abilities
  • Expertise in impact monitoring and evaluation methodologies, tools, and software
  •  Superior organizational and time management skills and attention to detail
  •  Impeccable written English and excellent communication abilities, both verbal and written
  •  Self-motivated and able to work independently to meet deadlines and adhere to quality standards
  • • Cultivate an independent understanding of issues including social/economic development, agriculture, water, and energy, with a focus on rural India
  •  High degree of computer literacy with the command of MS Office; knowledge of graphic design
  • software or platforms (Adobe Creative Suite, Canva, Prezi or equivalent) will be an advantage
  •  Able to work within a multidisciplinary, international team with sensitivity and respect for diversity
  •  Strong team spirit and commitment to the environmental and social mission which drives Oorja
  •  Ability and willingness to travel to rural areas of India for fieldwork

Benefits

  •  Exciting high-impact assignments
  •  A collegial and creative work environment
  •  Attractive wages
  •  You will join a dynamic and passionate team of professionals
  •  Opportunity to thrive and grow within flat hierarchies in pursuit of an inspiring mission.

Application process

Oorja conducts a 3-stage evaluation process. First, a short preliminary interview (45 min) about your
background, experience, and motivation. Second, a longer interview (2-3 hours) is arranged including
assignments to further assess your skills and adequacy for the role, interactions with the team, and fit
within the organizational culture. Third, a final interview (30 min) with Oorja’s external advisors to assess
your long-term aspirations and alignment of your learning and growth objectives with the company’s
mission and goals. Successful candidates in each stage will be notified by email.

Equal Opportunities and Non-Discrimination Statement
Oorja Development Solutions India Private Limited is an equal opportunity employer that values and
respects the importance of a diverse and inclusive workforce. It is the policy of the company to recruit,
hire, train and promote persons in all job titles without regard to religion, race, caste, gender, place of
birth, sexual orientation, marital status, or disability status. Oorja endeavors to provide a safe, diverse, and comfortable workplace. Oorja will not adversely discriminate, and prohibits other adverse
discrimination at the workplace, against any person on its premises, whether that person is in its
employment or otherwise. If you can contribute to our organization, you are welcome, regardless of your
roots, religion, age or gender.


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