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Field Departures Coordinator

Médecins Sans Frontières
  • Location: Sydney
  • Reporting to: Field Departures Manager
  • Supervising: NIL
  • Status: TBC 6 to 9 months fixed term contract (Full time)
  • Date: TBC August/September

The Field Human Resources (FHR) Department of MSF Australia recruits, places and manages medical and non-medical field staff for MSF’s medical humanitarian projects worldwide.

Overall Responsibility

The Field Departures Coordinator plays a key role in coordinating the logistics and administration of departures and returns of field workers who are seconded to MSF Operational Centres to work in overseas field projects. This role has a wide scope of responsibility over a diverse range of tasks associated with the field deployment process. It requires close liaison with the Operational Centres, to ensure that on time departures allow operational needs to be met, and with field workers, to advise them on all matters relating to their departures and returns to and from the field.

Main Tasks and Duties

1. Departure Preparation – Field Staff on placement in projects managed by MSF Australia

  • Wherever possible, ensure on time departures to the field, particularly in emergencies
  • Manage all practical steps required for field worker departure, including, but not limited to:
    • Arrange travel and accommodation, whilst adhering to MSF policies and MSF Australia budget. Responsible for the majority of travel bookings.
    • Research and remain aware of transit airport regulations and restrictions for departing and returning field workers and learn which travel routes and airlines are most reliable for different destinations
    • Verify and organise as required the updating of field staff personal information, bank forms and other documentation
    • Organise and scheduling briefings
    • Conduct a comprehensive administrative briefing for all departing field staff providing field staff with necessary information required for mission preparations
    • Liaise with external suppliers, operational centres, the field, the field worker and Sydney office staff to ensure smooth departures
    • Coordinate departures of office staff and Board members going to the field
    • In collaboration with FHR team, update briefing documents and tools when required
    • Ensure FHR database is current at all times with personal information and documentation

2. Visas

  • Manage the process of obtaining the appropriate visas for field staff and office staff related to the field
  • Liaise with official organisations such as embassies to ensure smooth departures
  • Build and maintain strong relationships with embassies
  • Liaise with immigration solicitors regarding visa requirements
  • Advise field staff, office staff, and Operational Centres on visa-related matters, including feasibility of obtaining visas in Australia, visa types available, application time frames etc
  • Remain current with visa requirements and policies for all countries with MSF missions, as well as those covered by the Emergency Response

3. Contracts Administration & International Remuneration Project (IRP)

  • Prepare and manage contracts & related documents for field staff for each mission using the contracts template
  • Liaise with cross administration/counterparts in other sections for contract dates; reconciliate leave entitlements, debt collection and other related paperwork
  • Ensure Payroll related data is collected and updated within monthly Payroll deadlines
  • Process monthly payroll for field workers in time for processing by Finance Officer and liaise with field workers and Finance regarding payroll queries only when required
  • Undertake scaling of field workers to determine salary level within the Australian salary grid
  • Maintain a comprehensive understanding of IRP to advise fieldworkers when required

4. Insurance

  • Activate insurance for field staff and maintain knowledge of MSF insurance cover for field workers
  • Conduct briefing and debriefing of field staff when they depart and return from each mission in relation to contractual, insurance, OH&S or related issues
  • Advise field workers on their entitlements and assist with their insurance queries and claims
  • Liaise with workers compensation insurers when required
  • Ensure compliance of Australian law by recording and reporting OH&S incidents

5. Post Mission Support - Field Staff on placement in projects managed by MSF Australia

  • Manage all practical steps required for field workers return, including, but not limited to:
    • Manage all flight arrangements to ensure financial responsibility liaising with the OC, field and field worker
    • Coordinate travel and accommodation in adherence to MSF policies
    • Schedule debriefings
    • In consultation with HROs, organise office presentations by returned field workers
    • Ensure returned field staff are debriefed as per the debriefing checklist
    • Raise any concerns to Field Departures Manager that might require psycho-social support

6. Finance

  • Processing reimbursement and other payments to the field workers according to MSF policies in relation to their mission departures and returns
  • Ensure the proper accounting procedure is followed in the payment and approval of invoices
  • Responsible for reconciling a credit card within the assignment limit and follow-up accounting procedures

7. Field Staff Training

  • Organise the practical aspects of the pre-departure training (travel, accommodation, catering, finance, etc) and support the HROs as required
  • Collaborate with OC Training Units to manage travel, visas and accommodation for fieldworkers to attend MSF sponsored training either overseas or within Australia

8. Relationship with Operational Centres

  • Maintain strong and proactive relationships with OC counterparts
  • Take an active role in familiarising and engaging yourself in international issues that have a direct effect on the administrative aspects for MSFA field staff

9. Support - Field Staff on placement in projects managed by MSF Australia

  • Actively respond to enquiries from the field and field workers on mission or direct to appropriate contact
  • Act as the non-emergency contact to support field workers’ family and friends as needed
  • Facilitate End of Year Packs sent to field workers, liaising with other MSF A departments and external departments when required

10. Other Administrative duties

  • Maintain the hardcopy and electronic filing system, and review and improve the system as necessary
  • Monitor several inboxes related to the Field Departures Team
  • Maintain current relationships with external suppliers, particularly travel agents, embassies and accommodation providers
  • Ensure compliance at all times with MSF A Privacy Policy
  • Provide additional support across the Field Departures Team as needed

11. General Departmental Input

  • Provide a positive input with department related activities (e.g. team meetings, strategic planning, cross departmental activities)
  • Undertake such other activities as may be required and approved by the Field Departures Manager and/or Head of FHR

Selection Criteria

Essential Criteria

  • Experience in general HR Administration and/or Visa Processing and/or Embassy Liaison
  • Ability to research and learn about current travel regulations and restrictions
  • Strong organisational skills with particular attention to detail
  • Excellent ability to prioritise, with strong time-management skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills (empathetic, approachable, diplomatic)
  • Show initiative and have good problem-solving skills
  • Ability to remain level-headed, flexible and decisive under time pressure, deadlines and/or last minute changes
  • Exceptional communication skills (written and verbal)
  • Good computer usage skills for standard applications (Outlook, Office 365 andAccess)
  • Ability to work both independently and within a team
  • Ability to work in a cross-cultural environment
  • Able to work outside regular office hours in emergency situations as determined by your manager.
  • Fluency in English
  • Current right to work in Australia

Desirable Criteria

  • Good knowledge of HR management principles
  • A sense of initiative to review and improve administrative systems
  • General knowledge or understanding of humanitarianism principles and the charter of MSF
  • Experience and knowledge of MSF internal processes and structures
  • Experience within the travel industry - good understanding of global geography
  • Ability to speak a 2nd language (ideally French)

Please note that a criminal record check may be required as part of the selection process. Applicants with criminal records will not automatically be ineligible for the position they are applying for. Médecins Sans Frontières Australia has a Child Protection Policy in place and all employees are required to comply with this policy.

Médecins Sans Frontières Australia is committed to creating an inclusive workplace for all our staff. We believe that a diverse team helps us better serve those most in need, and we encourage people from a wide range of backgrounds to apply for this role, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds and people with disabilities.

Enquiries to Email: officerecruitment@sydney.msf.org, using the subject line: Field Departures Coordinator enquiry via EthicalJobs.

A position description is attached.

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