Grade: NOB

Vacancy no.: DC/COLOMBO/NO/2023/05

Publication date: 12 April 2023
Application deadline (midnight Geneva time): 28 April 2023

Job ID: 10661
Location: Colombo

The ILO is issuing a call for expression of interest for candidates who wish to be applied for the position of National Project Officer (NOB), based in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Interested candidates are invited to submit their application on-line in order to establish their profile in the pool, from which they may be considered for relevant opportunities that may arise.

The ILO may only offer a contract to persons who have a valid residency status in Sri Lanka.

The following are eligible to apply:

  • External candidates
  • Currently serving staff on DC or short-term contract (SST, ST, ST 3.5)

    The ILO values diversity among staff. We welcome applications from qualified men and women, including those with disabilities. If you are unable to complete our online application form due to a disability, please send an email to


    In 2011, the ILO launched a comprehensive sustainable livelihood development programme under its flagship Local Empowerment through Economic Development (LEED+) project, which was funded for two phases. Given the success of the LEED+ project, and with funding from the Government of Norway, the ILO and its constituents (Government, Employers and Workers Organizations) has now initiated PAVE (Promoting Advancement of Vulnerable Persons and Enterprises) project in November 2022 in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka.

    The province with a population of 1.143 million has faced disproportionate challenges to socio-economic development and growth as a direct consequence of the 30-year civil conflict. Despite significant development efforts since the end of the war, the province remains the poorest region in the country. While there are indications of improvement in the region’s poverty status, the prevalence of acute poverty in certain pocket areas as well as among certain vulnerable population groups indicate that development efforts have not been equitable. With the onset of COVID-19 and the subsequent economic crisis in Sri Lanka, there is an ever-pressing need for the advancement of vulnerable communities, particularly engaged in agriculture sector and micro-small-medium enterprises (MSMEs). Within this context, PAVE project is highly relevant and a timely intervention to uplift the vulnerable communities in the North.

    Reporting lines

    The National Project Officer will work under the overall leadership of the Country Director of ILO Sri Lanka and the direct supervision of the Chief Technical Advisor of the Jobs for Peace and Resilience Programme.

    Duration of the Contract

    12 Months

    Description of Duties

    The Project Officer will focus on the realization of project objectives related to policy dialogue and promotion of an enabling environment for business and cooperatives in the Northern Province as well as promotion of the project’s approach in selected provinces of Sri Lanka. S/he will play a lead role in liaison with the national level authorities, tri-partite constituents, key private sector actors, relevant UN agencies and relevant academic institutions, NGOs and the media community. S/he will take the overall responsibility for planning, designing, monitoring, and reporting of project activities related to the policy dialogue and sustainability/continuity of key project components. S/he will ensure quality technical input, assist with reporting to the ILO and its donors; and compilation of project experiences and lessons learned.

    The Project Officer will liaise closely with the National Project Coordinator in Vavuniya to ensure coherence of initiatives and linkages between project interventions, especially in relation to policy dialogue. The Project Officer will also provide direct support to the intervention in the north, primarily through engagement with companies based in the Western Province.

    General duties
    • Support the implementation of the policy development and dialogue component of the PAVE project, including supervising consultants and organization of meetings, in line with the ILO policy, rules and regulations, and in close collaboration with the NPC.
    • As part of the policy dialogue, engage with provincial and national institutions to develop systems of support for the replication and scaling up of the PAVE project for strengthening of cooperatives and MSMEs including through the creation of an enabling environment.
    • Under the delegated authority of the Chief Technical Advisor and in collaboration with the National Project Coordinator participate on behalf of the ILO in various fora.
    • Implement the work under preparing ILO constituents on ratifying the (ILO) Convention 188 on Work in Fishing, this work may include studies, consultative workshops and advocacy campaigns.
    • Provide input into periodic and ad hoc reports on programme planning and implementation progress.
    • Ensure that gender and PWD issues are integrated in the planning of activities and their implementation and evaluation as well as in research, awareness raising and political dialogue.
    • In the context of the activities undertaken, promote ILO policies regarding decent work, equality of opportunity and treatment for women and men, and the relevant International Labour Standards.
    • Obtain services from consultants and other relevant individuals and organizations to carry out studies and surveys in relation to policy dialogue and scaling up and replication of the PAVE project.
    • Organize training workshops and meetings for the tripartite partners, NGOs, target groups and stakeholders as appropriate.
    • Carry out other duties as may be assigned.

    Managerial duties

    • Oversee the development and approval process of sub-contracts, monitor the performance of sub-contractors, and consultants, and ensure timely implementation of sub-contracts in relation to policy dialogue and PAVE replication in other provinces.
    • Ensure that implementation of the project component on policy dialogue takes place in accordance with ILO guidelines, rules and regulations.

    Required qualifications


    University degree in social sciences, or related field and strong knowledge on development issues particularly in Northern province of Sri Lanka.


    At least Two (02) years’ experience in managing development co-operation, project management and in implementing development programmes in the field of labour and employment, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise development and cooperative development. Previous experience with the ILO would be a strong advantage.


    Excellent knowledge of the working language of the duty station and a good knowledge of English.


    • Good knowledge of social, economic and development structure and trends in Sri Lanka.
    • Good knowledge of one or more of the following issues: labour, MSMEs, Cooperatives and good knowledge of gender, international human rights and climate change mitigation
    • Ability to understand and effectively work with Government, workers and employers organizations, non-government organizations and UN agencies.
    • Ability to write analytical technical reports in English
    • Ability to conduct policy discussion and engage in high-level political processes.
    • Clear commitment to mainstream gender into project activities.
    • Ability to work under time pressure and meet deadlines.
    • Ability to work independently with a minimum of supervision.
    • Ability to work in a multicultural environment and gender-sensitive behaviour and attitudes are also required.

      Recruitment process

      Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application form. To apply, please visit ILO People. The system provides instructions for online application procedures.

      Evaluation may include a telephone interview with a recruiter, one or several written tests, including a Ms Office online test, and an interview with a hiring manager. ILO uses communication technologies such as Zoom and Ms Teams in the process of assessment and evaluation of candidates.

      Fraud warning

      The ILO does not charge any fee at any stage of the recruitment process whether at the application, interview, processing or training stage. Messages originating from a non ILO e-mail account - - should be disregarded. In addition, the ILO does not require or need to know any information relating to the bank account details of applicants.

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