Human Resources Specialist (Employee Relations) – 2 positions

Closing date:


1. SOLICITATION NO.: 21-184**

2. ISSUANCE DATE: November 10, 2021.**

3. CLOSING DATE/TIME FOR RECEIPT OF OFFERS: November 24, 2021 (4:30 PM East Africa Time).

4. POSITION TITLE: Human Resources Specialist (Employee Relations) – Two Positions.

5. MARKET VALUE: Equivalent to FSN-PSC 10 (Step 1: 3,341,686 KSH to Step 13: 5,680,858 KSH per annum)**.** In accordance with AIDAR Appendix J and the Local Compensation Plan of USAID/Kenya and East Africa. Final compensation will be negotiated within the listed market value.*

6. PERIOD OF PERFORMANCE: Five-year contract with an initial probationary period of six (6) months. Four (4) additional option years are contingent on fully successful or better performance rating, funds availability and the continued need to retain the position.**

7. PLACE OF PERFORMANCE: Nairobi, Kenya; with possible travel as stated in the Statement of Work.**

8. SECURITY CERTIFICATION REQUIRED: Prior to joining USAID, the selected candidate will be required to:**

· Undergo a comprehensive background investigation

· Undergo a health check to obtain medical clearance and;

· Obtain and retain an embassy issued Security Certification.


10. AREA OF CONSIDERATION: Open to qualified Kenyan Citizens and current employees of the U.S. Government. USAID provides equal opportunity and equitable treatment for employment of all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status or sexual orientation.

11. PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The position requirements do not involve rigorous physical demands.


USAID/KEA is the largest USAID Mission in the world. USAID/KEA’s Executive Office Human Resources Team (HRT) provides the full range of HR management services supporting the full employee life cycle to the staff of two Missions – USAID/Kenya and East Africa (USAID/KEA) and USAID/Somalia. The HR Management Team’s responsibilities include position classification and recruitment of all local (CCN) and international (US and TCN) Personal Services Contract (PSC) positions; management of Mission staff training and development, recognition, and performance management programs for CCN and American staff; budgeting for all PSC personnel including salaries and benefits; and serving as the liaison with the US Embassy regarding HR topics and providing periodic reporting. The Human Resources Management Team consists of seven (7) Cooperating Country National (CCN) positions and two Eligible Family Member (EFM) positions. The current client universe for these two Missions consists of a total of 460 employees (55 U.S. Direct Hires -USDH, 23 expatriate U.S. Personal Services Contractors-USPSCs off-shore hires, 21 expatriate U.S. Personal Services Contractors – Local Hires, 3 Eligible Family Members (EFMs), 4 Third Country Nationals (TCNPSC) and 355 Cooperating Country Nationals (CCNPSCs).

The incumbent is a member of the HR Team and works under the overall supervision of the Executive Officer and the direct supervision of the Lead HR Specialist (CCN Services). The Human Resources Specialist (Employee Relations) is a key partner providing advice primarily in the areas of employee relations and programs and interpretation of policies and procedures. S/he is the primary subject matter specialist on all phases of CCNPSC onboarding, contracting management and performance management. Duties include but are not limited to recruitment and contracting of locally engaged staff, salary negotiation, preparation of all types of contracts, contract modifications, contract close outs and other general personnel actions. The incumbent is responsible for and will serve as a key resource to all Mission staff on all employee relations matters including contract-management related matters providing technical advice and guidance to CCN staff and supervisors on personnel actions related to remuneration, leave and benefits. The HR Specialist is primarily responsible for the overall management of Mission’s contract management for both USAID/KEA and USAID Somalia missions for CCN position and will act as a backstop for all USPSC positions. S/he is accountable for utilizing project management, facilitation, communication expertise to deliver relevant and effective employee relations solutions.


1. Personal Services Contractor (PSC) Contract Administration and Management 60%

The incumbent independently manages and is in charge of the onboarding and contracting processes for CCN Personal Services Contract employees. Provides high level advice and technical guidance to the Mission Management and employees related to onboarding procedures and internal Mission policies for locally hired employees. S/he is responsible for proper and timely appointment and management of all locally engaged staff of the two Missions.

