IFOAM : Job vacancy | Head of Operations (Deputy Director)

Head of Operations (Deputy Director)

About Us

Founded in 1972, IFOAM – Organics International works as an agent of change, advocating for true sustainability in agriculture, value chains, and consumption. We are an international nonprofit organization with a membership base that spans around 100 countries, and promote a holistic approach to food systems based on the principles of health, ecology, fairness, and care.

The Position

It’s an exciting time to join our team! We are growing and in transition, and are looking to
strengthen our organization by giving strategic leadership to our Governance Department in
general and to the work areas of Governance, Finance and Human Resources in particular. To
this end we are looking for an experienced manager of people and processes to head the
Governance Department.

The Governance Department, as termed in our organizational strategy, sits alongside three other departments – Policy & Guarantee, Capacity Development and Communications – and designs process blueprints to potentiate efficiency, transparency and coherence in all operations, at our International Office and across our extended network.

As Head of Operations you will be in charge of Governance, Human Resource and Financial
Management. In this role, you will be part of the Management Team and you report directly to the Executive Director.

Your experience and solid management skills will allow you to design and further develop the
areas of Finance and Human Resources strategically. You will oversee our day-to-day operations and support the Executive Director in monitoring performance against our strategy. Working collaboratively with your colleagues on the management team, you will identify and pursue opportunities to maximize internal synergies and optimize processes.

You will act as a role model for delivery and accountability, and help shaping our organizational culture to reflect the ambitions of the vision laid out in our strategy.

Beyond the International Office you will lay the groundwork to potentiate an increased
involvement of and engagement with our Self-organized Structures.

You will join a culturally diverse 30-member team at our office in Bonn, Germany. Your
departmental team consists of 7 persons (5,9 FTE), each of them bringing in their expertise into one of the work areas.

We are aiming to fill this position by the beginning of 2020.


Overall Management

  • Design framework for the work areas of Governance, Finance and Human Resources that
    effectively weaves them into the overall organizational fabric;
  • Develop and implement (multi)year work plans for the department, manage the
    departmental budget and team members;
  • Replace the Executive Director in her absence;


  • Conceive a plan for the development and implementation of a comprehensive compliance
    management system for IFOAM – Organics International, including the identification of
    potential organizational risks and mitigation strategies;
  • Oversee all legal matters;
  • Oversee membership acquisition and the development of our network structure,
    maximizing opportunities for cooperation through good governance. You will further collaborate with the Communications Department in membership engagement planning processes.


  • Design an optimal framework for a smooth handling of organizational budgeting, financial
    forecasting, monitoring and reporting requirements, including audits;
  • Oversee financial management processes;

Human Resources

  • Design and implement a comprehensive HR strategy, introduce new and revise existing
    tools and processes;
  • Act as an internal consultant and coach for co-managers on HR-specific issues.

Skills, Experience and Qualifications

  • As a pre-requisite you share values of our organization and endorse the Principles of
    Organic Agriculture;
  • An MBA, Law degree or equivalent qualification;
  • A minimum of 10 years of relevant professional, senior management experience, ideally in
    a global not-for-profit organization, in a multicultural setting;
  • A deep understanding of NGO financial and legal systems, preferably in an international
    and German context;
  • Ability to consistently make sound decisions, drawing on a combination of analysis,
    experience and judgement;
  • High level of business acumen and experience in successfully managing profit and loss;
  • Broad experience with the full range of business functions and systems, including strategic
    development and planning, budgeting and business analysis;
  • People-oriented with high emotional intelligence and excellent communication skills, you
    are a team builder and set the tone for a positive and inclusive organizational culture;
  • Servant leadership style with the capacity to empower leaders in a multi-cultural setting –
    you put people in a position to succeed;
  • Mission-driven and process-oriented, you have the necessary skills to improve existing
    systems in order to increase productivity and impact. With a knack for problem-solving
  • you help others deliver measurable and cost-effective results, and ensure accountability;
  • Proficiency in English (working language) and German (language of our legal framework).

Our Offer

We offer a full-time (40 hours/week) position initially for 2 years with the intention to extend to an unlimited contract, with a probation period of 6 months. IFOAM – Organics International offers an annual salary comparable to those offered by other international NGOs of a similar size in Bonn, Germany for similar positions.

How to Apply

Please submit your application by email in one single file (PDF) to jobs@ifoam.bio, no later than November 24th 2019.
Your application must include a cover letter, your CV and salary expectations. Additional documents may be asked for at a later stage. Short-listed candidates will also be asked to provide the names and contact details of two professional references. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

More Information

Source: IFOAM – Organics International e.V., October 2019