Senior Executive Assistant

World Bank Group

Beijing, China

Experience: 5 to 10 Years

Skill Required: HR and Admin

The selected candidate will work with the Beijing-based Country Director (CD), Operations Manager (OM) and team in the office of the Country Director, as well as the broader group of administrative and client services team (ACS) in Beijing, the country management unit’s team in DC, and in very close coordination with the executive assistants for the Country Manager in Mongolia and Special Representative in Korea.

Duties and Responsibilities:

Executive Assistance to the Country Director 

  • Responsible for highly proactive time, travel and calendar management for the CD, including effective prioritization and resolution of related conflicts and competing demands.  
  • Responsible for the day-to-day supervision and coordination of the CD’s workflow in close coordination with the Program Assistant for the Portfolio and Operations team.  Acts as back-up to the Program Assistant for Portfolio and Operations in providing support to the OM.
  • In consultation with other colleagues, screens and prioritizes invitations received for the CD and senior management (e.g. for speaking engagements) and make recommendations to the CD.
  • If requested, monitors the CD’s official email, including while the CD is on leave or unable to monitor emails regularly, ensuring that urgent and key issues are addressed in a timely manner.  Prepares draft responses and emails as requested.  Always maintains absolute confidentiality.
  • Ensures quality assurance and operational accuracy of all documents requiring the CD’s signature. Guides staff on official formatting and standard protocol in processing executive correspondence and briefing materials. Works closely with the Program Assistant for the Portfolio team to ensure all operations-related correspondence conforms with operational guidelines.
  • Independently drafts correspondence and presentations and provides general research support on a range of topics on behalf of CD utilizing all relevant software programs.  Participates in and prepares minutes of meetings for the Director, including the regular DMT meetings.
  • Liaises with senior officials both inside and outside the Bank Group including a wide variety of high level contacts in government offices, other international organizations, NGOs and the public sector.
  • Establishes and maintains contacts with executive assistants of all relevant senior government officials, development partners, embassies, etc, relevant for the communications of the CD.
  • Independently responds to diverse inquiries and makes decisions when multiple courses of action are possible. Keeps relevant parties informed of actions taken by the CD by providing pertinent information, reports or status updates.
  • Supports the CD in ensuring that management decisions are properly communicated, carried out and delivered in a timely manner.
  • Supports staff acting as CD when the CD is traveling, ensuring seamless execution of the Country Director’s responsibilities.

Management of Beijing office ACS team

  • Works in partnership with the Operations Manager to manage the ACS staff in Beijing office, including: a) acts as official co-supervisor for all ACS in Beijing office for annual performance evaluations (OPEs) (with OM as supervisor) at all stages of the cycle, including results agreement planning, mid-year check ins and end of year performance reviews; b) manages and coordinates day-to-day work allocation and execution for all ACS staff.
  • Plays leading role in ensuring that ACS seek feedback from relevant and diverse feedback providers, synthesizes feedback during the OPE process, and provides draft comments to the OM.  
  • Conducts mid-year check in conversations with ACS staff and documents them.  Together with OM, jointly conducts annual performance conversations with ACS staff.  Alerts OM if off-cycle conversations with staff are required and facilitates them as needed.
  • Manages day to day work allocation of ACS in Beijing Office, making adjustments as needed to respond to changing circumstances.  Coordinates with the OM and HR if short term staff are needed to cover absences or as surge capacity during peak periods.
  • Serves as a mentor for ACS staff in Beijing.
  • Acts as CMU focal point for Bank-wide and regional ACS activities and programs, including the Community of Practice forums.   Represents the CMU in the regional ACS committee.  Ensures effective communication of all corporate priorities and initiatives to the ACS team in 3 offices.  
  • Organizes and chairs regular ACS meetings in Beijing and periodically by VC with the ACS teams in Mongolia and Korea, to ensure effective sharing of key information relevant to the work of the ACS team.  Reports on key DMT decisions and schedule to the ACS team.
  • Coordinates closely with HR colleagues and the OM on a range of issues, including internal/external recruitment of ACS staff, STTs for back-up work and, review of job posting/selection communication and processes.

Senior Visits, Events and Annual/Spring Meetings 

  • Works as a key member of the leadership team (with CD, OM, and Admin Officer) for senior visits to China, including the President, Managing Directors, Vice-Presidents and other senior Bank officials.  Key areas of responsibility will be as assigned by the CD but will likely include drafting of external correspondence related to the visit, managing agenda including liaison with external parties, and ensuring complete accuracy between logistics arrangements and the visit program through close cooperation with the Admin Officer.
  • Supports the DC-based team’s production of Briefings for the Annual and Spring Meetings and other senior level meetings by provision of bios and other relevant local information.  Liaises with government delegations on program and other details as requested by the Country Director or Senior Country Officer.
  • Prepares and provides support in organizing CMU events (annual meetings, retreats, workshops, seminars, and donors’ meetings).

Coordination with Mongolia and Korea country offices 

  • Takes a leadership role in coordinating the overall program and schedule for the department by working collaboratively with the executive assistants for the Country Manager in Mongolia and Special Representative in Korea and the Program Assistant for the OM, as well as with others within the department to ensure smooth planning of major events and activities that involve the CD and members of the DMT.  Holds regular meetings of the senior ACS leadership team in China, Mongolia and South Korea and develops a department-wide calendar of key events.
  • Ensures overall coordination of travel and activities for the CD when she is visiting Mongolia or Korea, liaising with the teams in those locations in advance to ensure timely preparation of schedule and materials required by the CD during the visit.

Selection Criteria

  • Bachelor’s degree or with at least 7 years of relevant experience, preferably with international development organizations working in an English language environment.
  • Previous experience in effectively managing or supervising staff will be a plus.
  • Ability to process, handle, and communicate matters of a sensitive and confidential nature with a high degree of judgement and maturity.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, including ability to speak articulately and to write clearly in English, precisely and concisely for various audiences, and strong ability to work within a team environment.
  • Ability and willingness to work with a diverse set of colleagues, cooperating and working seamlessly with all key members of the CMU management team, especially the CD and OM.
  • Excellent organizational, administrative, and time management skills with proven ability to work promptly and efficiently under pressure and meet tight deadlines.  Ability to shift gears at short notice to work on a wide range of assignments, remaining flexible and effective with a clear understanding of objectives to be achieved.
  • Demonstrated initiative, and drive for results including ability to undertake a diversity of tasks within a rapidly changing and demanding environment on short deadlines.