Senior Manager Portfolio and Planning, Paediatric HIV/HCV

Geneva, Switzerland
[Closing date: October 15, 2017]


Established in 2003, Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) is a not-for-profit research and development (R&D) organization that develops new, improved, and affordable medicines for deadly neglected diseases that afflict millions of the world’s poorest people.

DNDi focuses on discovering and developing treatments for sleeping sickness (human African trypanosomiasis), Chagas disease, leishmaniasis, filarial infections, paediatric HIV, mycetoma, and hepatitis C. In 2016, in collaboration with the World Health Organization, DNDi launched the Global Antibiotic Research and Development Partnership, a not-for-profit research and development initiative set up to develop new antibiotic treatments addressing antimicrobial resistance and to promote their responsible use for optimal conservation, while ensuring equitable access for all.

Since its inception, DNDi has developed seven new treatments for neglected patients for malaria, sleeping sickness, visceral leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, and paediatric HIV with several new drug candidates in the R&D pipeline, including two for sleeping sickness. Our objective is to deliver 16 to 18 new treatments by 2023, ensure equitable access to these treatments, and build a robust pipeline of new drug candidates.

The HIV/HCV team aims to develop two solid first-line “4-in-1” fixed-dose combinations using the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended treatment regimen for HIV positive infants and young children. At the same time, DNDi and its partners in South Africa are also addressing the negative drug-drug interactions between WHO-recommended HIV treatments and the TB drug rifampicin through a process known as “super-boosting.” To address HCV patient needs, the team’s objective is to develop an affordable public health tool using direct-acting antivirals (DAAs).


Purpose of the position

The Senior Manager Portfolio & Planning, Paediatric HIV/HCV will be a member of the Paediatric HIV/HCV Disease Team and will be responsible for ensuring the project management excellence of the disease areas’ product development portfolios. Working closely with the Director of the HIV/HCV Programme, team members and senior management, S/he will ensure that up-to-date, high quality, business-relevant information is available to define project milestones, track progression and manage risks.


Specific job responsibilities

Project schedules

  • Work with the members of the Paediatric HIV/HCV Disease Team to ensure that the projects have realistic, achievable schedules, including all major activities and milestones
  • Maintain and ensure the use of a standard DNDi scheduling tool and ensure that schedules are updated on a regular basis and after major changes.

Planning: Assumptions, constraints, risk management, KPIs

  • Work with the Director of the HIV/HCV Programme and team members to understand and document the planning assumptions and constraints for the projects.
  • Support team members and regional project staff, as required, to identify risks and document risk management measures to ensure consistent performance across the projects and teams.
  • Identify and monitor the achievement of key performance indicators (KPIs) of the disease team as defined by the annual Action Plan.


  • Communicate on regulatory aspects with external and internal regulatory experts on behalf of the Director of the programme and integrate regulatory milestones and conditions into programme schedules, assumptions, constraints, risk management and KPIs.

Project and programme reports

  • Produce summary reports of project and portfolio delivery against milestones for use by the senior management within the team, and with DNDi’s senior management.
  • Manage the preparation of the monthly update for the paediatric HIV/HCV disease area for the monthly DNDi meeting.

Fundraising, finance and HR administration

  • Work with the fundraising team to prepare grant and fundraising proposals and donor reports, including proposal and report writing.
  • Contribute to identify funding gaps of the projects and advise the Fundraising Team when scoping proposals for donors.
  • In collaboration with the Fundraising Team, review earmarked proposals and reports before sending to donors.
  • Contribute to establish and manage dashboard with R&D teams and the Fundraising Department..
  • Build annual budget, conduct budget revisions and ensure follow-up of budgets, with the support of the senior Finance Team.
  • Ensure the teams (in RO’s and Geneva) understand and control the budget and are accountable of their expenditure against the budget.
  • Develop entire project budget for the duration of the project.
  • Support the Finance Team and Fundraising Team to produce/prepare intermediate and final financial reports.
  • Work with the HR team on administration of consultant contracts, support the HIV/HCV Director on the preparation of team retreats, drafting of role & responsibility charters, job descriptions and staffing plans for the HIV/HCV Team.

Additional responsibilities

  • Participate to HIV/HCV global team meetings, management meetings and contribute to team processes and projects as appropriate.
  • As a member of the HIV/HCV Team, participate in the preparation of regulatory submissions, as appropriate.
  • As a member of the HIV/HCV Team, participate in the development of materials for the bi-annual Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) meeting and monthly R&D meetings, as appropriate.
  • All tasks must be conducted in accordance with applicable DNDi policies, guidelines, standard operating procedures (SOPs), working instructions (WIs), and other guidance and standards.

Reporting line

  • S/he reports to the Director of the HIV/HCV Programme, and has a secondary (dotted) line to the Head of Clinical Development of the HIV/HCV Programme.


  • Works with R&D transversal teams, operations teams, and regional offices that implement HIV/HCV programmes.


Job requirements

Skills and attributes

  • Very strong ability to use initiative, prioritize, multi-task, and work well under pressure to meet deadlines.
  • Very clear and systematic thinking that demonstrates strong judgement and problem solving competencies.
  • Very strong communication skills in multicultural, multi-lingual environments.
  • Very strong ability to work effectively as part of a multicultural team.
  • Very well organized and structured.
  • Very strong analytical skills.
  • Very strong ability to lead project delivery.
  • Expert project management and planning skills (particularly defining realistic assumptions, scheduling and risk management).
  • Very strong ability to manage large size projects with budget management.
  • Very strong ability to work integrating planning and financial milestones and indicators and to produce budget reports.
  • Very strong management, negotiation, and advocacy skills.
  • Very strong ability to exercise a high degree of independence to support program delivery and explore new areas of activities.
  • Very strong ability to interact with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Very strong inter-personal skills (to work with diverse range of study and function managers and leaders) and to be able to challenge effectively the HIV/HCV team on the robustness of their plans.
  • Able to work effectively with senior management as well as project team members.
  • Lead and motivate a team for optimum performance, supervising junior staff.

R&D technical skills

  • Very strong knowledge of clinical and pre-clinical development and regulatory requirements and processes with the ability to translate this into meaningful plans that can be used to set expectations and track project delivery.
  • Very strong ability to support the preparation of grant proposals for the HIV/HCV Team, through coordination of the work and assembly of the different parts of the proposal, in particular the timelines and the budget.
  • Able to combine a strategic perspective, understanding the technical, regulatory and other objectives and constraints of disease areas and project teams, with a high level of focus on operational detail and the feasibility of project plans.


  • 10+ years’ experience in pharmaceutical project management (pre-clinical to registration).
  • Infectious disease experience useful but not essential.
  • Discovery experience useful but not essential.
  • Late-phase clinical programme experience a must.
  • Proven ability to work effectively in a team environment and matrix structure.
  • Experience of working in the public and private sector is highly desirable.


  • Advanced postgraduate degree or graduate degree with equivalent experience to reach Master’s level.

Other requirements

  • Fluency in English.
  • Proficiency in local languages desirable.
  • Strong IT skills including a good understanding of project management software e.g., Microsoft Project.

Other information

  • Status: (full time – permanent role)


To apply

  • Deadline for application: Accepting applications until October 15th.
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.