Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs are posted here in response to questions sent by staff members. Click any of the topics to see a list of questions and answers materials in order by date posted. You can set the filter to sort for FAQs for one or more topics.

You can submit a question by emailing unstaff-servingasone@un.org. Please note that emails are not responded to individually. However, as many queries as possible are turned into Frequently Asked Questions which are posted here.

Administrative matters

Rental subsidies

How do I know the rent threshold percentage for a place of employment?
Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The threshold percentage is published by the International Civil Service Commission
on its website. From the ICSC homepage map, click on the country, the information
icon, and from the data that opens about that country, click post adjustment
classification. Rental subsidy percentage for that country is also provided on the
screen.
>Go to the ICSC site - http://icsc.un.org (Please note that certain data is not available
through the public website but is available through the UN intranet or extranet)

Where can I find the reasonable maximum rent level for a duty station?
Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The maximum reasonable rent level by duty station is found in the Benefits at My Duty
Station Calculator on the Pay and Benefits page of the HR Portal. The maximum rent
levels are also published in Information Circulars that you can find by searching the
HR Handbook.
> Go to the Benefits Calculator (Link not yet available)

Appointment types

Continuing appointment

As of the eligibility date, I had a disciplinary measure imposed on me, but I am appealing the decision through the UN Dispute Tribunal. Will I be eligible for consideration of a continuing appointment?

In accordance with section 2.1(f) of ST/SGB/2011/9, a staff member must not have been subject to any disciplinary measure during the five years preceding the eligibility date.  Therefore, if a staff member had a disciplinary measure imposed in the five years preceding the eligibility date, the staff member would not be eligible for consideration at that review, even if an appeal is in progress as of the eligibility date.  Should the disciplinary measure be rescinded after the eligibility date, the staff member may be considered in the next review, provided all other criteria are met.

Does time spent working on a temporary assignment count towards the five years of continuous service required to be eligible for a continuing appointment?

The required five years of continuous service must have been completed without any break in service.

Time spent working under a temporary appointment does not count towards the five years of continuous service given that temporary appointments cannot be converted to fixed-term appointments and staff members separate from the organization upon expiration of temporary appointments.

Assignment of a staff member who holds a fixed-term appointment to a temporary job does not affect his/her continuity of service. Service is considered continuous until the expiration of their fixed-term appointment. If a staff member is separated following the expiration of their fixed-term appointment and then is reemployed on a temporary appointment, the service shall not be considered as continuous between the prior and new appointment.

How do I access the menus on continuing appointments in inspira?

To find the continuing appointments menu, log on to inspira using your staff ID number and select Self service > Continuing appointments > Continuing appointments. Here you will be able to review and provide comments on your data.

You must have a staff member account in order to view this information and you must have been pre-identified as potentially eligible as at 1 July 2013.

How long will the continuing appointment be?

A continuing appointment is an open-ended appointment. Staff members remain, subject to satisfactory performance, for continued employment.

A continuing appointment can be terminated for unsatisfactory performance as well as for other reasons including abolition of a post, reduction in force, health reasons, disciplinary reasons, and in the interest of the organization.

I am a staff member on a fixed-term appointment who meets all the eligibility requirements. I have always been on secondment from my government. Am I eligible for consideration for a continuing appointment?

Provided all other eligibility criteria are met, including appointment following a review by a Secretariat central review body, staff members on secondment from their national government are eligible for consideration of a continuing appointment.   It will normally be granted only once the secondment status ceases.

I am currently on special leave without pay and I meet all the eligibility criteria as of the eligibility cut-off date. Can I get a continuing appointment?

For the 2013 review exercise, candidates who avail of special leave without pay during the review process will be exempted from being disqualified on the basis of the special leave without pay, if they meet all the eligibility criteria and are deemed eligible by their executive office or local personnel office. However, during the final review if the candidate on special leave without pay continues to meet the criteria listed under section 2.1(b), (e) and (f) of ST/SGB/2011/9 and a decision is made to grant a continuing appointment to such candidate, it will be granted only upon return to active service.

I can log into inspira using a staff account but when I go to the menus for continuing appointments, it tells me that only some staff have been given access. Can I still request access to review my record even if I am not eligible?

No.&nbsp Only staff pre-identified as potentially eligible have been given access to the continuing appointment menus in inspira.

Staff members who believe they are eligible and have not received email notification of their eligibility for review should contact their Executive Office or local HR office to request review for inclusion by the deadline of 31 December 2015.&nbsp No requests will be considered beyond this date.

I did not get an email saying that I am potentially eligible and as a result, I cannot access the continuing appointments menus in inspira to conduct the review. However I meet the requirements to be considered. How can I request access?

If you believe you are eligible for consideration, please contact your Executive Office or local HR Office and make a request to be included.  Before you contact them, please be sure you meet the eligibility criteria listed in this checklist.

Please note that the deadline for request to be included in the list of potentially eligible candidates is close of business on 31 December 2015.  No requests will be considered beyond this date.

I have been serving in the UN Common System continuously since January 2000. I joined the Secretariat on secondment from the UNICEF in June 2011 and subsequently transferred to the Secretariat in September 2013. Considering that I have been serving...

I have been serving in the UN Common System continuously since January 2000. I joined the Secretariat on secondment from the UNICEF in June 2011 and subsequently transferred to the Secretariat in September 2013. Considering that I have been serving with the UN Secretariat since June 2011, would I be eligible for consideration for the granting of the continuing appointment?

As of the eligibility date i.e. 1 July 2013 your parent Organization was UNICEF as you were on secondment status with the Secretariat. Although during the seconded period you were subject to the Staff Regulations and Rules of the UN Secretariat, you retained your rights of employment with UNICEF. It was only upon your transfer in September 2013 that you became a UN Secretariat staff member and ceased to have any contractual relationship with UNICEF. Accordingly, you may be eligible for consideration in the next review, provided all other criteria are met.

I just returned from secondment. Although at the eligibility date I was on secondment, I returned to the Secretariat during the period of consideration. Would I be considered for the continuing appointment?

In accordance with section 2.7 of ST/AI/2012/3, a staff member who is, at the eligibility date or at any point during the period of consideration, seconded from the Secretariat to another United Nations entity, will be considered at the next review following his or her return to active service in the Secretariat. The “period of consideration” refers to the period of time between the eligibility date and the date of granting of the continuing appointment. Accordingly, a staff member on secondment to another organization at the eligibility date and who returned to the Secretariat during the period of consideration would be considered in the next review, subject to meeting the eligibility criteria.

I received an email saying that I can start the continuing appointments eligibility review but I am lost as soon as I log into inspira. Where do I need to go?

It will be helpful to begin by understanding the continuing appointments process. The review stages are outlined in this step-by-step guide and ST/IC/2015/23.

Next, refer to the inspira Quick Guide to help you navigate the different screens in inspira.  You will also find a green information button on each screen that will guide you on what you need to do.

I was a former 300 series staff member who was separated with payment of accrued annual leave and reappointed the next day on a fixed-term appointment. Is my service under the 300 series appointment counted towards the five years of qualifying service...

I was a former 300 series staff member who was separated with payment of accrued annual leave and reappointed the next day on a fixed-term appointment. Is my service under the 300 series appointment counted towards the five years of qualifying service needed to be eligible for a consideration of a continuing appointment?

Generally, continuity of service shall be considered broken when the staff member has been separated and paid on account of termination indemnity, repatriation grant or commutation of accrued annual leave.

The General Assembly, in resolution 65/247, decided, however, that the service of staff members who were previously appointed under the 100, 200 or 300 series of the Staff Rules, and who have been appointed since 1 July 2009 on a fixed-term appointment under the provisional staff rules after a competitive process under staff rule 4.15, would count towards the eligibility requirement of five years of continuous service for a continuing appointment, if they have served for five years continuously.  Exceptionally, for the purpose of implementing General Assembly resolution 65/247, the service of former 300 series staff who were separated and reappointed under a fixed-term appointment without a break in service would be considered as continuous for the purpose of consideration for a continuing appointment, regardless of whether or not separation payments were made under the 300 series appointment, unless the separation and reappointment occurred at their own initiative through their resignation or application to a position or duty station involving a separation on resignation or expiry of appointment and reappointment to another position. Subject to meeting all other eligibility criteria, the period of service under the 300 series appointment for these individuals would be counted towards the five years of qualifying service needed for consideration of a continuing appointment.

I was given access to inspira, so if I am eligible, why do I need to provide comments and information?

Only potentially eligible staff (i.e. who meet some, but not necessarily all, eligibility criteria) were given access to the continuing appointments menus in inspira. However, existing data has to be checked for accuracy and any additional data related to eligibility may not be automated and will require assessment by your Executive Office or local HR office. Any comments/additional information you can provide on the data by the deadline date (31 January 2016), will enable your Department to have as much information as possible available to make a recommendation. As review by staff is not mandatory, non-review on your part will not disqualify you for review by Departments/Offices.

I was serving on an 11-month fixed-term appointment as of 30 June 2009. Under the interim guidelines for the implementation of the contractual reform[1], I was given a one-year fixed-term appointment under the new staff rules with no break in service...

I was serving on an 11-month fixed-term appointment as of 30 June 2009. Under the interim guidelines for the implementation of the contractual reform[1], I was given a one-year fixed-term appointment under the new staff rules with no break in service, which was renewed for another year. After serving two years, I was separated and required to take a break in service, following which I was subsequently reappointed under a fixed-term appointment after having been selected for a position subject to review by a Secretariat central review body. Does my prior service under fixed-term appointments count for the purpose of consideration for a continuing appointment?&nbsp

Generally, continuity of service shall be considered broken when the staff member has been separated and paid on account of termination indemnity, repatriation grant or commutation of accrued annual leave. Exceptionally, however, bearing in mind General Assembly resolution 65/247 and the transition to the new contractual arrangements, the service of staff who were transitioned to a one-year fixed-term appointment under the new staff rules in accordance with the interim guidelines&nbsp will be considered as continuous for the purpose of consideration of a continuing appointment in cases where a separation from service occurred after 1 July 2009 and involved an interruption in employment with the United Nations of three working days or less that was imposed by the Organization for administrative purposes, regardless of whether the staff member was paid on account accrued annual leave or other separation benefits.&nbsp Such service will be counted towards the five years of continuous service needed to be eligible for consideration of a continuing appointment unless the separation and reappointment occurred at their own initiative through their resignation or application to a position or duty station involving a separation on resignation or expiry of appointment and reappointment to another position.

I was “regularized” prior to the continuing appointment eligibility date after having been selected for a position following review by a Secretariat review body. Prior to being regularized, I served for many years on 11-month fixed-term appointments...

I was “regularized” prior to the continuing appointment eligibility date after having been selected for a position following review by a Secretariat review body. Prior to being regularized, I served for many years on 11-month fixed-term appointments and was required to take a 3-day break in service in between appointments. Is my service under the 11-month fixed-term appointments counted towards the five years of qualifying service needed to be eligible for consideration of a continuing appointment?

Generally, continuity of service shall be considered broken when the staff member has been separated and paid on account of termination indemnity, repatriation grant or commutation of accrued annual leave.

Exceptionally, in order to implement General Assembly resolution 65/247 and to take into account the transition to the new contractual arrangements, for staff formerly appointed under the 100 series of staff rules, service will be considered as continuous in cases where a separation from service occurred before 1 July 2009 and involved an interruption in employment with the United Nations Secretariat for a period of 30 calendar days or less that was imposed by the Organization for administrative purposes only, regardless of whether or not the staff member was paid on account accrued annual leave balance or other separation entitlements. Such service would count towards the five years of service needed to qualify for a continuing appointment, unless the separation and reappointment occurred at their own initiative through their resignation or application to a position or duty station involving a separation on resignation or expiry of appointment and reappointment to another position.

If a staff member has stayed in one duty station for 2 years or more and had two e-PAS cycles, will she/he be given points for two entries?

Yes, a staff member may receive points for each e-PAS cycle of at least 1 year period when the performance rating received is either “Exceeds expectations” (which refers to the highest rating under the new Performance Management and Development system) or “Consistently exceeds expectations” (the highest rating under the previous Performance Management system) or “Frequently exceeds expectations” (the second highest rating under the previous Performance Management system).

