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Director, Business Services and Operations

Director, Business Services and Operations
Business Services and Operations
Duty Station: 
Harare, Zimbabwe

Closing Date:                       This is a rolling process and the vacancy shall remain live until the successful candidate has been identified


Background/Job Purpose

The African Capacity Building Foundation is searching for an entrepreneurial and ambitious results-focused individual to develop, advise and implement quality business support to ensure effective Financial, People, Procurement, Administration, and ICT services in compliance with ACBF policies and standards. To ensure Programme Services management contributes to and is aligned to the ACBF program and strategic goals.  The position serves as the lead business services and operations manager, reporting directly to the Executive Secretary. As the Business and Operations Director, you will have the opportunity to work together with partners, to catalyze and scale transformative innovations creating unlikely partnerships to span sectors and geographies. This role is based in Harare, Zimbabwe, and is a fixed-term, renewable three-year contract. 

You may be the ideal candidate for this role if you thrive working within a team structure, sharing information and insights, and engaging in ongoing intellectual exchange. You must be comfortable building bridges with partners, service providers, financial institutions, government, and corporate sectors. You should have experience in financial engineering, providing corporate services support to cross-country programs and projects, and managing people and processes. 

Duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • To proactively address the interface between Finance, Procurement, HR, Administration & ICT teams to ensure our operations are cost-effective, efficient, and comply with organizational standards of management and accountability.

  • Manage all aspects of finance, and administration procedures in line with corporate standards, ensuring required financial reports are provided as required.

  • Ensure compliance with legal and statutory financial reporting requirements.

  • Implementation of External & Internal Audit recommendations and provision of progress reports.

  • Ensure that the supply of goods and services to the foundation and its programmes is carried out speedily and efficiently in a transparent manner, following donors’ requirements.

  • Make sure that delivery of efficient day-to-day administration and general support, including reception, travel, office environment, and staff safety issues are made.

  • Be actively involved in and aware of all organisational issues, to proactively identify potential problems and concerns and deliver quick, practical, business focussed solutions.

  • Take prompt and definite action on non-compliance with policy and practice.

  • Oversee the operational planning and implementation of corporate finance, procurement, ICT and administration initiatives to ensure rollout in an appropriate manner for the foundation.

  • Advise managers on the interpretation and implementation of the full range of ACBF’s business policies and procedures, ensuring consistency and fairness in application, in accordance with ACBF policy and relevant legislative requirements.

  • Ensure compliance with legal obligations of the foundation in the areas of finance, ICT, logistics and administration.  Provide advice and guidance to the Executive Secretary, and the Management Team on risk management plans relating to programme services functions.

  • Development of customer service attitude within the finance, logistics, ICT and administration teams and a focus on integrated teamwork.

  • Responsible for overall management of and provision of an advisory role on all aspects of business services. 

  • Ensure that program support functions are reviewed and improved where necessary.

  • Ensure accurate and timely production of financial reports to donors and ensure the effective tracking and reporting on multiple donor-funded programs.

  • Ensure that our practices are aligned with ACBF’s values and policies, especially around financial management, staff management, and procurement, both internally and externally with partners and suppliers’ organizations.

  • Support the Executive Secretary in the business planning and reporting cycle, including planning, forecasting, budgeting, and financial analysis.

  • Manage the Business and Operations Team to ensure they have the necessary skills and abilities to effectively deliver operational support and services to the organization and to support other ACBF staff in their capacity-building work and to deliver relevant training and support to partner organizations as required.

  • Regularly monitor and evaluate individual and departmental performance against objectives and ensure issues are identified and addressed.

  • Develop and implement a detailed plan for building the business services capacity of partner organizations, especially in finance, and logistics.  This will include needs assessment, capacity building approach and delivery plan including tools and methodologies, performance standards, and evaluation approach.     

  • Represent the Foundation in diverse communities, including speaking engagements, attending conferences, and participating in other key internal and external meetings. 

  • Network building and connecting grantees, partners, and other stakeholders

Desired Competencies and Experience

  • Preferably post-graduate education to Masters’ level and full professional qualification in Accountancy (e.g.CA/ACCA/ACA/CIMA) with a minimum of 10 years of professional experience, with significant experience in program support functions and management of it (Finance, HR, capital assets, ICT and Procurement) in the development context. 

  • Capacity to analyze, develop solutions and communicate to a wide audience, diverse and complex problems, usually within organizational policy.

  • Experience of managing wide diverse technical teams to deliver on tight deadlines.

