Global Communities

  • Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Specialist

    HQ - Partnerships and Programs
  • Overview

    Global Communities is an international development non-profit organization. Our mission is to create long-lasting, positive and community-led change that improves the lives and livelihoods of vulnerable people across the globe.


    Global Communities is seeking a Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Specialist to join the Partnerships and Programs team at the headquarters in downtown Silver Spring, Maryland.


    Under the guidance of the Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Manager, the MEL Specialist functions within the Monitoring, Evaluation, Learning and Knowledge Management (MELKM) Unit to add value to three key MEL functions across the organization: 1) program support; 2) new business development; and 3) thought leadership. This position provides assistance to headquarters and field-based staff in the design and use of quality MEL systems, processes and standards with the goal of generating valid data to measure program performance, identify areas for improvement, and assess results, effectiveness and impact; ensuring adherence to quality MEL systems and standards throughout the organization and the life cycle of programs; strengthening MEL staff capacity in MEL; promoting sharing of MEL knowledge and best practices; and incorporating MEL results into improved programming.


    The MEL Specialist plays a key role in supporting general needs of field programs, particularly during new project start up. This person will assist in the development of high-quality MEL processes, tools and systems to collect, store and analyze monitoring data, integrate mobile technologies/ICT4D into data collection plans, ensure industry data quality standards are followed, provide and/or develop training or capacity building solutions appropriate for field staff and that use adult learning approaches; and provide organizational-level monitoring system support. The MEL Specialist will also provide support to other HQ and field MEL functions, including new business development, review and analysis of MEL data, results and reporting; and design and oversight of assessments, evaluations and related research instruments.


    • Take the lead in the development of MEL processes and systems for field projects. Will include helping programs finalize and operationalize their Performance Monitoring Plans, determining MEL system set-up and data collection requirements, and identifying/developing research instruments and tools and procedures for tracking beneficiaries, measuring results and complying with donor requirements; should apply use of mobile technologies and geospatial data collection and mapping as appropriate.
    • Lead Data Quality support. Will include helping programs comply with industry data quality standards, ensure record keeping systems are in place and followed, and ensure field teams are prepared for Data Quality Assessments (DQA) and DQA audits).
    • Provide training and technical support as needed to field and headquarters staff related to MEL systems, standards, processes, compliance and systems set-up.
    • Serve as main technical resource for evaluation planning and design. May include drafting and reviewing scopes of work (SOWs) for hiring external firms and consultants, identifying appropriate research questions, methods and plans, reviewing and approving surveys and other research instruments, and managing external consultants.
    • Provide MEL proposal development support, including writing and/or approving MEL sections of proposals for donor funding. Will include MEL plans, Performance Monitoring Plans (PMPs), Strategic Frameworks (e.g. Logframes and Logic Models) and MEL field staff recruitment.
    • Contribute to knowledge sharing through production of a variety of media including newsletter, MEL community listserve, quick tips, etc. using SharePoint and other social and collaborative platforms.
    • Coordinate processes to ensure that consultant deliverables are timely, technically sound, within budget, and compliant with donor regulations.
    • In coordination with the Learning and Knowledge Management Manager, develop materials and/or trainings to demonstrate efficacy and utility of organizational tools.
    • Represent organization and organizational tools and results at interagency meetings, conferences and other venues.
    • Carry out other duties as assigned.

    Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

    • In-depth knowledge of and experience working with MEL for foreign assistance programming, including theory of change, results-based performance monitoring, learning for adaptive management (or Collaborating, Learning and Adapting) tracking of foreign assistance indicators, and US government evaluation practices and policies, particularly related to USAID-funded projects.
    • Experience working with USDA and US Department of State also helpful.
    • Experience providing MEL field assistance on international development contracts and Cooperative Agreements.
    • Experience developing and using standard MEL tools and data collection systems to collect and store quantitative and qualitative data.
    • Experience with ICT4D and use of mobile technologies in monitoring and evaluation; use of geospatial data collection mapping and analysis a plus.
    • Ability to mentor adult learners in the effective use of technology for collecting data, creating impactful presentations, tracking indicators, data analysis, graphic visualization, and task management users of differing skill levels.
    • Solid organizational, communication, teamwork and inter-personal skills; a willingness to carry out a variety of technical and training functions, often on short deadlines; ability to work independently and take ownership of one’s learning and professional dvelopment needs; and who possess a keen attention.
    • Proficient in MS office suite including robust skills in SharePoint, Excel, and PowerPoint.
    • Experience living and working overseas highly desirable.
    • Ability and willingness to travel independently and on short notice up to 25%.


    • Master’s degree with up to two years’ of relevant work experience in international development, social sciences or a related field and relevant professional training/experience; or a Bachelor’s degree with a minimum of two years’ of relevant work experience. 
    • Working knowledge of Excel, SPSS/STATA, mobile data collection platforms, data visualization software, GIS, and/or other related technologies highly desirable. 
    • Understanding of social science research methods, both quantitative and qualitative.
    • Working knowledge of USAID rules and regulations and practices in MEL.
    • Knowledge of group facilitation methods and adult learning theory a plus.
    • Fluency in English, written and oral. Abilities in a second language preferred.
    • Must have U.S. work authorization.


    Global Communities is an equal opportunity employer that values diversity at all levels. EOE/AA - Minorities/Females/Veterans/Individual with Disabilities.


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