If I need copies of my performance documents or any additional information/ clarification to complete my review in inspira can I contact HR Services in OHRM?

No, you should contact the focal point from your respective executive office/ local HR office.

In terms of eligibility for a continuing appointment, is there any difference between a national staff member working for a field mission and a national staff member working for an agency, fund or programme in the same duty station?

Agencies, funds and programmes must decide on their own modalities for the granting of continuing appointments..

Regarding national staff in field missions not being eligible for continuing appointments, the General Assembly decided this based on the Member States’ view that individual field missions are temporary and have finite mandates. Their view was that granting of continuing appointments to this group of staff would be inconsistent with the purpose of this contractual arrangement.

Is a “letter of reprimand” from a supervisor considered a disciplinary measure?

No. This is an administrative measure and such measures, as listed in staff rule 10.2 (b), are not equivalent to the disciplinary measures which render staff members ineligible.

Is the OIOS review body considered a Secretariat Review Body?

The OIOS review body (ORB) established under ST/AI/401 is not a considered a Secretariat review body within the context of ST/SGB/2011/7 on Central review bodies.

One of my performance appraisals completed prior to the eligibility date is currently under rebuttal. Will this appraisal be used in the review for a continuing appointment?

In cases where a completed performance appraisal is under rebuttal, should the rebuttal process result in a change in the rating of an appraisal after the eligibility date but prior to the completion of the ongoing annual review process, the revised rating shall be the one taken into account in the current review exercise.

One of the conditions for eligibility for continuing appointments is that staff members must have a performance rating of at least “Meets expectations” or equivalent in the four most recent and completed performance appraisal reports of one year or more…”

One of the conditions for eligibility for continuing appointments is that staff members must have a performance rating of at least “Meets expectations” or equivalent in the four most recent and completed performance appraisal reports of one year or more…” (2.1(b) of ST/SGB/2011/9 and 2.21 of ST/AI/2012/3). What is understood by the “four most recent and completed performance reports of one year of more”? 

For the 2013 review, as an exception to sections 2.1 (b) of ST/SGB/2011/9 and 2.21 of ST/AI/2012/3, staff members who have had a performance rating of at least “meets expectations” or its equivalent in all performance reports, including those of a duration of less than one year, but covering the past four years, can be eligible for consideration for conversion to a continuing appointment. However, no points would be allocated for any performance appraisal report covering a period of less than one year. Inspira will display the e-PAS/ePerformance on file for 10 years from date of eligibility but staff members can always provide e-PAS/ePerformance records that the system does not display for consideration.

Regarding the base criteria for eligibility for a continuing appointment, what is considered a disciplinary measure?

Disciplinary measures can take one or more of the following forms:

(a) Written censure
(b) Loss of one or more steps in grade
(c) Deferment, for a specified period, of eligibility for salary increment
(d) Suspension without pay for a specified period
(e) Fine
(f) Deferment, for a specified period, of eligibility for consideration for promotion
(g) Demotion, with deferment, for a specified period, of eligibility for&nbspconsideration for promotion
(h) Separation from service, with notice or compensation in lieu of notice, &nbspand with or without termination indemnity
(i) Dismissal.

Any one of these constitutes a disciplinary measure and means that the staff member does not meet the base eligibility criteria for continuing appointments.

In accordance with section 2.1(f) of ST/SGB/2011/9, a staff member must not have been subject to any disciplinary measure during the five years preceding the eligibility date – which is 1 July 2013 for the purposes of this review.

Some of my personal information in inspira is incorrect. How can it be changed?

The data you see has been uploaded to inspira from different databases (IMIS, Nucleus, etc). You will be able to comment, within the prescribed timeframe, on the data that is critical for eligibility or points allocation determination, and your Department/Office will take your comments into account when making their final decisions.

However, please note that any correction of wrong information will have to be done at the source (i.e. the system from which the data was uploaded). Contact your Executive or local HR office to request a correction. No new uploads of data into inspira will be done in the course of the review for continuing appointments.

What are the Secretariat review bodies?

The Secretariat review bodies are: the Senior Review Group (under ST/SGB/2011/8), and the Central Review Boards, the Field Central Review Boards, the Central Review Committees, the Field Central Review Committees, the Central Review Panels and the Field Central Review Panels established under the framework of ST/SGB/2011/7.

What if I have a temporary appointment in between two fixed-term appointments, would the period on temporary appointment be treated as continuous?

The period of service on a temporary appointment would constitute a break in the continuity of service under a fixed-term appointment, therefore your overall period of service would not be considered continuous. The period of service under a temporary appointment would not count towards the five-years of qualifying service. And the count of qualifying years of service would start counting from the date of your second fixed-term appointment, posterior to the period on temporary appointment.

What is the difference between a permanent appointment and continuing appointment?

Permanent appointments were linked to the concept of a career service, and thus subject to satisfactory performance. A staff member granted a permanent appointment had a reasonable expectation of continued employment until his/her mandatory age of separation.

Continuing appointments are open-ended appointments. However, unlike the permanent appointment, the Secretary-General may terminate the appointment without the consent of the staff member if, in the opinion of the Secretary-General, such action would be in the interest of the good administration of the Organization.

What is the rationale for having an age limitation for eligibility towards the continuing appointment?

The condition of seven years of service remaining before a staff member’s mandatory age of retirement is a requirement imposed by the General Assembly.

In resolution 65/247 of 24 December 2010, the General Assembly specifically decided that in order to be eligible for consideration for the granting of a continuing appointment, staff members must “have at least 7 years of service remaining before reaching the mandatory age of separation”.

The General Assembly based this decision on one of the eligibility criteria which was in place for consideration for a permanent appointment, namely to be under the age of 53 on the date when the staff member has completed or completes the five years of qualifying service. In order to ensure equality in treatment for all the staff members irrespective of their individual mandatory age of separation which varies depending on their date of entry in the Organization, the General Assembly decided to formulate this criterion differently and refer to the number of years of service remaining rather than to the age of staff members.

What is the timeline for the continuing appointments review?

1 December 2015:
Email sent to potentially eligible candidates. inspira opens up for candidates’ review of eligibility data.
* Staff who do not receive emails and believe they may be eligible should review the eligibility criteria on this checklist and then contact their Executive Office by 31 December to request to be included in the potentially eligible group and to receive access to the continuing appointments data in inspira.

31 December 2015:
Deadline for Executive Office/local HR office focal points of respective department to send lists of additional staff who may be eligible through the “Contact Us” button in inspira.

31 January 2016:
Deadline for candidates to provide comments and submit additional information through inspira.
* Please note that this deadline will be strictly enforced. Staff are advised to allow sufficient time to prepare and submit their comments in inspira.

30 April 2016:
Deadline for Executive Offices/local HR offices to review their staff members’ information in inspira.

Date to be announced:&nbsp
Candidates will be notified when the Executive Offices/local HR offices have completed their review.

Stage 2 – Points Allocation Review

In the event that the post envelope is larger than the number of eligible staff members, the process will end at this stage and all eligible candidates will be awarded continuing appointments. &nbsp

If the post envelope is smaller than the number of eligible staff members, a points allocation process will be conducted to determine which staff members will be granted continuing appointments.

Which Department will conduct my continuing appointment review?

You will be reviewed by your parent department at the time of the review.

Why are the staff in the tribunals and national staff (National Professional Officers and staff in the General Service and related categories) in field missions not eligible for continuing appointment?

Given the fact that the tribunals are downsizing and completing their mandates and that Member States view individual field missions as temporary and with finite mandates, Member States concluded that the staff in the tribunals and national staff (National Professional Officers and staff in the General Service and related categories) in field missions are consequently employed only for a fixed period of time. Based on this, Member States were of the view that granting of continuing appointments to this group of staff would be inconsistent with the purpose of this contractual arrangement.

Will I be granted a continuing appointment if I meet all the criteria and I am found to be eligible?

The review of eligibility is Stage I of the process. If the number of continuing appointments to be awarded under a given post envelope is larger than the number of eligible staff members then those staff members recommended to be granted continuing appointments will be assessed by OHRM to ensure that they continue to meet the following criteria during the entire review period:

(a) have performance rating of at least “Meets expectations” or equivalent

(b) are not international or locally recruited staff serving in the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwandaor the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

(c) are not be subject to any disciplinary measure

(d) are not seconded or separated from the Organization. The final determination of granting the continuing appointment will be made by the ASG for Human Resources Management.

If in the event the number of continuing appointments to be awarded under a given post envelope is smaller than the number of eligible staff members, then Stage II, that is, the Point Allocation, will commence. Staff members and Departments/Offices will be advised of the calendar of this process in due course. As with Stage I, staff will be given the opportunity to provide comments and additional information through inspira on the calculation of their points. The Departments/Offices will proceed with the review.

Will I have access to check in inspira the on-going status of my continuing appointment case after the staff member review deadline?

Once you submit your comments on your eligibility status, your status in inspira will change from INITIAL to SUBMITTED FOR REVIEW. This indicates that your Executive Office or local HR office will initiate the review of your eligibility. However, as this is a global competitive process, all staff members will be notified on the same date (after 30 April 2016) about the outcome of the eligibility review. Your status will continue to show as SUBMITTED FOR REVIEW until that date and no feedback will be provided while the review is under way.

Will service with agencies, funds and programmes count towards eligibility and the points for continuing appointments?

In order to be eligible for consideration for the granting of a continuing appointment, staff members must have five years of continuous service on fixed-term appointment(s) under the United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations. Thus, periods of service on fixed-term appointments in another entity governed by the United Nations Staff Regulations and Rules prior to joining the United Nations Secretariat shall be counted towards the qualifying service provided the service has been continuous.

Service in organizations not governed by the United Nations Staff Regulations and Rules will not count towards the eligibility criteria.

Once considered eligible for the granting of a continuing appointment, points will be allocated based on established criteria regardless of whether the staff member’s previous service was with the UN Secretariat or with agencies, funds and programmes, provided the service has been continuous.

For example, a staff member employed by UNICEF for 3 years in Khartoum, by FAO for 3 years in Kabul, and by the UN Secretariat for 6 years in New York would be considered eligible for a continuing appointment based on the 6 years of continuous service with the UN Secretariat. FAO is not governed by the United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations; nonetheless points will be allocated for the staff member’s service in Khartoum and Kabul, provided such service was continuous.

Will there be a certain number of seats available for each Department or Mission?

<span id="docs-internal-guid-5732002b-412c-29d6-4990-f337e99fdee5">As this is a global exercise, individual departments, office, missions, etc., will not be allotted a given number of seats. The number of continuing appointments granted each year, if any, will depend on the level of the relevant post envelope. There will be two global post envelopes one for the Professional and higher categories and Field Service category&nbsp and one for the General Service and related categories, including but not limited to National Professional Officers, Trades and Crafts and Security Service category.</span>

<span id="docs-internal-guid-5732002b-412c-29d6-4990-f337e99fdee5">Staff members who are eligible for consideration for the granting of a continuing appointment shall be allocated points and ranked, according to the number of points accumulated, on an annual competitive basis. The ranking is done on a Secretariat-wide basis (not by individual Office, Department or Mission)&nbsp and undertaken only when the cumulative number of staff members with a permanent or continuing appointment is not equal to or exceeding the established level of the relevant post envelope. Staff members who are awarded the same number of points shall be ranked on the basis of length of continuous service.&nbspContinuing appointments shall be granted to the top-ranking candidates subject to the availability of appointments within the relevant post envelope.</span>

Permanent appointment

I am a staff member with a permanent appointment currently on a post funded from the regular budget. If I accept a position in the Secretariat that is funded from extra-budgetary resources, will I risk losing my job and permanent status if the funding for

In line with staff rules 13.1 (a) and (d), staff members holding a permanent appointment shall retain the appointment until they separates from the Organization. In the event that the necessities of service require abolition of a post or reduction of the staff, and subject to the availability of suitable posts for which their services can be effectively utilized, staff members with permanent appointments shall be retained in preference to those on all other types of appointments, provided that due regard shall be given in all cases to relative competence, integrity and length of service.

