Research Operations & Research Support

J-PAL, India

Skill Required:, Research and Analysis
Preferred Experience: 
2 years of relevant work experience
Closing Date for Applications: 
25th October, 2019

Job Description

The research operations team is responsible to ensure the availability of highly efficient and quality infrastructure and resources on the ground to facilitate rigorous data collection across various evaluation studies across the country. The vertical works closely with other verticals to ensure quality data collection systems and process, as well as high adherence to research compliance.

We are looking for a dynamic personality with exceptional field and people management skills along with exceptional communication and multitasking exposure in highly competitive environment. An ideal candidate would be someone who has implemented large scale field research projects on the ground, has the ability to work with project teams to understand field activities and simultaneously work with Research operations team to ensure resource availability, quality delivery and widespread coverage.

The Senior Associate (Research Operations), is a highly collaborative position that would require to work across teams and people at all levels within the organization. The ideal candidate is someone who has excellent field management skills, communications skills, is a team player, is passionate to work at the grass root level and should be a creative problem solver who can lead on multiple fronts. The role requires the Senior Associate to operate in a dynamic environment, defining priorities for resource allocation leading to optimal utilization. The role also requires the Senior Associate to support the setting-up of and lead a highly efficient information management system for a large team operating under him/her. The position would also require the Senior Associate to roll up the sleeves and oversee first hand data collection to ensure quality of services provided by the team to the projects. The Senior Associate (Research Operations) will also be responsible to provide operational support to all projects that do not have Research Manager. The allocation of such projects will be updated on a monthly basis. The Senior Associate (Research Operations) will report to Associate Director (Research Operations) and will take the lead on supporting projects, across J-PAL SA, on activities pertaining to data collection.

Successful candidate shall be monitoring and supervising, the members of Research Operations team, that includes Team Lead (Surveys), Survey Coordinators and Project Associate. The Senior Associate (Research Operations), along with Associate Director (Research Operations) will work closely with Associate Director (Research) and Senior Managers for the operational management of projects operating on the ground without Research Managers.


Coordination and communication (With projects and within team)

  • Manage systematic channels of communication across projects to track planned activities and implementation timeline. Keep track of activities in the field across projects that require support and ensure systematic and optimal utilization of human resources.
  • Keep AD (RO) apprised of the activity charter across projects and development on the projects pertaining to the activities supported by the team members.
  • Manage an efficient reporting structure for the team that helps to efficiently consolidate information pertaining to activities supported by the team on the ground and keep a track of qualitative issues and concerns and their resolution, systematically.

Compliance tracking and quality control measures

  • Take measures to systematically track research and organizational compliance and work closely with project leads to implement resolution plans. Also, manage technology driven tools to track compliance across activities and projects and take measures to consolidate information in an efficient manner on digital platform.
  • Take lead in tracking quality control measures across projects. Procure and manage skills inventory to support project in terms of setting up quality control tools.
  • Support in consolidating information pertaining to assessing surveying quality from the field across projects. Take measures to link it up with a digital platform and to generate training needs assessment for field staff to improve surveying quality.

Supporting the Capacity development initiatives

  • Actively support the capacity development initiatives for the vertical including
  • Key training programs aimed to develop technical and soft skills for team members
  • Digital orientation programs to induct new hires systematically
  • Standardized human subjects training program for enumerators across projects aligned with best in class content of international repute
  • Represent vertical and organization as lead trainer for internal and external events. Efficient information management systems ·
  • Streamline the existing communication, reporting and information management systems with focus on bringing in better efficiency and visibility.
  • Support in setting up vertical’s dashboard with key macro and micro outcomes across various initiatives and activities facilitate better decision making. Knowledge Management initiatives
  • Support vertical’s knowledge management initiatives; contribute to the knowledge library by bringing the key qualitative insights and experiences from the field as write-up and op-eds for newsletter and the vertical’s knowledge library.

Project Management: Supporting projects without Research Managers

  • Ensure that projects have the optimal support required to adhere to the learning and development standards of J-PAL SA as well as the Research Protocols.
  • Support the AD-R to ensure this support is being delivered through regular check-ins and subsequent corrections with the research team.
  • Act as the advisory and operational point person for all projects running without the Research Manager.
  • Allocation of such projects will get updated on a monthly basis.
  • Manage project timelines & schedule check-in dialogues with RA/RSA and setup internal reporting.
  • Mentor RA/RSA to build technical and managerial competence.
  • Ensure compliance with J-PAL’s research protocols.


  • Education: Master’s degree (Preferably in development studies, rural management, international development, economics, public administration, public policy. Ideal candidate will have academic exposure to program evaluation, survey methodology and understanding of research methodologies and evaluations.
  • Experience: A minimum of 2 years of experience at the associate level


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