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Evaluation of the project ‘Procurement Process and Practice Harmonization in Support of Field Operations’

Organization: UNICEF

UNICEF, the world’s leading organization working for the rights of children, seeks an individual consultant for the evaluation of the project ‘Procurement Process and Practice Harmonization in Support of Field Operations’, starting as early as October 2012. The assignment is expected to be mainly home-based.

The project ‘Procurement Process and Practice Harmonization in Support of Field Operations’ (the “Harmonization Project”) is being carried out by the High Level Committee on Management (HLCM) Procurement Network (PN) Working Group (WG) Harmonization, with a dedicated team based in Copenhagen and representatives from 17 organizations of the UN System of organizations, representing more than 95% of the procurement spend of entire UN system of organizations.

The project was commissioned by the HLCM and worked in close collaboration with the United Nations Development Group and reported to the HLCM PN. It ran over the period of 18 months from May 2011 to November 2012. The project is being implemented in close collaboration with the HLCM PN and the WG Harmonization members; the day-to-day administrative supervision was carried out by the Chief, UNICEF Supply Division Centre , Financial Management and Administration Centre. The project is managed by a Procurement Specialist and supported by an Administrative Assistant.
Some of the stakeholder groups of the Harmonization Project are the HLCM Procurement Network Secretariat and Management Board, the HLCM Procurement Network, the HLCM PN WG Harmonization, the project team based in Copenhagen, the CEB Secretariat, the HLCM Harmonization of Business Practices (HBP) Steering Committee, the UN Development Operations Coordination Office (DOCO), and country-level managers and procurement staff from UN organizations.

The project strived to further harmonize the procurement practices of all UN organizations and addressed issues of harmonization at both HQ and field levels, including financial regulations and rules, procurement policies and manuals, and field implementation. One of the overall goals was to enable the leveraging of efficiency and effectiveness gains through the harmonization of procurement practices.

In particular, the specific objectives of the Harmonization Project were to:
• Create a common framework for the harmonization of procurement related regulations, rules, policies, procedures and business practices
• Document and include country level outcomes and best practices in collaboration with the UNDG Task Team on Common Services and procurement in (selected) countries
• Develop a standardized toolkit for country level procurement practitioners taking into account the best practices, needs and insights from the country level

The objective of the evaluation of the project ‘Procurement Process and Practice Harmonization in Support of Field Operations’ is to provide an independent view and a comprehensive assessment of all relevant aspects of the Project, including elements such as outcomes, project management, organization and setup, good practices, lessons learned, and other elements as outlined in the Scope of Work, for the information of the project donors and other stakeholders and for the benefit of similar future projects.

• Evaluate the progress made and results achieved on the specific objectives of the Harmonization Project, as outlined in the final project proposal, the final project plan, the Memorandum of Understanding between UNICEF and the CEB Secretariat, and other relevant documents governing the Harmonization Project. In particular, evaluate the degree to which deliverables from the Harmonization Project have been implemented by the organizations of the UN System.

• Explore aspects related to planning, execution and implementation of the Harmonization Project, including overall project management and applied methodologies, lessons learnt, good practices, obstacles and impediments encountered during these phases

• Evaluate any other relevant aspects related to the planning, execution and implementation of the Harmonization Project

• Assess administrative aspects of the Harmonization Project such as administrative management by the host organization, reporting mechanisms etc.

• Formulate recommendations to be taken into account when planning, executing, and implementing future similar projects, i.e. inter-organizational projects in procurement – in particular in the light of a possible extension of the Harmonization Project

• Upon completion of the assignment, the consultant is expected to produce a report encompassing the specific areas listed above in the Scope of Work. To ensure clarity and readability of the report, the consultant should ensure that it uses clear and concise language. Excessive use of acronyms and use of jargon should be avoided.

• The consultant is also expected to provide an oral and visual presentation and summary of the findings in a closing meeting with the HLCM PN WG Harmonization and other interested stakeholders.

• The evaluation process is supervised by the Chair of the HLCM PN Working Group Harmonization who is supported by the WG Harmonization.

• A number of important sources of information may need to be consulted during the evaluation, including the HLCM PN Secretariat and Management Board (4 members), the HLCM Procurement Network (approx. 40 members), members of the HLCM PN WG Harmonization (approx. 25 members), the project team based in Copenhagen (4 members), the CEB Secretariat (2 stakeholders, possibly including the HBP Steering Committee, approx. 10 stakeholders), the UN Development Operations Coordination Office (DOCO, approx. 3-5 stakeholders), the United Nations System Staff College (UNSSC, approx. 3-5 stakeholders) and country-level staff from UN organizations (possibly a very large number of stakeholders). At the country-level, stakeholders can include Resident Coordinators (RC), United Nations Country Teams (UNCT) and Operations Management Teams (OMT).

• The assignment will be mainly home-based and the consultant is expected to commence work at the earliest on 1 October 2012 (preferred) and the latest on 1 November 2012.

• By no later than 31 December 2012, the consultant is expected to have submitted the final deliverables. Prior to finalizing the report, an intermediate report is to be submitted to the WG Harmonization for review and for the purpose of collecting feedback on structure, content, scope, completeness and other relevant requirements.

All applicants should submit their CVs along with a detailed proposal document describing how they propose to carry out the assignment to achieve the desired outputs. The proposals should include information on the proposed methodology and a work plan describing the major activities, along with report samples of previous work/projects. The proposal document should also include a fixed cost contract price together with a proposed payment schedule. The contract price needs to include a detailed cost breakdown. All applicants must be fluent in English (Advanced level – Engage freely in discussions, read and write complex material).

The proposals will be evaluated and potential candidates will be short-listed for an interview for further discussion on their proposals. The evaluation criteria will focus on the following main areas:
Completeness: This will evaluate whether the proposal is intellectually and technically sound and the extent to which it responds to the objectives. It will also evaluate whether the objectives of the proposal are achievable in the time-frame stated, whether the proposal is well written, easy to read and provides samples of previous work on similar projects.
Experience with evaluating projects: This will evaluate the applicant’s relevant previous work experience in terms of evaluating projects.
Proposed methodology: This will evaluate the descriptive narrative of how the applicant proposes to carry out the assignment to achieve the desired outputs. This includes the proposed work plan and how adequately it describes all the important activities and how they are going to be carried out, whether the proposal is logical and the methodology specified is tailored to the assignment, how flexible is the methodology, and how innovative is the approach.
Relevant technical experience: This will evaluate the applicant’s work experience, academic qualifications, English language and writing skills.

In order to apply, please submit your CV and proposal to Alexander Blecken, ablecken@unicef.org, subject: [EVALUATION_HLCM]. Closing date is July 1, 2012. Only short listed candidates will be contacted.

Click here to view the full advertisement, with the Evaluation Criteria.



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