Conditions of Service

Allowances

Does time served as a GS staff or National Staff count towards the five year period required for eligibility for mobility allowance?

Mobility allowance is payable to staff in the P and FS categories. To qualify for payment of the mobility allowance, a staff member must have five years’ prior consecutive service as a staff member in the United Nations or another organization of the common system. Service credited towards the five-year requirement may include service as a GS or NO staff member.

How much is the non-family hardship allowance?

The non-family hardship allowance is equivalent to the applicable dependency rate of hardship allowance in a category “E” duty station for staff with dependents, and half of the applicable single rate of the hardship allowance in a category “E” duty station for staff paid at the single rate. As is the case with the mobility and hardship allowances, the amount of the non-family hardship allowance will vary depending on dependency status and grade level.

 

  P-1 to P-3
FS-1 to FS-6
P-4 to P-5
FS-7
D-1 and above
Dependent rate (per month) $1,453 $1,743 $1,938
Single rate (per month) $  545 $  654 $  727

 

Non-family hardship allowance is in addition to the regular hardship allowance received by staff applicable to their duty station of assignment.

I am going to a non-family duty station soon. When can I expect to receive the non-family hardship allowance?

As provided in section 5 of the Administrative Instruction on the Mobility and hardship scheme (ST/AI/2011/6), the additional non-family hardship allowance shall be payable to eligible staff members who are assigned to duty stations designated as non-family from the beginning of their assignment and for the duration of their assignment to those locations.

If there is a change in the designation of the duty station (from family to non‑family or the reverse) during the course of a staff member’s appointment to the duty station, an appropriate adjustment shall be made to the staff member’s salary to account for the amount payable or for discontinuation of the allowance, as of the effective date of the change in the duty station designation.

I was recruited as international staff member on a Temporary Appointment in a non-family duty station. Am I entitled to receive the non-family hardship allowance?

Yes, staff on Temporary Appointments are eligible for the non-family hardship allowance.

I work in a family duty station but my family cannot join me here for various reasons. Am I eligible to receive the non-family hardship allowance?

No. Only eligible staff assigned to duty stations with non-family designation receive the new hardship allowance. When a staff member is assigned to a family duty station, the organization has not restricted travel of family and thus this is the personal choice of the staff member. In cases where the family does not join, the staff member may avail of Family Visit travel.

If I serve in a field mission and if my duty station becomes a family duty station, my family will join me. My question is why is the lump sum, in lieu of shipment, only $5,000 and not $15,000 which is the lump-sum at a dependent rate?

The amount of the relocation grant, which is in lieu of shipment of personal effects, is linked to the travel of the family members. As only family members are being authorized to travel to the duty station join the staff member, that portion of the relocation grant relating to family members is payable. The $5,000 portion of the relocation grant relating to family members is the difference between the single rate of the relocation grant payable when the staff member travels alone ($10,000) and the dependent rate when staff and at least one eligible family member travels together ($15,000).

Regarding the non-family hardship allowance, why does single staff get less than staff with dependents (single staff get only half of the applicable single rate of the hardship allowance in a category “E” duty station)?

This is in recognition of the fact that a single staff member has less liabilities in maintaining a second household.

What is the non-family hardship allowance for?

The non-family hardship allowance is to compensate for the added financial burden and psychological hardship of keeping a second household and being away from family.

The regular hardship allowance compensates for the degree of hardship experienced at the duty station in terms of health, security, climate, housing, isolation, local conditions and educational facilities. Duty stations are categorized on a scale of difficulty from A to E with A being the least difficult. The amount of the hardship allowance varies according to the hardship classification of the duty station and the staff member’s grade and family status. Please go to the website of International Civil Service Commission, www.icsc.un.org, for more information on the hardship allowance.

Benefits/ entitlements

As a Headquarters staff member going to the field, I understand I get some benefits for relocating, such as assignment grant and relocation grant. Will I get these benefits also upon my return to my parent duty station?

Yes. If you are assigned to a field mission for one year or longer, you are eligible for assignment grant as well as 1,000 kgs shipment of personal effects (or relocation grant in lieu of shipment of personal effects). Upon return from mission assignment, you would again be eligible for payment of assignment grant, and 1,000 kgs shipment of personal effects (or relocation grant in lieu of shipment). Please see the UN Salaries, Allowances and Benefits website for more information on assignment grant and relocation grant.

Do I need to keep the original documentation I submit for the review?
Wednesday, May 20, 2015

All eligible staff members are required to retain the original documentation submitted as part of each annual review for five years, as this may be necessary for audit / monitoring purposes. Failure to provide this information will result in the funds being recovered.

How have the harmonized conditions of service affected staff serving in field missions?

• There are now more staff in the field serving in family duty stations. In some duty stations, there was the discrepancy whereby, in some locations, staff serving with UN agencies, funds and programmes or other UN offices could bring their families but staff serving with field missions in the same location could not. Before 1 July 2011, only about 10 % of the posts in peacekeeping and special political missions (about 680) were in family duty stations. As of 1 July 2011 this increased to approximately 30 % of the posts (over 2,000) in missions. Staff who have eligible dependents (i.e. spouse and dependent children) and who are assigned to family duty stations are able to have their eligible family members installed at their duty station, if they so wish. Eligible family members are entitled to travel related entitlements.
• For staff serving in non-family duty stations there is an additional hardship allowance (non-family hardship allowance) to compensate for the added financial burden and psychological hardship of keeping a second household and being away from family. Through the additional hardship allowance, international staff serving in non-family duty stations will be paid between $500 – $1,900 per month depending on grade and whether you are paid at the dependency rate or single rate.
• The rest and recuperation scheme is harmonized within the UN common system. International staff, as well as UN Volunteers, serving in locations with R&R, get paid for R & R travel to a designated location. However, where there is UN transportation available, travel will be provided to staff free of charge and no payment for travel costs apply. The duration of R & R travel is five consecutive calendar days not charged to annual leave plus an appropriate number of calendar days for travel time. R & R designations and cycles are harmonized across the common system.

If I go on a mission assignment from a headquarters duty station or an office away from headquarters will I be eligible for rental subsidy when I come back to my post at my duty station?

Rental subsidy is an integral part of post adjustment. If an internationally-recruited staff member at Headquarters goes on assignment to a field mission which involves a change of duty station, on return from assignment he/she would have a new change of duty station and be again installed at the Headquarters duty station. He or she would be eligible to apply for rental subsidy.

In order to complete their dependency review, what should a staff member do if they do not see the “Benefits” section in the Self Service Menu of inspira?
Wednesday, May 20, 2015

First, staff members should contact the inspira support in order to determine if there is a technical problem (Contact us link located in the top right of the inspira screen.). They should also contact their local Human Resources office, where they can get assistance to complete the review and/or hand deliver required documentation. 

Initially, I was recruited internationally for a temporary appointment and was subsequently given a two-year fixed-term appointment. Now that my appointment is ending, I am relocating back to my home country. How is my relocation grant calculated upon...
Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Complete version of the question: Initially, I was recruited internationally for a temporary appointment and was subsequently given a two-year fixed-term appointment.  Now that my appointment is ending, I am relocating back to my home country.   How is my relocation grant calculated upon separation?

 

Your relocation grant will be based on the allowance package coming with the two-year fixed term appointment.  Accordingly, you can then receive a lump sum for unaccompanied shipment in the amount of $15,000 USD at the family rate or $10,000 USD at the single rate.  

Rental Subsidies and Deductions – Revised Policy and Process

A new administrative instruction on “Rental subsidies and deductions” (ST/AI/2013/2), is now available which introduces a more streamlined process in addition to more specific eligibility requirements.

Various key changes have been established in advance of the increasingly automated procedures that Umoja is starting to bring as the new system is gradually implemented throughout the UN Secretariat.

What are some key changes to the policy?

Application process

Staff members no longer need to submit annual re-application forms but now must re-apply every time their lease is renewed. The subsidy will be calculated in accordance with the lease validity period, provided there is no change in dwelling, rent and family size.
Conditions of payment

Conditions to regulate the payment of the subsidy to former staff members who are re-employed or serving staff who return from assignments under six months involving a change of official duty station now apply.
Clarification on how the payment of the subsidy is determined when both spouses are eligible has been included.
Staff must now disclose all rebates and gratuities granted to them by their landlords (such as free rent or temporary reductions in rent).
Self-certification mechanism

Rental subsidy self-certification, which requires that staff attest to information stated in their application, has been introduced.
Monitoring and oversight

Staff members may be requested to submit original documentation within 30 days of the initial request. Consequently, lease agreements and any other documents supporting rental subsidy application(s) must be retained for five years.
Should a staff member fail to submit any requested documentation or to report changes such as the provision of housing assistance, changes in accommodation, rent, family size, or to falsify documentation, various administrative measures may be effected including:
(i) immediate termination of the rental subsidy;
(ii) recovery of prior subsidy payments; and/or
(iii) any other administrative and/or disciplinary measures (see staff rule 10.2), including dismissal for misconduct.

The staff member and their eligible family members, as applicable, are required to regularly reside at the property for which the subsidy is claimed.
How will the new policy be implemented?

A new information circular (ST/IC/2013/25) on this topic has also been issued. This includes additional details on self-certification, as well as the new compliance monitoring mechanism and rental subsidy application forms. This simplified rental subsidy process will remain in effect until the procedure later becomes automated through the Umoja solution.

For further information, please refer to the itsforreal website for regular updates on a wide range of Human Resources topics.

What time-frame does the current dependency benefits review cover?
Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The current dependency benefits review covers the 2014 calendar year. (However, those who have not completed review for prior years are highly encouraged to do so by the same deadline of 30 June 2015.) 

Where can I get help in completing my dependency benefits review?
Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Once you have logged into inspira, you can access the P84 Dependency Allowance Staff Member Quick Guide in the Manuals Section for help in completing your application.  In addition staff should consult circular ST/IC/2015/9, for further information.

 

Education grant

Can I claim the education grant during periods of Special Leave without pay (SLWOP)?

SLWOP will have an impact on the education grant entitlement and all other allowances and benefits. “Without pay” refers to any and all types of payments. No allowance, benefit or entitlement is payable. The education grant will, therefore, also not be paid during periods of SLWOP. If the staff member is on SLWOP for a period shorter than the full school year for the education grant, then that grant will be prorated accordingly to take the period of leave into account.

International Civil Service Commission (ICSC)

What did the General Assembly decide in 2010 regarding “harmonization of conditions of service for staff serving in non-family duty stations”?

Acting on the basis of a recommendation of the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), which regulates and coordinates the conditions of service of staff in the entire UN common system, the General Assembly decided that benefits and allowances for staff working in non-family duty stations should be the same for the entire UN common system, whether you work for a UN field mission or for a UN agency, fund or programme.

In December 2010, the General Assembly approved one compensation package for all UN common system staff serving in non-family duty stations. The package included an additional hardship allowance to compensate for the added financial burden and psychological hardship of keeping a second household and being away from family (this non-family hardship allowance will eventually replace the special operations approach used by agencies, funds and programmes). Furthermore, the package included the same rest and recuperation scheme for all UN common system staff, including paid travel.

The General Assembly also decided that the designation of mission duty stations as family or non-family should be harmonized on the basis of security assessment and the practice of the UN agencies, funds and programmes.

The General Assembly’s decision to harmonize conditions of service of staff in non-family duty stations was effective 1 July 2011. For the full text of the General Assembly decision, see resolution 65/248.

Leave

Are staff members permitted to work for another entity while on special leave without pay (SLWOP)?

As outlined in staff rule 5.3 (a) (i), Special Leave without Pay (SLWOP) may be granted at the request of a staff member holding a fixed-term or continuing appointment. It is usually envisaged for advanced study or research in the interest of the United Nations, to meet personal obligations, such as for child-care in cases of extended illness, or for other important reasons, and for such period of time as the Secretary-General may prescribe. Requests for SLWOP are reviewed on their merits and approved on the basis of the interest of the Organization. If you are interested in taking SLWOP, please approach your Executive Office.

Since during periods of SLWOP staff members remain staff members of the Organization and retain their status as international civil servants with all obligations this entails, SLWOP is not normally intended to provide staff members with an avenue to pursue employment in other UN or non-UN entities. Outside employment / activities are governed by ST/AI/2000/13, in particular section 3 and 4.

