MIC MEDIA UG

Your info source

Job Title: Associate Agronomy Advisor

Organisation: TechnoServe

Duty Station:  Kayunga, Uganda

Reports to: Senior Agronomy Advisor

About US:

TechnoServe works with enterprising people in the developing world to build competitive farms, businesses and industries. We are a nonprofit organization that develops business solutions to poverty by linking people to information, capital and markets. With more than four decades of proven results, we believe in the power of private enterprise to transform lives.

Program Description:

TechnoServe is implementing a four-year coffee agronomy training program that seeks to improve incomes for 30,000 coffee farming households in Central and Western Uganda by increasing their coffee farm productivity. This will be achieved by promoting improved coffee agronomic practices at the farm level through a two-year structured and farm-based training program based on the coffee growing cycle.

The training will be conducted by locally recruited and trained Farmer Trainers (FTs) and delivered in three different cohorts. It is expected that up to 60% of the target households will adopt at least half of the coffee best practices, which will translate to at least 50% increase in coffee yields. To validate the impact of the program on yield increase and attribute the results to actions of the program, a Randomized Control Trial (RCT) is conducted by external agencies.

Job Summary:  The Associate Agronomy Advisor shall support the implementation of strategies that will enable farmers to achieve sustainable increases in coffee quality and yields.

Key Duties and Responsibilities: 

Planning and management of Farmer Trainers (FTs)

  • Supervise 6 to 8 Farmer Trainers (FTs).
  • Prepare and submit weekly work plan and monthly training schedules.
  • Collect and review weekly training plans and attendance data from FT’s. Ensure completeness, accuracy and clarity of data prior to submission for processing.
  • Clearly communicate goals and roles and responsibilities to Farmer Trainers.
  • Provide feedback, coaching and development activities related to performance management.
  • Develop a team spirit among all reports.

Conduct monthly agronomy training to FTs

  • Model monthly agronomy training to FTs at local training demonstration plots.
  • Supervise teach-backs and give feedback to Farmer Trainers.
  • Prepare and ensure all training materials reach FTs in a timely manner.

Observe FTs delivering training to farmers

  • Observe full training delivered to farmers by assigned Farmer Trainers (FTs).
  • Check attendance form, cross check with number of farmers seen as present. Ensure reported data is accurate, clear and complete.
  • Complete training observation assessment on tablet and give feedback and coaching to the FT.
  • Each FT must be observed at least once a month, with a minimum of 9 observations in total per month.

Visit farmer fields and demonstration plots

  • Visit randomly selected farmers, discuss training, farmer adoption and challenges and complete best practice check list on tablet.
  • Meet with Focal Farmer (FF), check demo plot status and discuss any challenges and innovations.
  • Complete demonstration plot assessment on tablet. Give feedback to FT on improvements required. A minimum of 10 demonstration plot visits and assessments to be made each month.

Attendance Monitoring

  • Support the FT to develop strategies to encourage the attendance of women at training.
  • Collect, check for completion and submit complete set of FTs attendance sheets to the M&E team within 1 week of training completion.
  • Compile weekly attendance update and discuss any attendance issues with FTs and develop actions to solve problems.

Prepare & check FTs expenses

  • Collect official voucher receipts for transport and accommodation and timely submit to Finance.

Stakeholder Management

  • Create a good working relationship with stakeholders and manage quarterly update meetings with local stakeholders including district, sub-county, parish and village leaders.

Program representation and expansion

  • Lead and manage the expansion of the agronomy program into a new operational area including needs assessment, stakeholder sensitization, farmer mobilization, group formation and recruitment of FTs.
  • Be a program ambassador at the operational area.
  • Provide translation and contextualization services to high-level visitors.
  • Spearhead efforts in making the agronomy program more gender inclusive and conflict sensitive using local customs etc.
  • Provide support to the Uganda country operations as required.

Qualifications, Skills and Experience:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture, Agronomy, Agribusiness, Crop science, Horticulture or related agricultural sciences.
  • At least two years’ professional experience – ideally in the private sector – in one or more of the following areas: agriculture, small and medium enterprise development, farmer associations or cooperatives, project management, financing, engineering, community development.
  • Strong planning abilities; prior experience working with tight and strict deadlines.
  • Ability to lead a team and work collaboratively within a team; prior experience managing direct reports.
  • Strong interpersonal and cross-cultural skills, willingness to spend significant time in rural areas.
  • Experience working with farmers is essential.
  • Experience riding motorcycles and a valid riding permit.
  • Experience working in the project location and knowledge of Luganda is essential.

