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EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY – Acquisition and Assistance Specialist

Closing Date of The Position: February 9, 2015

ALL ORDINARILY RESIDENT (OR) APPLICANTS MUST HAVE THE REQUIRED WORK AND/OR RESIDENCY PERMITS TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR CONSIDERATION.

The US Embassy is seeking an individual for the position of Acquisition and Assistance Specialist at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). This is a full-time Personal Services Contract position.

USAID anticipates hiring up to five new staff as Acquisition & Assistance (A&A), depending on the qualifications of the applicant.

Under the A&A position, USAID is willing to accept applicants with fewer than the required minimum number of years of experience but meeting the minimum educational requirements. These employees will be considered trainees and begin at one grade lower. Attainment of the higher grade level is contingent upon the Specialist successfully completing all required training, years of experience to reach the fully qualified level, in addition to meeting agreed-upon objectives and milestones, and performing in a fully successful manner. Failure to obtain the minimum qualification of the next grade level may be grounds for termination.

The candidates for this position will be reviewed on a continuous basis until the closing date or until all positions are filled.

 

BASIC FUNCTION OF POSITION

The Acquisition and Assistance Specialist is located in the Office of Acquisition and Assistance, USAID/TANZANIA. The function of the Office is to provide Acquisition and Assistance (procurement) support to Mission Technical Offices and Development Objective (DO) Teams in the Mission, and in any other Offices that may be supported by the Mission. The primary purpose of this position is to perform a variety of acquisition and assistance duties including writing grants, cooperative agreements, contracts, and other procurement instruments and preparing amendments in support of the Mission. The Specialist reviews and recommends for approval or revision of requisitions in the Global Acquisition and Assistance System (GLAAS); scopes of work (SOW); drafts requests for proposal or quote; performs cost and price analysis; analyzes proposals or quotes received; drafts contracts and contract modifications; analyzes contractor-proposed budgets; recommends revisions to various contract provisions; writes Memoranda of Negotiation; and, prepares other required documentation. The Specialist maintains contract files and records up to date, prepares Contractor Performance Reports (CPRs), and supports award closeouts. The Specialist provides guidance related to administrative award modifications, and is responsible for carrying out day-to-day activities under the mentorship of more senior A&A specialists.

This position is a part of an established career ladder, which provides for career progression if established performance objectives are met. Attainment of higher grade levels is contingent upon the Specialist successfully completing required training, meeting agreed-upon objectives and milestones, and performing in a Fully Successful manner. Promotion to higher grade levels is not guaranteed.

 

MAJOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

a. The Specialist (Trainee) is responsible for program/project/activity acquisition and assistance support for USAID/Tanzania Technical Offices, Development Objective (DO) and Assistance Objective (AO) Teams, and any designated clients. USAID programs are diverse and multi-sectorial. The Specialist is required to provide acquisition assistance to designated Technical Offices and/or DO/AO Teams, and to support a variety of programs/projects/activities. These programs/projects/activities are implemented through complex Government contracting and grant mechanisms, including but not limited to purchase orders, competitively negotiated technical assistance agreements, contracts, cooperative agreements, Participating Agency Service Agreements (PASA), and sole source contracts.

b. The Specialist (Trainee) is expected and required to select the appropriate procurement instrument type for the situation at hand, and to accurately apply USG procurement laws, regulations, policies, and procedures governing each type of instrument. The advanced developmental nature of the assignment includes the acquisition of goods and various types of services. The Specialist (Trainee) must be equally familiar with the procedures for acquisition of goods, and for managing personal service and non-personal service contracting actions.

c. The Specialist (Trainee) is expected to work with technical specialists/activity managers in Technical Offices and DO/AO Teams throughout the Mission and the Region, assisting in the preparation of annual procurement plans, the development of clear and concise statements of work, and full supporting documentation. The Specialist (Trainee) must be able to provide authoritative technical guidance to technical specialists/activity managers, pertaining to their procurement-related responsibilities and procedures. Specific duties include: Pre-Award Duties – the Specialist (Trainee) assists technical DO/AO Team personnel in the analysis of annual program plans, and advises on the selection of appropriate acquisition and assistance mechanisms to help achieve program objectives; assists technical personnel in the preparation of required descriptions of proposed activities, including statements of work, specifications, and activity descriptions; prepares pre-solicitation documents and clearances, including determinations, justifications, synopses, and solicitations and, reviews GLAAS Requisitions (REQs) for completeness and clarity. The Specialist (Trainee) advises on the adequacy of evaluation criteria, proposed contracting mechanisms, the extent of advertising required, and any other required terms and conditions. In coordination with Technical Offices and/or representatives of host-country governments, the Specialist (Trainee) evaluates and analyzes bids and proposals, ensuring compliance with evaluation criteria. The Specialist (Trainee) assists in the development of pre-negotiation costs or programmatic objectives, in conjunction with the Contracting/Regional Contracting Officer and/or his/her designee, technical personnel, and others; recommends the competitive range, and negotiates with potential awardees; documents negotiations in writing; assists in technical and cost evaluations; recommends the selected contractor and prepares contract files, to include making required certifications and determinations necessary for each procurement action: and, prepares award documents that accurately reflect all discussions and provisions relevant to the type of award mechanism to be implemented.

