Grants Officer Job Opportunity at the British Council in Nigeria July 2019

Career Vacancy : Grants Officer Job Description

Employment Opportunity : British Council Job Recruitment

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We create friendly knowledge and understanding between the people of the UK and other countries. We do this by making a positive contribution to the UK and the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust.

We work with over 100 countries across the world in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Each year we reach over 20 million people face-to-face and more than 500 million people online, via broadcasts and publications. Founded in 1934, we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body.

We are recruiting to fill the position below:

Job Title: Grants Officer
Abuja, Nigeria
Pay Band: 6/G
Duration: Fixed Term 3+ years
Role Type: Business Delivery
Reports to: Operations Manager
Department: Education & Society

Role Purpose

  • This role is to manage the grants function of the programmes in line with the programme strategies, implementation plans and financial plans, and to client’s corporate standards.

Geopolitical/SBU/Function Overview

  • The Programme has an annual turnover of around £5-£6m and work in 3 states – Adamawa, Borno and Yobe as well as in Abuja. The programme is being delivered alongside a partner (International Alert) with the British Council leading the contract.
  • The Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC) programme in Nigeria is a €25m EUDF-funded Programme (2017-2021) and has the overall aim of enhancing good governance in Nigeria by contributing to strengthening of the rule of law, curbing corruption and reducing impunity.
  • The programme has an annual turnover of around £5-£6m and work in 4 states – Adamawa, Anambra, Kano, Lagos, as well as in Abuja. The RoLAC programme will be extending to Edo State.
  • The Agents for Citizen-driven Transformation (ACT) programme is an EU funded programme being implemented by the British Council.
  • The programme is funded under the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) and will be implemented over a period of five years from July 2018, with the first 6 months serving as the programme Inception Phase for the development of strategies for full programme implementation.
  • The ACT programme will contribute to the progressive achievement of several of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as well as to the national development priorities identified in the Nigeria Vision 20:20 Economic Transformation Blueprint.
  • The Overall Objective of the programme is to contribute to more inclusive, effective, accountable and gender-responsive development in Nigeria; while its specific objectives is to enhance the credibility and role of CSOs as drivers of change for sustainable development in Nigeria. The programme has an annual turnover of around £3-£4m and will be implemented at the Federal level and in selected states where EU programmes concentrate.
  • The Nigerian context is generally challenging, having poor infrastructure and currently facing a volatile security situation. There is still a significant reliance on the cash economy, corruption is high and the regulatory and compliance structures that exist are highly ineffective.
  • The overall economic situation is not good with the low oil prices leading to high unemployment, increasing inflation and a shortage of foreign currency causing the value of the Naira to weaken considerably. This makes Nigeria a very challenging environment in which to deliver programmes.
  • The Programme Support Office is located in Abuja, but in an office that is separate from the main British Council office.
  • The post holder must therefore have the ability to work in an ambiguous and difficult environment in which British Council processes need to be adapted or developed to cope with unusual requirements and difficult context.
  • The post holder will work closely with the programme delivery and management teams as well as having significant interactions with the technical teams and Nigerian partners.
  • The British Council in Nigeria is implementing the European Union Conflict Management in Nigeria programme under their Trust Fund (EUTF) and the Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption programme in Nigeria under their Development Fund programme (EUDF).
  • We are implementing the Agents for Citizen-driven Transformation (ACT) Programme under the European Union development fund. In partnership with COFFEY, we are delivering the Policing work under their Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) and are managing the Programme Coordination Office for DFID’s Deepening Democracy in Nigeria Phase 2 (DDiN2) Programme.
  • To support our existing contracts as well as future contracts, we are developing flexible structures that meet the global British Council standards to provide support to our FCR (Justice, Security and Conflict) work in Nigeria.
  • The Conflict Management programme in North Eastern Nigeria is a €21m EUTF-funded Programme (2017-2021) and works with the overall aim of enhancing state and community level conflict management capability to prevent the escalation of conflict into violence in a number of locations in North-Eastern Nigeria.

Accountabilities, Responsibilities and Main Duties
Project management and delivery:

  • Coordinate and quality assure the grants inputs into planning, financial and project management processes, including cash-flow forecasting, reconciliation of grants disbursements and maintain financial records and documentation.
  • To manage and maintain programme grants databases.
  • Organising meetings where required to support programme/partners’ grants activities.
  • Reviewing partners financial and narrative reports; and supporting documentation (monthly etc) in line with contractual requirements and standards as set out in the Grants Manual.
  • Responsible for producing relevant grants reports (monthly and quarterly) as part of management information and other grants statistics (e.g. grants tracking spreadsheet) as may be required by management.
  • Responsible for conducting financial management training/induction during partners’ coordination meetings.
  • Manage the grants contracts with partners, in liaison with HR and Consultancy Manager; grant disbursements, monitoring and feedback processes.
  • Responsible for taking and developing the minutes of the grants selection committee.
  • Support programme state offices on grants processes and activities.
  • Carry out any other tasks as may be required by the Operations Manager.
  • Manage the grants management system: to support and provide guidance in the management and co-ordination of an effective proposal review, selection and grant management system across FCR Programmes; including the development and application of proposal review and selection criteria, the implementation of agreed grants administration processes and the maintenance of due diligence standards and criteria in line with the grants manual.
  • Update programme grants manual where necessary.
  • Ensuring that all relevant programmes and projects have a grants management plan which sets out the requirements of the contract with respect to the planning, implementation and evaluation of grants.
  • Manage the grants selection process in liaison with the technical team and grants selection team, ensure eligibility requirements are met by prospective grants recipients leading to a fair and transparent grant making practice.
  • Support technical teams to finalize on grants proposals from partners and CSOs.
  • Manage the process of supporting grant recipients to follow and fulfil all requirements  in grants implementation and to strengthen their financial management capacity for grants management.
  • Developing and improving strategies and tools to optimize the grants administration process.
  • Processing and administering timely requests for grants payments, after due diligence checks have been carried out in line with contractual requirements and standards set out in the Grants Manual.
  • Providing guidance to support the development of efficient systems of record keeping and learning, and safeguard the effective use of programme grants fund in line with contractual requirements and standards set out in the Grants Manual.

