Transitioning from JPO to Regular Staff

You are well underway with your JPO assignment and may be starting to think about the options you have to either continue your JPO assignment or get a regular staff contract. We have collected some advice that many JPOs have previously found useful.


Co-funded contract extension


Some partner countries are willing to co-fund a contract extension in the third year of assignment. The co-funding arrangements varies for partner countries, so you may want to contact your HRA in the JPO Service Centre for further information.

In order to request a co-funded contract extension with the partner country, you will need to ensure that the following is submitted to your HRA from your duty station:

-    Annual evaluation form
-    Letter from your duty station in support of the contract extension
-    COA from your duty station


Duty station funded contract extension

After the end of the partner country funding period, your duty station can fully fund up to 12 months of contract extension, provided that there is no change in your job description.

If the third year of your contract has been co-funded, that means in practical terms that your duty station has contributed 6 months of the funding. They are allowed to fund you for a total of 12 months and as such they may fully fund you for another six months, depending on availability of funds in their budget of course

In order to process a fully funded contract extension, your duty station needs to send a message to your HRA confirming the period of extension and the Chart of Account (COA) to charge.


Applying for regular positions

You can apply for regular (non-JPO) positions after serving for 15 months as a JPO. Most UNDP JPOs can apply for UNDP positions as internal candidates, provided that their JPO appointment was endorsed by UNDP’s Compliance Review Board (CRB). If in doubt about your eligibility, you can contact your HRA for information. 

You can apply for regular Fixed-Term-Appointments (FTA), as well as Temporary Appointments (TA) and Service Contracts (SC). Should you get a TA or SC contract, you will need to separate from your JPO FTA and have a break in service before taking up your new contract. If you are with UNDP and get a regular FTA contract with UNDP, you can reassign directly from your current duty station to the new one. However, we do recommend that you take home leave in conjunction with reassignment, so you travel from your current duty station to your place of home leave and finally to your new duty station. This is provided you have accrued enough home leave points.


Reassignment during your JPO contract – only 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 a regional centre/headquarters location or vice versa, or a reassignment from one region to another region offers JPOs broader exposure. For more information please read visit the HR Section of our website.


Detail assignment – using your DTTA

If you are interested in working with another duty station or unit, but are unable to reassign there, you may want to consider a detail assignment instead. A detail assignment is an assignment of usually 2-4 weeks in another duty station or unit within your organization. The purpose is to expose yourself to another experience and to expand your competencies. It is also a good way to network and get to know other colleagues through working with them - and for them to get to know you.

To set up an arrangement for a detail assignment, you should start by discussing the possibility with your supervisor who may also be able to support you in contacting another duty station. There has to be a clear agreement between your supervisor and the supervisor in the other duty station or unit. Therefore it is important to draft a detailed TOR for the assignment, so expectations are clearly outlined before taking up the assignment.

Using your DTTA funds for a detail assignment, entitles you for payment of your travel ticket and DSA. You should use the same procedures for claiming this as outlined in the DTTA guidelines.