In particular, SLWOP will not be authorized for governmental service in a political office, in a diplomatic or other representational post or for any functions that would be incompatible with the staff member’s continued status as an international civil servant. However, in exceptional circumstances, SLWOP may be granted to a staff member who is requested by his or her Government to render temporary services involving functions of a technical nature.

For employment in other UN entities that are part of the UN Common System of Benefits and Allowances, for staff in the professional and higher categories, there are administrative procedures in place to facilitate the temporary or long-term movement to such entities, subject to agreement by the receiving and the releasing entity and the staff member. Holding parallel appointments in two UN entities at the same time is normally not allowed.

If a staff member asks to work for another UN entity whilst already on Special Leave the following information will be required:

The reason why Special Leave was originally approved in advance of the requested employment.
Details of the proposed role, including entity, functions etc.
Details of any potential conflict of the new role with the staff member’s status as an international civil servant.

Can I be granted special leave without pay (SLWOP) for employment outside the UN Secretariat?

During periods of SLWOP, staff members retain their status as international civil servants with all obligations this entails. Therefore, SLWOP is not normally granted to provide staff members with an avenue to pursue employment in other UN or non-UN entities but rather is granted for work-life balance, to accompany a spouse to a different duty station, etc. Should a staff member during the period of his or her SLWOP be presented with an opportunity to engage in outside employment/activities, he or she must request approval to engage in such activity. These types of requests are reviewed on a case by case basis.

In particular, SLWOP will not be authorized for governmental service in a political office, in a diplomatic or other representational post or for any functions that would be incompatible with the staff member’s continued status as an international civil servant. However, in exceptional circumstances, SLWOP may be granted to a staff member who is requested by his or her Government to render temporary services involving functions of a purely technical nature.

Regarding employment in other UN entities that are part of the UN Common System of Benefits and Allowances, there are administrative procedures in place to facilitate temporary or long-term movement to such entities for staff in the professional and higher categories. This is subject to agreement by both the receiving and releasing entity and the staff member. The Inter-Organization Agreement concerning Transfer, Secondment or Loan of Staff details the conditions under which staff members can move throughout the UN Common System of salaries and allowances.

If a staff member requests permission to work for an entity other than the UN Secretariat whilst already on Special Leave the following information will be required:

- The reason why Special Leave was originally approved in advance of the requested outside activity or employment.

- Details of the proposed role, including entity, functions etc.

- Details of any potential conflict of the new role with the staff member’s status as an international civil servant.

- Any other relevant information. Additional information may be requested by the reviewing office and/or OHRM.

Can I still receive my rental subsidy while on Special Leave without pay (SLWOP)?

SLWOP will have an impact on rental subsidy. “Without pay” refers to any and all types of payments. No allowance, benefit or entitlement is payable. Rental subsidy will, therefore, also not be paid during periods of SLWOP

How do I apply for Special Leave?

Except for sabbatical leave, staff members are required to address a memorandum through their Chief to their Director/ASG for approval. The approved memorandum is then forwarded to the Executive Office for administrative action. Depending on the request, it may be further reviewed by OHRM.

I am a staff member on a Temporary Appointment – can I request Special Leave?

Staff members holding temporary appointments may be granted special leave on an exceptional basis for compelling reasons, subject to approval from the Secretary-General.

If I become sick while on annual leave, how should this be reported and subsequently recorded for time and attendance purposes?

Sick leave during annual leave may be approved if a staff member is ill for more than five consecutive working days (not including weekends or holidays), in any seven day period while on annual leave, including home leave, provided that the sick leave is certified. If the illness does not cover at least five consecutive working days, the entire duration of absence is considered annual leave.

Is it possible to take Special Leave without pay (SLWOP) for personal reasons? For how long and what reasons are acceptable?

Special leave without pay is granted at the discretion of the Secretary-General. Special leave can normally be authorized for up to two years. The acceptable reasons for special leave are advance studies and research in the interest of the United Nations, extended illness, child care, family support, mandatory military service, and other. For eligibility requirements, please refer to staff rule 5.3.

What is sabbatical leave and under which conditions am I eligible to take it?

Eligible staff may apply for sabbatical leave under the sabbatical leave programme to pursue projects of study and research related to the work of the United Nations. Sabbatical leave lasts no more than four months, during which the staff member would be granted special leave with full pay.

The sabbatical leave programme is open to staff members who have completed five years of service with the Secretariat within the last six years and who are expected to serve with the Secretariat for no less than two years after completion of the sabbatical leave period. A committee will evaluate applications in a competitive manner and recommend a maximum of 15 applications per year.

The provisions governing the sabbatical leave programme are found in ST/AI/2011/1.

When can I request special leave?

The conditions under which special leave may be granted to a staff member vary. The table which is attached summarizes the conditions for requesting special leave, which are reviewed individually and take both the Organization’s and the staff member’s interests into account.

This summary illustrates different modalities of special leave with full, partial or without pay. The list of requirements is not exhaustive; and it should be noted that the Staff Regulations, Rules, and governing Administrative Issuances prevail in all instances.

Who is eligible for Special Leave?

In accordance with staff rule 5.3, Special Leave may be granted to staff members holding fixed-term, permanent or continuing appointments. Staff members holding temporary appointments are exceptionally granted special leave for compelling reasons, subject to approval from the Secretary-General.

Pay

I am a locally recruited staff member working in a small remote area in a mission away from my family. Can I be considered for any of the entitlements that compensate for the hardship of being away from my family?

Locally recruited staff are eligible for Hazard Pay. However, the mobility and hardship allowances, including the new additional hardship allowance, are only for staff who have been internationally recruited on an assignment of one year or more.

Relocation grant

Can an internationally recruited staff member defer his/her entitlement to a relocation grant upon separation? If so, for how long?

Yes, upon separation an internationally recruited staff member can defer their entitlement to removal expenses for up to two years. The entitlement expires if removal has not commenced within two years of the date on which the staff member became entitled to such expenses.

Rest and Recuperation

Do I have to travel to the designated location for my R&R?

While travel will be provided to the R & R destination, staff members may choose to travel to any other location, however any additional costs of the deviation would be at the staff member’s expense. Where UN transportation is provided to the designated R & R location, any travel to another location would be entirely at the staff member’s own expense.

How many days is Rest & Recuperation (R&R)?

As of 1 July 2011, the rest and recuperation scheme includes five consecutive calendar days not charged to annual leave and an appropriate number of calendar days for travel time to the R & R destination. Travel days are counted as calendar days.

How much is the payment of Rest & Recuperation (R&R) travel?

The Organization will pay for travel on R & R by the least expensive and most direct route from the duty station to the designated place of rest and recuperation. The Organization may purchase a ticket or provide a lump sum equivalent to the air ticket price. Where a staff member chooses to go to a destination different to the designated location for R & R, the financial liability of the Organization will be equal to the cost of the air ticket to the designated location.

Where UN transportation is available, it will be provided to staff free of charge and no payment for travel costs will apply.

How will the designated location for the purpose of paid R&R travel be determined?

The official R & R destination is normally a location nearby the duty station that is suitable for R & R purposes in terms of cost and convenience of transportation. The Organization’s designation of rest and recuperation destinations takes into consideration the availability of United Nations transportation.

The R & R destinations, as well as the R & R designations and cycles, will be determined by an interagency group comprised of representatives from the UN and the UN agencies, funds and programmes with a field presence.

Is it possible for a family duty station to have Rest & Recuperation (R&R) entitlements? And if so, will my family get paid R&R travel as well?

It is possible that a family duty stations could be designated for rest and recuperation purposes. However, only the staff member would be entitled to rest and recuperation travel. There is no entitlement for R&R travel for family members.

Now that R&R for peacekeeping and special political missions are harmonized with the rest of the UN common system, how is it decided which duty stations will have R&R (and what the cycle will be)? ...

Now that R&R for peacekeeping and special political missions are harmonized with the rest of the UN common system, how is it decided which duty stations will have R&R (and what the cycle will be)? Will missions still be able to send in their recommendation? 

Rest and recuperation cycles for field missions are aligned with those of the UN agencies, funds and programmes. The International Civil Service Commission (ICSC) has established the framework which guides the determination of locations designated for rest and recuperation and the cycle.  Duty stations shall be approved for rest and recuperation by the Office of Human Resources Management following inter-agency consultations.

Field missions will continue to be consulted and will be able to provide their recommendation but should do so in consultation with the UN Country Team.

Now that the rest and recuperation scheme is harmonized with the UN common system, what are the changes for staff in field missions?

The harmonized rest and recuperation scheme for international staff as well as international UN Volunteers includes:

Paid travel by the least expensive and most direct route to a designated R & R location. Where UN transportation is available, it will be provided to staff free of charge and no payment for travel costs will apply.

Five consecutive calendar days not charged to annual leave and an appropriate number of calendar days for travel time to the designated R & R location.

R & R cycles and designations are harmonized within the UN common system.

What if I want to go to another location than the official R&R destination? What amount will I get then?

Where the UN provides free transportation from the duty station approved for rest and recuperation purposes to the designated rest and recuperation destination and the staff member decides to travel to an alternative destination, there will be no payment expenses by the Organization.

Where UN transportation does not exist and the staff member chooses to travel to a location other than the official R&R destination, the staff member may still receive the air ticket to the designated destination.

When a lump sum is provided, the cost of travel in the lowest fare, economy class, by the cheapest and most direct route from the duty station approved for rest and recuperation purposes to the designated rest and recuperation destination is payable.

Where can I find the rules on R&R?

Administrative instruction ST/AI/2011/7 on “Rest and recuperation” details the rules on R&R.

Duty station

Duty station classification

How is a determination made of whether a duty station is designated as family or non-family as of 1 July 2011?

Duty stations from which dependents have been evacuated will be designated as “non-family duty stations” where a determination has been made that the medium- or longer-term presence of non-essential staff and/or dependents is dangerous or unsuitable for reasons of their safety and security. The determination of a duty station as non-family will normally be made within six months of the declaration of an evacuation.

I serve in a field mission and my duty station is expected to become a family duty station but I don’t think the conditions at my current duty station are suitable for young children. Can my family be paid to travel to another duty station?

Travel of family members in connection with a staff member’s appointment or assignment can be made only to the duty station that the staff member is assigned to, as the purpose of the travel to for the family to reside with the staff member at the duty station of assignment. However, children attending school outside of the duty station may be eligible for education grant travel.

My duty station was a non-family duty station but is becoming a family duty station. What are my entitlements for moving my family?

Where a non-family mission location is designated as a family duty station internationally-recruited staff members with eligible dependents (i.e. a spouse and dependent children who would normally reside with the staff member when not serving in a non-family duty station) are eligible for travel related entitlements for family members. These include:

Initial travel of eligible family members to the duty station,

Payment of assignment grant in respect of family members who travel to the family duty station at UN expense consisting of 30 days DSA at half the rate applicable to the duty station for each family member,

Shipment of personal effects for family members who travel to the duty station at UN expense in the amount of 500 kgs for the first eligible family member and 300 kgs for each additional dependent, or a relocation grant in the lump-sum amount of $5,000 for all family members in lieu of shipment of personal effects.

In addition, eligible family members of staff serving in a family duty station are eligible for home leave travel and education grant travel.

Some of the duty stations that are designated family duty stations do not seem suitable for families. Why are they family duty stations when the conditions are not appropriate for a family?

The overall quality of life at a duty station is taken into consideration in the hardship categorization of the duty station. However, the hardship classification of a duty station in itself does not determine the status of a duty station as “family” or “non-family”.

In determining the degree of hardship, consideration is given to local conditions of safety and security, health care, education, housing, climate, isolation and the availability of the basic amenities of life. Duty stations are categorized on a scale of difficulty from A to E with E being the most difficult. The hardship allowance provides staff with compensation to make whatever arrangements they deem necessary to manage under the circumstances or to supplement for the lack of adequate facilities at the duty station. In addition, where there is a lack of adequate school at the duty station, the education grant provides for additional education grant travel and a higher amount for board for children attending school outside the duty station at the primary and secondary levels.

