Chinnor, Oxfordshire
£38,088 - £41,135 per year
Permanent, Full-time
Job description


MapAction is a charity existing to provide mapping, geospatial and information management services to humanitarian emergencies. A leader in its field, MapAction has an inspirational team of highly skilled volunteers backed up by a specialised staff team to provide humanitarian emergency response, preparedness, early anticipation activities and the delivery of training services worldwide. The overall aim is to save lives and minimise suffering by ensuring that humanitarian aid is delivered as effectively and efficiently as possible, getting to where it is needed most, fast.


MapAction has a strong reputation for excellent service delivery and a collaborative approach. It is a technical partner of several United Nations and regional disaster management agencies, with ongoing funding from several humanitarian donor governments, trusts and foundations. With a team of creative, compassionate and committed people and a strong team spirit, we remain small enough that you will quickly come to know and respect what everyone contributes, as they will you. We pull together to do what is needed.


What will you do? 


This is a key role at the centre of the MapAction Operations Team which combines technical expertise in geospatial services with a hands on approach that is instrumental in the organisation's ability to deliver humanitarian effect. You will be involved in all aspects of MapAction’s operational activity, from emergency responses, both remote and deployed, through the planning and delivery of internal and external training, and supporting preparedness activity with partners globally. Having an excellent understanding of information management in humanitarian or development contexts and an extensive knowledge of practical applications of geospatial technologies will make you an excellent candidate for the role.


You will play an important role as the focal point for all geospatial products and services, acting in a position of leadership for the whole team. You will collaborate with internal and external stakeholders to set standards in the quality and utility of our products and services with an eye to future technological innovation and evolving our offer. You will need to be an experienced leader, able to work closely with a variety of technical experts in challenging, high pressure and time constrained situations. You will need experience in project and programme management, comfortable with uncertainty and able to manage relationships with multiple partners concurrently.  


You will be the line manager for the Geospatial Analyst role, coordinating and cohering MapAction’s delivery of geospatial products and services. Alongside our volunteer team, you will work closely with the technical team, developing and implementing roadmaps for operationalising new and innovative geospatial tools and methods. 


Job satisfaction will come from working with committed and passionate staff and volunteers alike, all working towards common humanitarian outcomes. You will nurture excellent partnerships with external organisations in the humanitarian and geospatial sectors, updating and ensuring the relevance of  MapAction’s offer to national agencies and regional partners. 


The post holder will report to the Operations Director and sit within the Operations team.


Main Responsibilities: 


  • Lead MapAction’s Geospatial offer to partners. The role requires a leader who is able draw on learning and experience to evolve our offer, understanding the needs of partners and working closely with the MapAction team to plan, deliver and evaluate the delivery of products and services across the three key areas of MapAction outputs: emergency response, training and preparedness activities

  • Operationalise geospatial plans. The role requires an experienced and highly competent geospatial professional who can translate organisational strategies into workable operational plans, policies, and procedures 

  • Line manage the Geospatial Analyst role 

  • Act as the quality marker for all MapAction Geospatial activity and uphold standards 

  • Lead in coordinating the data functions required across all Operation outputs, ensuring lessons are learned and problems are resolved via the data circle 

  • Lead the coordination of the support base functions required in an emergency response, including developing or delivering Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) or guidance as required, and ensuring appropriate quality assurances are developed and delivered 

  • Lead on the development and use of MapAction’s online resources working with the volunteer team 

  • Support the Operations Director in the preparation, deployment and management of emergency responses

  • Support the Operations Director to maintain the volunteer team ensuring it is technically operationally ready at all times and act as a staff point of contact to the volunteer team on Geospatial issues

  • Support the wider Operations team in the delivery of internal training events and external training exercises with input to training and simulation materials

  • Work closely with the Technical team to operationalise tech projects and programmes

  • Manage and strengthen relationships and collaboration with key partners and networks through attendance at key geospatial fora

  • Manage projects and programmes as directed by the Operations Director

  • Undertake risk assessments for low-medium threat environments

  • Act as a staff focal point for the maintenance and improvement of MapAction Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

  • Maintain expert knowledge of tools and systems to maintain and enhance organisational  knowledge management and lead in its operational utilisation across the team (SalesForce, wiki, team launchpad, Google Apps, MapAction website (Wordpress), MDR (CKAN)) 

  • Manage organisational record keeping, utilising tools (salesforce) to deliver analytical insight 

  • Maintain a watching brief of existing and emerging technologies, working closely with staff and volunteer teams to understand where these may be effectively used or adapted to MapAction’s work

  • Work closely with the Head of MEAL to develop and collect appropriate metrics to measure the effectiveness of MapAction products and services 

  • Deputise for the Operations Director when required


Key Competencies:

  • Professional qualification in GIS

  • Five years or more proven experience in a Geospatial profession

  • Excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to coordinate with multiple stakeholders, build and maintain relationships 

  • A proven leader and team player. Comfortable with working, leading, and getting the best from multiple small teams  

  • Demonstrable project management skills  

  • Experience of managing and developing personnel

  • Comfortable with a fast moving environment and managing multiple demands on your time

  • Commitment to working with volunteers 

  • Ability to work to short deadlines and work within pressured environments

  • Ability to deal with ambiguity and use judgement in challenging circumstances

  • Strong commitment to MapAction’s mission and values

  • Good IT skills and experience of Microsoft Office, google applications and electronic record keeping (Salesforce)  

  • Ability and willingness to travel, including being deployed at short notice 


Additional Information:


  • Flexibility and willingness to work outside office hours including evening and weekends, including undertaking cover for the Operations Director as requested and attending monthly weekend training events. In particular, training events will be scheduled for a weekend, once a month and this post is expected to attend these events. Reasonable time off in lieu is available by agreement

  • Must have the right to live and work in the UK. MapAction is unable to consider candidates who do not already hold appropriate permissions

  • Required to work remotely initially and then to attend the MapAction offices by negotiation

  • Note: this is an operational role in a small, highly specialised charity and an appreciation of, and affinity with the humanitarian purpose of the charity is essential, as well as a willingness to take up additional tasks outside of the normal role when needed


Equal Opportunities Policy:

MapAction is an Equal Opportunities employer. All employees have a personal responsibility to promote and support measures designed to create a working environment which is free from harassment or discrimination on the grounds of gender, marital status, family status, age, race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, membership of the Travellers community or HIV&AIDS status.


How to apply:

Please complete your application by submitting a CV and covering letter on Go Hire via our website. The closing date for applications is 31.01.2021. For further discussion regarding the content of this role, please call Chris Davies, Operations Director. MapAction reserves the right to close the application date early.


More about MapAction

MapAction is a charity existing to provide mapping, geospatial and information management services to humanitarian emergencies. A leader in its... Read more

Refreshed on: 18 January 2021
Closed date: 31 January 2021
Job ref: Head of Geospatial Services
Tags: IT, Operations

The client requests no contact from agencies or media sales.