Post-Award Duties – The Specialist (Trainee) monitors performance as required by the terms and conditions of the award, through review of performance and review of financial reports; manages the assigned portfolio; assures that funding is available when required; and, works with DO/AO Teams/CORs/AORs to assure targets/milestones are set and being met (or that remedial action is taken), and that the overall goals of the program/project/activity are met; conducts site visits and attends meetings; and, provides guidance to technical personnel and assists in programmatic duties as required to avoid contractual/legal improprieties. The Specialist (Trainee) assists the CO/RCO with issues that may arise during contract performance, including changes, work stoppages, disputes, implementation problems, defaults, cost overruns, unacceptable performance, and payment problems.

d. The Specialist (Trainee) conducts closeouts of contracts, grants, and cooperative agreements after completion; closeouts include ensuring contract audits are conducted in a timely manner, preparing performance documentation, and resolving outstanding issues noted in audits.

Performs other duties as assigned or required.

 

REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS

As this is a Career Ladder position, the elements of the Required Qualifications differ from one level to another, EXCEPT for Education and Language requirements which are the same at all three levels of Junior, Mid-Level, and Specialist (Fully Successful) Level.

a. Education (ALL LEVELS):
Possession of a Baccalaureate (Bachelor’s) Degree or the equivalent of a four-year US college/university (or equivalency accreditation if a non-US institution) degree in accounting, law, business, finance, contracts, purchasing, economics, industrial management, marketing, quantitative methods, and/or organization and management is required.

NB: Additional education may NOT be substituted for Experience.

b. Language Proficiency (ALL LEVELS):
Level IV (Fluent) English language proficiency, both oral and written, is required.

SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS AT EACH LEVEL:

  1. JUNIOR LEVEL

    c. Prior Work Experience:
    Three or more years of progressively responsible experience in acquisition and assistance, development assistance, business, law or another closely related field is required.

    d. Knowledge:
    Knowledge of public and/or private-sector business processes, or the ability to quickly gain such knowledge, is required. The knowledge or the ability to quickly gain an understanding of US Federal Acquisition Regulations, and/or knowledge and understanding of how to execute and administer a complex acquisition or assistance (grant) portfolio, is required, particularly as it relates to acquisition through methods of negotiation, sealed bidding, small purchase procedures, and that result in standard and established contract types.

    e. Skills and Abilities:
    The potential to acquire the ability to plan and administer acquisition activities, and provide acquisition assistance and support for Agency programs and projects in a timely manner, is required. The potential to gain the ability to apply contracting regulations, procedures, and policies to individual acquisition and assistance programs is required. And, an ability to communicate effectively with internal and external customers and stakeholders is required.

    Good analytical, negotiating, and time management skills, along with strong proofreading skills and attention to detail, are required.

    Ability to write clearly and concisely. The ability to work calmly, tactfully, and effectively under pressure is essential, as well as the ability to maintain strict CONFIDENTIALITY, and meet all STANDARDS OF CONDUCT/ETHICS STANDARDS in accordance with US law throughout all phases of acquisition and assistance procurement processes is required.
  2.  

  3. MID-LEVEL

    c. Prior Work Experience:
    Four or more years of progressively responsible experience in acquisition and assistance, development assistance, business, law or another closely related field is required.

    As this position is part of a recognized and established career ladder, a minimum of one year of this experience must be performing complex A&A work under USG acquisition and/or assistance regulations, in the public or private sector is required.

    d. Knowledge:
    Knowledge of public and/or private-sector business processes is required. At this level, knowledge of USG Federal Acquisition Regulations, or knowledge and understanding of how to execute and administer an acquisition and portfolio, is required, particularly as it relates to acquisition through methods of negotiation, sealed bidding, small purchase procedures, and that result in standard and established contract types is required.