Even if a duty station is designated family duty station, staff members may decide not to bring his or her family to the duty station where he or she is serving. If a staff member chooses not to bring his or her family to the duty station, he or she can continue to make use of the Family Visit Travel or Education Grant Travel, if applicable.

Family duty station

I am in a duty station that has just become a family duty station. As a new mother, am I entitled to breaks to breastfeed my baby? I know that national staff have this right, but do internationally-recruited staff too?

The Secretary-General’s bulletin ST/SGB/2003/14 details the Secretariat-wide policy, it applies to all nursing mothers of infants under one year of age and is not linked to national staff status. It is one of the rather straightforward policies, though local conditions in terms of facilities (“pump-room”, cold storage, etc.) may vary outside HQ and Offices away from HQ (UNON, UNOV, UNOG) and Regional Commissions). So for those aspects on specific facilities, it will depend on the duty station, but all duty stations are encouraged to support the policy through respective facilities, within their means. Staff should speak with their local personnel office to mind out more about the facilities and arrangements made locally.

To clarify, it is not possible to combine the two breaks allowed daily to one longer break, the two breaks are for two separate “feedings,” not one very long one.

Field

I am a staff member at HQ in New York. If I go on a mission assignment for a year I understand I will be installed in the mission duty station. What does installment entail?

Installment involves a change of duty station with payment of salary and allowances applicable to the duty station. A staff member assigned to a mission duty station for one year will be installed and be eligible for payment of assignment grant, shipment of personal effects, post adjustment, rental subsidy, and mobility and hardship allowance at rates applicable to the mission duty station. Effective 1 July 2011, staff members serving in non-family duty stations will be paid an additional hardship allowance. The amount is between $500 and $1900 per month depending on the staff member’s level and dependency status.

What is the arrangement if you work at an HQ duty station and want to go on assignment to a field mission?

Initial assignments to field missions are normally for a period of one year. Extensions of assignments to field missions may be made, subject to the mission’s needs, the staff member’s performance and the agreement of the releasing office.

An internationally-recruited staff member assigned to a mission for one year will be installed at the mission duty station and be eligible for payment of assignment grant, shipment of personal effects, post adjustment, rental subsidy, and mobility and hardship allowance at rates applicable to the mission duty station. Effective 1 July 2011, an additional hardship allowance will also be paid for service in non-family duty stations.

Internationally recruited Professional staff members and General Service staff members at an HQ duty station or a regional commission who go on assignment to a field mission may retain a lien on their post at the parent duty station for up to two continuous years counting from the effective date of their initial appointment.

Staff members in the Professional category who wish to remain at the mission beyond a continuous period of service of two years will be required to relinquish their lien on their post at the parent duty station and will be transferred to the mission post, provided they were competitively selected through the established procedures. For transfers to the same position for which they were initially selected for mission assignment, they will not be required to apply again provided they were previously reviewed by a central review body.

General Service staff members who wish to remain at the mission beyond a continuous period of two years are required to relinquish their lien on their post at the parent duty station and compete as an external candidate for an appointment to a mission. They are required to apply and be selected through the established selection processes.

Effective 22 April 2010, staff members with no appointment limitation who are on assignment to field mission positions one level higher than their current grade at the headquarters location or regional commission, and who maintain a lien on their post at the parent duty station, are temporarily promoted for the duration of the assignment. This means that while being temporarily promoted, such staff members may apply to positions one level higher than their temporary grade as long as they have been on that assignment for more than one year. At the end of their posting, the staff member will however revert to their original level at the former duty station and may then only apply to job openings one level above their original level.

If a staff member from an HQ duty station goes on assignment to a field mission for three months or less, he or she it will be on travel status basis (i.e. in receipt of daily subsistence allowance).

Non-family duty station

I am a General Service staff member working at one of the headquarters duty stations. If I go on assignment to a non-family duty station what salary scale will I be paid under?

For the purpose of payment of salary and allowances, General Service staff members who are assigned to a non-family duty station are temporarily converted to the Field Service level for the duration of their assignment. The staff member’s pensionable remuneration, however, will remain at the General Service level. Upon return to the parent duty station, the staff will revert to their General Service level.

I am serving in a non-family duty station. Am I eligible to get travel paid for my family to go to a closer place than my home country? There is, for instance, a duty station within my mission that will become a family duty station.

Entitlements are based on the duty station where the staff member is assigned. As you are assigned to a non-family duty station, there is no entitlement to travel of your family members to the duty station or an alternative location. However, you are entitled to the non-family hardship allowance, which compensates for the added financial burden and psychological hardship of being separated from your family members.

I work at a Headquarters duty station, what will happen to my family if I go on assignment to a non-family duty station? Will they be repatriated to my home country?

Family members of staff members assigned to non-family duty station are normally expected to remain at the parent duty station during a staff member’s mission assignment. However, where the entitlement exists, staff members would be given the option to travel their family members to the place of home leave under the home leave travel or advance home leave travel entitlement. When the staff member returns to the parent duty station, eligible family members may travel back against the return leg of home leave travel or advance home leave travel.

Effective 1 July 2011, and following the General Assembly’s decision to harmonize conditions of service for staff serving in non-family duty stations, staff who serve in a non-family duty station will get an additional hardship allowance. The amount is between $500 and $1900 per month depending on the staff member’s level and dependency status.

Which duty stations are currently designated non-family duty stations?

Please click here for the latest list of non-family duty stations designated by the International Civil Service Commission, which is effective from 1 July 2014.

Examinations & Tests

G-to-P/G-to-N

Are staff members who plan to sit for the YPP examination allowed to take time off to prepare for and attend the examination?

Subject to your supervisor’s approval, you should be allowed to take the YPP examination without having to take annual leave. Preparation for the examination should be done outside of working hours.

Are there particular P positions reserved for internal candidates or will rostered staff members be competing against other successful YPP candidates for the same positions?

In the recruitment process the Hiring Managers will review profiles of all eligible rostered candidates from all three tracks and choose the most suitable based on merit. Whilst staff members on the G-to-P track who pass the YPP examination will fill up to 10% of all the YPP positions available, there are no specific posts earmarked for candidates moving from the General Service and related categories to the P level.

Can I apply for the YPP examination as a UN Secretariat staff member?

Yes, if you meet the basic YPP requirements advertised on the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/YPP). Other FAQs will explain to you what basic requirements are.

Generally, there are three different tracks for UN staff member to apply: The so-called external track, the G-to-P track and the G-to-N track.

  • If you are a Professional staff member you can only apply via the external track if you fulfil the eligibility requirements.
  • If you are General Service staff you can apply via the G-to-P track (from the General Service to internal UN quota for Professional service) or via the G-to-N track (from the General Service to national quota for Professional service) if you fulfil the eligibility requirements which differ from track to track. You can find the eligibility requirements for each track on the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/YPP). Up to 10% of vacant P-1/P-2 posts are reserved for successful candidates on the G-to-P track. If you are successful on the G-to-N track you have been invited to sit the exam like the applicants via the external track. A total of 90% of vacant P-1/P-2 posts are reserved for successful G-to-Ns and externals. If you have applied, been eligible and invited to sit the exam on the G-to-P and the G-to-N track at the same time, you will automatically be considered only as a G-to-N candidate throughout the entire exam process.
Can I apply for the YPP examination if I work for a UN agency, fund or a programme?

The YPP is a programme of the UN Secretariat. If you work for a UN agency, fund or a programme you can apply via the external track but not as G-to-P or G-to-N. The only exception is made for staff members at UNJPSF, UNEP and UN-HABITAT who are considered Secretariat staff members for the purpose of exam. As such, those staff members in the General Service and related categories or Field Service category FS-5 and below can apply for YPP job openings listed ‘for Secretariat Staff G-to-P’ and ‘for Secretariat Staff G-to-N’ , provided that they meet all of the eligibility criteria. You can find the eligibility requirements for each track on the Careers Portal (careers.un.org/YPP).

Can I apply to sit the YPP examination in more than more exam area?

Only if you are the G-to-P candidate you can apply for up to two exam areas provided you meet the eligibility criteria. If you are convoked to sit the examination in two exam areas, you will have to sit for both exams on the same day.

Can I arrive late to the YPP examination?

All candidates must register at the examination venue. Depending on the layout of the venue and the number of candidates this process might take some time. You also need to consider strengthened security arrangements at some locations. After your arrival to the exam room you also need to be seated according to a special seating arrangement. All these procedures could be time consuming and must be taken into consideration when planning your arrival. No late arrivals are allowed after the start of the exam In order to protect the secrecy of the examination questions at different locations around the world. Check the Careers Portal https://careers.un.org/YPP for registration times of each venue and for additional instructions.

Can I change my preferred examination centre?

Once convoked, you can change your preferred examination venue within the timeframe provided. The period to request examination centre change will be communicated to convoked candidates. Once the deadline for changing examination centres has passed, we will no longer be able to accommodate any change requests.

Can I use any digital devices during the exam?

The use of a digital device (including but not limited to cell phones, MP3 players, cameras, or other telecommunication devices capable of capturing or relaying information) is strictly prohibited during the administration of the exam. If you use a digital device during the examination you may be disqualified from the YPP.

Can the YPP examination be done on-line?

No, the YPP examination is a paper based-exam. The UN is currently looking into possibilities how to a computer based exam but no changes in the examination format are foreseen for the YPP 2015.

How do I know to which of the different job openings I should apply?

Similar to other UN job openings applicants need to fulfil some basic requirements to be eligible to apply. The list below can help you see which category to apply for. For detailed applicable UN rules and regulations please refer to ST/AI/2012/2/Rev.1.

This is a list of basic requirements, which candidates need to fulfil to be eligible to apply:

  • Nationality – Nationality is important if you are applying via the G-to-N or external track. Only nationals of one of the Member States participating in the examination in a particular year can apply to the YPP via the G-to-N or external track. There is no requirement to have the nationality of a participating Member State if you apply via the G-to-P track.
  • Age – Age is important if you are applying via the G-to-N or external track. You must be 32 years or younger at the end of the examination year in order to be eligible to apply. There is no maximum age requirement if you apply via the G-to-P track.
  • Language – All applicants must be fluent in either English or French. They must indicate this on their application regardless if one of the two is their mother tongue or current working language. Candidates who are not fluent in either of these two languages will be screened out.
  • UN Contract expiry date – This requirement is important for the G-to-P and G-to-N applicants. You need to hold a UN appointment valid until at least six months after the examination. If your contract is currently not valid until six months after the examination date, you are required to attach a letter from your Executive Office to your online application stating the intent to renew your contract at least until that date.
  • UN Secretariat work experience – This requirement is important for the G-to-P applicants. You need to have a minimum of five years of continuous service in the Secretariat at the time you apply for the examination, excluding any service in separately administered funds or programme of the UN. At the discretion of the Central Examinations Board, breaks in service of not more than six months may be permissible.
  • Education – This requirement is important for all tracks: G-to-P, G-to-N and external. You must hold at least a first-level university degree, such as a bachelor’s or another undergraduate degree, relevant to the exam area in which you wish to sit the examination. Relevant means that you should have studied one of the fields that are listed in the job opening through which you want to apply under “Education”, like in any other inspira job opening. The requirement for a three-year first level university degree may only be waived for applicants who have post-secondary academic qualifications and who have five years of continuous service in the United Nations Secretariat by 31 December 1989. The relevant field of study can never be waived, also not if you have assembled many years of relevant work experience.
  • Performance rating – This requirement is important for G-to-P and G-to-N applicants. You need to have a rating of at least Successfully meets performance expectations in your last two (for G-to-P applicants) or one (depending on the length of service with the Organization for G-to-N applicants) available performance assessments. Incomplete performance assessments documents will not be taken into consideration.
How often are YPP examinations held?

YPP examinations are held annually. Each year the UN invites un- and under-represented Member States to participate in the programme. It is up to the Member States to decide whether they want to participate.

I am a Junior Professional Officer/Associate Expert, consultant, UN Volunteer, National Professional Officer or an intern. Can I apply for the YPP examination?

