International Youth Foundation (IYF)
The International Youth Foundation (IYF) invests in the extraordinary potential of young people. Founded in 1990, IYF builds and maintains a worldwide community of businesses, governments, and civil society organizations — now spanning 73 countries — committed to empowering youth to be healthy, productive, and engaged citizens. In the past two decades, IYF has supported 472 youth-serving organizations in 134 countries, and has partnered with a wide range of corporate partners and public training systems, reaching more than 16 million young people. IYF programs are catalysts for change that help young people obtain a quality education, gain employability skills, make healthy choices, and improve their communities.
Based in Johannesburg, IYF seeks to fill the following vacancy:
MEASUREMENT, EVALUATION, RESEARCH & LEARNING (MERL) SPECIALIST
The primary responsibility of this position will be to oversee the development and implementation of MERL plans for IYF South Africa programming, and to ensure data is used to inform programme management decisions and to enhance decision-making of IYF partners, including public institutions and the private sector. The MERL Specialist will also build IYF staff and partners’ capacity in data collection, management and analysis, and utilizing data to guide management decisions. The MERL Specialist will work in close collaboration with IYF’s global MERL Director (based in the United States)—including in the design of IYF South Africa’s MERL system and plans—to ensure they integrate with IYF’s global MERL systems, policies, and organizational learning priorities.
The candidate should be data-driven, detail-oriented, and a self-starter with excellent analytic and communication skills. In addition, the candidate should possess strong interpersonal skills and excel at building strong working relationships with colleagues and IYF partners, particularly government departments and public TVET colleges. Prior experience conducting MERL through programmes that work with public education institutions is highly desired.
Key responsibilities of this position will include:
- Developing and implementing Measurement, Evaluation, Research and Learning (MERL) plans to track, analyse, and utilize project performance and results. This includes responsibility for data collection management, analysis, reporting, assessments, and all other related activities.
- Finding creative ways for conducting MERL within public education institutions, including through leveraging routine data collected by our public education partners, and through other models that limit reliance on public institutions to collect non-routine data on behalf of IYF
- Providing ongoing support to IYF South Africa team and partners to ensure compliance and accuracy of data collection, STORM management and reporting according to donor, partner and IYF standards
- Reporingt results of MERL activities to various stakeholders, internal and external, including donors by providing written documentation about program results and progress toward achieving indicators/targets, as appropriate
- Ensuring high-quality implementation of the MERL System, in close collaboration with the IYF USA MERL Director, and consistency in protocols, information and reporting systems
- Leading the operationalization of the IYF Institutional Learning Agenda for South Africa-based programs
The MERL Specialist must meet the following criteria:
- Bachelor's degree and minimum 5 years of work experience in monitoring and evaluation of large programmes with a robust MERL component. Master’s degree preferred.
- Strong computer skills and experience working with one or more types of data analysis and management software (e.g., SPSS, STATA, R, etc.), and data management solutions (e.g., Salesforce, MySQL, etc.). Excellent knowledge of and experience using Advanced Microsoft Excel techniques.
- Demonstrated experience in data management and analysis, and in conducting data quality assessments and audits
- Experience conducting assessments and using qualitative and quantitate tools (focus group discussions, surveys, interviews). Strong analytical skills and ability to synthesize information to inform planning and strategy
- Strong English communication skills (written and spoken), program management, presentation, team-building and interpersonal skills, as well as an analytical ability to identify and establish priorities and attend to all details in a professional manner. Advanced critical thinking and problem-solving skills
- Commitment to youth development and a values-driven work environment
- Ability to travel nationally, as needed.
- To be eligible for this position, you must be a South African citizen or a permanent resident without work restrictions in South Africa.