    A good knowledge of Regional markets pertaining to program and project requirements for services and commodities, and a good knowledge and understanding of US market and pricing methods is required.

    e. Skills and Abilities:
    Skills and Abilities: The ability to plan and administer acquisition activities, and provide adequate acquisition assistance and support for agency programs and projects in a timely manner is required.

    The ability to apply governing contracting regulations, procedures, and policies to assigned acquisition and assistance programs is required.

    An ability to deal effectively with high-level representatives of the US and Regional business community, and with colleagues in USAID Missions and/or host governments throughout the Region is required. Skill in the use of most elements of the Microsoft Business suite is required.

    Good analytical, negotiating, and time management skills, along with strong proofreading skills and attention to detail, are required.

    The ability to work calmly, tactfully, and effectively under pressure is essential, as well as the ability to maintain strict CONFIDENTIALITY, and meet all STANDARDS OF CONDUCT/ETHICS STANDARDS in accordance with US law throughout all phases of acquisition and assistance procurement processes is required.
  4.  

  5. SENIOR LEVEL

    c. Prior Work Experience:
    Five or more years of progressively responsible work in acquisition and assistance is required. As this position is part of a recognized and established career ladder, a minimum of two years of this experience must be performing complex A&A work under USG acquisition and/or assistance regulations, in the public or private sector, with at least one year at the Mid-Level or equivalent.

    d. Knowledge:
    Knowledge of US Federal and/or USAID Acquisition Regulations, and knowledge and understanding of how to execute and administer a complex acquisition and assistance portfolio is required, particularly as it relates to acquisition through methods of negotiation, sealed bidding, small purchase procedures, and that result in standard and established contract types. A good knowledge of host-country and regional markets pertaining to program/project/activity requirements for services and commodities, and a good knowledge and understanding of US market and pricing methods is required. Knowledge of business processes in public or private sectors is required.

    e. Skills and Abilities:
    The ability to plan and administer large acquisition activities, and provide adequate acquisition assistance and support for agency programs/projects/activities in a timely manner is required. The ability to apply governing contracting regulations, procedures, and policies to individual complex acquisition and assistance programs is required. An ability to deal effectively with high-level representatives of the US and Regional business community, and with colleagues in USAID Missions and/or host governments throughout the Region is required. Skill in the use of most elements of the Microsoft Business suite is required.

    Good analytical, negotiating, and time management skills, along with strong proofreading skills and attention to detail, are required. The ability to work calmly, tactfully, and effectively under pressure is essential, as well as the ability to maintain strict CONFIDENTIALITY, and meet all STANDARDS OF CONDUCT/ETHICS STANDARDS in accordance with US law throughout all phases of acquisition and assistance procurement processes.

 

 

POSITION ELEMENTS:
a. Supervision Received: The Acquisition and Assistance Specialist works under the general guidance of the Contracting Officer and/or his/her designee, or a higher-level Specialist/Officer, who makes assignments in terms of the range of procurement actions the Specialist will perform. The Specialist independently initiates necessary coordination with requesting Mission CORs/AORs, Technical Offices, and Development Objectives and Assistance Objective Teams providing policy and strategic guidance on how to best fulfill requirements, and with Office of Financial Management, staffs of other offices, and with awardees. The Specialist keeps the Contracting Officer, and/or his/her designee, updated through periodic status reports and through verbal briefings. Completed work is reviewed from the overall standpoint of providing a viable procurement approach for results achieved, in meeting delivery schedules, and in the selection of appropriate contract methods.

b. Available Guidelines: Guidelines include the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), USAID Acquisition Regulations (AIDAR), Automated Directives System (ADS), Contract Information Bulletins (CIBs), US Department of State Standardized Regulations, Federal Travel Regulations (FTR), Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circulars, Mission Orders, and grant format requirements.

c. Exercise of Judgment: The Specialist must exercise a high degree of sound judgment in handling all aspects of pre-award and post-award actions, when advising CORs/AORs and Mission staff, and when interacting with implementing partners (IPs) to resolve complex issues arising during program/project/activity implementation. The Specialist must exercise good judgment in dealing with visitors and callers; in the analysis of cost, financial, and other characteristics of prospective contractors and grantees; and, in deciding what questions need to be asked of Technical Officials and DO and AO Team representatives and proposed contractors/grantees, in order to ensure achievement of the acquisition objectives on contract, grant, or other assistance instruments. Unusual decisions and matters of policy are referred to the Contracting Officer/Regional Contracting Officer and/or his/her designee.

