Director of Operations, OCBA

MÉDECINS SANS FRONTIÈRES OCBA (Operational Centre Barcelona-Athens) is looking for a:




Médecins Sans Frontières is an international independent medical-humanitarian organization, which offers assistance to populations in distress, to victims of natural or man-made disasters and to victims of armed conflict, without discrimination and irrespective of race, sex, religion, creed or political affiliation.

The MSF movement is built around five operational directorates supported by 21 sections and offices worldwide. MSF OCBA is one of those directorates. The MSF OCBA is currently active in 23 medical and humanitarian crises worldwide. OCBA operations are implemented by 69 field teams, of which and on average, 40% are responding to emergencies, and 21 mission coordination teams and 4 ops organizational units based in Barcelona,, Nairobi, Dakar and Amman. The field operations are guided and supported by the Operations’ Team, made up of 5 Operational Cells (two cells are decentralized to Nairobi and Amman) an Emergency Unit, , two Deputy Directors, a Security Management Focal Point  and a variable number of senior staff in charge of specific strategic dossiers.

MSF OCBA is focused on assisting populations, communities and individuals suffering the consequences of conflict and on responding to medical and humanitarian emergencies, , while permanently exploring new possible scenarios where response to other medical and humanitarian needs could be relevant. The OCBA actively promotes the analysis of humanitarian causes and consequences threatening the lives and well-being of the populations with whom we work, and analysis of the relevance of our action in a given crisis.. This process involves the constant examination of the contexts in which MSF OCBA intervenes, the causes of suffering of people affected by conflict and crises and reflection on our role, scope and limitations.

The Director of Operations (DO) is a cornerstone of the OC and a key international actor. Holds primary responsibility for the operations. Defines the operational decisional framework of the Strategic Plan.Leads the Operations Team. Manages the Operations Department. Leads and contrasts the analysis of the operational portfolio internally and at an international level. The DO also participates in the definition of overall policies within the operational centre. With his/her team develops the annual plan around which the overall MSF-OCBA yearly planning is constructed.



The DO is accountable to the General Director of MSF OCBA.As amember of the Management Team, s/he designs, proposes, participates in and/or implements the decisions and strategic planning that it adopts.

The DO is an active member of  the MSF international platforms (DirOP, DirOps & DirMeds platforms).



The DO, reporting to the General Director, is responsible for the Operations of MSF OCBA. The DO defines, formulates, manages, guides and coordinates the MSF-OCBA’s operations.

  • Defines the priorities and the global operational decisional framework of the Strategic Plan
  • Ensures coherence of OCBA operations with the Operational objectives and strategies as defined in the Strategic Plan
  • Leads and guides the operations team at HQs and in the field when implementing the Strategic and the Annual plans
  • Defines the annual planning and the budget for the Operations.
  • Is responsible for security of the teams in the field
  • Is responsible for MSF OCBA positioning regarding operational medical humanitarian priorities
  • Defines the distribution of the operational portfolio among the Operational Cells.
  • Frames and validates the  strategy and the annual plan of the decentralized operational units
  • Is accountable for the strategic dossiers managed by the Ops Department
  • Supports, coaches and manages the teams in their functioning and decision making process.
  • Approves the opening and closing of projects (regular and emergencies) and missions.
  • Manages and develops the human resources in the Operations Department, having also final word on the validation of Heads of Missions together with the HR Director
  • Prepares and defines strategic changes in operational plans in coordination with the MT and the General Director.
  • As a member of the MT, participates in the definition and implementation of the Strategic Plan and the definition of policies of the organization.
  • Manages the linkage of the Operations Department with other departments.
  • Represents and promotes relations and accountability, at an operational level, in the international Directors of Operations platform and other MSF sections.
  • Represents and promotes relations and accountability with the Spanish and Greek home societies and with other humanitarian agencies.
  • Promotes and maintains relationships with representatives and organisations, linked to the countries of intervention.
  • Participates in orienting and enhancing debates within the organisation.



Education and experience

  • Higher education or University degree.
  • Medical training will be looked upon favourably.
  • Relevant Field experience with MSF essential.
  • Three-year relevant experience in management positions preferably in MSF.
  • Fluent English essential.  Spanish and French highly desirable.


MSF Vision

  • Identification with the current Strategic Plan of MSF OCBA, focused on emergency response and on responding to the medical humantarian consequences of conflict.



  • Commitment to MSF’s Principles
  • Cross-cultural Awareness
  • Strategic Vision
  • Results and Quality Orientation
  • Initiative and Innovation
  • Capacity to Negotiate
  • Teamwork and Cooperation
  • Leadership
  • People Management and Development
  • Security Awareness and Management
  • Networking and Building Relationships



  • Communication skills.
  • Problem-solving capacity.



  • Based in Barcelona at the Médecins Sans Frontières -Spain Headquarters.
  • Availability to travel (25% of his/her time minimum).
  • Full time position.
  • Moral commitment of a minimum of 3 years
  • Annual gross salary: 62,043.77 Euros (divided into 12 monthly payments) + secondary benefits based on MSF OCBA Reward Policy.
  • Starting date: September 2017



To apply, all applicants should please send their CV and cover motivation letter under the reference DIRECTOR of OPERATIONS” to:


Please submit your CV and cover letter in ONE file and name the file with your LAST NAME.

Closing date: June 9th, 2017

Replies will only be sent to short-listed candidates.

Médecins Sans Frontieres, as a responsible employer, under article 38 of “Ley de Integración Social del Minusválido de 1982 (LISMI)” invite those persons with a recognized disability and with an interest in the humanitarian area to apply for the above mentioned position.