Head of Operations, Jhb

About Oxfam South Africa (OZA)Oxfam Logo

Oxfam South Africa is a new, independent organisation in South Africa to become an affiliate of the Oxfam International Confederation. Oxfam International, one of the leading global development organisations, is a diverse confederation of 17 strongly interconnected national affiliates working in over 90 countries, either directly, or with partners to enable transformational change, using a unique combination of long-term development, campaigning and humanitarian programmes.

Oxfam is undergoing a period of self-transformational change which envisions a future where we are a more interdependent network, driven more by knowledge, organised for more simplicity internally and more globally balanced. Key to this change agenda are strong, autonomous and vibrant affiliates in Southern countries that can raise their own funds, run their own programs, make their own alliances with local partners, and lobby their own governments and business actors.

Oxfam South Africa (OZA) is the first African member of the Oxfam Confederation advancing this vision.

Building on Oxfam’s 57 years of advancing social justice in South Africa, OZA consolidates and deepens this legacy and through its own, new, strategic plan, takes Oxfam’s work to new heights.

OZA is building a visionary programmatic proposition which will gear the organisation to be a key and influential member of the social justice movement in South Africa and the wider continent, advancing the agenda of a just world without poverty. It aims to grow to a medium-sized organisation in the next years, working efficiently for high impact, low cost, innovative interventions.

Oxfam South Africa attaches great importance to the efficient delivery of programs, building a strong institutional foundation driven by innovation, solution-seeking approaches, and creative ways of working that deliver on our high impact value proposition. The Head of Operations is a senior leader in the organisation that will support program, policy, campaigns, fundraising and marketing work by ensuring that all internal operations are efficient, effective and aimed at increasing OZA’s impact as an organisation in its own right, and as a member of the South African, African and international development sectors.

The focus of the position will be on leading and managing all OZA’s internal operations on behalf of the Executive Director. This will involve operational oversight of OZA’s short and longer term planning, forecasting, budgeting and review processes.

As the most senior internally focused staff member, the position will act as a primary internal translator, communicator and implementer of OZA’s vision and internal development goals and strategies. The position will particularly focus on accountability of the Management Team and of the whole organization against the areas of responsibility, and on support for income generation and any other projects and ventures OZA might engage in.

It is expected that the Head of Operations will have a background and qualifications that are relevant to the role, with a particular focus on financial skills, organizational development, change management and experience in human resources, information systems as well as some knowledge of marketing and fundraising.

Main Duties and Responsibilities


1.1. Act on behalf of, and in close consultation with, the Executive Director to lead and coordinate internal work, to improve cross sectional ways of working and internal accountability, and to operationally manage:

  • The development and implementation of the organisation’s Strategic Planning – including monitoring and evaluation;
  • In collaboration with all staff and programme Leads, the organisation’s multiyear and annual planning and budgeting cycle;
  • The overall organisational structure including of the various sections and operating units to ensure that the structure is appropriate to achieve OZA’s strategic goals;
  • Internal communications across the organisation;
  • Governance arrangements for the Board and Sub Committees;
  • Systems and protocols to improve cost efficiency and effectiveness across the organisation, in line with Performance Frameworks and to ensure consistency across the organisation;
  • In collaboration with other Unit and Programme Heads, foster a climate of innovation, including the identification of innovative practices to enhance the potential and impact of all organisational programmes and project

1.2 Lead and manage the Operations Section including the following functions:

  • Finance;
  • HR & OD including Industrial Relations;
  • Information Technology;
  • Risk, Legal and Compliance;
  • Asset management and insurance;
  • Governance

1.3 Ensure that the organisation as a whole meets its legislative, regulatory, policy and budgetary responsibilities in respect of Operations functions and that Management Team is held accountable for agreed and planned outcomes in the areas of responsibility set out above.

1.4 As one of the designated members of the Management Team, act for the Executive Director in a day to day capacity when the Executive Director is temporarily away from the office (noting that alternative formal acting arrangements are put in place for longer term absences such as overseas travel and leave).

1.5 Assist the Executive Director to lead the internal agenda and ways of working for Management Team.

1.6 Represent the organisation at appropriate Oxfam International and external forums including assisting the Executive Director and other Heads of Departments to strengthen national and global relationships and build Oxfam South Africa’s visibility and public presence.

1.7 Act as Company Secretary of Oxfam South Africa

1.8 Other duties as specified from time to time by the Executive Director.

  1. Budget
  • Oversight and reporting on overall organisational budget performance
  • Accountability for the Operations Section expenditure budget.
  1. Policy
  • Oversee OZA’s operational policy framework and policy development processes, including the Delegations Framework.
  • Develop, maintain and monitor policies and procedures for all Operations functions, including financial, human resources and information systems.
  • Support the implementation and monitoring of organization-wide policy within areas of delegation.
  1. Human Resources
  • Line-manage direct reports including recruitment and selection, performance management and staff development.
  • Ensure all staff under management demonstrate good human resource practice and comply with organisational policies and procedures.
  • Represent Oxfam South Africa in negotiations with staff, and the OHS and Security Committees.
  • Implement and monitor equity, diversity and staff health and wellbeing policies and procedures within areas of management and lead on implementation and monitoring across the broader organisation.
  • Monitor workloads and work environment for self and for staff under management and take reasonable steps to minimise risks to self and others.


Qualifications, Knowledge & Experience

  • Relevant qualifications, preferably at a higher degree level.
  • Proven senior management experience in a complex environment including the ability to lead a multi-disciplinary teams.
  • Experience with setting up organizations with strong systems and building them to the desired level
  • Strong knowledge of management and financial accounting – a professional background with strong financial and budget management skills is essential.
  • Strong background and experience developing and implementing organizational change approaches and practices including workplace culture change as well as
  • Strong experience and knowledge of human resources and industrial relations policies and practices, particularly in relation to Australian industrial relations legislation and practice.
  • Strong knowledge of IS applications and experience of successfully managing the development, implementation and evaluation of information technology systems.
  • Demonstrated experience supporting and promoting gender and diversity issues
  • Ability to work at multiple levels and managing diverse partnerships


  • Experience working in the Not For Profit sector.
  • Good understanding of the Development Sector both domestically and internationally.
  • Experience and knowledge of marketing and fundraising approaches and practices, preferably as they apply to the not for profit sector.

Skills & Personal Attributes

  • Essential Skills – skills of a high order are required in the following areas:
  • Leadership, motivational and change management skills
  • Analytical and conceptual thinking skills
  • High level interpersonal and cross-cultural communication
  • Mentoring and coaching skills
  • Ability to maintain and enhance financial and people management in a medium sized organization
  • Excellent influencing skills with experience of external representation

Personal Attributes

  • Facilitative and collaborative style
  • Leadership capacity with demonstrated ability to motivate staff
  • Problem-solving approach
  • Ability to work independently and as a member of a team
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Availability to work flexible hours including occasional weekend work and attendance at parts of quarterly Board of Director meetings
  • Highly numerate
  • Understanding of and commitment to Oxfam South Africa’s development philosophy, principles and objectives
  • Understanding of and commitment to adhere to equity, diversity and staff health and wellbeing principles.


This position will requires travel of a minimum of 12 weeks a year both international and national. 

How to Apply

All applications and queries must be addressed to KM Global Consulting and sent directly to oxfam@kmglobalconsult.com stating OXFAM-HO-RSA in the subject line.

Deadline: 26 June 2015