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Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international independent medical humanitarian action-driven organization, which offers assistance to populations in distress, to victims of natural or man-made disasters and to victims of armed conflict, without discrimination and irrespective of race, religion, creed or political affiliation. 21 sections and 16 branch offices make-up the international movement and work in partnership around 5 operational centres.

The Spanish section of MSF was founded in 1986 in Barcelona. MSF-Spain has various Regional Offices (Delegations) in the rest of Spain, Regional Branch Offices in Argentina and Nairobi as well as operational units in Dakar and Amman.

In 2005 an operational partnership was established between MSF-Spain and MSF-Greece. Today the Operational Centre Barcelona-Athens (OCBA) has 5 Operational cells (3 in Barcelona, 1 in Nairobi and 1 in Amman) and an Emergency Unit (based in Barcelona). More recently, OCBA has created the OCBA Network, consciously evolving towards a network configuration with a growing number of MSF partners.

The social mission is focused on assisting populations, communities and individuals as it is expressed in the MSF charter, while continuously exploring new possible scenarios where response to medical and humanitarian crisis could be relevant. The quality, relevance and volume of operations have evolved significantly over the past years. MSF OCBA/ is currently active in 27 medical and humanitarian crises worldwide and contributes to the global response to emergencies of the MSF movement.

The organizational units are organized into Departments: Operations, Medical, Logistics & Supply, Finances, Human Resources, Communications & Public Awareness, Fundraising, Projects and IT and General Direction. In 2019, an estimated number of 7,200 people make the social mission of MSF OCBA a reality, 580 of them based in headquarters and the rest deployed in the field. The estimated budget of MSF OCBA in 2019 is 200 Million euros.




Accountable to the Director of Human Resources, the person in charge of the Recruitment, Development and Profile Management Unit provides staff[1] to the organization according to needs in terms of both quantity and quality, in the short, mid and long-term, consolidating the human resources strategies and policies relating to recruitment, selection, development, retention and profile management for MSF-OCBA projects, based on the needs and priorities set by the Organisation.

The Unit is made up of 18 positions. Permanent staff comprises the head of the Unit, and the Profile Management, Career Management and Recruitment teams. In addition, the head of this area is functionally linked to the recruitment area in the Buenos Aires and Nairobi. S/he also works in close collaboration with the different heads of Units within the Human Resources Department and has working links with the heads of the other departments within MSF OCBA (Operational, Medical, Logistics and Finance). There is also strong collaboration with the heads of Recruitment and Profile Management in other MSF Operational Sections and with the Recruitment and Career Management areas in the MSF partner sections.




  • Propose recruitment, selection, development, retention and profile management strategies to ensure the provision of international staff to the field as needed in terms of quality and quantity in the short, mid and long-term.
  • Guarantee that all vacancies are filled, both in field and Headquarter, through good management and selection of staff and the staffing needed in the different projects.
  • Analysis of the current capacities in terms of human resources and projection of needs based on estimated growth and the priorities set in the Executive Plan and the Operational Policy.
  • Ensure a detailed analysis of related management and general trends in International HR areas by defining indicators and analysing data.
  • Propose measures to improve recruitment management and retention and implement solutions to have a positive impact on the lack of international HR in the field.
  • Effectively manage the team under his/her responsibility in order to respond to operational needs.




HR Planning design and follow-up
  • Ensure that HR and financial planning for his/her Unit are in line with the executive plan, the operational policy and the MSF OCBA HR vision, strategy and planning (drawing up of the planning for the Unit).
  • Ensure that action plans and the expenditure planned by the Unit are fulfilled (regular follow-up and review of the Unit’s planning and budget).
  • As a member of the coordination team in the Human Resources Department, contributes to the definition of the department’s strategy
  • Ensure that the organization of the Unit responds to the needs of the Organization and the people comprising MSF OCBA.
OCBA’s HR Analysis and Capacity Building
  • Analyze the current capacities in terms of human resources and projection of needs based on estimated growth and the priorities set in the Executive Plan and the Operational Policy.
  • Ensure a resource plan as effective as possible in the short, mid and long-term.
  • Propose and implements strategies to face potential lack of human resources.
  • Guarantee the building of key competencies in staff in coordination with Human Resources Management, the Training Unit and Operational Technical Units (Medical, Logistics and Finances).


