The Project Manager will report directly to the Chief of Staff with a dotted line to the Head – Supply Chain, and will be responsible for leading a large-scale project promoting small holder organic agriculture in the Northern, Luapula, Eastern, Central and Lusaka provinces of Zambia in partnership with 260 Brands, a consumer food manufacturer which processes, markets and distributes soya and maize-based consumer food products.
260 Brands currently works with 2,500 small holder farmers in the areas above, and aims to partner with 5,000 this upcoming season and 12,000 in the following season – through farmer recruitment, training in organic farming, organic inputs financing, follow up farmer field monitoring and guaranteed off-take of organic soya at a premium price.
Project scope, objectives and budgets have already been designed and are ready for a Project Manager to implement for the upcoming growing season. The Project Manager will be the person ultimately responsible for the project in terms of leading his/her extension team in producing deliverables around numbers of farmers recruited and trained, number of farmers certified as organic according to external certifying body standards and farmer documentation requirements, and metric tonnes procured at the end of the season with 100% input loan recovery. He/she will lead a large extension team in the field consisting of agronomists, regional managers and extension officers. The Project Manager will also be held responsible for his/her team to meet timelines, stay within budget and report on time and accurately on impact milestones and strict financial reporting requirements to external partners.
There will also be a heavy emphasis on digital record keeping through means of an Automated Out grower Management System (AOMS) App of farmer info, input loan data by farmer, and commodity procurement and logistics data, which the Project Manager will be responsible for implementing in the field with his/her team.
The role is based in Lusaka with travel to all the areas above, with the potential to expand the project to additional areas if applicable.
1. Align objectives of departments and the project, its structure, and operating rules with internal and external partners
2. Recruit, integrate, appraise, train, discipline and motivate his or her staff
3. Ensure that career and appraisal interviews are carried out timely
4. Define training needs for his or her department
5. Prepare a workplan for each region and ensure the regional team is trained on the activities required to meet farmer targets and other deliverables, and will hold regional managers accountable in following the workplan
6. Coordinate with the organic certifying body, organic farming experts and company departments to ensure organic certification of 260 Brands’ small holder farmer out grower scheme runs smoothly. Ensure expectations for organic certification are clear in terms of activities and paperwork from farmers required, plan with relevant extension team members to ensure requirements are executed and ensure successful audits by certifying body of grower groups
7. Carry out inception meetings at the beginning of each season and/or project start
8. Develop and provide simple role profiles for each project team member so they are fully aware of their roles & responsibilities on the project
9. Lead regular monthly (weekly if deemed required) check ins with the relevant project team members to check on progress of activities and deliverables, communicating effectively on expectations and planning requirements
10. Implement the use of an Automated Outgrower Management System (AOMS), a digital app which allows for streamlining of out grower operations including creating farmer profiles, gathering farmer info and streamlining procurement operations
11. Report on time and accurately on strict financial reporting requirements to external partners
12. Monitor and gather impact data and documentation in the field and/or lead and coordinate with a data gathering team to ensure partner reporting requirements are met
13. Have an understanding of commodity markets and dynamics that impact pricing at farm-gate level to maintain harmony between smallholder farmers and the company’s objectives
14. Coordinate procurement of commodities with liaison of Head of Supply Chain and field staff, for aggregation and delivery to head office
15. Provide project updates on a consistent basis to Chief of Staff and various stakeholders about strategy, adjustments, and progress.
1. 7-10 years experience in project management, out grower schemes and/or commodity purchasing from farmers in Zambia
2. Experience working with donor-funded projects
3. Proven ability to complete projects according to outlined scope, budget, and timeline
4. A relevant four year Bachelor’s degree required
5. Project Management Professional (PMP) certification preferred
6. Strong leadership and communication skills (both oral and written) required
7. Experience and/or knowledge with small holder farmer out grower schemes required
8. Experience in organic farming and certification is preferred
9. Strong familiarity with project management software tools, methodologies, and best practices
10. Thrives working within strict timelines and in ‘high pressure environments’ and demonstrates excellent time management
11. Strong interpersonal skills and extremely resourceful
12. Good command of English, Nyanja and Bemba
13. Demonstrates a positive and resilient attitude towards challenges
14. High level of computer literacy with a strong command of Microsoft Office products (Word, Excel and PowerPoint).
Method of Application
For all interested candidates, please email a CV and relevant qualifications to the email address with ‘Project Manager’ in the subject line. In addition, please fill out the survey by following the link below.