National programme officer (NPO)
For its duty stations abroad, the SDC recruits local employees on the basis of their experience, education and training. In addition to considerable technical expertise and operational experience, our national programme officers are very familiar with local conditions. They play a pivotal role in reconciling Swiss interests with those of the partner country.
Our national programme officers are responsible for gathering information about local conditions and maintaining a good network in the partner country, which are two crucial prerequisites for international cooperation.
NPOs are our local experts. They implement country programmes established by the FDFA, SECO and other Swiss-based organisations and ensure both quality and continuity. Alongside project management and coordination tasks, NPOs also handle financial, controlling and monitoring tasks.
Key concerns for Swiss development cooperation include the rule of law, democratisation and socially and environmentally sound economic growth. For this reason, most of our NPOs have formal
academic credentials in one of these fields.
Prospective NPOs should be able to think and carry out tasks in a systematic fashion. They should be able to plan and guide development processes. Moreover, they should have experience in project management and networking and have the ability to work in a team. They should be reliable, responsible and have good language skills (depending on the duty station, the languages will either be English, Spanish or French). Demonstrated familiarity with the country and local conditions are absolutely essential.
As a rule, NPOs report directly to a country director and are not subject to regular reassignment like other SDC employees.
The SDC offers NPOs a gender-sensitive, international environment with good social benefits and a broad range of continuing education courses.
Vacancies are normally advertised in the local media (mainly in English, Spanish or French) and/or are posted on the Coordination Office Website. Applications must be sent directly to the contact person indicated in the vacancy announcement.
Each application will be thoroughly examined and trial periods vary from three to six months, depending on local legislation.