Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative – Finance Manager.

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The Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) is an international, not-for-profit research and development (R&D) organization that develops and delivers new treatments for neglected diseases that affect millions of the world’s poorest people.

Together with more than 200 public research and industry allies worldwide, we use the power of partnership, innovation, open science, and advocacy to find solutions to a great injustice: the lack of medicines for life-threatening diseases that disproportionately impact poor and marginalized people. Driven by collaboration, not competition, and by patients’ needs, not profits, we promote equitable access, foster inclusive and sustainable solutions, and advocate for a more effective global biomedical R&D system that meets the needs of neglected patients.

Since our inception, DNDi has delivered nine new treatments for people with sleeping sickness, visceral leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, HIV, hepatitis C, and malaria that have saved millions of lives. We now aim to deliver an additional 15-18 new treatments by 2028 – addressing R&D gaps for neglected tropical diseases and viral infections, including new pandemic-prone diseases (such as COVID-19) and climate-sensitive diseases (such as dengue) with a focus on the needs of patients in low- and middle-income countries.

With 250 employees of 37 nationalities located in nine offices on four continents, DNDi is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion as essential parts of our culture and key drivers of our success. We encourage candidates of diverse profiles and backgrounds to apply.

Counting the Kenya Medical Research Institute as a founding partner and numerous collaborations with science and access leaders in the broader East African region, DNDi established itself in 2003 in Nairobi. An integral part of DNDi’s global network, DNDi Eastern Africa nurtures R&D and access partnerships across East Africa and beyond, while contributing to DNDi‘s global strategy. It hosts key global functions such as global clinical operations, communications, policy advocacy and operations. It leads regional networks and initiatives in R&D and access such as the Leishmaniasis East Africa Platform, and is also home to DNDi’s Data Centre, processing and leading the statistical analysis of clinical trials data for DNDi and a growing cadre of African science global health and science groups.  

Purpose of the position

To support the Finance team in the effective and efficient delivery of financial support to the DNDi Africa Regional Office operations, projects and clinical trials and the implementation of the global financial management strategy, with a strong emphasis on donor financial management, financial planning, budgeting and partner management activities.

Specific job responsibilities

Donor financial management (50% of the role)

Provide effective financial management support throughout the life cycle of donor funded projects from proposal development to project close out and audits:  

  • In collaboration with the R&D, External Relations and Finance teams, develop financial proposals in compliance with donors’ requirements.
  • Review donor contracts before signature to clearly understand financial management requirements and disseminate these to the relevant teams (R&D and non-R&D) including external partners involved in the grants.
  • Provide excellent financial monitoring and advisory support to the DNDi programme teams and partners to appropriately manage the grant funding over its life cycle.
  • Prepare intermediate and final financial reports for donor submissions in collaboration with R&D and External Relations teams, ensuring compliance with the grant’s legal, procurement and financial requirements. 
  • Enhance global grants management capacity by enabling the sharing of best practices via training, guidelines and tools development, and process improvements.

Partnership management (30% of the role)

Ensure DNDi project partners implement Good Financial Practice (GFP) principles in the management of project funds.

  • Reviewing budgets submitted by DNDi partners to ensure all activity costs are captured and are in line with the action plan.
  • Conduct visits to partners including organizing pre-contract assessments to assess the partners’ capacity to support effective project financial management.
  • Implement the audit tool kit which will provide periodic reports to help identify areas of improvements related to partner financial management and the required technical assistance. 
  • Ensure partner financial reports are submitted on time and are in line with contract terms and GFP principles. 
  • Provide trainings and technical assistance to partners either on a one to one basis and/or in workshops.

Budget management (20% of the role)

Provide financial planning and budget follow-up support to ensure operations/projects are implemented within the approved annual budgets and in compliance with both DNDi and donor financial requirements.

  • Participate in internal meetings to understand the budget, income, timelines, and key challenges of the projects / disease and support budget owners develop their rolling budgets.
  • Conduct periodic budget follow up with budget owners , to ensure the respective budget owners understand and control their budgets, and are accountable for their expenditure against the budget.
  • Support the implementation of the Finance KPIs dashboard to facilitate decision-making and arbitrations by senior management.
  • Support Project Leads measure the financial impact of projects risks and document the cost of mitigation measures.
  • Coach the project teams on the budget process, good budgeting and budget analysis practices and contribute to regular training of project leaders and budget holders on finance matters.

Job requirements

Skills and attributes

  • Solid business partnering expertise with experience working with senior leaders and negotiating with both internal and external stakeholders in a global matrix, multi-cultural environment.
  • Strong ability to manage a complex and diverse workload and work well under pressure to meet tight deadlines.
  • Well organized and structured with very clear and systematic thinking demonstrating analytical skills and problem-solving competencies.
  • Good project management skills and proven ability to work collaboratively across functions to deliver on complex, multifaceted projects.
  • Fluency in English. Proficiency in French is an added advantage


  • Professional competence
  • Care of relationships
  • Leading by example


  • Minimum 12 years’ relevant experience with at least 4 years in a similar senior finance role.
  • Prior grant budget development, compliance, and financial reporting experience, with a good understanding of major institutional donor requirements including budgeting, eligibility issues, compliance management, and reporting.
  • Proven experience in partner financial management and oversight in resource-limited settings.
  • Working experience with accounting software e.g., Navision
  • Very good knowledge of Microsoft Suite especially MS Excel and MS PowerPoint
  • Proven ability to work effectively in a team environment and matrix structure
  • Experience working in a clinical research environment and leading/supervision of a finance team is a plus


  • Master’s degree or equivalent
  • CPA (K) or equivalent

To apply

  • Please submit your application using the online form
  • Deadline for application: Accepting applications until 2 May 2022
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted
  • Application submission for this position may close early if we have enough suitable applicants




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