AIRO Young Opportunity

28 Jul 2020
World Food Programme, Rome
WFP seeks candidates of the highest integrity and professionalism who share our humanitarian principles. Selection of staff is made on a competitive basis, and we are committed to promoting diversity and gender balance

Job Title: Full Stack Developer Consultant
Type of Contract: When Actually Employed (WAE) Consultancy
Division: SCOO – Supply Chain Planning
Duty Station (City, Country): Rome, Italy (working remotely from PPR)
Duration: 6 months


The World Food Programme (WFP) is the United Nations frontline humanitarian agency addressing hunger and malnutrition worldwide. WFP tackles poverty and hunger through a range of interventions: saving lives and protecting livelihoods in emergencies; investing in the prevention and mitigation of disasters; restoring and rebuilding lives and livelihoods in post-conflict or post-disaster situation; and other interventions to tackle hunger. Each year, on average, WFP feeds more than 90 million people in over 80 countries.

With a strong focus on end-to-end planning, visibility, and optimization, the Supply Chain Planning & Optimization unit (SCOO) works intensively with colleagues in the field, regional bureaux, and HQ to make sure everyone has a holistic view of each operation, from Logistics to Resource Management and from Nutrition to Donor Relations. Once everyone agrees on what is going on, analytical tools are deployed to anticipate issues down the line, and support COs to develop Supply Chain plans and what-if scenarios to address them. Through this pro-active approach, COs can make more integrated, evidence-based decisions that improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of our operations.

WFP has been developing an optimization approach that considers the end-to-end supply chain, covering food basket design, transfer modality selection, and sourcing & delivery planning. The process brings together stakeholders from key functions to plan beneficiary needs and lay out supply chain options under various resource scenarios. The output is a sourcing & delivery plan that drives the implementation of WFP’s programmes. In order to facilitate this process, the Planning unit has been developing optimization tools. These advanced decision support tools assist WFP decision makers to maximize beneficiary outcomes while minimizing all costs related to delivering the food assistance through in-kind food or cash-based transfers. The Planning unit is now in the process of mainstreaming and automating several of these tools, and seeks the skills of a full stack developer to maintain and further improve the web application where they are hosted.


The developer will support existing optimization initiatives, in particular the award-winning Optimus tool, and support their global scale-up. Specific responsibilities include but are not limited to:

Support the overall development and application of optimization tools and methodologies;
Take the lead on the development (back-end and front-end) of Optimus, an optimization tool supporting operational design for WFP operations that is being rolled out globally.
Develop new front-end components (React.js);
Develop REST APIs to facilitate data exchange between front-end, back-end, and WFP’s data management platform (Palantir Foundry);
Maintain, upgrade and develop new features in the back-end (Django/Python);
Maintain and upgrade servers, databases and deployment procedures;
Support the migration of the application to Amazon Web Services;
Develop an automated testing suite to improve error handling and ensure a robust development environment;
Develop enhancements and fine-tune the tools/methodology to align with business needs;
Support end-users on potential unexpected behaviours of the application, by investigating, fixing, and upgrading the tool whenever needed;
Work closely with Subject Matter Experts in SCOO team to define new requirements and translating them into functionalities for the different optimization initiatives;
Work closely with WFP’s Technology department to ensure compliance with corporate standards around the development of software (e.g. UI design, hosting, authentication, etc.);
Support progress against project milestones to help ensure timely completion of project deliverables;
Recommend system and/or process enhancements to further improve the performance and/or scalability of planning tools;
Support conceptual and quantitative analyses of prioritized supply chain improvement projects;
Work closely with the various WFP business units at both headquarters and field level.


Master’s Degree or equivalent in Computer Science

At least three years of working experience related to the development and maintenance of web applications is required;
Prior experience in UX and front-end design is required;
Prior experience in Supply Chain related industry including business analysis, process mapping, data extraction and analysis, and development of SC optimization tools within global organizations is strongly preferred;
Prior experience working with governments, UN agencies, and/or NGOs is preferred.

Knowledge & Skills:
Strong and proven coding proficiency, covering at least the following languages and frameworks: Python, Django, REST-API, JS, HTML, CSS, React.js, Celery, Git, PostgreSQL, and AWS;
Fast learner who can quickly understand, master and improve the code of complex analytical tools;
Can handle multiple parallel requests from end-users and SMEs, manage their expectations and support them in their daily work with the tools;
Can easily translate functional needs into code and can think outside of the box to find creative solutions to solve complex problems;
Balance complexity and idealism with pragmatism;
Good interpersonal and communication skills, with the ability to perform in a multi-functional and multi-cultural team;
Strong time management skills with the ability to plan ahead and anticipate requirements, problems, and obstacles;
Focus and commitment to generate content on short notice, while maintaining a healthy work-life balance;
Committed and motivated to achieve the objectives of WFP.

Verbal and written fluency in English is required.

Terms and Conditions
WFP offers a competitive compensation package which will be determined by the contract type and selected candidate’s qualifications and experience.
Please visit the following websites for detailed information on working with WFP. Click on: “Our work” and “Countries” to learn more about WFP’s operations.

Deadline for applications: 28 July 2020
Ref.: VA No. 123064

Qualified female applicants and qualified applicants from developing countries are especially encouraged to apply. WFP has zero tolerance for discrimination and does not discriminate on the basis of HIV/AIDS status.

No appointment under any kind of contract will be offered to members of the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), FAO Finance Committee, WFP External Auditor, WFP Audit Committee, Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) and other similar bodies within the United Nations system with oversight responsibilities over WFP, both during their service and within three years of ceasing that service.