d. Authority to Make Commitments: The Specialist is required to hold discussions and negotiations with potential contractors and grantees to reach agreement on statements of work/program descriptions and budgets. The Specialist has the authority to conclude negotiations and to structure the final terms and conditions of USAID acquisition and assistance instruments, as assigned. The agreements must be approved and signed by a warranted Contracting Officer/ Regional Contracting Officer and/or his/her designee, in order to obligate funds.

e. Nature, Level, and Purpose of Contacts: The Specialist is in daily contact with staff throughout the Mission, with managers of any serviced Missions/Offices in the Region, Technical Office staffs and DO and AO Team Leaders, CORs/AORs, and with grantees, potential grantees, visitors, and mid- to high-level officials from both the public and private sectors, as well as with NGOs and IPs, in order to exchange and/or collect information, and to provide advice relating to program implementation.

f. Supervision Exercised: This is a non-supervisory position, although the Specialist may be assigned as an acting Leader for short periods of time. The Specialist may provide limited guidance to lower-level acquisition staff, trainees, and clerks.

g. Time Required to Perform Full Range of Duties: One year.


SELECTION PROCESS

When fully qualified, US Citizen Eligible Family Members (USEFMs) and US Veterans are given preference. Therefore, it is essential that the candidate specifically address the required qualifications above in the application.

ADDITIONAL SELECTION CRITERIA

1. Management will consider nepotism/conflict of interest, budget, and residency status in determining successful candidacy.

TO APPLY

Interested candidates for this position must submit the following for consideration of the application:

  1. Universal Application for Employment as a Locally Employed Staff or Family Member (DS-174). A hard copy of the application form (DS-174) is also available at the American Embassy, gate 3; or


  2. A combination of both; i.e. Sections 1 -24 of the UAE along with a listing of the applicant’s work experience attached as a separate sheet; or


  3. A current resume or curriculum vitae that provides the same information found on the UAE (see section 3A below for more information); plus


  4. Candidates who claim US Veterans preference must provide a copy of their Form DD-214 with their application. Candidates who claim conditional US Veterans preference must submit documentation confirming eligibility for a conditional preference in hiring with their application.


  5. Any other documentation (e.g., essays, certificates, awards) that addresses the qualification requirements of the position as listed above.

 

3A. If an applicant is submitting a resume or curriculum vitae, s/he must provide the following information equal to what is found on the UAE.

Failure to do so will result in an incomplete application.

    A. Position Title
    B. Position Grade
    C. Vacancy Announcement Number (if known)
    D. Dates Available for Work
    E. First, Middle, & Last Names as well as any other names used
    F. Date and Place of Birth
    G. Current Address, Day, Evening, and Cell phone numbers
    H. U.S. Citizenship Status (Yes or No) & status of permanent U.S. Resident (Yes or No; if yes, provide number)
    I. U.S. Social Security Number and/or Identification Number
    J. Eligibility to work in the country (Yes or No)
    K. Special Accommodations the Mission needs to provide
    L. If applying for position that includes driving a U.S. Government vehicle, Driver’s License Class / Type
    M. Days available to work
    N. List any relatives or members of your household that work for the U.S. Government (include their Name, Relationship, & Agency, Position, Location)
    O. U.S. Eligible Family Member and Veterans Hiring Preference
    P. Education
    Q. License, Skills, Training, Membership, & Recognition
    R. Language Skills
    S. Work Experience
    T. References

 

SUBMIT APPLICATION TO

American Embassy
Human Resources Office
P.O. Box 9123
Dar es Salaam

POINT OF CONTACT

Telephone: 229 4000, Ext: 4137/4148/4233/4024
Fax: 2294726

 

CLOSING DATE OF THE POSITION: February 9, 2015.

The US Mission in Tanzania provides equal opportunity and fair and equitable treatment in employment to all people without regard to race, color religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status, or sexual orientation. The Department of State also strives to achieve equal employment opportunity in all personnel operations through continuing diversity enhancement programs.

The EEO complaint procedure is not available to individuals who believe they have been denied equal opportunity based upon marital status or political affiliation. Individuals with such complaints should avail themselves of the appropriate grievance procedures, remedies for prohibited personnel practices, and/or courts for relief.

 

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted

 

Application Form

  • Click here to download application form (DS-174) (PDF 640KB)

    (Required Application Form to be completed for all vacancies)