Senior Program Manager – Ethiopia

Are you a business-minded and solutions-oriented senior manager, with experience in leading large-scale agricultural supply chain development programs in Africa? Do you have an in-depth knowledge of maize and oil seed production, value chains and processing? Then you are the Senior Program Manager, we are looking for, to lead our new program in value chain development work in Ethiopia.

As part of value chain development program, IDH has made an inventory of interest of key private sector partners to invest in increasing and upgrading local sourcing opportunities of agricultural raw materials in Ethiopia. Based on these assessments, two multinational companies expressed the most urgency and commitment to solidify their local operations working with SMEs and small holder farmers (SHF) to produce Maize grits etc. As a result, IDH and the two companies are starting a three- year market-led value chain development program in Ethiopia, to work on the development of the maize and oil seed sectors, support the inclusion of the SMEs and SHF into formal and premium markets at the same time creating jobs with a central focus on women and youth. The program will be implemented between August 2022 and 31 December 2025.

Through a market-led approach, IDH will work closely with the two companies and the SMEs in Ethiopia to improve business operations, build and strengthen value chains, technical and management capacity, structure sourcing of high-quality maize and oil seed from SHF producing these crops. We will support these SMEs and SHF in meeting the buying requirements of the two companies and other off-takers for local and regional markets. IDH will provide technical assistance, business development and strategic support to these SMEs through project contracts, to support them in realizing business opportunities in these supply chains, leading to impact through job creation.

The Role

For this program, the Senior Program Manager will be a part of the IDH Ethiopia team, based in Addis Ababa, work hand in hand with the two companies. The Senior Program Manager will be responsible for the overall management of the program implementation, work with the implementing partners who will be providing management and technical support to the SMEs and SHF. He/She will be coordinating the effective implementation of all project activities to achieve the program targets, managing relationships with key program stakeholders (SMEs, SHF, off-takers, extension servers etc) and coordinating key monitoring, learning and the evaluation processes ensuring the project delivers the target accordingly. You will also be responsible for developing our operations in Ethiopia and in the region, creating new opportunities for growth with private sector and other relevant stakeholders

Who you are

You are a business-minded and solutions oriented senior program manager, with at least 10 years of experience in leading large-scale agricultural development programs in Africa that have a track record of achieving commercial viability. You have an in-depth knowledge of the Ethiopian Maize production, supply chains and processing, and a systems approach to understanding the key challenges and opportunities to developing commercially viable Maize and oil supply chains as required by the premium markets. You have a track record of developing and implementing innovative approaches to creating thematic impact, particularly relating to SHF inclusion in into formal supply chains, gender and youth empowerment. You are an experienced team leader, with the ability to motivate and coach team members to achieve envisioned success. You have the capacity to build and manage relationships with key stakeholders, and to synthesize stakeholder feedback into the strategic and impactful design of program interventions. You have long experience of agricultural value chain and business development with focus on commercialization and industrialization

With your people skills, you are approachable and easy to talk to. This makes it easy for you to work with flexibility, entrepreneurship, and diplomacy both individually and as part of a complex team effort. You have good networking skills and can share your ideas and expertise in a compelling manner. You have strong verbal and written communication skills in English and are both analytical and practical. You are honest, transparent, energetic and a professional that demonstrates highest level of integrity.

Key requirements
  • Master’s degree in business administration or advanced degree in Agriculture, Agri-business development, or logistics management, combined with commerce and business management qualifications.
  • At least 10 years of experience working in commercial agricultural supply chains or in large-scale agricultural development projects in Africa. With at least five years’ experience of extensive field work and in leading large-scale agricultural development projects in Africa
  • Experienced in contaminant mitigation at farm and post-harvest level to deliver maize that are compliant with international market specification
  • Develop marketing and market outreach strategy to support and increase market linkages between SHF and buyers domestically and in the region in West Africa
  • Provide the vision and thought leadership on a range of key issues that drive increased investments in the Ethiopia agriculture and promotes responsible, sustainable, and inclusive business models ensuring these models are sustainable beyond the project duration
  • Experience in working with government institutions especially in agriculture development
  • A systems approach to understanding the challenges and opportunities in agricultural supply chains, and the ability to work on a detailed-oriented basis.
  • Experienced in and ability to support smallholder farmers to adopt climate smart and sustainable farming practices
  • Inspired and motivated to work with private sector partners to create positive impact in agricultural supply chains in Africa, particularly relating to supporting the inclusion of smallholder famers, and empowering women and youth.
  • Experience in developing and implementing IT solutions to supply chain challenges (for example, traceability, service provision, facilitating market linkages).
  • Demonstrated networks among relevant supply chain service providers, technology solutions, and knowledge institutions in Ethiopia
  • Excellent communicator with strong team building skills, proven experience in managing people and performance, decision-making and conflict resolution
  • At least five years’ experience of working in an international organizations and supply chains
  • Have excellent communication, reporting and presentation skills in English and preference for speaking fluent local languages in the program implementation area
  • You are based in Ethiopia and lead implementation of the program in different regions of the country
  • Master’s the English language verbally and in writing plus fluent in Amharic
 Stakeholder management and networking
  • Ensure effective communication with the relevant stakeholders (government, CSO, private sector) in the country focusing to maintain a strong partnership with them
  • Build and strengthen partnerships with key partners to ensure that projects are built on existing activities undertaken in the countries and creates “additionality”
Operational program management
  • Responsibility for achieving the targeted results and impact in the development and implementation of the projects with operational support and guidance from partners
  • Run the required program facilitation, administration, and reporting within the overall structure
  • Manage contracts with implementing partners, service providers and consultants (with legal and administrative support of the IDH HQ Operations in The Netherlands).

Who we are

IDH brings companies, CSOs, governments and others in public-private partnerships together to realize Better Jobs, Better Income and Better Environment at scale in commodity sectors and sourcing areas. Our approaches are designed to drive sustainability from niche to norm in mainstream markets, delivering impact on Sustainable Development Goals. We focus on creating positive impact on deforestation, living incomes and living wages, working conditions and gender. In this we are supported by multiple European governments, including our core donors: BUZA (Dutch Foreign Affairs), SECO (Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs) and DANIDA (Danish Development Cooperation), large private sector foundations and other program funders. IDH is a not-for-profit organization that works together with over 500 companies, 200 public sector actors and over 300 CSOs, financial institutions and producer organizations in 12 sectors and 17 landscapes in almost 40 countries worldwide.

For more information about IDH, please visit .

What we offer?

IDH offers a dynamic international environment and an enthusiastic and passionate team. As an IDH team member you can contribute to positive global change. The position is full time for 40hours, initially for 1 year, but with the prospect of extension. We offer market competitive compensation and solid fringe benefits.

The position is based in the Ethiopian office. Candidates should have permission to work in Ethiopia.


Would you like to apply? Just send us your motivation and resume in English by using the following hyperlink:

For any questions about the position, please contact Ayana Chatterjee (Corporate Recruiter) at .

We encourage applicants to respond as soon as possible, latest by July 10th, 2022.