You may apply as external candidate provided that you meet the criteria for external candidates (advertised on the Careers Portal: https://careers.un.org/YPP).  You should use a non-UN inspira account to apply for the relevant job opening (i.e., not the account with your index number). You also do not need to wait for 6 months after finishing your UN assignment before applying for the Young Professionals Programme.

I am a new staff member applying as a G-to-N. I do not have a performance assessment document (ePAS), can I still apply?

If you are a new staff member, you can submit an application without attaching a performance report. Please indicate in the application in the “Cover Letter & Additional Info section that you don’t have a performance assessment document.

I am a staff member in the Professional category or field service staff in the FS-6 category. Can I apply for the YPP examination?

Yes, you can apply via the external track if the country of your nationality is participating in the YPP. You will compete with top 40 applicants from your country to be convoked to the test. If successful you will be considered for 90% of vacant P-1/P-2 posts.

I am a staff member on a temporary appointment (I don’t have a fix-term or continuous/permanent contract). Can I apply for the YPP examination?

If you are a staff member on a temporary appointment, you can apply via the external track if the country of your nationality is participating in that year’s YPP and you meet other minimum criteria (advertised on the Careers Portal: careers.un.org/YPP). You can also apply as G-to-N if you meet the relevant criteria (advertised on the Careers Portal: careers.un.org/YPP) and your country of nationality is participating in the YPP. In that case you will be able to apply through your UN staff inspira account and apply for the G-to-N job opening. Via the G-to-N track you can apply to only one job opening. Submitting two or more applications will result in automatic disqualification of that candidate.

I am a staff member with a contract administered by UNDP. Can I apply to the YPP?

You cannot apply as a G-to-P or G-to-N candidate. However, you can apply as an external candidate if the country of your nationality is participating in the YPP and you meet the eligibility criteria.

I am a staff member with dual nationality. Can I apply for the YPP examination with either nationality?

This question is relevant for the applicants via the G-to-N and the external track. If you have more than one nationality and all/both countries of your nationality are participating in the YPP you can choose which nationality you want to apply under. If you have the nationality of only one of the countries participating in the YPP then you will need to use that nationality in order to apply. If successful you will need to use the nationality you applied under as your main nationality for the purposes of the UN. Please note that your preferred nationality must be indicated in your online application as the "Country of nationality". You find this by clicking on the tab “Cover Letter & Additional Information”. The country-of-nationality drop down list is in the box on the bottom of this page which is called “Personal Information”. Please do also indicate your nationality in the “Profile” portion of your online application.

The G-to-P applicants please note that you may apply under one of your nationalities other than the nationality recognized by the UN. However, if successful in the examination, the currently recognized nationality will be changed to the nationality under which you passed the examination. You won’t be allowed to revert to your previously recognized nationality for the purposes of your employment at the UN during your entire career with the UN.

I have an important appointment that I cannot miss on the day of the examination. Can I take the examination earlier or later on that day or any time before or after the announced examination date?

No, this is not possible. All examinees must start at the same time and remain in the examination centre until the end of the examination according to the specific schedule of their examination centre. There is no makeup examination; there are no exceptions, not even for medical or other compelling reasons.

I have submitted my application but forgot to attach the requirements. Can I still upload the required documents?

Applicants who already submitted their applications can still upload the required documents as follows: After having logged into inspira (inspira.un.org) go to -> My Career Tools (= the box in the middle on the top of the home screen) -> My Profile (a link in the lower right corner of that box) -> Careers Home (tab in the upper left corner) -> Attachments -> Add another attachment and save.

I have very poor handwriting. Can I use a typewriter or a computer during the YPP examination?

No, this is not possible. The examination is paper-based, so we strongly encourage you to write as legibly as possible. Successful candidates have told us that they have practiced their handwriting for several months prior to the exam. Exceptions are made only on medical grounds on case by case basis.

I meet the relevant eligibility criteria. Can I apply both to the job opening marked ‘for UN Secretariat Staff G-to-P’ and to the job opening marked ‘for UN Secretariat Staff G-to-N’?

Yes, a staff member in the General service and related categories (including Field Service category, FS-5 and below) who meets the eligibility criteria for each opening can apply both as G-to-P and as G-to-N provided they meet other eligibility criteria. If you have applied, been eligible and invited to sit the exam on the G-to-P and the G-to-N track at the same time, you will automatically be considered only as a G-to-N candidate throughout the entire exam process.

I need to add/correct some information on my application. Can I withdraw and resubmit my application?

Even after submitting an application you can change the contact information in your profile, including your email address or phone number. However, the substantive part of your application (including the cover letter, work experience, education details and references) cannot be edited after an application has been submitted. If you withdraw an application (whether intentionally, or by accident), you cannot submit a new application for the same exam area.

I passed the written part of the YPP examination but failed the oral examination. Do I need to repeat both parts of the examination at a subsequent examination?

Yes, you will have to go through the entire examination process again, starting with the submission of your application. The YPP examination is comprised of both a written and oral examination, and results from one examination year do not carry over to another examination year.

I recently completed my B.A. degree but have not received my diploma. What can I attach to my application to show proof that I have completed my degree?

You can attach a letter from your university certifying that you have completed the degree. This letter should include the date of completion and the field of study, not only the title of the degree.

I was invited to take last year’s YPP examination, but I did not take it. May I take this year’s examination?

No. In order to take this year’s examination, you must submit a new application, meet all eligibility requirements, and be convoked to the examination.

I was not successful in the YPP examination. Can I receive information regarding my scores for each part of the examination to identify the areas I need to work on?

Because of the high number of applicants, we regretfully cannot communicate individual results.

I will be obtaining my B.A. in June of next year. Can I apply?

No. In order to be eligible, you must already hold a relevant degree by the time of the application.

I will be obtaining my Master's degree in June of next year. I already have a B.A. Am I eligible?

Your eligibility depends on many factors. In regard to the necessary education, you should hold at least a first-level university degree with a field of study which is listed in the job opening through which you apply. This means that you do not need a Master’s degree to be eligible.

If I am successful in the YPP exam and placed on the roster how long will it take me to be recruited?

The number of candidates placed on the roster is closely linked with the number of positions that are projected to become available while the roster is open. Each year, only the number of candidates that match the projected vacancies plus 10 % is placed on the roster. Offers for available posts are made quarterly to successful candidates and are subject to the requirements of the Organization.

For these reasons, successful YPP candidates can expect to be placed in the timeframe of two years while they are on their respective rosters. When the roster closes after two years and some candidates have not been recruited despite the projections they will unfortunately no longer be considered for posts and will have to re-sit the YPP examination if they wish to be reconsidered.

If I finish the examination early will I be allowed to leave?

No, all examinees must remain in the examination room until the examination ends and all booklets are collected, even if you have finish early. To ensure transparency of the examination and safety of examination material the exams need to be counted and accounted for at the end of each exam. This procedure can take some time. You should take this into consideration when planning your transportation home from the exam location. The UN must also make sure that candidates don’t communicate with each other between different venues. That is why you have to remain in the room even if you have finished your exam. 

Is submitting my PHP sufficient to apply for YPP?

If you fulfil the basic requirements as stated in the job opening (under Education, Work Experience and Languages) you are applying to then you only need to attach the last two (for G-to-P applicants) or one (depending on the length of service with the Organization for G-to-N applicants) available performance assessment. The performance assessment must contain all pages. Incomplete performance assessments documents will not be taken into consideration.

If your contract expires sooner than six months after the exam, you will need a letter from your Executive Office clearly stating the intent to renew your contract at least until six months after the exam. A recent Personnel Action sheet is sufficient if the contract date meets the six month criteria. Please be aware that inspira does not automatically have access to your personnel file, and neither do we. The screening process is done entirely on the basis of the information in your online application. 

If your field of study does not clearly match the fields of study in the job opening you are applying for, attaching a transcript of your studies will be helpful to determine your eligibility.

What career opportunities are there after I am recruited?

All successful candidates will be initially appointed at the P-1or P-2 level, depending on your qualifications. Candidates appointed at the P-1 level shall be promoted to a position at the P-2 level following a minimum of two years of satisfactory performance and depending on the availability of posts. Thereafter, candidates may apply for positions at the P-3 level through the staff selection system so long as they meet the necessary qualifications. After two years of service you will also be eligible for mandatory rotation to a different post. This rotation could be geographical or within the same duty station.

You will also be offered orientation and mobility training as well as career support. This will help you adapt and accelerate the learning period leading to productive work and job satisfaction as an international civil servant.

What exam areas are offered for the YPP examination?

The exam areas offered in a particular year depend on the projected needs of the UN. They are announced on YPP Careers portal: https://careers.un.org/YPP. Most exam areas will be offered every second year but there could be changes to this schedule.

What if I cannot find my Main Course of Study or Field of Study in the drop-down menu?

If your exact education is not listed in the drop-down menu, please select the closest relevant option and explain discrepancies under the Additional Comments. Refrain from choosing other in these two fields because this will screen your application out automatically. Please not also that the Specialization field will not be considered in the screening process.

What is next if I am successful in the YPP examination?

As a successful YPP candidate you will be placed on a roster of qualified candidates who can be selected for available positions within the Organization. Offers of posts are made quarterly to successful candidates and are subject to the requirements of the Organization. You may also be contacted for temporary positions. Although every effort will be made to secure employment for successful YPP candidates, please note that being placed on the YPP roster does not guarantee you a job at the United Nations. Placement from the roster is done in accordance with the needs of the Organization and the availability of positions. Your membership on the roster will expire after two years.

What is the difference between the G-to-P and the G-to-N track?

In order to apply for the G-to-P track you need to have a minimum of five years of continuous service in the Secretariat at the time you apply for the examination. This is not necessary for the G-to-N track where you only need to have a valid contract with the UN Secretariat. On the G-to-N track you need to be 32 years or younger at the time of the examination, which doesn’t apply for the G-to-P track. For the G-to-N track you need to be a national of a participating member state, which is not the case for the G-to-P track.

For both, G-to-P and G-to-N you need to have a valid contract at least until six months after the exam date. Fluency in either English or French and academic requirements are necessary for the G-to-P as well as the G-to-N track. For details on different criteria please see the Frequently Asked Questions – How do I know to which of the different job openings I should apply to?

If successful on the G-to-P track you will be eligible for up to 10% of vacant P-1/P-2 posts. If successful in the G-to-N track you will be eligible for at least 90% of vacant P-1/P-2 posts.

If you have passed the exam through the G-to-P track it is not mandatory that you accept to move to another duty station for the first assignment, but possible if you so wish. However, as a G-to-P candidate you are expected to accept the first position offered if it is in the same duty station. If you joined via the G-to-N track you will have to take the first position offered, regardless of department or duty station. You will also be subject to mandatory rotation to a different duty station after your first two-year posting.

What is the format of the YPP examination?

Please go to the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/YPP) and open the tab “Exam structure”.

What is the G-to-N track?

This track is foreseen for Secretariat staff members in the General Service and related categories (including Field Service category, FS-5 and below) who have the nationality of a participating country. The list of participating countries is published annually and varies from year to year, depending on their geographical representation in the UN. You can apply as G-to-N candidates, if you satisfy the following criteria:

  • You are 32 years or younger at the end of the examination year.
  • You have a UN appointment valid until at least six months after the examination. If your contract is currently not valid until six months after the examination date, you are required to attach a letter from your Executive Office to your online application stating the intent to renew your contract at least until that date.
  • You have a rating of at least Successfully meets performance expectations in your last two available performance assessments. Incomplete performance assessments documents will not be taken into consideration.
  • You hold at least a first-level university degree, such as a bachelor’s or another undergraduate degree, relevant to the exam area in which you wish to sit the examination.
  • You are fluent in either English or French.

IMPORTANT: To apply as a G-to-N candidate use your staff member inspira account (not an external account), using your index number, and apply to the job opening entitled “YPP EXAMINATION (for UN Secretariat Staff G-to-N)”. Applications submitted to a wrong job opening will be automatically screened out. Please be aware that in cases of incomplete or inaccurate data your applications will not be considered.

What is the G-to-P track?

