Accountability Lab: AL Country Director

Accountability Lab - South Africa
Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
Opportunity closing date: 
Monday, 3 August, 2020
Opportunity type: 

Accountability Lab South Africa supports active citizens, responsible leaders and accountable institutions in South Africa. They support creative change-makers to develop innovative, positive ideas for integrity in their communities. By building diverse coalitions to generate the knowledge, skills and networks needed for accountability, they unleash positive social and economic change. Accountability Lab South Africa is a registered non-profit organization based in Johannesburg.

Accountability Lab seeks to appoint a Country Director to be based in Rosebank, Johannesburg.

Start Date: offices to commence soonest.

Reports to: Accountability Lab South Africa Board of Directors

Compensation: Competitive, commensurate with skills and experience.

Position Description

The purpose of this position is to lead the organization. S/he provides strategic guidance, oversight and management, leads fundraising and outreach efforts, builds relationships and reports directly to partners, and leads policy and advocacy work. The CD works in partnership with other staff in South Africa and with support from the Accountability Lab Global team- to ensure delivery against the organizational strategy and goals. The CD reports to the Accountability Lab South Africa Board of Directors directly; and to the Executive Director of Accountability Lab Global separately.


  • Vision and Strategy Development:
    • Set overall vision and strategy for the organization, matched to plans and programs in South Africa;
    • Develop organizational goals and work to match these goals with available resources and capacity;
    • Liaise with the Board of Directors and other partners on strategy and plans and adapt and refine approaches as necessary.
  • Oversight and Human Resource Management:
    • Overall responsibility for the effective functioning of the organization from a strategic, process, human resource and financial perspective;
    • Manage all hiring, appraisal and disciplinary processes;
    • Oversee the development and operationalisation of internal processes to strengthen management of staff, internal communication and coordination, efficient operations and program management;
    • Oversee efforts to mentor, train, and invest in the professional growth of Accountability Lab South Africa staff and accountapreneurs;
    • Provide structured oversight for the Lab’s curricula, trainings and events, including strengthening systems to plan and coordinate implementation;
    • Ultimate responsibility within the team for the Lab’s financial and administrative guidelines, and other key financial risk management safeguards and controls.
  • Fundraising and Donor Engagement:
    • Overall responsibility for raising the funding needed for the operations and growth of the organization;
    • Continual identification of, and relationship building with, possible donors and other partners and systematic tracking of fundraising opportunities and funding flows;
    • Lead outreach activities with support from other staff including media, social media, conferences and other public events to build awareness and credibility for the organization;
    • Grant writing and reporting to foundations and donor governments, with responsibility for programmatic, financial and compliance reporting.
  • Board Management:
    • With support from colleagues, responsibility for reporting to the Board of Directors on a regular basis and according to best practice, along with management and development of the Board of Directors itself;
    • Support to Board committees and provision of inputs for governance and oversight as needed.
  • Programmatic Support:
    • Ongoing high-level guidance for the development of programs and scale/sustainability of those programs across contexts;
    • Oversight of implementation of organizational strategy and goals, including fundraising, outreach, partnerships, program design and implementation;
    • Oversight of and support for program performance assessments.
  • Operations and Risk Management:
    • Take overall responsibility for operations of the organization and delegate operational tasks in ways that ensure effectiveness, transparency and timeliness;
    • Understand, develop and monitor internal controls and systems to ensure compliance with best practices, international norms domestic laws;
    • Develop deep understanding of risks (external and internal to the organization), develop and closely monitor risk mitigation strategies and efforts;
    • Take overall responsibility for the financial management of the organization- with support from finance staff- for effective budgeting, auditing and planning.
  • Marketing and Communications:
    • Oversee organizational communications, messaging and marketing efforts;
    • Write and place thought leadership pieces and speak publicly about the Lab’s work;
    • Build partnerships with outreach partners to leverage the Lab’s work.
  • Partnerships, Policy and Advocacy:
    • Lead the Lab’s work in key working groups and policy discussion processes;
    • Develop relationships with policy and advocacy partners such as universities and advocacy organizations;
    • Design and lead outreach events for the Lab;
    • Integrate the Lab into key global policy networks.


  • Advanced degree in Public Administration, Journalism, International Relations, Management, Business, or related social science field and 8-10 years experience in relevant roles or demonstrable experience in a similar position.
  • Experience managing programs and/or teams in Sub-Saharan Africa in compliance with the highest international standards;
  • Experience fundraising for projects and working with/within donor organizations or other partners. Some familiarity with donor reporting systems, requirements, timelines and structures;
  • Experience conducting trainings and mentoring professionals;
  • A visionary leader, communicator and team player;
  • Adaptable, resourceful, self-motivated and able to prioritize in fast-moving environments;
  • Highly organized and willing to travel for work related duties;
  • Ability to problem-solve both big picture and day-to-day issues;
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills, and the ability to communicate with clarity and professionalism to all relevant stakeholders (staff, board, donors, regulators and partners);
  • Commitment to the Accountability Lab’s values of integrity, innovation, humility, practicality, and collaboration.
  • Knowledge of at least two South African languages a plus

What they're Looking For:

Accountability Lab South Africa is a dynamic fast-paced organization that has the potential to grow quickly. The CD needs boundless energy, the ability to multi-task and a vision for the organization locally and play a role in developing the organization globally. S/he also needs excellent leadership and management skills, the ability to operate in difficult contexts, the capacity to build long-lasting relationships with a variety of stakeholders over time. The CD will also need to be able to support and motivate a dynamic and culturally diverse team, embodying the organization’s commitment to accountability, transparency and equity. We seek a demonstrated record of assuming significant professional responsibility and delivering on management goals with integrity and humility.

What they Provide:

This position provides an exciting opportunity to develop a leading civil society organization in South Africa. It builds upon the work the organization has done to date; but also provides significant room to shape the agenda, programs and team going forwards, especially after the coronavirus pandemic. We provide an exciting work environment that focuses on local problems but with international linkages, support and opportunities. If you are looking to engage with the individuals and communities building a better South Africa, are deeply committed to positive social change and are ready for new responsibilities, this is for you.

To apply, please send your CV and salary expectations to [email protected]. Interviews will be held on a rolling basis, this position will stay open until the position is filled.

Please quote the source of this advertisement in your application - NGO Pulse Portal

NOTE: AL is not able to sponsor visas, all applicants must have the right to work when they apply.

Location: Johannesburg with extensive travel across South Africa and internationally as needed.

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