The job holder is primarily responsible for leading, coordinating and managing the implementation of Innovative and Inclusive finance interventions within the “Stimulating Agribusiness for Youth Employment (SAYE )” project funded by the Mastercard Foundation.
Strategy and Programming:
• Participate in the development of strategy and program plans for the Agriculture & MSME Finance (AMF) Pillar; seeking to support financial service providers, digital platforms and value chain actors in the focus sectors to develop more innovative and appropriate financial products and business models that will deliver financial services to women, youth and MSMEs at an affordable cost:
• Act as FSD Uganda’s expert in Rural and Agricultural financing in the SAYE project, playing an enabling role and facilitating the functionality of the access to finance ecosystem. He/She will work to align the demand and supply sides for agri-financing and build capacity of a range of providers (SACCOs, MFIs, Fintechs, Agritechs and banks) to revisit their business models and systems in order to deliver appropriate and timely finance to young people and MSMEs in Busoga sub-region.
Undertake market environment scoping and analysis in relation to provision of financial services for the identified market segments in conjunction with consortium partners; seeking to understand how the development of financial instruments suitable for the targeted sectors may be most effectively utilised to decrease poverty and increase welfare and resilience
Support SAYE project partners in the development of innovative and appropriate financial products and business models targeted at women, youth and MSME’s in the rural and agriculture sectors including but not limited to:
Supporting Agri-Tech Platforms and financial institutions to refine their value chain financing business models and financial products, including bundled/embedded financial products as well as building the capacity of their staff Providing technical assistance to the Agri-hubs and Agri-Tech Platforms to develop robust agent networks (Cash-in, Cash-out infrastructure, Village/Digital Agents/Entrepreneurs, etc.)
Providing technical assistance to cooperatives/agri-hubs and Agri-Tech Platforms to develop robust big data business models and products/solutions to increase access to and utilization of financial services
Providing capacity building for gender considerations for agri-hubs/MSMEs and financial service providers
• Farm equipment and warehousing related financing
• Use a market systems lens to explore innovative business models and approaches that are gender inclusive, increase the adoption of relevant and affordable digital financial services in this sector
• Develop a portfolio of initiatives in this space that can lead to greater uptake of digital financial services (savings, credit, insurance, payments) by various actors in the various agriculture value chains
Facilitate legal, regulatory and policy engagement and review of national data policies, laws, and regulations as well as industry standards
Relationship Management & Communications: Strategically manage relationships with stakeholders who can influence change in the Rural and Agricultural Finance space, in particular with identified Implementing Partners; implement aspects of the communications plan that are relevant to the targeted market segments:
• Ensure a good understanding of how achievement of FSD Uganda’s goals in the targeted market segments are dependent upon effective influencing and communication; participate in the development of impactful strategies and plans
• Manage, coordinate, and build effective working relationships with all stakeholders involved in assigned interventions, including consultants; swiftly escalate any problems to the Pillar Head
• Build relationships with key actors; use a variety of influencing strategies to gain traction, in particular by negotiating a win:win between stakeholder interests and FSD Uganda’s strategic agenda; establish formal partnerships and MOUs as possible & appropriate
• Contribute to the implementation of both FSD Uganda and Pillar Communication & Influencing plans. Including, but not limited to:
• Organising influencing forums and events – workshops, conferences, webinars – may include developing workshops, webinars, educational materials, etc.
• Networking & bringing stakeholders together for collaboration & collective action (convening)
• Producing knowledge products and other communication outputs (publications, blogs, digital or media materials, etc.)
• Contributing to the development of annual and quarterly reports/newsletters
• Portfolio Management:Lead the development of the Agriculture & Rural finance portfolio; ensure that well written and conceptualised Program Appraisal Reports (PARs) are submitted to, and approved by, the Investment Committee:
• Work collaboratively with AMF Lead to develop relevant sub-portfolios of work; aiming to selectively invest funds towards interventions with the best chance of driving the gender inclusive results, impact, and learning agenda of FSDU’s strategy
• Once an intervention is approved, confirm, or develop the strategy for attracting potentially impactful implementing partners (IPs):
• Proactively approach influential stakeholders who have been identified via market systems analysis, ensuring a good understanding of their needs & determining fit with FSDU’s strategic objectives
• Follow procurement procedures to develop Expressions of Interest (EOIs) and or Requests for Proposals (RfPs) and identify suitable implementing partners
• Communicate to partners concerning the ‘yes’, ‘no’ and ‘maybe’ decision
• Ensure that partners are supported in developing concept notes and proposals that meet Investment Committee standards, including but not limited to theories of change, learning and results measurement plans, risk management frameworks and budgets for resources (financial, HR, Comms)
• Provide business development and impact management advice and support to partner; support them in processing feedback on their drafted proposals
• Liaise with the designated Project Accountant to ensure that due diligence and contracting processes are carried out efficiently, and that partners are provided with a quality briefing concerning FSD Uganda’s procedures for project / grant management
Managing Results & Learning:
• Manage the delivery of portfolios by Partners and Consultants, so that results are achieved and quality program interventions are delivered; ensuring that learning from program interventions is fully utilised to maximise impact and innovation:
• Provide technical advisory services to IPs/cooperatives/agrihubs/agritech platforms and/or engage with them to check their satisfaction with any services or capacity building that have been delivered.