The incumbent administers the complete recruitment cycle process for locally hired contract employees to include the following: a) collection, review and screening of applications received for review by the appropriate Mission Technical Evaluation Committees; b) arranging interviews, serves as the HR representative on TEC panels, and administering pre-employment skills tests; d) drafting all correspondence required under the hiring process and communicating with applicants regarding selection matters. The HR Specialist initiates all pre-employment and personnel actions which affect appointment and works closely with the selected candidate to ensure smooth and timely onboarding.

The incumbent provides briefing and orientation on USAID policies and regulations to incoming personnel. S/he advises and counsels PSC staff throughout their career, on matters pertaining to their employment and also provides advice and guidance to supervisors and office chiefs on matters related to PSC contracts.

The HR Specialist is the subject matter specialist for PSC contract administration and management for USPSC and CCN positions. Being an in-house subject matter specialist in PSC contracting, the incumbent is responsible for proper implementation and application of the Federal contracting laws and Agency regulations and policies, for achieving effectiveness and efficiency of contracting operations, and ensuring fiscal integrity of the Agency’s fiscal systems. The HR Specialist is responsible for ensuring that PSC contract files are administered, managed, and maintained consistent with M/OAA guidelines governing contract management requirements. The incumbent is responsible for preparing and processing all PSC contracts, personal services contracting actions, and modifications such as incremental funding, extension, salary increase, renewal, terminations etc. The incumbent ensures all requisite contract documentation is uploaded in ASIST, maintains and upkeeps ASIST database for all PSC contracts. The HR Specialist is responsible for conducting and processing the PSC contract close-outs following the mandatory ADS close out procedures and guidelines.

2. Employee Relations 25 %

The Specialist consistently embodies USAID’s seven (7) core values: Passion for Mission, Excellence, Integrity, Respect, Empowerment, Inclusion and Commitment to Learning.

S/he serves as a liaison and resource person responsible for providing leadership and technical guidance to employees on all personnel matters, salary and benefit entitlements under contracts, in accordance with the Standardized Regulations and General Provisions. Provides guidance and counsels employees in the proper implementation of HR policies and procedures. Specific responsibilities include providing high level advice and technical guidance on matters relating to the local compensation plan/questionnaire, payroll, wages and compensation and benefits, health and life insurance, leave policy, and retirement and severance pay entitlements. Keeps employees informed of changes in personnel policies and procedures in USAID/KEA and Somalia. Advises and counsels employees on the full range of personnel and management matters on allowances, benefits, salary increases, environmental and working conditions, Reduction-in-Force (RIF), separation, ethics and conduct, disciplinary actions, grievance procedures, and other HR management issues. The incumbent is the primary point of contact for the management and administration of the Workmen’s Compensation Insurance for USAID Kenya and East Africa CCNPSC contracted Employees.

Organizes and coordinates the onboarding of new CCN employees at the Mission. Prepares all check-in, check-out and security clearance packages for CCNPSC contracted employees; as the principle and first point of contact for all new CCNPSC employees, the incumbent is responsible to ensure that the new hires are well orientated with the contents of their individual CCNPSC Contract(s); Performance Evaluation Requirements (to include Mission probationary period); Standard Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch; Pension and Medical Plan Overview; Core Work Hours; and introduction to their immediate supervisor and designated work location. Prepares various reports and status updates on onboarding actions as needed by Office Directors and Executive Officers.

The HR Specialist will conduct employee relations investigations, analyze organizational issues and work in partnership with HR leadership to develop and execute plans to address arising problem areas. S/he will collect data and present trends across employee relations cases to assess organizational needs and assist HR leadership in diagnosing root cause problems that impact overall organizational health. S/he provides counseling, direction and guidance to employees on employee relations policy questions and concerns, facilitates communication, helps resolve conflicts that impact employee engagement and produces and maintains employee related reporting. S/he will facilitate periodic Mission climate surveys (temperature checks) to assess culture and engagement and support the yearly Federal Employment Viewpoint Survey (FEVS), extrapolate data received to prepare FEVS workplans for the two Missions and lead interventions to address arising issues.

