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Section Head (Workforce Policy & Medals)

  • IMS
Brussels, Belgium
Application Deadline: April 21, 2024
  • IMS
Brussels, Belgium
Application Deadline: April 21, 2024


A post in the Workforce Branch (MB) in the Logistics and Resources (L&R) Division of the International Military Staff (IMS), the Section Head (Workforce Policy & Medals) also acts as senior adviser to support and assist the Branch Head (BH) in the management of the Branch and in the assessment and development of all workforce issues consistent with the evolution of the NATO mission and direction from the North Atlantic Council (NAC) and the Military Committee (MC). He/she provides knowledge, expertise and continuity in the development of all workforce issues, both for the Peacetime Establishment Authorities (PEAs) and for Nations in the NATO Defence Workforce Committee (NDMC), particularly in relation to workforce policy. The Section Head (Workforce Policy & Medals) is responsible to the Head, Workforce Branch and the Deputy Chair NDMC and acts as adviser to the NATO Meritorious Service Medal (MSM) Board and is the senior civilian personnel policy adviser to the MC as well as acting as the NATO Military Authorities (NMAs) MC civilian personnel policy adviser to the Advisory Panel (AP) on Administration.


  • Developing and coordinating policies and procedures relating to Integrated Resource Management in NATO Military bodies (NMBs), with particular focus on military and civilian workforce policy in NMBs;

  • Providing expert advice on policy work relating to the update of MC 0216 (AAP-16) NATO Workforce Policy and Procedures (NMPPs);

  • Acting as Chair of standing NDMC Working Group (WG) on AAP-16 NMPPs and as such, also acting as a member of the Human Resources Data Services (HRDS) Board under the chairpersonship of DCoS Enablement;

  • Acting as chair of NDMC Working Level Sessions as required;

  • Attending Joint Consultative Board (JCB) meetings (chaired by Deputy Secretary General) as delegated by the military Co-Vice Chair (Director, L&R);

  • Attending AP meetings as the NMA;

  • Coordinating with the Strategic Commands (SCs) to provide consolidated NMA advice where necessary on military and civilian workforce and personnel issues;

  • Acting as civilian adviser and interface with HQ NATO International Staff (IS) in the development of the NATO Civilian Personnel Regulations (NCPRs) to ensure consistency and coherency with military workforce policy. This includes chairing and sitting on JCB and AP WGs as agreed on issues of common interest to the IS and NMBs and Agencies;

  • Developing and coordinating work on policy and procedures for the management of NATO medals;

  • Supervising and directing the work of the secretariat for the NATO MSM Board, including administration of the NATO MSM and acting as adviser to the MSM Board when in session;

  • Providing representation to NATO Committees, external conferences and WGs where workforce policy expertise is required, including providing the IMS NATO link with and representing the IMS Workforce Policy perspective to the Bureau for International Language Coordination (BILC) Steering Committee which acts as an advisory body to NATO on language assessment and training issues;

  • Providing senior staff input to NDMC, MC and other NMB products, for example assessments, studies, briefs, speakers and discussion papers;

  • Supporting all staff functions within the MB as required;

  • Deputising for the BH in periods of absence and assisting in branch personnel management by providing input on awards, International Efficiency Reports, personnel development plans, branch travel budgets and branch programme of work.


  • Performing additional related duties, albeit in a different organisational element to which the individual normally works;

  • Traveling both within and outside of NATO boundaries;

  • Attending as directed additional training and specialised courses relevant to the aforementioned duties;

  • Working irregular hours whenever necessary.



  • Previous NATO experience and knowledge of military operations;

  • At least 10 years’ experience in the HR field related to military and civilian workforce policy, with excellent skills in communication and negotiation techniques;

  • Understanding of staffing procedures and the organisational implications of military operations;

  • Leadership experience in supervising people and management experience in setting workflow priorities;

  • Practical experience of completing staff work in complex international organisations at the highest level;

  • Strong interpersonal skills and poise, tact and management ability commensurate with his/her position as senior civilian adviser in NATO Command Structure (NCS);

  • Mature, logical and creative thinking, including the ability to think laterally to resolve complicated and conflicting positions on major civilian personnel and military workforce policy issues, coupled with the ability to brief and discuss issues at senior official level;

  • Sensitivity to divergent and often politically or culturally based positions on policy proposals while maintaining the ability to determine and direct the way ahead;

  • The ability to write well-structured papers, briefs and letters expressed clearly, logically and with maturity.


