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Chief of Unit: Payroll and Accounts Payable


Post Number : BFM 046

Grade : P-4

Parent Sector : Bureau Of Financial Management (BFM)

Duty Station: Paris

Job Family: Finances

Type of contract : Fixed Term

Duration of contract : 2 years

Recruitment open to : Internal and external candidates

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 04-FEB-2022 (EXTENDED)


UNESCO Core Values: Commitment to the Organization, Integrity, Respect for Diversity, Professionalism




Under the overall authority of the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and the direct supervision of the Chief of Finance and Accounting Section (FAS) within the Bureau of Financial Management, the incumbent

of the post is responsible for the overall management of Payroll and Accounts Payable Unit. S/he ensures that Units under her/his responsibility operate smoothly by maintaining accurate and complete records regarding payments to suppliers and employees, and optimizing processes for timely and efficient service delivery based on the Organization's needs. S/he will establish objectives and supervise Payroll and Accounts Payable Units.

In particular, the incumbent will be responsible for the following:

  • Manage and guide the work of the team in delivering the objectives of Payroll and Accounts Payable Units including, accurate and complete processing of global multicurrency payroll and managing Accounts Payable cycle, in conformity with UNESCO financial rules and relevant procedures.


  • Provide overall leadership and real-time decision making in identifying, assessing internal control risk, measuring and mitigating operational risks to ensure that the units operate within UNESCO's Internal Control Framework. Supervise the design and preparation of periodic reports on compliance monitoring to ensure adequacy of controls.


  • Lead the proactive identification, development, planning and implementation of the units’ business processes for driving process and system efficiencies, and manage the changes through consultation with cross-functional teams.


  • Review, develop and update related IPSAS standards, including Employee Benefits and transfer expenses and internal procedures relating to work performed by the Units and ensure that are aligned with the best practices.


  • Provide Guidance to Administrative Officers at headquarters and in the Field offices on matters under the responsibility of the incumbent. Interact with internal/External Auditors in responding to queries related to the Unit’s work.


  • Participate in and lead, as appropriate, the development of policy papers and statutory documents in the related areas, including reports and advice on financial implications on matters related to long term staff liabilities (ASHI) and Medical Benefit Fund.

COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial)

Communication (C)
Accountability (C)
Innovation (C)
Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C)
Planning and organizing (C)
Results focus (C)
Teamwork (C)
Professionalism (C)
Building partnerships (M)
Driving and managing change (M)
Leading and empowering others (M)
Making quality decisions (M)
Managing performance (M)
Strategic thinking (M)


For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.




  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in Finance, Business / Public Administration, Accounting, or economics.


Work Experience

  • Minimum 7 years of progressively responsible relevant professional experience in the field of accounting and finance, of which preferably 3 years acquired at an international level.
  • Minimum 3 years of working experience in multi-currency payroll processing and development of internal controls.
  • Experience in supervising and managing teams.


  • Strong analytical capability with ability to look for weaknesses in process and to propose improvements.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including the ability to draft clearly and concisely.
  • Ability to manage and motivate staff and teams and to maintain effective working relationships in a multicultural environment.
  • Client oriented with ability to identify clients’ needs and suggest appropriate solutions.
  • Excellent organizational, planning and interpersonal skills.
  • Excellent IT skills, including knowledge of Excel.
  • Very good knowledge of payroll functions in ERP systems.



  • Excellent knowledge (written and spoken) of English or French and basic knowledge of the other.






  • Professionally recognized Accounting Qualification such as Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Chartered Accountant (CA).


Work Experience

  • Experience within the UN system.



  • Knowledge of SAP and experience of data analytics and of the latest technology used in Finance - RPA, AI etc.



  • Knowledge of another official language of UNESCO (Arabic, Chinese, Russian or Spanish).


UNESCO’s salaries consist of a basic salary and other benefits which may include if applicable: 30 days annual leave, family allowance, medical insurance, pension plan etc.


For full information on benefits and entitlements, please consult our Guide to Staff Benefits.


Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application and provide complete and accurate information. To apply, please visit the UNESCO careers website. No modifications can be made to the application submitted.

The evaluation of candidates is based on the criteria in the vacancy notice, and may include tests and/or assessments, as well as a competency-based interview. 

UNESCO uses communication technologies such as video or teleconference, e-mail correspondence, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates.

Please note that only selected candidates will be further contacted and candidates in the final selection step will be subject to reference checks based on the information provided.


UNESCO applies a zero tolerance policy against all forms of harassment.

UNESCO is committed to achieve and sustain gender parity among its staff members in all categories and at all grades. Furthermore, UNESCO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities, as well as nationals from non-and under-represented Member States (last update here) are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the highest level of confidentiality. Worldwide mobility is required for staff members appointed to international posts.

UNESCO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process.