The Specialist will act as the Office-by-Office liaison with all technical/lifeline offices and will attend all weekly/monthly Mission office meetings, responding to arising personnel issues and queries as well as feedback pertinent information to the Executive Officer. S/he maintains knowledge and awareness of federal, state, and Local Labor Laws especially as they pertain to Workmen’s Compensation, Retirement, Outsourcing, Reduction in Force (RIF), and time limited contracts with Host-Country Nationals. S/he backstops the management of the performance evaluation program and serves as an advisor to all Mission employees and Mission Management on the performance management portfolio (this includes all aspects of employee performance management such as annual evaluation process, performance improvement plan, mentoring and coaching, and achievement recognition) in the absence of the HR Assistant (Training, Performance Management & Recognition). The Specialist backstops the Benefits portfolio in the absence of the HR Assistant (Recruitment & Benefits Administration).

3. HR Information Systems, Special Projects and Reporting 15 %

The HR Specialist is responsible for leading all special HR projects relating to HR Information Systems and Records Management compliance, as necessary and/or appropriate. S/he will ensure the maintenance of accurate and up to date HR records and data on HR information systems (EAPS, OPS, ASIST, G drive, Public drive, HR drive, etc.) and maintain official personnel and contract files. The HR Specialist establishes and maintains all CCN employees’ official personnel/contract folders in ASIST, ensuring that these are kept current, accurate, and complete; prepares personnel actions for new appointment, step increases, resignations, retirements, disciplinary actions, etc. The incumbent drafts and prepares various HR materials, forms, documents, reports, tracking/monitoring logs consisting of memorandums, correspondence, cables, forms, mission notices, tabulations and lengthy detailed tracking and/or master source documents. Establishes and administratively maintains an electronic log of all ongoing, pending and active CCNPSC contracting actions for which the incumbent has responsibility and accountability to provide weekly updates to the EXO and Mission Leadership. The incumbent regularly updates various Mission staffing reports and ensures that all employee and contract data and information is up to date and accurate at all times, prepares and submits periodic staffing data reports from the staffing pattern and provides other ad-hoc HR reports to USAID/Washington and the Embassy as and when required.


a. Supervision Received: The HR Specialist will be directly supervised by the Lead HR Specialist (CCN Services). In times of extended absence of the immediate supervisor, the Executive Officer will supervise, lead and mentor the incumbent. All policy items and conflicts are discussed with the immediate supervisor, but the incumbent will have wide latitude in the performance of daily duties/responsibilities, the capacity to work independently, with only minimal administrative technical guidance provided. The incumbent must be able to establish own priorities, adhere to and meet established deadlines, and perform responsibilities and duties with minimal guidance with little or no follow-up/errors.

b. Supervision Exercised: Supervision over others is not anticipated.

c. Available Guidelines: 3 FAM, 3 FAH-1, 3 FAH -2, ADS 309 Personal Services Contracts with Individuals, ADS 401 Human Capital Framework, AIDAR Appendix J, AAAPDs USAID Interim Strategic Workforce Plan FY 2020-2022, USAID Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan (2017), Equal Employment Opportunity policy (2019), USAID Acquisition Regulations and policy documents, USAID HR Manuals, USAID Leadership Philosophy, Kenya and East Africa Mission Orders, Somalia Mission Orders, HR Policies, Mission Leadership Charters, Local Employed Staff (LES) handbook, US Embassy Local Compensation Plan (LCP). USAID regulations (including the Automated Directives System) provide broad guidelines for the conduct of work related to the duties described above. US Embassy regulations, and USAID/KEA Mission procedures, Mission Orders, and Organization Charts, US Government / Kenya Government local labor laws, regulations, and policies, and other documents and background papers may provide useful guidance. The incumbent is required to understand Mission and Agency-specific policies and procedures that govern personnel and position management in addition to administrative operating procedures, policies by the Department of State. The incumbent will be required to be proactive in keeping abreast of evolving guidelines and policies which affect workforce planning and personnel management.