This track is for for Secretariat staff members in the General Service and related categories (including Field Service category, FS-5 and below). You can apply as a G-to-P applicant, if you satisfy the following criteria:

  • You have a minimum of five years of continuous service in the Secretariat at the time you apply for the examination, excluding any service in separately administered funds or programmes. Short breaks in service of not more than six months may be allowed at the discretion of the Central Examinations Board.
  • You have a UN appointment valid until at least six months after the examination. If your contract is currently not valid until six months after the examination date, you are required to attach a letter from your Executive Office to your online application stating the intent to renew your contract at least until that date.
  • You have a rating of at least Successfully meets performance expectations in your last two available performance assessments. Incomplete performance assessments documents will not be taken into consideration.
  • You hold at least a first-level university degree relevant to the exam area in which you wish to sit the examination. The requirement for a three-year first level university degree may be waived for applicants who have post-secondary academic qualifications and who have five years of continuous service in the United Nations Secretariat by 31 December 1989. The relevant field of study can never be waived, also not if you have assembled many years of relevant work experience.
  • You are fluent in either English or French.

To apply as a G-to-P candidate, log into your UN staff inspira account using your UN index number and apply to the job opening entitled “YPP EXAMINATION (for UN Secretariat Staff G-to-P)”.

What is the meaning of P-1 level?

These are the levels used to classify entry-level professional positions at the United Nations. P-1/P-2 level is at the entry level and does not normally require any extensive work experience. Please visit the Staff categories page of the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/lbw/home.aspx?viewtype=SC) for more information. For salaries and other benefits you can visit https://careers.un.org/lbw/home.aspx?viewtype=SAL

What should I bring to the examination centre?

You need to bring:

  • Your application number, which will be sent to you in an email by inspira immediately after you submit your application. To find the application number you can check at any time your inspira notification centre. For instructions how to find the notification centre go to https://careers.un.org/YPP
  • Your convocation letter, which we will send to you per email once your eligibility has been determined
  • A valid national photo ID (valid national ID or passport)
  • 2 sharpened pencils
  • 2 Dark blue or black ink pens

You may also bring some light food (candies, chocolate, etc.) and refreshments (clear water or juice bottle, etc.) that will not distract others in the room. Smoking is not allowed in the examination room. Generally, there is no dress code to participate in the examination. However, some examination centres, depending on the location, may require a dress code to enter the premises (e.g., military institutions). Please be aware that some examination venues might be rather cool or warm, so you should prepare according to the local climate and weather. We suggest that you to periodically check the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/YPP) for examination centre details and important updates.

IMPORTANT: You are required to check the Careers Portal (careers.un.org/YPP) and the tab “Examination centre” for location, time and any specific requirements for your examination centre.

What should I do if I cannot see my examination centre/venue listed on the Examination centres page?

All examination venues are listed on the Careers Portal (careers.un.org/YPP) latest in November. If you are a staff member serving in a location without an examination centre please contact the YPP team at YPP2015@un.org.

What type of contract will be offered to staff recruited through the YPP?

Candidates who pass the YPP examination will be offered a two-year fixed term contract at the start of their Professional career with the Secretariat. After two years, they will be granted a continuing contract, subject to satisfactory performance. An exception is made for staff members who pass the YPP examination and already hold a permanent or a continuous contract. As a permanent or a continuous contract is an acquired right, this will not be removed, and such staff members will simply keep their existing status as they move to a Professional position.

Candidates can also be offered a temporary contract while they are waiting for an available post. Such contract is not a fixed-term two year contract for the purposes of the YPP and does not carry the expectation of renewal after the expiry of the contract. Temporary contracts are an effective way to gain experience on the new level while waiting to be recruited to a fixed term P-1/P-2 post.

When is the YPP examination held?

The YPP examination is held in select examination centres worldwide on the same day. The date (usually a day in December), locations and specific times will be announced on the Careers Portal at https://careers.un.org/YPP during the fall of a given year.

When should I expect the results of the YPP examination and how will I be notified?

The marking of the written examination is usually completed within 3-4 months of the examination. The interviews normally take place 1–2 months after the written examination has been marked. YPP candidates should regularly check the Careers Portal https://careers.un.org/YPP for updates. 

Where can I find any information about my examination centre?

All details regarding each examination centre will be posted on the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/YPP) at the latest in November.

Will staff members who pass the YPP examination have any choice regarding the duty station of their first placement? Will they have to take the first position offered to them?

If you have passed the G-to-P it’s not mandatory that you accept to move to another duty station for the first assignment but it is possible, if you so wish. However, as a G-to-P candidate you are expected to accept the first position offered if it is in the same duty station.

Candidates who join the YPP through the G-to-N track will have to take the first position offered to them, regardless of department or duty station. They will also be subject to mandatory rotation to a different duty station after their first two-year posting.

Will staff who pass the YPP examination be given the same personal development opportunities as external YPP candidates?

Yes. There is no distinction between successful internal or external YPP candidates regarding development opportunities.

Will the change from G to P/NCRE to YPP mean that there are more positions available to staff who pass the examination?

This may vary from year to year. In both the old and the new system, Secretariat staff who pass(ed) the examination are (were) eligible to compete for a proportion of the total number of positions available to successful candidates. With the old NCRE system, GS staff (and those in related categories) who passed the examination were entitled to a reserved portion of P-1 and P-2 posts, consisting of 10% of the number of staff, other than language staff, recruited during the previous year at the P-1 and P-2 levels after passing a competitive examination, plus up to seven positions in non-geographic locations and up to three positions in high vacancy duty stations.

Since the change to from the NCRE to the YPP in 2011, successful GS staff are still entitled to up to 10% of all regular P-1 / P-2 posts being filled through the YPP in a given year, and 15% of all extra-budgetary P-1 / P-2 posts (A/65/537) that are not financed through peacekeeping budget.

So, for example, in 2011, a total of 96 candidates passed the YPP examination and were placed on the roster. Of the 96 successful candidates, 11 were internal candidates. If 96 positions become available, up to 10% of 96 positions (i.e. 10) should be filled with internal candidates.

The exact number of posts available varies from year to year, depending on the job families the examination is offered in and the changing needs of the Organization. However, in any case, the variety of positions will be greater since the introduction of the YPP, as the inclusion of extra-budgetary posts means that there are more opportunities for field experience and international exposure.

Language Proficiency Examinations

After I click "Browse Catalog", I get the message below.
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

The issue is related to how the security of "cross-domains" is handled in Internet Explorer, adding the "https://elearning.un.org" domain to the list of trusted sites should fix the issue.

1. Go to Internet Explorer >> Internet Options >> Security

2. Add "https://elearning.un.org" to the list of trusted sites

Am I eligible for the LPE if I have not taken any courses or use the language at work, but I speak the language at home regularly since I am a child or with my spouse?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

No, using the language at home does not fulfill the eligibility criteria.

Are all UNDP staff eligible to register for the LPE Examination?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Please note that only UNDP staff members who are in the General Service Category and on Fixed Term or Permanent Appointments are eligible for UNDP endorsement to take the Language Proficiency Exam according to UNDP practice. If you need further clarification, please contact UNDP directly.

Are civilian police, military observers and members of national military contingents serving in missions considered UN Secretariat staff members?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

No, civilian police, military observers and members of national military contingents serving in missions are not considered UN Secretariat staff members. 

Are interns of United Nations System considered staff members of United Nations common system?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

No, interns are not considered staff members of United Nations system.

Are Junior Professional Officers (JPOs) considered staff members of the UN common system?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Yes, JPOs are staff members of the UN entity that issued their letter of appointment. Therefore, Associate Experts or Junior Professional Officers of the UN Secretariat are considered UNS (internal) staff members. Those working with UNDP or UNICEF for instance are considered staff members of UNDP or UNICEF, external staff for the purposes of the LPE.

Are National Professional Officers working at UN Secretariat field missions considered staff members?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Yes, National Professional Officers are considered staff members.

Are United Nations Volunteers (UNVs) considered staff members of United Nations Common System?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Yes, UNVs are staff members of the UN Common System, but they are not staff members of the UN Secretariat (UNS). Therefore, they are considered "external applicants" for the purpose of the LPE. Eligible UNVs may be convoked to the LPE as external candidates, only if UNV - Bonn Headquarters endorses and is responsible for payment of the LPE fee.

I have a UNDP-issued letter of appointment. Am I considered a Staff Member of the United Nations Secretariat?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

If your letter of appointment is issued by a UNDP office on behalf of an agency, fund or programme, you are considered a staff member of the UN Common System and you must select your corresponding agency, fund or programme, when registering for the LPE. Alternatively, and strictly for the purpose of registering for the LPE, if your letter of appointment is issued on behalf of an office or department belonging to the UN Secretariat, such as OCHA or DSS, then you are considered a staff member of the UN Secretariat and you must select UNS (United Nations Secretariat) when registering for the LPE.

If the agency/organization that I worked for does not endorse the payment of my LPE registration fee, can I opt to pay the fee myself?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

No, individuals may not pay the registration fee directly to the UN to register for LPE. 

In inspira, after I click on "Browse Catalog" in "My Learning", I see the message "You do not have access to Catalog items. Please contact your System Administrator." Who should I contact?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

This message means that you have not requested for access to the examination catalog items. Go to My Learning, then click Request for Learning, then select LPE as the Learning Type. The guide "How to create an account in inspira (external applicant) posted here covers how to request for such access. Please try the steps outlined in the guide. 

The "Appointment Type" and/or "Appointment Expiry" date in inspira does not reflect my contract type and/or expiry date. How can I correct this?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

These fields in inspira are pre-populated from a snap-shot of Umoja and may not be the most up-to-date. These fields will not be used in the eligibility screening process. Please attach a copy of your contract which states the correct expiry date to the application. Click Add Attachment, then select Contract Extension as Document Type. You may also make a note in the comment box to the Local Administrator that the correct expiry date is shown in your attachment.

What should I do if I get the message below after I click "Submit Enrollment"?
Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Please attach a proof of your contract which states the correct appointment expiry date to the application. Click Add Attachment, then select Contract Extension as Document Type. It is important that you choose Contract Extension and NOT Contractual Status as Document Type in order to bypass this error message. 

YPP programme

Are staff members allowed to take time off to prepare for and attend the YPP examination?

Subject to your supervisor’s approval, staff should be allowed to take the YPP examination without having to take annual leave.  Preparation for the examination should be done outside of work hours.

Are staff members at UNEP and UN-Habitat eligible to apply for the YPP as Secretariat staff (‘G to P’ and ‘G to N’ candidates)?

Staff at UNEP and UN-HABITAT are considered Secretariat staff members for this purpose.  As such, those in the General Service and related categories or Field Service category FS-5 and below can apply for YPP job openings listed ‘for Secretariat Staff G to P’ and ‘for Secretariat Staff G to N’ , provided that they meet all of the relevant eligibility criteria.

Are staff members placed at the professional level from the YPP examination given the same personal development opportunities as external YPP candidates?

Yes, absolutely. No distinction is made between YPP participants in terms of development opportunities offered.

Are staff members who plan to sit for the YPP examination allowed to take time off to prepare for and attend the examination?

Subject to your supervisor’s approval, staff should be allowed to take the YPP examination without having to take annual leave. Preparation for the examination should be done outside of work hours, or during leave.

Can a JPO/ Associate Expert, consultant, UNV or intern apply for the YPP examination?

Only Secretariat staff from the General Service and related categories and Field Service staff FS-5 and below can apply for the YPP examination as a staff member (‘G to P’) or through the route referred to as ‘G to N’. JPOs/ Associate Experts, consultants, UN Volunteers and interns may apply for the YPP examination only as an external candidate if they meet all criteria for the YPP. For details of how to apply, external candidates should refer to the instructions on the UN Careers Portal and should use a non-UN inspira account to apply for the relevant job opening (i.e. not the account with their index number). 

Can a staff member in the Professional category or field service staff in the FS-6 category apply for the YPP examination?

Only Secretariat staff from the General Service and related categories and Field Service staff FS-5 and below can apply for the YPP examination as a staff member (‘G to P’) or through the route referred to as ‘G to N’. Other categories of staff may apply for the YPP examination as an external candidate, provided that they:

are 32 years or younger at the end of the examination year;
are a national of a participating country. The list of participating countries is published annually and varies from year to year (Go to careers.un.org/ypp or /yppfr for clarification);
hold at least a first-level university degree, relevant to the job family in which they would like to take the examination;
are fluent in either English or French (knowledge of other official United Nations languages is an asset).

