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About UNICEF: Employment

Rolf Schaller


Chief, Mobility and Staffing Section
UNICEF, New York, HQ

Nationality: Switzerland
Education: Universite de Geneve; University of Aberdeen, Master in International Relations and Political Sciences
Field of Study: Strategic Studies
Languages: English, German, French, Spanish
“My time at UNICEF has been a very exciting and challenging experience which led me to discover many new things.”
I joined UNICEF in June 2010. I have had the opportunity to work with UNICEF years ago when I worked for the International Committee of the Red Cross and since then I always had in the back of my mind that someday I would want to work for UNICEF. It is a great organisation, working for a great cause and working with great people.

Honestly, there is no typical day for me and that is an exciting thing as well as a bit of a challenge. It means that often the plan for the day gets completely changed as priorities get changed. However, one thing remains constant: at some point of the day there is a need to deal with the constant influx of emails.

I have not yet spent enough time with UNICEF to single out my best experience so far. All the many different projects which I am lucky to work on brought their little successes but the big steps have yet to materialize. So far some of the challenges have been the changing priorities and balancing out short term urgencies against the long term conceptual work.

My advice to aspiring UNICEF applicants - Inform yourself with as much detail as possible on the different activities that UNICEF carries out. Check out the vacancies that come up on the web site (you can get an RSS feed for your field of expertise) and do an honest and critical review to see if your competencies and experiences match with what UNICEF is looking for. Only apply when you are very confident that you fully match the requirements. It becomes then very important that you can illustrate in a convincing way how you fulfil the profile – put yourself in the recruiter’s shoes and think of what UNICEF looks for. Get inspired by UNICEF’s core values and competency framework. And lastly: don’t give up when it does not work out the first time - remember that you compete with a lot of other applicants.



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