  • Excellent leadership and people management abilities, with motivational, talent development and change management skills.  Able to manage and develop other people’s professional standards and potential.

  • Analytical and strategic planning skills and the ability to handle multiple priorities.

  • Leadership qualities and people management expertise to provide direction and effective support to a multi-disciplinary team.  Ability to build and performance manage high functioning team.

  • Ability to present information and concepts clearly, both verbally and on paper.

  • Computer literacy, preferably knowledge of common financial and project database systems.

  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills and a proven ability to be flexible in demanding situation.

  • Ability to take considerable initiative and independence, and to take the lead and shoulder considerable responsibility without recourse to additional support.

  • Capacity to take decisions and to support others to take decisions.

  • Good written and spoken English essential.

  • Ability to travel occasionally, particularly within Africa

Personal Characteristics

  • An intellectually curious but humble leader with a high degree of compassion, able to engage, enable and inspire. 

  • A hands-on approach to all activities with real passion and high levels of energy. Agile and comfortable adapting to different environments.

  • Creative and resourceful in overcoming barriers and unexpected roadblocks. Courageous in spirit, driving change through innovation.

  • An authentic leader who intuitively engenders an inclusive environment, enabling the program to reach its ambitious goals.

  • Possesses high personal standards of ethics and integrity towards employees, stakeholders, and beneficiaries.

  • Diversity of thought and experience. Continually seeks new perspectives and feedback, takes an inclusive approach,

  • High levels of learning-agility with a real interest in the capacitybuilding ecosystem.

  • Entrepreneurial and comfortable with ambiguous and change-led environments; self-confident with an authentic style that gravitates to championing change.

  • Eager to seek a challenge and expand frontiers; brings a visionary approach. Sets and meets a high bar of goals and principles.

  • Servant leadership mentality, deeply committed to serving and listening to others. Natural ability to build strong relationships and enable collaboration through empathy and authenticity.

  • Committed to building a community through ACBF’s principles.


The African Capacity Building Foundation offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience.  The Foundation provides a very generous package of benefits.

About the African Capacity Building Foundation

For more than 30 years, The African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF) has been building human capital and institutional capacity for Africa’s sustainable development. With membership from 40 African Countries, the African Development Bank, the United Nations Development Program, The African Union, and The World Bank, ACBF is the leading institution for capacity development in Africa. While serving all actors, ACBF recognizes the importance of and pays attention to improving the effectiveness of Africa’s public sector institutions at local, national, regional, and continental levels to become effective systems integrators and catalyzers of sustainable and transformative change.

Since its creation in 1991, ACBF has trained over 50,000 personnel in civil service, most of whom hold key positions in Ministries of Finance, Planning or Economic Development and Central Banks across the continent. The Foundation has established a network of over 50 think tanks supporting evidence-based policymaking across Africa and conducted numerous policy research/analyses, which have been critical in informing economic management and establishing benchmarks for success.

The Foundation currently maintains offices in Accra, Addis Ababa, Harare, and Nairobi.

To apply for this position please submit in confidence a resume and a cover letter that details why you are a good fit for this career position quoting the reference, “Director, Business Services and Operations /01/2024,’ to

Please note, only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted. 

The African Capacity Building Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer

We strongly encourage qualified female candidates to apply.

For detailed information and the application process, visit our website on

Accompanying Documents: 
Thomas Kwesi Quartey

ACBF has been granted the status of a specialized agency because of the potential to transform Africa through capacity development.

H.E. Thomas Kwesi Quartey, Deputy Chairperson, AU Commission
Erastus Mwencha

The recognition of ACBF as the African Union’s Specialized Agency for Capacity Development launches the beginning of a new era for capacity building by ACBF, which will require an appropriate level of political commitment and financial support from all stakeholders.

H.E. Erastus Mwencha, Chair, ACBF Executive Board
Lamin Momodou

The remarkable achievements ACBF has registered over the past 26 years is not by accident in our opinion. They have come through hard work, dedication, commitment, purposeful leadership, support from the member countries as well as productive partnership building.

Mr. Lamin Momodou MANNEH, Director, UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa
Goodall Gondwe

Africa needs ACBF as much, probably more now, than at the time it was created in 1991.

Hon. Goodall Gondwe, former Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance – Malawi
Ken Ofori Atta

Ghana’s partnership with ACBF is a tremendous blessing for us and therefore the opportunity for Ghana to host the 26th ACBF Board of Governors Meeting is something that we treasure.

Hon Ken Ofori Atta, Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance - Ghana