d. Exercise of Judgment: The incumbent will perform work of a confidential nature; therefore, initiative, discretion and tact regarding personnel matters and interpretation of personnel policies must be exercised. Incumbent uses judgment to determine priorities, recommend and offer salary levels, maintain confidentiality, to provide even and equitable treatment to all serviced employees. The incumbent exercises significant judgment in resolving technical and/or operational problems encountered during interaction with Mission staff, as well as in determining the need for consultation with superiors when circumstances require. Discretion and confidentiality are a must. The incumbent must exercise sound judgment to be able to function “honestly and effectively”. The incumbent will also be required to follow and adhere to the Agency’s Code of Ethics and Conduct.**

e. Authority to Make Commitments: The incumbent cannot make financial commitments; but within guidelines established by the supervisor makes recommendations for personnel actions. Independent decision in advising and counseling employees on personnel matters which are not commitments but considered authoritative. The incumbent will conduct salary negotiations; guidance is sought when needed, and the supervisor informed of activity and status.

f. Nature, Level, and Purpose of Contacts: Leadership, organizational, communications, inter-personal and listening skills are critical and required in order to develop and maintain collaborative and effective working relationships within the EXO/HR Team Office; USAID/Kenya and East Africa Mission, Somalia Mission and other Mission offices. Internal/external contacts, and/or visitors from USAID/W-based Human Capital Talent Management (HCTM) and working level contact with all mission personnel, legal advisors and representatives of host country medical insurance and social security system. Contacts are at all levels within the USAID Mission in providing advice, counsel, and technical guidance on matters related to human resources regulations and policies, and personnel administration and management. Contacts are maintained with counterparts in the Embassy HRO, RSO, and Medical Unit, and USAID/Washington OAA and AMS, HTCM, SEC, and State/MED.

g. Time Expected to Reach Full Performance Level: One year (12 Months).


Any application that does not meet the minimum requirements stated below will not be evaluated. Only short-listed applicants will be contacted. If you have not been contacted within one month from the closing date of this advertisement, please consider your application unsuccessful.


a. Education: Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources Management, Business Administration, Public Administration, Project Management, Social Science or a closely related field is required.

b. Prior Work Experience: A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience as a HR generalist working in a human resources or employee relations role in a multicultural work environment at an International Organization, Non- Governmental Organization, Donor Agency or Embassy is required. Total experience must include experience in position classification, recruitment, performance management, learning and development and personnel administration.

c. Post Entry Training: The HR Specialist will receive on-the-job familiarization with USAID operations, regulations and procedures. General USAID training including on-the-job training on organizational procedures and familiarization with USG records management practices will be offered. The full range of USAID and FSI Human Resources Management Courses are provided, including Personal Services Contracting training and HR Essentials Workshop, Agency-specific Records and Communications management, Global Acquisition and Assistance System (GLAAS); on-the-job, eLearning, or classroom training on USAID human resources policies and procedures; FSN compensation, payroll and benefits courses; and, other appropriate training in the field, subject to course offerings and the availability of funds. Mandatory training includes the Introduction to Program Cycle (IPC), Collaborating, Learning and Adapting (CLA), Communication and Presentation Skills and Records Management training.

d. Language Proficiency: Level IV (Fluent) proficiency of written and spoken English and Kiswahili is required. Ability to prepare and present reports is required.

