Market Systems Development Regional Coordinator

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Market Systems Development Regional Coordinator

  • Post Date:June 21, 2022
  • Views 306
0 Applications
  • Career Level Coordinator
    Qualification Master’s Degree
    Experience 3-5 Years
  • Industry Non Governmental
Job Description

Location: Bulawayo
Position Status: Fixed-term, Full-time
Duration: 1 year (with possibility of extension)

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps partners with communities as they move from a place of fragility to resilience, meeting urgent needs while addressing root causes – always powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse, and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

The Program / Department / Team

Mercy Corps has been operating in Zimbabwe since 2002 focusing its interventions on a multi-sectoral market systems development portfolio mobilizing communities to promote small-scale agriculture and revive local economies. MC Zimbabwe seeks to support at-risk communities in Zimbabwe – with a specific focus on young people, women and other marginalized groups – to move towards sustainable development through building resilience and strong inclusive systems in the face of climatic and economic shocks and stresses. Market driven approaches are at the heart of Mercy Corps’ programming. Mercy Corps facilitates the development of systems that increase incomes and improve access to goods, with services, and employment opportunities, while reducing the risks and effects of shocks and stresses.

General Position Summary

Mercy Corps Zimbabwe will implement a 4-year Market Systems Development (MSD) program focused on urban/peri-urban and the associated rural and urban linkages. The program seeks to improve incomes, working conditions and resilience to shocks and stresses for women through sustainable livelihoods, with a particular emphasis on the potential embedded in microenterprises and informal markets. This position presents an exciting opportunity to lead a programme that pushes the boundaries of conventional MSD practice through its application of the MSD approach to employment outcomes for women in informal markets, and through its emphasis on rules, norms and networks. The MSD Regional Coordinator will be based in Bulawayo. The position holder will also provide MSD technical leadership in the region on the strategic development and management of MSD programs from new business development to technical support for implementation and close out. Zimbabwe is well positioned to grow its MSD portfolio, presenting exciting potential for the position holder’s leadership role to grow in influence and impact.

Essential Responsibilities


  • Develop and adaptively manage a portfolio of MSD interventions in the region that effectively enable the informal sector system to function more inclusively for women, particularly young women, for increased productivity, employment and income opportunities in accordance with expected outputs, outcomes and impacts. Interventions should tackle the challenges urban informal enterprises face, while strengthening urban and rural relations in target regions, with an emphasis on improving worker rights and quality of work.
  • Use MSD approaches to assess and analyse data to develop a good understanding of market opportunities in the informal sector for women
  • Leverage technical expertise in relevant market systems to develop and implement comprehensive intervention strategies in close collaboration with appropriate colleagues, including other portfolio managers, and the monitoring and evaluation team.
  • Develop and modify contingency plans, business plans, work plans, budgets and other documents necessary for the management of a portfolio of interventions, as required
  • Engage in effective stakeholder management locally, engage various market players, develop partnerships, carry out partnership activities and act as a professional and credible spokesperson for the region.
  • Build, and support team members to build, facilitative partnerships with relevant private and public sector partners which provide targeted support to stimulate behaviour changes that catalyse system changes.
  • Ensure backstopping for regional team members, including by managing a portion of the programs directly when needed, market research, intelligence, assessments and feasibility studies; building private sector partnerships and engagement plans; liaising with market actors to find strategic leverage points for co-investment; and designing systemic interventions in response to root causes of market ineffectiveness and exclusion of women and young people.


  • Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where region team members strive to achieve excellence.
  • Promote accountability, communicate expectations, and provide constructive feedback via regular performance discussions and strong performance management protocols.
  • Supervise, hire and orient new region team members as necessary.
  • Train and mentor staff in the region of operation for successful implementation of the program.
  • Recognize opportunities for innovative action and create an environment where alternative viewpoints are welcomed.
  • Provide management support and coaching to relevant team members in skills, particularly MSD technical skills including facilitation, partnership management, intervention monitoring and adaptive management
  • Provide guidance to team members and colleagues on the development and management of interventions using an MSD approach


  • Ensure the program meets targets, on time, on scope and on budget. This responsibility includes collaborative work planning that keeps all region team members accountable, ensuring accurate budget forecasting and analysis of monthly budget vs. actual reports, and proper procurement planning in collaboration with the Operations team.
  • Cross-check detailed transactions and review budget versus actual (BVA) spending reports to determine status of program burn rates.
  • Work with the Country Finance team to ensure spend-down plans and cash projections are developed and monitored.
  • Lead region team input on any budget revisions or programmatic input for financial reports.


  • Conduct ongoing analysis of the markets and market systems affected by interventions, including documenting and analysing observations and results, and drawing relevant conclusions to inform future intervention strategies.
  • Provide advisory support to the management team to identify and launch new interventions that can be scaled up based on existing interventions and research.
  • Monitoring the progress of the assigned intervention(s) and delivery against the results chain(s), including updates to the intervention management model
  • Manage results chains, including providing key information on programme results, lessons learned and trajectory correction strategies; modify the result chains, in a timely manner, if necessary.
  • Prepare regular updates on the status of interventions, including a) verbal updates at weekly meetings, b) progress checks against the results chain and response guides updated monthly, and c) quarterly written progress reports
  • Work with the MEL team to ensure the finalization of the region-specific MEL plan and any relevant procedures with clear designation of roles and responsibilities between the Region Program and MEL teams.
  • Ensure that robust monitoring and evaluation, quality data collection and analysis, and review systems are in place, adhered to and used as a decision-making tool, in coordination with MEL Officer.
  • Capture learning from interventions, and feed these into wider learning agendas for the programme, country and agency.
  • Ensure appropriate attention to program learning and integration of lessons learned.

Supervisory Responsibility: MSD Team in the region of operation
Accountability Reports Directly To: MSD Team Leader
Works Directly With: HR, Finance, and Operations staff; Technical Support Unit; Resource Development Department

Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Minimum Qualification & Transferable Skills

  • Masters’ degree or equivalent in International Development, International Relations, Business Management, Gender Studies or another relevant field highly preferred.
  • 4-5 years of field experience in MSD programming with a focus on markets required. At least 3 years of experience in a supervisory role.
  • Experience directly building partnerships with the private sector to increase employment opportunities. Experience working within the private sector is a plus.
  • Experience in multi-stakeholder engagement, building value propositions in both peri-urban and rural programming.
  • Strong strategic thinker with demonstrated capacity to translate concepts into action, with proven ability to be accountable for all components of the program.
  • Experience in financial inclusion, tech-based employment, or youth and gender transformative MSD programming, or in similar themes in roles within the private sector..
  • Competent in building networks, strong problem-solving skills, and ability to influence with effective listening, persuasion, negotiation, and other techniques.
  • Strong analytical and critical-thinking skills, with an ability to perform business, financial and systems analysis.

Success Factors

The ideal candidate is expected to be a high performer in fast-paced project cycle management, MEL, quality assurance and team and budget management. The MSD Senior Program Officer will have a strong technical understanding of MSD in markets such as Zimbabwe. They will take energy from solving program implementation challenges. They will have a strong ethical center and a commitment to safeguarding. They will be an influencer, able to connect with diverse audiences from a young petty trader to a private sector employer to a high-ranking government official.

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient, and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and
collaborates to do the best work of their lives. We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening, and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact. We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, colour, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct eLearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.

How to Apply

To apply, please send one document that includes your cover letter describing your interest, qualifications, contactable references, and your CV to Mercy Corps Human Resources at [email protected] by COB 24 June 2022.

Applications should be clearly marked with the position applied for in the email subject line.

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity organization and encourages both female and male candidates to apply.

Applicants will be considered on a rolling basis and shortlisting will proceed as applications are received.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.