  • University Degree or equivalent (at least to ISCED level 6, categories 64 and 65, subcategories 5/6) combined with multiple experience tours in the military field related to the J1 function, HR or personnel policy. As an alternative, higher secondary education and intermediate vocational training (at least to ISCED level 3, category 35 subcategories 3/4) in a management discipline combined with practical experience in the military J1 function, HR or personnel policy.


  • Due to the drafting and presentational requirements of this senior post, candidates must have an advanced command of spoken and written English. The working language in the IMS is English and therefore candidates will be required to pass a one-hour multiple-choice computer-based test in English at the required level as well as to demonstrate their abilities in the written test and interview.

Computer Literacy

  • Use of MS-Office applications in crucial to the effective and successful execution of daily duties. Advanced working user experience with Word and Outlook, and basic working knowledge of Excel, PowerPoint and web applications.



  • Previous experience with NATO Workforce Staff;

  • Excellent knowledge of NATO civil and military organisations and operations;

  • Knowledge of civilian and military procedures and working practices;

  • Knowledge of NATO Military Workforce Policy and NCPRs;

  • Knowledge of NATO Awards Policy.


  • NATO Senior Officers’ Policy Course at the NATO School in Oberammergau;

  • Resource Management Education Programme Course and the NATO School in Oberammergau.


  • An elementary command of spoken and written French.


Have awareness and good judgement of political and social sensitivities of the different NATO bodies, entities and Nations and be able to discern how their interests and responsibilities interact;

Be recognised as having the status, knowledge and confidence to interact at the most senior NATO levels, and with external organisations, in order to represent the interests of NCS military and civilian personnel.

Be prepared to work long hours, often under pressure.

Candidates must demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Analytical Thinking: Makes complex plans and analyses;

  • Clarity and Accuracy: Checks own work;

  • Conceptual Thinking: Applies learned concepts;

  • Customer Service Orientation: Takes personal responsibility for correcting problems;

  • Impact and Influence: Takes multiple actions to persuade;

  • Initiative: Is decisive in a time-sensitive situation;

  • Organizational Awareness: Understands organizational climate and culture;

  • Teamwork: Solicits input and encourages others.


Responsible for the supervision of the NATO MSM Secretariat and programme and must have the ability, experience, tact, confidence and maturity to act as the Chair of international NDMC WG meetings and to manage the MB in the absence of the BH. Responsible also for the management of major personnel policy programmes.


Must be able to establish excellent working relationships with senior members of NMBs, with national military and international staff authorities and independent agencies.


The post impacts directly on the:

  • Development and implementation of workforce policy and procedures and personnel policy for military and civilian personnel;

  • Development of policy for the employment of NATO civilians in Crisis and Emergency Establishments and in support of NATO Out-of-Area operations;

  • Advocacy of MC position in the work of senior NATO Committees.


  • Security Clearance – NATO SECRET (if not currently held, the incumbent must be eligible for this level of clearance);

  • Work Environment – Normal office environment.


Applications must be submitted by 21 April 2024 (23:59 Brussels time) using one of the following links, as applicable:

  • For NATO civilian staff members only: please apply via the internal recruitment portal (for more information, please contact your local Civilian HR Manager);

  • For all other applications:


The successful applicant will be offered a three-year definite duration contract which may be renewed. If the successful candidate is seconded from a national administration, public institution or the armed forces of a NATO member state, he/she will be offered a three-year definite duration contract which may be renewed for a further period of up to three years. The maximum time of service in post for seconded staff is six years. Serving NATO international civilian personnel will be offered a contract in accordance with the NATO Civilian Personnel Regulations.

Appointment will be subject to the deliverance of a NATO SECRET security clearance by the national authorities and approval of the medical file by the NATO Medical Adviser.

A written test will be held as part of the selection procedure. Applicants who prove to be competent for the post but who are not successful in this competition may be offered an appointment in another post of a similar nature, which might become vacant in the near future, albeit at the same or lower grade, provided they meet the necessary requirements.

NATO as an employer values diverse backgrounds and perspectives and is committed to recruiting and retaining a diverse and talented workforce. NATO welcomes applications of nationals from all Member States and strongly encourages women to apply.

Building Integrity is a key element of NATO’s core tasks. As an employer, NATO values commitment to the principles of integrity, transparency and accountability in accordance with international norms and practices established for the defence and related security sector.

Selected candidates are expected to be role models of integrity, and to promote good governance through ongoing efforts in their work.

Due to the broad interest in NATO and the large number of potential candidates, telephone or e-mail enquiries cannot be dealt with.

The nature of this position may require the staff member at times to be called upon to travel for work and/or to work outside normal office hours.

Please note that the IMS at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium is a nonsmoking environment.
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