e. Job Knowledge: The HR Specialist must have good working knowledge of HR concepts, principles and best practices as well as demonstrable knowledge of Human Resources processes in a fast-paced matrix environment. The position requires a good knowledge of standard personnel practices applicable to the full spectrum of personnel management from recruitment through retirement. The incumbent must possess a detailed knowledge of/or have the ability to gain a thorough knowledge of, the Automated Directives System (ADS), USAID-specific handbooks and associated-agency human resources manuals and regulations. Must have strong knowledge of standard personnel practices applicable to the full spectrum of human resources/personnel management from recruitment through retirement, prevailing practice in compensation and employment; and knowledge of personnel administration principles and benefits for all categories of staff in Kenya is required. The incumbent should have a good working knowledge of file management, mail handling, and correspondence formatting. S/he and will bring a solution-oriented approach to address training and performance management challenges.

f. Skills and Abilities: The position requires strong analytical, prioritizing, interpersonal, problem-solving, collaborative presentation, budgeting, project management (from conception to completion), and planning skills in order to work effectively in a high energy team and deadline-oriented environment. The incumbent must be able to work calmly, tactfully, and effectively under pressure and demonstrate extreme flexibility in managing multiple personnel actions at a time in the performance of daily administrative HR duties and responsibilities. The incumbent must maintain a positive customer service orientation and be able to manage multiple priorities with minimal supervision. Good customer service skills, and analytical skills to make objective evaluation decisions and present them concisely are required. Ability to interpret and apply regulations to current situations is necessary. S/he must be able to provide advice and support to CCNPSC/FSN colleagues on HR-specific administrative/operational procedural changes that have direct impact on their overall well-being. The incumbent is required to have: 1) the ability to follow oral instructions and to organize, prioritize and follow through on all assignments with little or no oversight; 2) accuracy in typing; 3) strong proof reading skills; 4) a strong focus on “attention to detail”; 5) ability to remain calm in a fast moving work environment; and 6) demonstrated proficiency in word-processing, spreadsheets, databases, and other computer programs (Excel, Info Forms, INFOREGS, INFOGUIDES, e-Forms, PowerPoint, etc.). High degree of proficiency MS Office Suite, Outlook and Internet applications and familiarity with HRIS reporting is required. The ability to maintain strict confidentiality relating to all areas of USAID/Kenya and East Africa HR matters as/when appropriate or required. In addition, to be effective he/she must be tactful in working with internal and external contacts as well as all categories of Mission personnel. Of critical importance is the ability to analyze and evaluate HR administrative information and data. Self-motivated with critical attention to detail, deadlines and reporting.


Applicants must submit a resume/cv which describes how their relevant professional experience and education has prepared them to meet the specific challenges of the duties and responsibilities described above. As part of the interview process, those applicants ranked highest may be required to submit a timed writing sample on a topic provided. The selection committee may conduct reference checks at any time during the selection process.

Applications that do not meet the required minimum qualifications will not be scored.

  • Prior work experience (30 points)
  • Language (Pass/Fail)
  • Job Knowledge (30 points)
  • Skills and abilities (40 points)

Total possible points: 100

Candidates meeting the above required qualifications for the position will be evaluated based on information presented in the application and reference checks. References will be asked to assess the applicant’s technical knowledge, work performance, communication skills, and group dynamics, using the above criteria. USAID reserves the right to conduct interviews with the top ranked short-listed applicants. The interview will be one of the determining factors in the final selection.

How to apply

Step 1: Register in MyJobsInKenya at

Step 2: Qualified Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages), a copy of your most recent Performance Evaluation Report, and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents as one attachment and upload to MyJobsInKenya.


External Applicants/Not Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages) and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents as one attachment and upload to MyJobsInKenya .

Note to Applicants:

  1. Applications must be received by the closing date and time specified in Section I, item 3, and submitted through as stated in Section IV.
  2. Submissions will only be accepted through Late and Incomplete applications (those that do not contain the applicant’s most current and up to date detailed CV and relevant education certificates) will not be considered for the position. The closing date for receipt of applications is indicated above.
  3. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. Any form of canvassing will lead to automatic disqualification.
  4. USAID provides equal opportunity and equitable treatment for employment of all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status or sexual orientation.

Leave a Reply