Duties and Responsibilities
The Technical Specialist (TS) will be responsible for implementing a market development approach on Inclusive Digital Economy; providing technical assistance to policy makers & regulators; identifying peer to peer learning opportunities; developing a pipeline of projects that support the digital finance ecosystem and monitoring their outcomes; providing direct assistance or overseeing contracted technical assistance to partners and consultants; convening market players and assist the dissemination of lessons learned and best practices in DFS and financial services. The TS will also liaise closely with regional regulatory bodies to translate learnings and insights into harmonized regional policies that can unlock the benefits of DFS used at scale.
Below is a summary of key job roles and functions:
- Lead UNCDF’s policy & regulatory advocacy and manage relations with key stakeholders in the country
- Build a robust project pipeline of scalable and innovative DF projects in country
- Generate, facilitate, and disseminate research and information sharing to ensure stakeholders are informed on current trends, best practices, market conditions, and special topics as needed
- Provides support to UNCDF management on corporate initiatives and activities.
Lead UNCDF’s policy & regulatory advocacy and manage relations with key stakeholders in the country (30%)
- The country lead directly manages the in-country relations and activities with the government and manage the over stakeholders and outreach efforts of the programme.
- Be a catalyst for digital finance innovations in Trinidad and Tobago, seeking opportunities to empower people’s life with digital innovations, and develop the country program as a flagship country in regard to digital finance and innovation;
- Liaise regularly with policymakers and regulators in Trinidad and Tobago to understand their objective and translate to a technical assistance plan;
- Engage with the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) to share insights on regional impacts of DFS and support the development of a regional policy harmonization assistance package;
- Leverage UNCDF Inclusive Digital Economy Scorecard (IDES) as a national tool to measure and track the development of an inclusive digital economy in the country;
- Under the guidance and with the support of the Lead Technical Specialist on Policy, advise the government in creating a more enabling DF environment;
- Oversee the implementation of UNCDF’s plan for policy and regulation; support the government in the drafting of key reforms such as Financial Inclusion Strategies and related Digital Finance regulations; organize technical assistance for policy and regulation;
- Coordinate policy work, developing consistent messages and collaborating on key initiatives;
- Participate in industry working groups, providing thought leadership and identifying opportunities to build partnerships;
- Assist partners in identifying opportunities with others, including recommending or fostering strategic, financial or technical partnerships;
- Act as primary resource person for IDE for UNCDF, UNDP and other funders, helping to provide information, make introductions, coordinating efforts around the plan.
- On an ad-hoc basis, provide on-going technical advice to partners (providers, regulators, funders), including sharing of information and updates on innovations;
- Help to build awareness and build a consumer protection agenda with country stakeholders.
- Build effective and efficient partnerships at the operational level with major donor agencies to coordinate financial inclusion, including financial literacy, activities in country;
- Seek opportunities for coordinating and co-funding projects with other funders, ensure the program’s efforts complete those of other digital finance initiatives;
Build a robust project pipeline of scalable and innovative DF projects in country (40%)
- The country lead sets the direction and oversees the development of the project pipeline, and plays a key role in identifying innovative projects, appraising and monitoring for results, while the technical team manages the daily work or project identification and implementation.
- Investigate opportunities to expand digital finance ecosystem with projects focusing on empowering people’s life with digital innovations;
- Oversee a DF technical team (1-2) of DFS Expert consultants’ development and management of the existing pipeline of projects with the objective to reach project KPIs on time and reach scale.
- Help set priorities, provide advice and assistance as required, and ensure compliance with policies and procedures related to Direct Technical and Financial Support;
- Draft new project descriptions for the project in the country;
- Draft technical terms of reference for consultants to support partners, provide all technical input for procurement, drafting TORs and reviewing and evaluating technical proposals.
- Develop regular contact (e.g. monthly) with partners, monitoring overall progress and satisfaction with UNCDF support;
- Participate in weekly project progress meetings for projects with partners
- As needed, schedule field visits to check projects’ progress together with consultants and partners;
- Review and respond to quarterly reports, ensuring partners are reporting accurately, monitor progress and reporting under agreements and contracts, verify milestones and targets for disbursements;
Generate, facilitate, and disseminate research and information sharing to ensure stakeholders are informed on current trends, best practices, market conditions, and special topics as needed (20%):
- Collaborate with key partners and stakeholders for research and development of innovative, cutting-edge strategies and approaches to sharpen delivery of services;
- Conduct workshops on innovation in the supply of digital financial products,
- Identify learning, training, and knowledge sharing opportunities for partners and key stakeholders and provide scholarships for attendance;
- Maintain regular contact with partners, identify issues and assist them in overcoming them;
- Review and respond to partner reports, ensuring partners are reporting accurately on activities/initiatives;
- Monitor progress under performance-based agreements, verify milestones and targets for disbursements;
- Seek opportunities for coordinating and co-funding projects with other funders, ensure the programme’s efforts complete those of other initiatives
Provides support to UNCDF management on corporate initiatives and activities, focusing on achieving the following results: (10%)
- Grow UNCDF presence in Niger by developing partnership with funders and raise funds to fully implement the “Leaving no one behind in the digital era” strategy in the country;
- Support UNCDF implementation in other countries;
- Develop and monitor Country annual work plan and budget;
- Provide inputs for UNCDF semi-annual reporting;
- Support Annual Providers Survey and IDES reports;
- Assist in implementation of mid-term and final evaluations of the programme;
- Support annual and cumulative UNCDF results analyses and substantive inputs into Unit work plan and UNCDF and IDE Business Plans;
- As requested, assist in fundraising and relationship management with donors
Required Skills and Experience
- Master’s Degree or equivalent in technology, economics, public/business administration, social sciences or related discipline. A Bachelor’s Degree in these fields along with two additional years of experience is also acceptable.
- A minimum of five (5) years’ experience in progressively more responsible positions in the financial services and/or telecommunications field; out of which at least three (3) years’ experience must be in the field of Digital Finance; digital innovations or skills development in the digital era;
- Demonstrable strong technical knowledge in digital solutions, digital economies and digital financial services required
- Relevant experience with policy makers, regulators, central and local government in developing countries; including conducting regulatory assessments or diagnostics of the legal environment.
- Strong programme management experience with emphasis on monitoring, evaluation and incorporating lessons learned into inclusive finance projects and digital economies programmes is considered a distinct advantage.
- Demonstrable work experience in progressively managerial roles in country / program management roles in Caribbean or Latin America is considered a distinct advantage.
- Ability to communicate effectively in written form; including drafting reports and briefs to senior decision makers.
- Experience conducting training and capacity building considered a distinct advantage.
- Fluency in English required (excellent comprehension, verbal & written communication skills).