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Head of Learning and Development Division

Requisition ID:  12450
Location:  Geneva (GVA)
Contract type:  Open-ended contract
What we do


The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) works worldwide to provide humanitarian assistance to people affected by conflict and armed violence. We take action in response to emergencies and at the same time promote respect for international humanitarian law. We are an independent and neutral organization, and our mandate stems essentially from the Geneva Conventions of 1949. 



The ICRC is recruiting for its Head of Learning and Development (LnD).

The successful candidate will be responsible for articulating and implementing the Learning and Development vision, strategy and operating model to enhance ICRC employee and organizational performance. The role is based in Geneva and reports to the Deputy Director of Human Resources. Expected start date on or about 1 December 2019.

Main responsibilities


  • Devise the ICRC’s overall learning and development vision, strategy and operating model, based on input from the Directorate, the Learning Council and other senior stakeholders. Influence the standards and mechanisms of learning across the organization.
  • Partner with Global Talent Management and the office of the Director-General to enhance employee and organizational performance. Support the design and implementation of key talent and organizational development initiatives (performance management and development, succession planning, leadership development, employee experience and engagement, diversity & inclusion, organizational design, change management, building a culture of learning). The effective partnership should result in alignment and integration of Learning & Development with Human Resources, Organization Development and Talent Management activities.
  • Chair the Learning Council (LC), which governs learning and development priorities and activities of the ICRC, by ensuring:
    • The learning ecosystem is aligned to the ICRC institutional and People strategies, and operational priorities, considers external trends and best practices and integrates partnerships into ICRC practices;
    • Projects, activities and resources across the learning ecosystem are prioritized and coordinated;
    • The Learning Management System adequately supports learning activities;
    • Financial stewardship of the learning ecosystem, from the management of the learning budget, coordination and prioritization of resources, financial accountability through appropriate systems, controls and reporting;
    • Implementation of the overall Learning Strategy and resources.
  • The Learning Council has mandated authority from the Directorate, from which it receives input and to which it reports back annually on previous year’s learning activities and results, as well as learning priorities for the following year which are subject to the Directorate’s validation.
  • Lead the Learning and Development division which is composed of 90 staff members spread across 6 locations (Amman, Bangkok, Bogota, Dakar, Geneva and Nairobi). Enable the LnD team to deliver on its ambitious goals through a clear vision and objectives, as well as exemplary people management and development practices which include regular and open feedback, communication, coaching, ongoing professional development through a blended learning approach (combining on-the-job, social and formal learning activities). Foster a positive work environment that is inclusive, respectful, open and diverse, where employees feel valued and where contribution is recognized.
  • Implement the Learning Strategy in partnership with the Human Resources Department and all Learning-related partners. Ensure alignment and foster strong collaboration within the Learning Ecosystem.
  • Ensure delivery of strong Leadership Development programs, effective learning solutions, standardized global processes and methodologies, and building of cross-ICRC capability building.
  • Lead innovation within the learning approach and solutions with the latest technologies and measure impact through data/analytics integrated with key business data. Enhance data and analytics for learning to achieve a much greater understanding of learning activity and impact and use this to drive continuous improvements.
  • Actively engage with the external L&D community and stay ahead of best practices and tools.
  • Support ICRC to become a role model for learning and development in humanitarian aid organizations, by ensuring a culture of curiosity and continuous learning is embedded into the strategy and approach.
Measures of success


  • Clear learning approach that is aligned with the ICRC Strategy, Learning and People Strategies;
  • Integrate Learning and Development across all departments and into people leadership and management;
  • Measurable positive impact on employee capabilities, skills and behaviours contributing to increased performance and effectiveness of the organization;
  • Data analytics that monitors and shows the effectiveness of learning activities against ICRC goals;
  • Functional competency-based curricula in place for ICRC roles, building capability of the organization;
  • Contribute to cultivating a culture of curiosity, continuous learning, knowledge development and innovation;
  • Optimal use of budget and people resources within ICRC and for all training activities;
  • Critical enabler for major initiatives, including the development and deployment of state-of-the-art Leadership and Management Programs.
Education and experience required


  • University degree in social science, business or equivalent.
  • Further education (Masters) in e.g. Adult Learning, Learning Program Design, Leadership & Organizational Behaviour, Change Management, Coaching or equivalent is an asset.
  • Fluent in English, additional languages are a plus. 
  • Experience in large complex global enterprises where you successfully introduced new learning strategies, innovative learning methods, and technologies for a highly educated workforce that transformed the employee’s learning experience and increased their ability to deliver.
  • Knowledge and experience in Humanitarian Aid is a plus. 
  • Experience in delivering and facilitating learning programs.
  • Deep knowledge and thought leadership in learning, leadership development, transformation, innovation and change management, enabling you to lead change through learning across a global complex organization.
  • Enterprise-level strategic experience alongside operationally leading learning models and processes. 
  • Advanced project management experience with sophisticated planning and problem-solving skills, demonstrated by a record of successful major projects and process management transformations.
  • Advanced leadership experience from previous global or international leadership roles. Used to matrix managing large international program teams.
Desired profile and skills


  • Ability to inspire, influence and lead across different nationalities, ethnicities, languages and working style;
  • Strategic thinker with a strong focus on stakeholder management and employee experience;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills used to successfully develop effective collaborative relationships across a diverse international organization;
  • Exceptional communication skills (verbal, written and presentation), able to clearly present complex issues and straightforward solutions to impact leadership and stakeholders;
  • Curious learner, comfortable with ambiguity, thoughtful and with a customer-centric approach; 
  • A pragmatic, innovative and entrepreneurial approach, used to managing ambiguity;
  • Resilient, energetic and enthusiastic; responding constructively to challenging new ideas and input.
Additional information


  • Location:                       Geneva
  • Type of position:            Long-term assignment
  • Length of assignment:   6 years
  • Activity rate:                  100%
  • Estimated start date:     1 December 2019
  • Application deadline:  Sunday, 18 August 2019