Reassignment guidelines for UNDP JPOs
A JPO normally serves in the same job for the duration of his or her assignment. However, JPOs of partner countries that sponsor assignments of three years or more may be considered for a reassignment to another job which may be in a different duty station, unit or bureau. A change in job may be considered based on satisfactory performance, the recommendation of the head of unit and supervisor and the approval of the partner country.
A reassignment supports professional growth and career development and expands the network of the JPOs. A reassignment from a country office to regional centre/headquarters location or vice versa, or a reassignment from one region to another region offers JPOs broader exposure.
Some partner countries regularly support third year reassignments, so in order to be eligible you must be funded by one of the following countries: Denmark, Germany, Norway or Sweden. For Luxembourg there is an obligatory reassignment after the second year.
If your funding government is not mentioned in the above list, it means they do not normally support reassignments in the third year. Some countries may however support it on exceptional basis. You can contact your HRA for more information.
This guideline is not applicable for reassignments for compelling reasons, e.g. security and health matters which may occur for any staff at any point in time regardless of funding partner country.
If you are considering a reassignment, you should reflect on the following:
- How does the new job description support your JPO assignment, learning and career aspirations?
- How will a reassignment support your retention in the organization?
- Manage and maintain the relationship with your current duty station in a constructive manner.
- Seek advice from your current supervisor and/or office, for guidance on your career development and reassignment plans.
- Consider the impact and business continuity on the duty station you leave behind, also in light of your government’s commitment to that duty station.
- Consider the impact on your own learning and contribution in the new assignment vis-à-vis the benefits of staying in your current assignment
If you are in your second year and are considering are a reassignment for your third year, you should follow these steps:
1. Begin by contacting your JPOSC HRA and reflect on the above questions. If you are contemplating a change in duty station, you should also be prepared to inform your HRA which duty station you are considering reassigning to and why. Remember to take into consideration the priority countries and/or thematic areas of your funding government which you can find on their website. Your HRA will be able to advise you on UNDP strategic priorities and our knowledge of duty stations
2. Your HRA will contact the JPO Programme focal point of your government for a preliminary (and non-committal) agreement.
3. Once your HRA confirms endorsements obtained, you can contact the duty station/office where you will reassign to.
4. Prepare your application (P11, achievement oriented CV and cover letter) and keep your HRA informed throughout the process.
5. You should expect to be interviewed by the hiring unit and use such opportunity to find out more about the position.
6. You should clearly state with the hiring unit if your third year is expected to be fully funded or co-funded by your government. It is especially important for co-funded third years as the new hiring unit will have to commit to the co-funding beforehand.
7. You should submit an updated job description and a letter in support of your reassignment from the new duty station/office to your HRA. In this regard, it is usually an advantage if there is a possibility of your further retention beyond your JPO assignment and this is mentioned in the letter.
8. Your HRA will submit the official request to your government for approval.
It is our experience that obtaining the agreement with the new duty station, updated job description and support letter often takes 3-6 months, therefore it is recommendable you start the process in the 2nd quarter of your second year.
Once your government approves the reassignment, we can begin the administrative process (medical clearance, visa, travel, payments etc.) which normally takes about 6 weeks. It is therefore necessary to have at least 6-8 weeks left of your contract to ensure sufficient time for processing.
Provided your new assignment is for one full year or more, you will be entitled to receive payment for travel, relocation grant, lump sum assignment grant and 30 days of DSA for you and your eligible family members. For reassignments of less than a year, entitlements will be reduced as per corporate rules and regulations.
You will be expected to exercise home leave in conjunction with reassignment, so you travel to your new duty station via your place of home leave.
1. I would like to reassign before my third year starts. Is that possible?
No, it is not applicable.
The only time it is possible is in the case of evacuations or other compelling reasons.
2. I am in doubt which duty station has projects in the thematic areas that fit my profile. How do I move forward?
We suggest you first discuss this with your current supervisor or someone else who may know you well. They may be able to advise you on duty stations in relation to your profile and career aspirations. You may also research the webpages of duty stations which are of interest to you to learn more about the programmes in that particular country. You may also contact your HRA who may provide suggestions based on vacant JPO positions.
3. I am a SARC/Coordination Specialist at the P3 level. Can I also reassign in my third year?
No. The reason for supporting reassignments for JPOs is to give them the opportunity for greater exposure as part of their learning and career development, as they are normally in the beginning of their career.
The SARC/Coordination Specialist job is not an entry level position and does not have the same focus on learning as a JPO position.
4. I do not work with UNDP, but am still interested in reassigning. Who should I contact?
You should contact your HR focal point in the agency that you work with for further guidance.