Success Factors:

  • Competency is a combination of knowledge, skills and abilities (KSAs) directly related to successful performance on the job.

Core Competencies include:

  • Integrity and honesty: Is widely trusted; seen as a direct, truthful individual; presents truthful information in an appropriate and helpful manner; keeps confidences; admits mistakes; does not misrepresent himself or herself for personal gain.
  • Team Work/ Relationships: Works co-operatively and flexibly with other members of the team with a full understanding of the role to be played as a team member and/or leader, to achieve a common goal. Ability to build and maintain effective relationships and networks.
  • Learning attitude: Proactively takes advantage of opportunities to learn. Actively identifies new areas for learning; applies and shares new knowledge and skill appropriately.
  • Diversity/Inclusiveness: Demonstrates an understanding and appreciation for diversity and supports diversity efforts. Interacts effectively with and inclusively with people of all races, cultures, ethnicities, backgrounds, religions, ages, and genders.
  • Communication: Expresses ideas effectively in individual and group situations. Listens effectively; shares information, ideas and arguments; adjusts terminology, language and communication modes to the needs of the audience; ensures accurate understanding; acts in a way that facilitates open exchange of ideas and information; uses appropriate non-verbal communication.
  • Decision making/Problem Solving: Is able to analyze situations, diagnose problems, identify the key issues, establish and evaluate alternative courses of action and produce a logical, practical and acceptable solution. Is able to make effective decisions on a day-to-day basis, taking ownership of decisions, demonstrating sound judgement in escalating issues where necessary.
  • Results Oriented/ High Quality Deliverables: Stays focused on the efforts necessary to achieve quality results consistent with programmatic or departmental goals. Demonstrates the ability to achieve effective results; works persistently to overcome obstacles to goal achievement.

Accomplishes tasks by considering all areas involved, no matter how small; showing concern for all aspects of the job; accurately checking processes and tasks.

  • Planning & Time Management: Establishes a course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a specific goal. Effectively plans, schedules, prioritizes and controls activities; identifies, integrates and orchestrates resources (people, material, information, budget, and/or time) to accomplish goals. Prioritizes work according to the program or department’s goals, not just own job responsibilities; manages own time effectively.
  • Business Acumen: The ability to use information, ask the right questions and take decisions that make an impact on the overall business performance.

Job Specific/Technical Competencies include:

  • Partnership/Donor Management: program staff should understand and apply techniques to develop, maintain and manage business relationships with clients, donors and internal or external partners in order to implement and manage projects and/or identify new business.
  • Financial & Resource Management: an important competency program staff must possess to enable them budget properly based on facts and change course when necessary, knowledge of finance to develop and manage budgets.
  • Innovative Mindset: program staff should know how to ask questions and seeks out information from multiple sources, learn from mistakes, and see change as an opportunity.
  • Analysis, Research, Report Writing: Experience in business planning and analysis, modeling for feasibility and execution. Able to analyze and express oneself clearly in business writing.

Managerial Competencies include:

  • Emotional Intelligence: Empathetic, understands attitudes, interests, needs of others; predict others behavior. Self-aware and keeps own emotions from interfering with work. Understanding both the strengths and limitations of others.
  • Trust to Delegate: Appropriately allocates decision‐making authority and/or task responsibility to others; maximizes the organization’s and individual’s effectiveness.
  • Strategic Thinking: Formulates objectives and priorities, and implements plans consistent with the long-term interests of the organization in a global environment. Capitalizes on opportunities and manages risks.
  • Staff Development: Planning and supporting the development of individuals’ skills and abilities so that they can fulfill current or future job responsibilities more effectively.
  • Coaching/Feedback: Recognizes and acknowledges strengths in others. Provides timely guidance and feedback to help others develop knowledge and skill areas to accomplish tasks or solve problems.

Career Pathways:

The position that might be next career opportunities for employees in this job title include Agronomy Advisor.

How to Apply:

Qualified and interested applicants should submit a resume and cover letter in one single Microsoft Word document to ug-jobs@tns.org

Please identify the position for which you are applying in the subject line. Due to a high volume of applicants, please understand that we are able to contact only those who meet the minimum qualifications. No phone calls, please.

TechnoServe encourages diversity in all levels and across all facets of our organization. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, ages, HIV/AIDS status, protected veteran status, disability and all other protected classes.

Deadline: 24th February 2021 by close of business