Management of the international staff flow throughout their life cycle in the Organisation: emphasis on retention and development

  • Propose strategies and policies focused on providing human resources to the projects:
  • Recruit and Select
  • Draw up, implement and follow up development plans
  • Follow up and manage people in between missions
  • Retention strategies: propose long term retention strategies for the Organisation for its key HR
  • End of contract management.
  • Ensure that these strategies are implemented (road map, development plans, etc).
  • Manage mechanisms for detecting talent.
  • Propose and assess the priorities of pool candidates for MSF training, based on development plans and the needs of the Organization.


Filling vacancies

  • Guarantee all vacancies are filled both in field (in regular missions and in emergencies) and headquarters through good management and selection of staff, and correct staffing of people for the different positions.
  • Implement action plans together with Operations, in order to mitigate the impact of the gaps in HR 
  • Ensure good communication flow with other Units particularly Field HR, Training and the Operational Cells.
  • Identify opportunities to improve the process of filling vacancies
  • Ensure the development and implementation of “matching support plans“ for people leaving for a new mission, where necessary.


Defines recruitment and profile management strategies in line with operational strategies and needs

  • Offer to the Organization an in-depth analysis of recruitment and profile evolution dynamics in MSF
  • Consolidate the recruitment and profile management strategy in line with the Organization’s strategic objectives, adapting the way the Unit works and is organized.
  • Coordinate all the selection processes and Assessment Centre so as to ensure enough first mission expatriates for the profiles required in the field.
  • Define indicators and follow them up, consolidating and analyzing qualitative statistics and reports in terms of recruitment and selection strategies.
  • Guarantee that the candidatures of people who have experience in other Humanitarian Organizations are validated together with the referents at the Technical Units for coordination positions and guarantee an adjustment phase together with the Training Unit and Field HR.


Responsibilities relating to the management of the Unit.

  • See to the achievement of the objectives set by the Director of HR and the balance per recruitment (Spain, Argentina, Decentralized Units, Partner Sections, etc.).
  • Follow up indicators and result reporting to the Director of the Department.
  • Manage his/her team members, support them and build their competencies.


Coordination with other Units / Departments / MSF Sections.

  • Meet with Operations to set priorities in terms of vacancies and needs.
  • Keep and develop strategic contacts with Partner Sections in order to make them actively participate in the recruitment and development of human resources to address the needs in MSF OCBA projects and improve the integration and follow-up of people coming from Partner Sections.
  • Represent the Unit within the HR Department to ensure intra-department coordination regarding issues relating to the Unit.
  • Participate in working groups with other departments in MSF OCBA in cross-projects.
  • Participate in coordination meetings with the heads of operational Units.
  • S/he coordinates and collaborates with other Units within the HR department and / or other departments in MSF OCBA based on general planning needs in MSF OCBA and to follow up action plans.



Education and Experience:

  • 3 to 5 years of consolidated experience in similar management position
  • Consolidated HR knowledge (selection, training, capacity building, competence-based management, global HR management...).
  • MSF experience or with other humanitarian NGOs in coordination positions
  • Experience in team management.
  • Good command of English essential. Spanish or French desirable.
  • Advanced IT knowledge as a user (Microsoft Office setting).
  • Knowledge of the ERP-SAP system will be a plus.



  • Commitment to MSF’s Principles
  • Cross-cultural Awareness
  • Strategic Vision
  • Results and Quality Orientation
  • Service Orientation
  • Planning and Organising
  • Initiative and Innovation
  • Teamwork and Cooperation
  • Capacity to work under strong pressure



  • Availability to travel (20%  of the working time, including to MSF Network Units, missions and projects, sometimes in unstable contexts)




  • Open-ended position based in the Médecins Sans Frontières-Spain Barcelona Headquarters.
  • Full time job
  • Minimum of 3-year moral commitment
  • Annual gross salary: 44,405.32 euros (divided into 12 monthly payments) + Secondary Benefits based on MSF OCBA Reward Policy
  • Starting date: July 2019.



  • All applicants should send their CV and cover motivation letter under the reference “HeadDevRec” to
  • Please submit your CV and cover letter in ONE file and name the file with your LAST NAME. Closing date: June 2nd, 2019.
  • Replies will only be sent to short-listed candidates.
  • MSF OCBA is a people-focused humanitarian organization that offers a diverse, collaborative, and inclusive work environment. We believe this approach enhances our work and we’re committed to equity in employment. We embrace diverse backgrounds of people working together to exhibit their passion in action for the social mission of MSF.
  • Médecins Sans Frontieres, as a responsible employer, under article 38 of “Ley de Integración Social del Minusválido de 1982 (LISMI)” invite those persons with a recognized disability and with an interest in the humanitarian area to apply for the above-mentioned position.




[1] both International staff for field and Headquarter