Africa Regional Overview
HKI’s programs in Africa have a long history, going back more than 30 years. We are
currently implementing regional, multi-country and country specific projects in 12 countries in
Africa. With about 630 staff and an annual operating budget of over $40 million, HKI’s
programs in Africa are funded by a mix of government, corporate and foundation donors.
The country offices are supervised and supported directly by the Africa Regional Office
(AFRO) team, and multi-country program managers, most of whom are based at the regional office in Dakar.
HKI is seeking a Regional Human Resources Manager (HR Manager) to work alongside country office management teams and local HR staff to attract, retain and motivate employees who embody our organizational values, and our vision of becoming the most
technically and operationally competent organization in preventing blindness and malnutrition throughout the world.
Reporting to the Africa Regional Director of Operations (ARDO), the HR Manager serves as
a member of the Regional Management Team (RMT). In addition, the position has a strong
dotted line relationship to the Vice President, HR at the US headquarters and is a member of a global HR leadership team.
The HR Manager partners with Regional Directors and Country Directors to ensure alignment and appropriate adaptation of all HR policies and procedures to each country office and the Africa regional office.
As the functional lead for human resources in the region, the HR Manager serves as the dotted line manager of HR staff in the country offices, contributing to selection, performance management and any required disciplinary measures; and s/he leads a Community of Practice to continually develop HR staff in the region.
HKI has a matrixed reporting structure that respects both the line management and authority within country office and regional hierarchies; and the accountability and oversight duties of
subject matter experts and multi-country program managers at the regional and headquarters level. Regular communication and a spirit of team work among colleagues,
both hierarchically and laterally are essential to make this structure thrive.
Scope of the Position
As a member of the global HR team, the HR Manager plays a key role in the development of
HKI’s strategic HR development with a specific focus on national staff. And as a member of
the RMT, the HR Manager is also a key contributor to the strategic development and
oversight of country programs. In addition, the HR Manager is responsible for developing
and implementing long and short-term work plans for HR in the Africa region.
This position serves as the technical HR resource for Regional Directors in their oversight and support to country programs, as well as to Country Directors and their deputies, and
their HR staff with regards to labor law compliance; compensation design, analysis and implementation; employee relations; learning & development; performance management, etc. As such, the HR Manager helps to ensure high quality HR management and
administration as well as the development, implementation and monitoring of standards and compliance in all areas of HR.
This position is based at the regional office in Dakar, Senegal, with regular field travel to the country offices and occasionally to HKI HQ for meetings.
Overall Management and Leadership
• Within the mission, policies and guidelines of HKI, provide direction and guidance to HR
planning in countries and contribute to strategic development of the Africa Region in
accordance with the overall organizational strategic plan.
• Collaborate with the VP, Africa, the Regional Directors and the VP, HR, both individually
and on organization-wide workgroups, in the development of and roll-out of HKI-wide
policy and procedure changes, providing guidance and training as needed at the regional
and country level to ensure that the quality of HR support meets HKI operations
• Regularly analyze Africa Region HR capacity and contribute to efforts to develop
strategies and initiatives to close identified gaps.
• Build strong relationships with Country Directors and country HR staff, providing advice,
guidance and support in all areas of HR and in ensuring compliance at country office
level to HKI policies and procedures.
• Work closely with regional and country office management to ensure understanding and
compliance with host country labor and tax laws.
• Support Country Directors and regional management to address complaints and resolve
problems pertaining to national staff. Contribute significantly to the supervision of
country office HR staff at a variety of job levels in accordance with the organization’s
policies and applicable laws, including interviewing, hiring, and training employees;
appraising performance; and/or disciplining employees.
• Develop and maintain strong working relationships within a multi-disciplinary, multi-
cultural environment to ensure that regional and country office teams develop, promote and maintain integrated and cooperative operational units.
Internal Capacity Development and HR Management
• Lead the development of an annual HR work plan for the region that sets priorities for
projects pertaining to compensation design and analysis, the development of
standardized HR policy and procedures, labor law compliance, learning & development
initiatives, etc. across the Africa region.
• Review and recommend changes to regional and country office organization structure
and staffing levels to support effective program delivery and anticipation of funding or
programmatic changes, especially as regards HR staffing.
• Advise and assist managers and employees in the interpretation and implementation of
company policies and procedures, and compensation and benefits.
• Guide the resolution of complex employee relations matters in the regional and country
offices that support the resolution of issues in a manner that treats employees equitably
and serves the best interests of the organization, calling upon expert resources, as
Helen Keller International is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will
receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national
origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, disability, or protected veteran status.
• Continue to develop and guide policies and practices related to compensation including,
but not limited to: job analysis; survey participation; job matching; building harmonized
salary scales; budgeting increases; and staff communication.
• Provide support to management to continually develop and monitor implementation of
HKI’s policies and procedures in performance management and learning & development.
• Add a critical field perspective to the ongoing development of HR systems to improve
efficiency and reliability of data in HKI’s global enterprise resource software. Play a key
role in implementation and quality control of HR features.
• Partner with Regional and country office staff to conduct routine reviews and updates of
HKI standard operation procedures and HR Manuals that align with HKI values, internal
guidelines while ensuring appropriate adaptation to the size of the country office and
compliance with all local labor laws.
• Train new Regional and Country Directors on HKI’s HR practices and orient them to
ongoing projects and new initiatives.
• Participate in country office HR staff recruitment.
• Provide orientation, training and capacity building to all human resources staff as
necessary. Lead a regional HR Community of Practice.
• Partner with country and regional management to respond promptly to emergent issues.
• Bachelor’s degree with a minimum 8 years directly relevant international HR experience,
or equivalent combination of education and experience. One or more pertinent
certifications such as GPHR, or a Masters’ degree is highly desirable.
• Demonstrated knowledge of HR practices and employment laws and regulations, and
their day-to-day application, including experience partnering with senior managers.
• Exceptional interpersonal skills and ability to build collaborative relationships with
employees from diverse backgrounds at all levels.
• Ability to use tact diplomacy, mature judgment and creative problem solving skills is
• Ability to handle confidential matters with a high level of integrity and discretion.
• Excellent oral and written French and English skills required; Portuguese, a plus.
• Ability to develop and interpret HR policies and procedures.
• Excellent capacity building and coordination skills. An ability to effectively coach and
• Demonstrated knowledge and skill in creating and delivering adult learning and training
opportunities for staff a plus.
• Detail oriented with excellent organizational skills and follow-through skills.
• Demonstrated knowledge of the application of information technologies to HR. Strong
Excel skills and/or experience with HRIS systems a strong plus.
• Experience in the nonprofit sector strongly preferred. Demonstrated interest in working
with an international nonprofit required.
• Ability and willingness to work in challenging and changing environments, and to see
through challenges and find solutions
• An ability to maintain balance when under stress
• Demonstrable respect for all persons regardless of religion, ethnicity, class or gender,
with a high comfort level working in a diverse environment with a demonstrated
commitment to high professional ethical standards.
• Residence in or willingness to relocate to Dakar, Senegal.
• Ability and willingness to travel within the region plus occasional trips to HQ, up to 10-15% of the time
Qualified candidates should submit a cover letter and resume to:
noting the job title in the subject line. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.