• Provide business advisory services in case of Implementing Partners (IPs) experiencing difficulties, including adjusting project plans as necessary.
• Manage and coordinate the entire schedule of reviews and visits (program, M&E and financial accountability) as necessary to adaptively manage the performance of interventions and achieve targeted outcomes and impact.
• Review accountability reports provided by the IP/agritech platform; produce accompanying reports as per results measurement plan (up to and including 1 year after project closure).
• Collaborate closely with the MRM team to ensure collection of data, analysis of results and identification of opportunities for improvement in a blame-free spirit of academic enquiry:
• If desired results have been achieved, initiate strategies for widespread awareness-raising.
• If desired results have not been achieved, either manage performance of the implementation team(s) (both FSDU’s and the IP’s), or take corrective measures such as adjusting the strategy/approach.
• Periodically review theories of change, revising as appropriate.
Risk and Resource Management:
• Manage the resources associated with the portfolio; ensuring that each intervention achieves optimal financial efficiency, value for money, and impact, all the while ensuring compliance with FSD Uganda and donor policies:
• Ensure the development of detailed implementation plans, budgets and cash-flow forecasts that will, achieve fund utilisation targets, ensure intervention success, and address capacity gaps of partners
• Ensure that each project is resourced with the expertise necessary for success; liaise with the Operations Manager to support the processes associated with procurement of the goods and services that are required for each intervention being managed; ensure compliance with relevant policies and procedures
• Hold consultants and vendors to a high standard of quality methodology and work outputs; proactively address performance issues through timely constructive feedback, coaching and appropriate corrective action
• Liaise with the Operations Manager to support the processes associated with procurement of the goods and services that are required for each intervention being managed; ensure compliance with relevant policies and procedures
• Manage the risks associated with all portfolio activities; ensuring that a comprehensive understanding of risks has been developed and that strategies are in place and implemented for effective risk management:
• Ensure that the Pillar Lead (and Director of Programmes where applicable) is updated on a regular basis and alerted of any risks
• Ensure that key policies e.g., Safeguarding, VfM and Gender are fully understood and implemented by all Staff, Consultants and Implementing Partners
• Cooperate with both internal and external audit plans; lead the implementation of corrective actions arising, and create a culture of continuous improvement
Specifications For the Role Qualifications
• A Bachelor’s degree in a related field, preferably agricultural economics, development economics, public policy, business administration.
• A Master’s degree in Agricultural Economics, Development Economics, Business Administration or relevant other would be an added advantage.
• Certification in Project Management (e.g., PMP/ PRINCE2) preferred.
• At least 8 years of demonstrable experience, at least 3 of which should be in the financial services sector
• Experience of business leadership, resulting in an ability to empathise with, and provide experience-based advice to Implementing Partners
• Demonstrable understanding of digital financial services, financial inclusion, market research and business gap analysis
• Demonstrated experience working in the private sector providing innovative financial services; experience of agricultural finance preferred
• Proven track record in managing teams and consultants / service providers including development of terms of reference where required
• Familiarity with major players in financial sector development in Uganda (desired).
Critical Technical Skills & Knowledge:
• Good general knowledge of financial management practice and high ethical & financial standards for managing funds
• Good understanding of M4P principles, with ability to understand a complex ecosystem and design interventions that will drive the growth and inclusiveness of financial markets
• Good understanding of the needs and financial constraints of the target market segments (agriculture, rural) and target groups (youth, women).
• Knowledge of youth workforce development issues especially in the rural communities of the Busoga region.
• Understanding of monitoring and results management concepts and processes; track record of using learning to drive innovation
• Excellent spoken and written English language communication skills
Closing Date : 27th November, 2023