In the selection of its staff, UNICEF is committed to securing the highest standard of competence, by means of a competitive selection process and to achieving gender and geographic balance.
UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organisation.
The main participant in the selection process is the hiring office which seeks to fill a position.
For International Professional regular positions, a hiring office receives a list of eligible candidates who have applied through the e-Recruitment system. A review takes place to ascertain their suitability for the position. Based on this analysis, the hiring office retains a few candidates and uses a number of assessment tools, including written examinations, competency-based interviews and assessment centre findings to arrive at a recommendation. The recommendation is then reviewed to ensure that selection principles of fairness and transparency are adhered to.
For locally recruited National Officer and General Service positions and for temporary positions, the selection process will be entirely conducted and managed by the hiring office and follows the same recruitment principles outlined above.
The length of the selection process varies depending on the hiring office’s priorities. The selection process typically takes one to four months to be completed. UNICEF will endeavour to inform candidates of the status of their applications as quickly as possible.
Please note that UNICEF does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview, meeting, traveling, processing, training or any other fees). Click here to learn more about fraudulent job offers.
Values and Competencies
The selection of staff will be guided by UNICEF’s competency model. Core values should be held by all UNICEF staff. Competencies are sets of behaviours that are essential for the delivery of results for UNICEF.
Core Values shared across all UNICEF staff include: Diversity and Inclusion, Integrity, and Commitment. Our core competencies are: Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.
Expected proficiency in these areas varies by job level. Functional competencies also vary based on the functional area of a position. Please refer to the vacancy announcement of a position to learn about the required competencies.
You can click on the following document for a detailed description of each UNICEF core value and competency. [pdf]
A career at UNICEF offers unique personal and professional development while working towards fulfilling the mandate of the organization. All staff must be committed to mobility – assignments in various duty stations including in developing countries, in emergency settings and at headquarters locations.
There really are no typical career paths in UNICEF. Supported by the Organization, staff members are in charge of their careers based on their aspirations and areas of expertise.
For instance a staff member working in the Operations functional area may occupy positions of increasing responsibility within his domain of expertise in various field and headquarters assignments. Similarly, a Health Specialist may shift her career to a more managerial Deputy Representative assignment, because of her long standing field experience and exposure to work in emergencies. Such changes in functional area provide opportunities for applying multidisciplinary knowledge and broaden perspectives.
You can learn more about typical and atypical career paths of UNICEF staff by clicking here and viewing profiles and videos of our staff.
Duration of Assignments
The period an International Professional staff member is normally expected to serve in a duty station is determined by the mobility and hardship classification of the duty station, which is established by the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) according to prevailing living conditions. The tours of duty under the hardship classification are:
- H (Headquarters) and A duty stations five (5) years
- B duty stations four (4) years
- C and D duty stations three (3) years
- E duty stations two (2) years
You can find out about the current hardship classification of the duty station you are serving in by viewing the Consolidated List of Entitlements Circular available on the mobility and hardship section of the ICSC website at icsc.un.org.
In terms of eligibility requirements to be considered for another post, staff members can only apply for a post at another duty station one year before the end of his/her tour of duty at the current duty station as stipulated by the UNICEF Staff Selection Policy CF/EXD/2009-008. UNICEF Representatives are normally expected to serve their full tour of duty before they apply to another post. Staff members can apply for a new post in the same duty station after having served at least one year in his/her current post.