Senior Program Officer, Human Resources for Health

Clinton Health Access Initiative, Freetown, Sierra Leone

Skill Required:, HR and AdminProject/ Programme Management
Preferred Experience: 
5 years
Closing Date for Applications: 
29th July, 2018

Job Description


The Clinton Health Access Initiative, Inc. (CHAI) is a global health organization committed to saving lives and reducing the burden of disease in low-and middle-income countries, while strengthening the capabilities of governments and the private sector in those countries to create and sustain high-quality health systems that can succeed without our assistance. For more information, please visit:

The team in Sierra Leone has been engaged by the Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MoHS) to support the health sector’s recovery in the wake of the devastating Ebola crisis and has evolved that support to a broader health system strengthening approach. This is a unique moment for Sierra Leone as global attention offers the country an opportunity to build a more resilient and robust health system. The MoHS has taken this opportunity to think strategically and ambitiously about their plans for the future and CHAI has supported these efforts--with a particular focus on dramatically improving the number, skill, and distribution of its health workforce across Sierra Leone. The national HRH Strategy 2017-2021 is currently being implemented and CHAI is supporting decentralization of HRH management, increasing rural retention, and developing continuous education plans, as well as increasing quality of training.

CHAI has been working with the Directorate of HRH of the MoHS and related agencies, such as the Health Services Commission and key HRH working groups, to assist the MoHS in:

  • Clearly articulating HRH challenges;
  • Generating data and analysis around the health workforce to inform decision-making and planning;
  • Developing specific plans and policies in response to those needs;
  • Improving data management processes and structures to enable informed decision-making on an ongoing basis.

The Senior Program Officer will report to the HRH Program Manager and will be an integral member of the CHAI Sierra Leone HRH team contributing to critical projects—especially the implementation of the Sierra Leone HRH Strategy 2017-2021. Because of the fluid nature of our work, specific responsibilities may change over time.

Responsibilities:The Senior Program Officer will be responsible for the following tasks:


  • Create evidence needed to develop a long-term training plan for the health workforce and an action plan to increase rural retention of health workers—including design of data collection tools and analysis of different data sets

Health Workforce Financing

  • Oversee work to strengthen health workforce financing by providing compelling evidence to advocate for increased allocations and presenting innovative mechanisms for improving health financing
  • Collaborate with counterparts across relevant Ministries, including the MoHS Health Financing Unit, the office of the MoHS Permanent Secretary, the MoHS Directorate of Financial Resources, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development Budget Bureau, the Accountant General’s Department, and other relevant stakeholders
  • Strengthen the design of the national health insurance scheme, and support the roll out of the scheme, with a focus on implications for the health workforce and ongoing decentralization processes

Implementation of HRH Strategy 2017-2021

  • Work alongside counterparts in districts to improve available evidence and decision-making for increased HR management decentralization
  • Lead the costing of various interventions—including a resource mapping against the HRH Strategy 2017-2021
  • Provide advice on evaluations of mentoring and preceptorship pilots to assess their effectiveness
  • Support the resource mobilization efforts of the Directorate of Human Resource for Health

Data Systems and Research

  • Support the integration of different information systems and provide assistance in using available information to support ongoing planning and decision-making
  • Research and share knowledge on best practices relevant to building a resilient health workforce

Perform other tasks as necessary

  • The role will be based in Freetown, with potential travel to districts (maximum 10%).


CHAI places great value on relevant personal qualities: resourcefulness, responsibility, tenacity, independence, energy, and work ethic. We seek a highly committed and adaptable individual with a desire to be part of a team delivering quality results with limited resources. The individual must be able to function independently and flexibly in a swift manner. The ideal candidate will possess cultural sensitivity skills and demonstrate high emotional intelligence as they will be working closely government and external partners.

Minimum qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in a relevant field
  • 5+ years of relevant work experience
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks simultaneously, set priorities and work independently under minimal oversight
  • Ability to think strategically, handle ambiguity and work in a fast-paced, limited-structure, multicultural environment
  • Proven ability to build relationships in cross-cultural contexts
  • Detail-oriented with excellent organizational skills
  • Ability to learn on the job quickly
  • Ability to innovate and adapt for changing project needs
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to prepare and deliver compelling presentations and reports, as well as ability to communicate complex ideas to various stakeholders
  • Ability to design approaches to collect data, and analyze complex datasets to draw conclusions
  • Experience living and/or working in the Global South
  • Familiarity with global health issues
  • High level of proficiency in Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint and Word
  • Familiarity with costing and budgeting, including for large projects


  • Background in management or strategy consulting, or other fast-paced private sector experience
  • Experience advising senior Government stakeholders
  • Knowledge of Krio


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