Operations Director - Security and Risk

Operations Director - Security and Risk

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Position Summary

IPA seeks a Director – Security and Risk to provide strengthening and support to the safety and security, safeguarding and risk management of its global network of Country Offices.  The Director, in close collaboration with the Global/ Regional Programs team, will focus on supporting IPA’s safety and security and safeguarding, travel and risk management standards globally and across country offices. The position will, in addition, provide additional capacity in operations should crises within existing or new country expansion need extra high-level support for a concentrated period.  They will work under the direction and guidance of the Chief Global Program Officer and will work in close collaboration with the Operations Director – Systems and Procurement and the Regional Directors in support of IPA Country Offices. The Global Operations Director will also coordinate support and assistance with the key Global Functional Teams led by the Chief Finance Officer, Chief People Officer, General Counsel, Director of Technology, and others as required.



  • Oversees, trains and mentors the safety and security team

  • Oversees safety and security analysis, planning and management including the implementation and regular update of Global Safety and Security Policy and Procedures and Country Offices SOPs.

  • Coordinates the incident reporting process across all global teams and country offices 

  • Leads crisis management response in case of safety, security and health-related emergencies.

  • Coordinates sub-regional safety and security assessments and works with Country Office leadership to analyze safety and security risks and improve procedures.

  • Provides regular S&S analysis and information to SMT

  • Spearheads the Safety and Security Community of Practice to ensure a common understanding and application of IPA’s S&S policies and procedures across all COs.


  • In collaboration with the HR Department, oversee the implementation and regular update of IPA’s Safeguarding Policy and Anti-trafficking Policy, incl. ensuring that relevant projects have up-to-date compliance plans.

  • Promote safe programming concepts in all of IPA’s projects by ensuring that safeguarding risk assessments are conducted.

  • Spearheaded capacity developments efforts, training, coaching on safeguarding matters for Country Office leadership.

  • Leading the review of safeguarding incidents and concerns with program teams and consolidating lessons learned to improve program quality


  • In collaboration with the relevant Functional Teams and Country Office leadership, participates in the development, improvement, roll-out, and implementation of global operations and administrative policies and procedures (including but not limited to safety and security, safeguarding, travel, risk management) at Country Office level, including global and Country Office-specific SOPs. 

  • Participates in cross-team initiatives to improve our safety and security, travel and risk management processes

  • Fields and responds to operations-related questions and ad hoc requests related to S&S, safeguarding, travel, risk management, environmental performance.

  • Collaborates with the Global Learning & Development Specialist to identify training needs of country office operations staff and to develop training materials to address these needs

  • Actively promotes collaboration across country offices, seeking opportunities for similar offices or offices with similar issues to share experiences.


  • Define and keep updated, in collaboration with Country Office and Regional leadership and in coordination with the Legal Department, a compliance tracker at the Country Office level to provide a clear overview of the Offices’ compliance status with local laws and regulations and global policies.

  • Lead the development and management of the country risk registers at the project and Country office level

  • Support, in collaboration with the Regional Directors and the Country Directors, the implementation of project and country-level risk registers, and assist Global Teams on risk management in general. 

  • Provide operational support in country, country visits, emergency deployments, surge needs for start-ups or gap filling.

  • Assist in country-level audit planning and follow-up that can include reviews of country office operations departments, drafting and reviews of operational improvement plans, compliance sturdiness of country offices, audit readiness, internal audit interface. 


  • Regularly updates the IPA travel and environmental policy and works with country offices to update the related SOPs

  • Oversees the relationship with IPA’s travel agency and ensures dissemination and compliance with IPA’s travel policy.

  • Provides day to day support and guidance to IPA staff travelling

  • Provide statistics about travel volume and works with the travel agency to offset emissions in accordance to IPA’s policy

  • Coordinate the provision of data, on a yearly basis, for the environmental management report



  • Minimum of 7 years relevant experience with a minimum of 3 years of extensive management experience, preferably in an international NGO.

  • Extensive safety and security experience in a development organization; previous experience working on safety and security in fragile contexts is a plus.

  • Demonstrated experience coordinating the logistics and/or travel function in an international company

  • Previous experience in risk management including the definition of risk registers and business continuity plans 

  • Experience of working with non-for-profit organizations in a developing country is required. 

  • Excellent management, project management, leadership and organizational skills and ability to work independently.

  • Fluent English, written and spoken. Ability to fluently communicate in Spanish or French is an advantage.


  • Bachelor’s degree in development or security related discipline; Masters’ Degree an added advantage

  • Advanced training or certification in safety and security preferred .

  • Strong communication and representational skills 

  • Sensitivity to working in a culturally diverse organization and regions.

  • Flexible, self-motivating, able to manage multiple tasks efficiently, and a team player.


IPA's compensation structure is designed based on the labor market for the specific geographic location where the employee is located.  We are offering the following salary ranges for this position:

Operations Director - Security and Risk is classified as D2 on IPA's global job structure.
-  For US-based employees, the starting annual gross salary is $90,000 with a maximum of $120,000
- The salary for locations outside of the US will vary depending on IPA's salary scale ranges for that specific location.

Actual base salary may vary based upon, but not limited to, relevant experience, base salary of internal peers, business sector, and geographic location.

Reports to

Chief Global Programs Officer 


Must be based out of a country office or anywhere IPA is registered (Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Myanmar, Philippines, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru or anywhere within the U.S. where our IPA offices are located or registered ( AZ, CA, CT, DC, FL, GA, IA, IL, MA, MD, MN, NC, NJ, NY, PA, TX, VA, WA, WV.)

Application Instructions

Click here to apply. 


About IPA 

Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) is a research and policy nonprofit that discovers and promotes effective solutions to global poverty problems. IPA brings together researchers and decision-makers to design, rigorously evaluate, and refine these solutions and their applications, ensuring that the evidence created is used to improve the lives of the world’s poor. In recent decades, trillions of dollars have been spent on programs designed to reduce global poverty, but clear evidence of which programs succeed is rare, and when evidence does exist, decision-makers often do not know about it. IPA exists to bring together leading researchers and these decision-makers to ensure that the evidence we create leads to a tangible impact on the world. Since its founding in 2002, IPA has worked with over 600 leading academics to conduct over 900 evaluations in 52 countries. This research has informed hundreds of successful programs that now impact millions of individuals worldwide. 

IPA's Commitment to Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) 

As an organization, IPA is dedicated to improving the lives of the world's most vulnerable populations through evidence and policy. We also recognize how important it is for our staff to reflect the diversity of the places where we work and the communities we work with. As such, IPA is committed to hiring from a diverse pool of candidates, from a range of backgrounds, beliefs, experiences, and perspectives. We know that this makes our work stronger and more responsive to the challenges faced by those we work with and for and we encourage people from historically underrepresented groups to apply. Click here to learn more about IPA’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.


Innovations for Poverty Action is an affirmative action-equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other protected class. IPA will endeavor to make a reasonable accommodation to a qualified applicant with a disability unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the operation of our business. If you believe you require such assistance to complete this form or to participate in an interview, please contact us at jobs@poverty-action.org or via phone at 1-202-386-6200. The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of the work to be performed by the specified position. The statements are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all possible duties, tasks, and responsibilities. Management reserves the right to amend and change responsibilities to meet organizational needs as necessary. Please note that IPA will never request any form of payment from an applicant. Applicants are encouraged to confirm the information listed above with IPA prior to releasing any extensive personal information to the organization. Please direct questions to jobs@poverty-action.org. Please note that only qualified applicants will be contacted by the hiring manager.