Vacancy: Afrilabs Program Director

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AfriLabs is a network of tech innovation hubs in Africa. Each hub serves as a physical convening space for entrepreneurs, technologists, developers, designers, and investors in each tech community. S/he manages communications in both directions and empowers members of Afrilabs. This digital-savvy employee is also responsible for all communications, PR, social media, and content creation on the community portal, among other things. This is a Web 2.0 communications role, incorporating online tools and in-person networking to create relationships, fundraise, empower peer-to-peer communities and ultimately build the organization’s brand, both online and offline. While every day as a Program Director is different, the successful individual will be responsible for coordinating the overall activities of the AfriLabs secretariat including Fundraising, Media Relations & Communications, Partnerships, Projects as well as Membership.

Duties and Responsibilities

1. Community Empowerment – work with the members of Afrilabs. The manager, in close contact with the community, shall be responsible for planning, organizing and implementing initiatives/programs, which enable the communities to: a. Further grow, b. Add value to the members of the community, particularly Afrilabs members. This work also entails developing and implementing a sound social networking strategy for the community, an adapted media mix for the communities (mailing-lists, Afrilabs website with community functions, wiki, blog etc) and to develop intelligent cross-linkages with various partners.

2. Afrilabs Programs – In this context, the Program Director shall also plan and implement the key areas of Afrilabs. The focus here includes: Policy advocacy (lobbying on tech entrepreneurship), research and knowledge sharing among members.

3. Content Creation and Updates – To empower the community, write blog posts, articles, newsletters, communications materials, and material for social media channels. He/she will be responsible for updating the main Afrilabs site and related project pages, with input by Afrilabs members and the community at large.

4. Africa Hub Directory – The Program Director shall implement a “live Africa Tech hub Directory” on the website as one identified step of “added value” for members of the Afrilabs community. The directory shall serve as a clearinghouse for African entrepreneurship, and shall contain appropriate sections that shall match the expectations of the community, and that contains community-driven updating and governance structures.

5. Social media marketing – creating, managing and growing the organization’s presence through blogs, microblogs, and other strategically relevant online spaces including mailing lists. Enable the community to contribute and co-manage the organization’s presence in relevant online spaces (e.g. taking up community management roles)

6. Events and event planning – attending events on behalf of the organization and plan meet-ups for the Afrilabs community in countries and on the continent where possible. Key event targets include an annual meeting/gathering, as well as workshops, webinars/seminars organized periodically among others.

7. Public relations – support the Afrilabs secretariat in managing incoming media requests; develop and maintain and relationships with journalists and Afrilabs liaisons (hub contact persons) to promote the activities and values of Afrilabs, and engage the Afrilabs community to contribute to public relations through peer-to-peer processes (for example blogging)

8. Analytics – Using online analytic tools and other measurement tools to provide reports on metrics, and continually find ways to improve on those metrics through testing and new initiatives

9. Fundraising – Develop a fundraising plan and mobilize campaigns to raise funds for various Afrilabs activities. Fundraising targets shall be set by the Board, and is an important Key Performance Indicator for the Programs Director.

10. Management – Coordination and management of remote and on-site secretariat staff, volunteers and interns. The Program Director shall motivate, set performance benchmarks, recommend for hiring and firing to the board and oversee the work of secretariat staff members.

Line of Reporting

The Program Director shall report to the Afrilabs Community. This will include, among others:

– Afrilabs Board

– Afrilabs members

– Afrilabs partners

– The global tech entrepreneurship community on behalf of the African tech community

Oversight of the work of the Program Director is by the AfriLabs Board.The Program Director shall prepare and deliver to the board a written quarterly report of the state of affairs of the organization in scheduled meetings.

Qualifications –

Openness, creativity, leadership potentials

  •  A relevant university diploma or degree
  • Sufficient practice and knowledge of web 2.0, particularly social media tools / community building tools
  • Experience with fundraising
  • Proven experience of working with and within communities. Experience with establishing self-governance mechanisms of communities is a plus, ideas on it is a must. – Intense activity on social media and virtual collaboration/communication tools
  •  Passion for openness, networking, and African tech development
  •  Understanding of the open source landscape Skills we are looking for
  •  Ability to be resourceful and to delegate
  • Capacity to adapt to any African environment: a people’s person
  • High sense of organisation and discipline, since you will be working from your base
  • Capacity to work under pressure and meet tight deadlines
  • Team player, especially in virtual collaboration and co-working
  • Mastery of the English language, and no fear of other African languages

What you will need for this position

  •  A workstation: laptop, netbook, tablet or pad.
  •  Broadband internet connection. Except for weekends, responses to emails must be provided on the same day. We do not accommodate “out of office” auto mails. Internet connectivity expenses will be paid for.
  • At least 8 hours a day. We expect that by nature, you are the type that spends at least 5 hours daily on the internet.
  • Location: This person will be based in a member hub on the continent. Travel requirements is up to 50% across the continent to member hubs, as well as locations of donors in Europe, Asia and the Americas as may be required.

Remuneration:dependent on experience.

How to apply: Send two documents:

a) 1 pager on how you plan to do the work and your salary expectations.

b) Your CV Send these two documents in .odt or .pdf by February 5th, 2016, midnight GMT

Send these documents to:

Initial Contract: 6 months, renewable on satisfactory performance and availability of funding. Performance will be monitored against a work plan based on the “duties and responsibilities” of this document. Overall performance indicator after one year will be securing the necessary funding for running the organization for an additional 24 months after the end of period, and achieving high degree of interaction among member hubs as well as self-governance.


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