Finance Administration:

  • Responsible for reviewing narrative reports submitted and financial documentation pertaining to grant management (disbursements and retirements).
  • Monitoring grant expenditures against set budgets to ensure financial targets are met.
  • Coordinating and quality assuring grant inputs into planning, financial and project management processes, including cash-flow forecasting, reconciliation of grant disbursals and standing balances, and maintenance of financial records and documentation.
  • Provide support to partners by training them on efficient financial management system.
  • To ensure risk is minimized by strict application of corporate British Council financial principles in all programme grant related activities.

Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E):

  • To support initiatives led by the M&E Advisers developed to monitor activities and interventions.
  • Document lessons learned to improve the quality of events and their outcomes for the implementation phase of the programme.

Knowledge  Management:

  • Support activities to facilitate replication of good practices in granting (Demonstrate ‘value for money’); continuously benchmarking against external industry practice.
  • Liaise with Knowledge Management team to provide summary reports and stories that feed into the quarterly impact reports, newsletters and other knowledge management products, disseminating successes and lessons from grant projects.

Team Support and Contribution:

  • Ensure professionalism is demonstrated in own work area and  that customer / client needs and perspectives are reflected in own behaviours and focus.
  • To support the embedding of continuous learning and improvement into the team; providing constant opportunities to change working practices to improve results.
  • To seek to understand the interdependencies and connections programme team has with other functions and teams within EU programmes and the wider organisation.
  • To proactively share best practice and learning across the wider EU programmes team.

Staff Management:

  • Line Manage Grants Assistant

Other Administrative Work:

  • As required.

Key Relationships

  • National Programme Managers, Technical Lead/Advisers, Operation Managers, State Team Leads/State Programme Coordinators, Procurement and Estate Manager, HR Manager, Finance team, M&E team,Other Programme Officers, Admin and Resource Assistants.
  • All Visiting National and International Consultants
  • Other Project Teams


  • External relationship management where appropriate (i.e. linked to function of role), to include: EU, consultants,  Civil Society Organizations, MDAs, etc.

Role Requirements
Threshold requirements:

  • Passport requirements/ Right to work in country (All applicants should have a pre-existing legal status to live and work in Nigeria. British Council will not facilitate/sponsor visa applications and work permits.)
  • Assessment stage: Shortlisting
  • Direct contact or managing staff working with children? (Appropriate child protection assurance checks in accordance with British Council policy)

Note: Some unsocial hours, weekend work and travel may be required where the need arises.

Person Specification


  • Graduate level education


  • ACA/ACCA/CPA Professional Accounting qualifications
  • Project management qualification aligned to P&P professional standards (APM) at the appropriate level of the role

Assessment stage: Shortlisting and interview

Role Specific Knowledge & Experience:

  • Minimum of 4 years’ experience with a donor funded project
  • Skills and knowledge in grant management with an emphasis on continuous improvement for external clients and customers.
  • Experience of managing grants and  internal stakeholders / external partners.
  • Experience of working as part of a successful team/function.

Assessment stage: Shortlisting


  • Experience working in Full Cost Recovery contracts
  • Experience of the design, delivery, evaluation and improvement of external grant based products and services in a variety of contexts.
  • Experience of operating in a complex, multi-cultural context.

Assessment Stage: Shortlisting:

British Council Core Skills Assessment Stage

  • Managing Finance and Resources (Level 3) – Supports budget management – Monitors and controls an agreed budget within a defined area, producing reports and analyses and contributing to planning.
  • Using Technology (Level 2) – Operates as an advanced user – Works as an advanced practitioner in the use of office software and/or British Council standard and social media platforms and trains or coaches others in their use.
  • Planning and Organising (Level 3) – Develops and reviews the implementation of annual plans for a work group or function, taking account of business and customer requirements and reconciling competing demands.
  • Communicates clearly and effectively (Level 2) – Display good listening, writing and speaking skills, setting out logical arguments clearly and adapting language and form of communication to meet the needs of different people/audiences.
  • Managing Risk (Level 3) – Has track record of analyzing potential risks, promoting risk awareness, and holding others to account for their practices.

Assessment Stage: Shortlisting and Interview:

British Council Behaviours

  • Being accountable (More demanding) – Putting the needs of the team or British Council ahead of my own.  (Assessment stage: Interview and Performance Management)
  •  Making it happen (More demanding) – Challenging myself and others to deliver and measure better results.  (Assessment stage: Interview and Performance Management)
  •  Working together (More demanding) – Ensuring that others benefit as well as me.  (Assessment stage: Interview and Performance Management)
  • Creating shared purpose (More demanding) – Creating energy and clarity so that people want to work purposefully together. (Assessment stage: Interview and Performance Management)
  • Shaping the future (Essential) – Looking for ways in which we can do things better  (Assessment stage: Performance Management)
  • Connecting with others (More demanding) – Actively appreciating the needs and concerns of myself and others (Assessment stage: Performance Management)

N8,106,739 per annum.
How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply

Click here to download Job Details (Pdf)

Click here to download BC Behaviour (pdf)

Click here to download BC Core Skills (pdf)


Application Deadline 28th July 2019

Applicants must have existing legal right to live and work in Nigeria

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