View Vacancy - Private Sector Development Adviser SEO (16/23 LUS)

The British Government is an inclusive and diversity-friendly employer.  We value difference, promote equality and challenge discrimination, enhancing our organisational capability. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds. We do not discriminate on the basis of disability, race, colour, ethnicity, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age, veteran status or other category protected by law. We promote family-friendly flexible working opportunities, where operational and security needs allow.
Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (Policy & Political roles)
Economic and Prosperity

Main purpose of job:

The post-holder will provide advice on the UK Government’s contribution to growing the private sector, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises in Zambia.   

Increased growth, investment and jobs are shared priorities between the Governments of the UK and Zambia.   In 2021, the UK and Zambia signed a Green Growth Compact, which provides a model for our economic partnership, and demonstrates a commitment to work together to boost UK investment and trade with Zambia, to create  growth, increase jobs and reduce poverty. The Compact includes ambitions to: boost UK investment in Zambia by at least £2.5 billion; to increase by £500m the total value of UK Government/private co-funded investments and finance facilities; and to boost finance for SMEs by £150m. Other targets included increasing bilateral trade by 100% and increasing by 20% the number of Zambian businesses/products trading regionally and to the UK.  The UK is committed to support Zambia with green growth, including by attracting green finance and supporting businesses with projects to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change.  

Our advisers work on a range of tasks which can vary significantly from day-to-day. Your work will touch the range of issues covered in the Green Growth Compact and might, for instance, include drafting a short, rapid analysis of agriculture markets in Zambia and barriers to private sector participation, or challenging our programme delivery partners to ensure they are delivering value for money in how they use consultancy support, or collaborating with external stakeholders to explore new ways of promoting financial or market access for SMEs.  The technical competency framework for Private Sector Development (PSD) Advisers, which is available alongside this job description provides more guidance for PSD Advisers.

The post holder will work in the Economic Development and Green Growth Team, which includes advisers covering economics, infrastructure, climate and environment advisers, as well as programme managers. 

Main responsibilities of the job are to:

Provide technical advice to strengthen the UK’s growth and investment programmes in Zambia, including:

  • Help the British High Commission identify, generate and utilise the best evidence and  knowledge on private sector development to improve the effectiveness and impact of the green growth and investment programmes on poverty reduction.
  • Work with programme managers to oversee the implementation and monitoring of selected programmes within the portfolio, particularly in areas such as the role of the private sector in food and agriculture markets, green finance, and aspects of business policy reform . The list of programmes that the adviser will lead/engage on may change over time as the portfolio and business needs evolve, but sustainable agribusiness is likely to remain a focus. FCDO operates a model where advisers typically lead on the provision of technical advice in their area of specialism (in this case private sector development), whilst programme managers lead on the commercial, financial and contractual aspects of the programmes. They are however expected to work closely together and share a responsibility for robust risk management.
  • Some of the programmes the adviser will lead on may be programmes being designed or managed at FCDO headquarters in the UK. The adviser will need to develop and maintain relationships with both local stakeholders and headquarters to ensure those programmes make a strategic contribution to deliver or expand the ambitions of the Green Growth Compact, and to identify and maximise synergies between these programmes and programmes managed locally.
  • Draw on the expertise of other thematic specialists within the office where relevant to ensure the programmes’ maximum impact and to facilitate collaboration among programmes.
  • Develop strong relationships with implementers and external stakeholders in areas of responsibility.

 Build relationships with key external stakeholders, expanding networks and understanding of the context, and delivering advice or support to support UK and Zambian objectives related to private sector development:

  • Building relationships of influence with key players, using and expanding your network to influence positive change.
  • Developing and sharing knowledge on the context, opportunities, and constraints.
  • Implementing engagement plans that contribute to BHC objectives related to private sector development, identifying what works/ doesn’t work, and adapting your approach.

Provide other strategic and corporate support:

  • Respond to other requests of senior management as and when required in accordance with wider business needs, including strategy development and monitoring or risk assessments.
  • Give back 10% of advisory time to the rest of the FCDO global network to facilitate shared learning. This may include participation in programme reviews at headquarters or in other country offices or peer-review of business cases from other parts of the network.
  • Contribute to making the British High Commission in Zambia a great place to work by supporting cross-mission initiatives.

Resources managed (staff and expenditure):

  • This position is likely to manage up to 2 staff and support the management of an £85 million programme.
  • A strong undergraduate degree in Business, Economics, International Development or a related field
  • A master’s degree in business, economics, international development or a related field
  • At least 8 years of work experience in a relevant field
  • At least 5 years experience working in the private sector or supporting SMEs in Zambia
  • At least 2 years managing people
  • Excellent written and verbal English communication skills
  • Demonstrated ability to take initiative
  • Experience supporting SME development in Zambia
  • Experience managing programmes and budgets
  • Appetite and ability to establish strong relationships (including building and expanding informal networks) with a variety of senior stakeholders from across the private sector and government.
  • Track record of collaboration and team work
  • Willingness to embrace FCDO programme management requirements, including risk management and safeguarding
  • Market systems and business fundamentals knowledge -this is the core technical competency for Private Sector Development (PSD) Advisers in FCDO (see PSD Technical Competency Framework for FCDO)
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills 
  • Understanding / experience of key sectoral markets in Zambia such as agriculture/agribusiness
  • Understanding of investment and finance, green growth and innovation, as per the PSD Technical Competency Framework for FCDO.
  • Experience working in an international organisation
  • Experience working on international development

Communicating and Influencing, Making Effective Decisions, Working Together
8 December 2023
Senior Executive Officer (SEO)
36 hours
British High Commission
ZMW 44,170.17 (per month)
1 February 2024

Learning and development opportunities:

The British High Commission encourages all staff to seek continous professional development. There are a wide variety of courses available on the FCDO global learning platform, which include mandatory induction courses.  FCDO’s Private Sector Development Cadre also provide ongoing learning and development opportunities.

Working patterns:

This role involves some local and overseas travel. We are open to flexible working. Flexible working patterns include, but are not limited to: working from home (between 1-2 days a week), 100% office based, full time, compressed hours, flexi-time, or combinations of these patterns to be agreed between individuals and hiring managers to balance the needs of the business and the individual.

The following working pattern(s) cannot be accommodated:     Less than 100% FTE       


  • Please complete the application form in full as the information provided is used during screening.
  • Please check your application carefully before you submit, as no changes can be made once submitted.
  • The British High Commission will never request any payment or fees to apply for a position.
  • Employees recruited locally by the British High Commission in Lusaka are subject to Terms and Conditions of Service according to local employment law in Zambia.
  • All candidates must be legally able to work and reside in the country of the vacancy with the correct visa/work permit status or demonstrate eligibility to obtain the relevant permit. 
  • The responsibility lies on the successful candidate to:
  • Obtain the relevant permit
  • Pay fees for the permit
  • Make arrangements to relocate
  • Meet the costs to relocate 
  • The British High Commission do not sponsor visas/work permits except where it may be local practice to do so. 
  • Employees who are not liable to pay local income tax on their Mission salary may have their salaries reduced by the equivalent local income tax amount.
  • Information about the Civil Service Success Profiles can be found on this link: Please note:  AA=A1, AO=A2, EO=B3, HEO=C4, SEO=C5
  • Reference checking and security clearances will be conducted on successful candidates.
  • Appointable candidates who were unsuccessful may be placed on a ‘reserve list’.  If during the reserve period of 6 months the same or a largely similar role becomes available, that role may be offered to the second or subsequent candidate”.
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This opportunity is closed to applications.