Appointment Brief

Appointment Brief – Director of Operations – Afghanaid


The Director of Operations will be based in Kabul, from where s/he will work closely with the Managing Director, other members of the Executive Team and key members of the Board of Trustees and lead a team of dedicated professionals.  The Director of Operations will ensure strategic alignment, oversee policy-making and systems management, and provide overall  leadership  of  the Finance,  Human  Resources,  Administration,  Procurement  and  Logistics  and ICT departments.

For the Director of Operations, Afghanaid seeks a talented and seasoned professional, most likely with an  MBA or other similar qualification, combined with notable experience working at a senior level within a  non-governmental  organisation  as  well  as  experience  in  financial  and  operational  management in  a challenging conflict environment.

Afghanaid is an international NGO registered in England and Wales.  The organisation has facilitated community-driven  processes  for  emergency  assistance,  recovery  and  development  to  address  the  fundamental  needs  of  people  in  some  of  the  most  remote  areas  of  Afghanistan  for  more  than  three decades.  Operations are headquartered  in  Kabul,  with  provincial  and  district  offices  in  Badakhshan  (north-eastern region), Samangan (northern region) , Ghor (western region) and Nangarhar (eastern region), working through partners in a further 13 provinces, and maintaining  a marketing  and fundraising  office  in  London.  Afghanaid currently employs some 150 personnel, 95% of whom are Afghans.


£50,000 to £55,000 net of Afghanistan payroll taxes.


·       Medical, life and travel insurance: US$ 8,000 to US$ 12,000 per annum depending on insurable risk assessed by our insurers in the UK.

·       Annual leave: 22 working days.

·       Rest and relaxation (R&R): five working days or rest for each 50-60 weekdays completed in Afghanistan, plus one travel day and US$ 1,100 in a combination of air ticket and cash. This works out as four R&R periods per year and may be combined with annual leave in order to provide more time off.

·       Accommodation: shared staff house with furnished separate room dedicated for each person (total number of occupants in the house is currently 8-10). Heating lighting and water are paid for by the organisation. A cook is provided by the organisation for week days but staff pay for the food. Meals must be organised by employees during weekends and public holidays.

·       Transportation: A vehicle is assigned for international staff for visiting work locations (subject to security clearance) and/or friends at other organisations’ guest houses.

Other: salary can be agreed and contracted in either GBP or USD depending on successful candidate’s preference. Payment is made from Afghanistan to the chosen bank account of the international hire employee. Salary is assumed to cover bank charges in the recipient bank. Afghanaid pays for bank charges for the remitting bank.


Person Specification

Essential Experience
·       Ten years of financial management and accounting experience with a minimum of five years in a senior finance and administration management position with an international NGO, with more than a £5 million annual budget and multiple donor reporting requirements.

·       Proven ability to think and lead strategically, plan effectively, set priorities and meet deadlines.

·       Demonstrated knowledge of generally accepted international accounting principles, internal controls, auditing, and grant management.

·       Proven and substantive expertise in budgeting, donor reporting and auditing.

·       Previous substantive experience of financial and procurement policies and standards of institutional donors including DFID, USAID, EU, ECHO, UNICEF, UN OCHA, World Bank, etc.

·       Experience in preparing excellent, coherent, well-organised financial and narrative reports.

·       Comprehensive knowledge and experience of other non-financial areas of responsibility.

·       Sound understanding of international humanitarian and development work, including infrastructure, agriculture, community development, governance, gender and DRR.

·       Ability to represent a respected organisation at a senior level.

·       Experience and strong understanding of the security and operating environment in Afghanistan (or a similar conflict-affected context).

·       A minimum of one year of recent experience working overseas in a conflict-affected country.

·       Proven track record in leading change, motivating, mentoring, coaching and facilitating learning and development of colleagues.

  • Demonstrated ability to work with colleagues at a distance in the field to prepare high quality budgets, financial statements, audits and to manage change.

·       Experience in organisational level strategy development and management.

·       Experience working with a Board of Directors, either in a management role or as a board member.

·       Experience in a financial management position in the private sector.

·       Knowledge of human resource management.

·       Knowledge of Afghan laws and statutory requirements.


Qualifications/ Education
  • The position holder must possess a post-graduate degree in finance or business with a strong focus on financial matters. Ideally s/he must also hold the CPA, ACMA, CMA, ACA or equivalent professional qualification.
Key Skills and Personal Qualities
  • Native fluency in written English and demonstrated ability to write and lay out high quality documents and reports for diverse audiences.
  • Excellent conceptual and analytical skills able to distil key ideas with clarity and precision.
  • Excellent communication skills with the ability to persuasively present ideas.
  • Ability to lead and influence others with diplomacy and tact.
  • High-level proficiency in relevant enterprise-wide software packages and office applications, including spreadsheets, word processing, PowerPoint and Outlook.
  • Personal integrity with the initiative and drive to get things done and achieve results in a fast-paced and challenging
  • An outgoing and engaging personality, with cultural and gender sensitivity and a strong sense of humour; able to build trust, work and live collaboratively with others and manage relationships with a variety of stakeholders in a diverse multi-cultural environment.
  • Strong organisational and coordination skills, able to work with significant levels of autonomy, manage personal priorities and meet tight deadlines.
  • Business oriented with a commitment to build Afghanaid’s agility and grow its reputation.
  • Flexible and dynamic with the ability to deal with difficult, often ambiguous and challenging situations and creatively solve problems.
  • Resilience to live, travel and work in isolated and possibly insecure locations.
  • Demonstrated commitment to continuous learning and professional development.
  • Commitment to the vision and mission of Afghanaid.
  • Desirable: conversant in Dari or Pashto.

Application Instructions

To apply for this post, please download and read the Appointment Brief, then complete our online application form. Please complete the form in sentence case – there is no need to use block capitals.

You will be asked to submit the following information:

  • An up-to-date curriculum vitae (of no more than 2-3 sides of A4)
  • A detailed statement (of no more than 2-sides of A4) explaining why you are interested in this post and giving evidence of how you meet the Person Specification criteria. (Please look at Help for Candidates for hints on how to write a successful statement).

The documents should be saved in Word in the following format:

Your First Name, Your Last Name, Document Name, and Date (yymm) e.g.:

Applications will not be accepted without a completed application form.

Application form

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About you

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Equal Opportunities

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At Oxford HR, we are committed to equal opportunities. Our policy is to ensure that all candidates and clients are treated fairly, openly and honestly irrespective of age, gender, sexual orientation, marital or parental status, disability, religion, social class, nationality or ethnic origin. Occasionally, there may be specific reasons why one of these factors may have an operational effect in particular countries or circumstances. In these cases, we will say so. Otherwise we select candidates to put forward to our clients only on the basis of how closely they meet the needs of the job in terms of experience, skills, qualifications, abilities and personal qualities.

In order to assist us in checking that this policy is carried out, and for that purpose only, it would help if you could complete this form. However, you are under no obligation to do so. This sheet will be separated from the application form on receipt, will remain confidential and will not be used as part of the selection process.


As a UK-based consultancy, we use the categories generally used in the UK NGO sector and following guidance from the UK Equalities and Human Rights Commission.

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Afghanaid is an international humanitarian and development non-governmental organisation (NGO), created in 1983 specifically for the Afghans.