Oxfam South Africa: Executive Director

Oxfam South Africa
Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
Opportunity closing date: 
Friday, 27 August, 2021
Opportunity type: 

Oxfam South Africa is a social justice organisation working for transformative change to the injustices of poverty and inequality. We work at multiple levels of society, collaborating on initiatives that address a range of the drivers of poverty and for lasting solutions. OZA is an African Affiliate of Oxfam International (OI), a confederation of 20 organizations (affiliates) working together with partners and local communities in more than 90 countries. As a network, together, we tackle the inequality that keeps people poor, intervene when disaster strikes, and help people and their communities to build better lives after disasters.
All our work is led by three core values: Empowerment, Accountability, Inclusiveness. To read more about our values please click here.
We are committed to preventing any type of unwanted behaviour at work including sexual harassment, exploitation and abuse, lack of integrity and financial misconduct; and we are committed to promoting the welfare of children, young people and adults. We expect all staff and volunteers to share this commitment through our Code of Conduct. We place a high priority on ensuring that only those who share and demonstrate our values are recruited to work with us.

Note: All our offers of employment will be subject to satisfactory references and appropriate screening cheques which can include criminal records and terrorism finance checks.  

Job Purpose
The Oxfam South Africa Board of Directors seeks to appoint an Executive Director (ED). The ED will work with the Board and OZA staff team as the main executive responsible of the organization. The ED will provide leadership along with the members of the Board of Directors, and Shared Leadership Team made up of the Managers and Leads of the organisation’s various programmes and functions, lead the implementation of OZA’s strategy framework in the context of the challenges and opportunities presented by the COVID global pandemic and the appropriate place and nature of feminist organisations and organising in the world. In addition to facilitating effective coordination and integration of the work of all OZA departments (Programs, Communications/Public Engagement, Finance, HR, Fundraising), the ED will also be expected to stabilise OZA in all regards and particularly in regard to resourcing. The ED role also contribute significantly to the leadership of the Oxfam Confederation, together with the Executive Directors of other Oxfam affiliates and the Executive Director of Oxfam International.
It is expected that the ED position will be filled by the 1st of September 2021.
Overview of Position

The ED is responsible for shaping and co-leading an organizational strategy that emerges from consultative processes amongst staff, leadership, advisors, partners, allies and funders. The ED ensures the organization is relevant, healthy and well positioned to influence and collaborate with others in the sector. The ED ensures a critical balance between being responsive to context and allies, and being ‘ahead of the curve’ anticipating trends and opportunities across civil society. This requires understanding the distinct histories and making sense of country regional trends to forge an agenda and identify/step into opportunities for creative action and influence.

Key Responsibilities
Driving the strategy implementation including organisational reform processes emanating from the Strategic Framework:

  • Drive an institutional culture that upholds feminist values;
  • Provide leadership, strategic visioning and guidance with regard to organizational positioning internationally in line with OZA mission and values;
  •  Ensure consistent standards of excellence and innovation within the organization.
  • Act as ex-officio board member, keeping the OZA Board of Directors appraised and engaged with strategic and organizational issues;
  • Provide Financial Oversight including ensuring the development and maintenance of sound financial practices and the efficient and effective management of all financial functions of the organization;
  • Ensure adequate Organizational policies, systems and procedures are in place to guarantee compliance to contracts, registration requirements, and donors;
  • Ensure and promote a safe work environment and organizational culture aligned with the Oxfam values;
  • Lead and guide the definition of strategies, operational models, plans and budget of the organization, aiming at achieving its goals and fostering the implementation of plans;
  • Be an active member of committees and working groups within Oxfam International so as to define common strategies, plans and operational models for all the affiliates;
  • Build new and strategic alliances to ensure effective development, implementation and evaluation of initiatives that will fortify the ability of the organization to fulfil upon its mission;
  • Play a lead role in mobilizing resources (from institutional and individual donors), strategic alliances, external relations and advocacy, anticipating and engaging with new opportunities for resources, strategic partnerships and broader influence;
  • Represent the organization at key events, including speaking engagements, advocacy for rights-based policies and programs, authoring articles and op editorials and other highly visible roles that share OZA’s political experience and perspective to shape civil society discussion;
  • Build political and social networks with other institutions and NGOs, both at national and international levels, in order to contribute to the mission of the organization;
  • Ensure the proper management of the organization’s resources to achieve institutional goals by maximizing the effectiveness, efficiency and adequate use of those resources; and
  • Ensure compliance with the Code of Conduct throughout the organization and commit to be an example of this in your practices and behaviors.

 Skills, Knowledge, Experience

  • Masters degree or similar. other complementary leadership and managerial training will be an asset.
  • At least 10 years of experience in executive or senior leadership positions setting and developing strategies and leading teams with high diversity.
  • Proven track record of successful leadership and management of complex, change oriented and ground-breaking organisations.
  • Experience in building healthy teams and a collaborative organisational culture
  • Agile leadership and change management capacity.
  • Experience in working or collaborating with NGOs or other civil society organisations
  • Experience in international organisations will be an asset
  • Proven track record and experience/skill in setting vision and developing strategy.
  • Capacity in supervising budgetary and financial management in an organization.
  • Transformational leadership of multidisciplinary teams, with strong skills in developing people and supporting them to reach their maximum potential.
  • Proven experience in building and supporting a high-performing, transformational senior leadership team, able to play an active role in attracting, retaining and developing staff;
  • Experience in leading advocacy, policy and influencing work at various levels
  • Ability to achieve results through a team with a high level of responsibility, involvement, autonomy and competence.
  • Experience in fundraising and donor engagement.
  • Ability to lead the necessary changes to achieve the objectives of the organization.
  • Ability to make quick and strategy-focused decisions.
  • Excellent communication and external relationship skills in order to represent the organization.
  • Knowledge of South Africa and the Southern Africa region’s social, political and economic context.
  • Proven experience in navigating regional and global dynamics.
  • Experience in public engagement and digital transformation will be an asset.
  • Fluency in English and at least one South African national language is essential.
  • Availability to travel nationally and internationally up to five weeks per year and other five weeks in short trips.


  • A Masters degree in social science, development or related discipline.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English.
  • Fluency in one of the local languages 10 or more years of progressive management experience in a development or voluntary sector organisation
  • Five or more years working at senior level for non-profit management experience

How to apply  

Please submit your proposal to ozahr@oxfam.org.za             

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