For details of how to apply, external candidates should refer to the instructions at: careers.un.org/YPPapplicationprocess.

The information is also available in French at: careers.un.org/YPPderoulementdelaselection.

Please note that such candidates should use a non-UN inspira account to apply for the relevant job opening (i.e. not the account with their index number).

A staff member in the Professional or FS-6 category cannot apply to the job opening marked ‘for UN Secretariat Staff G to N’ nor ‘for UN Secretariat Staff G to P’.

Can a staff member on a temporary appointment apply for the YPP examination?

If you are a temporary contract holder in the General Service and related categories and would like to apply for the G to N examination, you will be allowed to apply as an internal applicant in inspira on an exceptional basis. If your contract is currently not valid until six months after the examination date (4 June 2015), you MUST attach a letter to your online application from your Executive Office stating the intent to renew your contract until at least 4 June 2015. You must create an internal inspira account with your UN ID and email address (if you already have an internal inspira account, you can use it). This account will allow you to apply for one of the job openings, as long as you meet all of the eligibility requirements. Please note that you can apply to only one job opening and that submitting multiple applications will result in automatic disqualification. You will need to build your application and full profile if you had only an external inspira account so far. You will not be allowed to apply to any other jobs with this internal inspira account. 

Can I apply to sit the YPP examination in more than more job family?

External applicants and staff applying through the ‘G to N’ route can only apply to one job family. Submitting applications for more than one job family will result in automatic disqualification.

Internal applicants (that is, Secretariat staff in the General service and related categories (including Field Service category, FS-5 and below) who meet the relevant eligibility criteria including five years of continuous Secretariat service and successful performance in the last two appraisals), can apply for up to two job families from the job openings marked ‘for UN Secretariat Staff G to P’. Submitting applications for more than two job families will result in automatic disqualification.

If staff members choose to sit the examination in two job families, they will have to sit for both job families’ Specialized Papers on the same examination day.

Can I arrive late to the YPP examination?

Arriving late is not permitted.

Can I be selected and placed at any time?

The placement of Young Professionals will be conducted centrally four times a year through a ‘recruitment campaign’ in the months of January, April, July and October. Should positions be available within your job family, you will receive a notification of the vacant posts via email and you will be asked to rank the positions in order

of preference. Hiring managers will also be required to create job openings in our estaffing portal, Inspira. Your application will then be appended to those job openings for review by hiring managers. Upon logging in to Inspira you will be able to view all the job openings to which your application was appended. Should a hiring manager be interested in your candidature they may recommend your selection

immediately from the roster or they may contact you for a brief informal discussion related to the position. Upon receipt of the preferences of both the hiring managers and the candidates on the appropriate roster the YPP team will conduct a matching exercise to facilitate the placement. Should exceptional circumstances warrant the need of filling a post outside of the quarterly schedule, you may be contacted for only that particular position. At that point the opportunity to rank the post will not be available.

Can I obtain a job by applying for extra-budgetary P-2 positions advertised on the Careers Portal?

P-2 positions advertised online at careers.un.org are extra- budgetary positions available in the United Nations Secretariat and you are free to apply to them. Please note that

if you do apply for these positions and are considered suitable, the hiring manager can select you immediately from the roster. However, if you are selected you will not be given a YPP contract. If you are selected for such a position, you will still remain on the YPP roster. Some YPP candidates may prefer to apply for these positions to acquire experience while they are waiting for their YPP placement. Should you be interested and apply, please send us an e-mail confirming that you applied.

Can I take the examination earlier or later on that day or any time before or after the announced examination date?

No, this is not possible. All examinees must start and remain until the end of the examination according to the specific schedule of their examination centre. There is no makeup examination; there are no exceptions, not even for medical or other compelling reasons.

Can/ should NCREs placed within the UN now refer to themselves as being YPPs in their PHP and other documents, or should they continue to use the term NCRE?

For clarity, the term NCRE should still be used.

Do all successful candidates get a job offer?

Passing the examination does not guarantee a job but if you pass the YPP examination, you will most likely be offered a job. The number of candidates that pass is closely linked to the positions that are projected to become available. Hiring Managers select the most suitable candidate for the P-1 / P-2 position in each case. Job offers to successful candidates are made on a regular basis, subject to the requirements of the Organization filling the P-1 / P-2 positions that have become available at that point in time.

Do staff members successful in the YPP examination compete against all other successful YPP candidates for the same positions, or are there particular positions reserved for internal candidates?

Hiring Managers review profiles of all eligible successful candidates both internal and external to the UN and choose the most suitable based on merit. Whilst staff members who pass the YPP examination will fill up to 10% of all the YPP positions available, there are no specific posts earmarked for candidates moving from the GS and related categories to the P category.

Does the United Nations cover my travel expenses to take the examination?

No, the United Nations does not cover any cost incurred for taking the written examination. 

How is the written examination evaluated?

Examinees' responses are marked anonymously by a panel of markers for the General Paper and by the Specialized Board Members for the Specialized Paper.

How long can I expect to remain on the list of successful candidates?

The YPP list of successful candidates is valid for a period of two (2) years. We hope to place all successful candidates within this time frame, but if you are not placed you will be removed from the list. Should you remain interested in the Young Professionals Programme, you will be required to retake and successfully pass the YPP examination.

I am a staff member with dual nationality. Can I apply for the YPP examination with either nationality, or do I have to apply according to what the UN currently recognizes as my nationality?

Secretariat staff from the General Service and related categories and Field Service staff on FS-5 and below who are applying to the YPP examination as a staff member, or through the route referred to as ‘G to N’, should apply using the nationality that is already officially recognized by the United Nations in official documents received when joining the Organization. If the staff member is a dual national and his or her nationality recognized for UN purpose is not participating in the YPP examination while his or her other nationality is participating, the staff member should indicate that he/she wants to apply for the examination under the nationality not recognized by the Organization.  If successful, he/she will have to take the necessary steps to change his/her nationality by contacting his/her human resources office or OHRM.

If a staff member is a dual national and both his/her nationalities are participating in the YPP examination, the staff member should indicate under which nationality he/she wants to apply for the examination. If he/she chooses a nationality not recognized by the Organization and if he/she is successful, he/she will have to take the necessary steps to change his/her nationality accordingly. Please note that your preferred nationality must be indicated as the “country of nationality” in your application.

I cannot see my examination centre listed on the Examination centres page.

First, double check that you have entered your application number correctly. Your centre assignment will be sent to you via e-mail in addition to being listed on the site.
Only after the application period has closed will the final list of examination centres be posted and only then will you be able to see where you are invited to take the examination. For a limited period of time, which we will communicate to you, you can also let us know if you need to move to another examination centre.
Keep checking the Examination centres page for updated listings.

I have very poor handwriting, so can I use a typewriter or a computer during the YPP examination?

No, this is not possible. The examination is paper-based, so we strongly encourage you to write as legibly as possible.

I passed the written part of the YPP examination but failed the oral examination. Do I need to repeat both parts of the examination at a subsequent examination?

Yes, you will have to go through the entire examination process again, starting with the submission of your application. The YPP examination is comprised of both a written and oral examination, and results from one examination year do not carry over to another examination year.

I was invited to take last year’s YPP examination, but I did not take it. May I take this year’s examination?

In order to take this year’s examination, you must submit a new application, meet all eligibility requirements, and be convoked to take the examination.

I will be residing abroad on the written examination date. Can I take the examination?

The examination is administered in a limited number of examination centres, under the supervision of a United Nations official. On request, either when you submit your application or at least 6 weeks before the exam date, we will attempt to invite you to the location closest to your residence abroad.

If I am not successful in the YPP examination can I receive my scores for each part of the examination to identify the areas I need to work on?

We do not release individual results.

If I am selected, how many days do I have to accept or decline the position?

Upon receipt of the offer of appointment you will have seven (7) calendar days, to accept or decline any position offered.

In what language is the examination given and what language should I use to write the answers?

The written examination questions both for the General Paper and the Specialized Paper are provided in English and French, the two working languages of the Secretariat. Candidates must write their answers for the General Paper in either English or French. The Specialized Paper may be answered in any of the six official languages of the Secretariat, i.e. Arabic, Chinese, French, English, Russian or Spanish.

Is the YPP examination taken on a computer or on paper?

The examination is paper-based only and we strongly encourage you to write as legibly as possible.

Is there a quota for the number of placements from YPP internal roster?

Yes. The number of placements from the “YPP internal” roster is subject to paragraph 51 of General Assembly report A/65/305/ Add.4, “…10 per cent of the total pool of positions available for the programme [will] be earmarked for successful G-to-P candidates, who [can] be placed in any available post”. YPP internal candidates will be offered positions on a first come, first served, basis until the quota is met.

May I bring food?

You may bring some light food (sweets, chocolate, etc.)and liquids in a clear water or juice bottle that will not distract others in the room when you consume them.

May I see sample YPP examinations?

For sample examination papers, please go to: careers.un.org/YPPsampleexaminations in English, or careers.un.org/YPPexemplesdepreuves  in French.

What can I bring to the YPP examination centre? Is there a dress code to take the examination? What is not allowed in the examination centre?

Please bring black pens, pencils, highlighters, calculator, ruler, your convocation (invitation to examination) document, and a picture ID indicating your nationality (passport, citizenship card, etc.). You may also bring some light food (sweets, chocolate, etc.) and refreshments (in a clear water or juice bottle, etc.) that will not distract others in the room. Smoking is not allowed in the examination room. There is no dress code to participate in the examination. Please be aware that some examination rooms might be rather cool or warm, so you should prepare according to the local climate and weather. Please click here for a list of acceptable calculators.

Do NOT bring mobile phones, dictionaries, portable computers, reference materials, or draft/scrap paper. Should you bring any of these items, you will be required to leave them outside the examination room in a secure area for the whole duration of the examination.

What career opportunities will I have?

After the initial two years of satisfactory performance and depending on the availability of posts, you may apply for positions you qualify for at the P-3 level through the staff selection system.

 

What does the change from NCRE to YPP mean for successful NCRE candidates who have already been placed within the Organization?

There will be no change for NCRE candidates who were appointed before the implementation of the YPP and have already attended their orientation.

Those who have not been placed yet, will be invited to the same orientation as the YPP candidates and will participate in a rotation programme after having normally served in the Organization at the Professional level for two years.

What happens if I decline interest in being considered for a particular post?

While preferences made at the time of application will be taken into account for all YPP recruits, all successful candidates must be prepared to accept the first position offered within their occupational group. Should you decline to be considered for the position, you will be removed from the list of successful candidates unless your decline falls under the exceptional circumstances. The following are counted as declines: failing to participate in an interview; declining to accept a position after being selected; declining a formal offer of appointment; withdrawing your application in iInspira; putting your application on hold in iInspira without approval from the YPP team; failing to respond to emails or phone calls from hiring managers within a reasonable time period.

What happens next if I am successful in the YPP examination?

If you are successful you will be offered a job at the P-1 or P-2 level (for further information on contracts, please have a look at the next section of these FAQs). Within 3 to 9 months after the conclusion of the examination, you will be informed of up to three jobs for which you will be considered and will be given an opportunity to indicate your preference(s). While efforts are made to take preferences into account this may or may not be possible. You are strongly encouraged to accept the job offer as declining it can eliminate you from further consideration. Those not placed within two years will no longer be considered for posts and will have to re-sit the YPP examination if they wish to be reconsidered.

What happens once I receive the formal written offer from the respective Human Resources Office?

You will receive detailed information about the practical details of the offer. You will also be given further explanation about the specific instructions relating to the duty station. You will then go through the pre-formalities such as confirmation of reference checks and medical clearance.

What if I am late on arriving for the YPP examination?

Arriving late will disturb others and you will miss the instructions read at the start of the examination. Therefore, coming late is not permitted under any circumstance. 

What is NOT permitted in the room?

Do NOT bring mobile phones, portable computers or other electronic devices, dictionaries or any type of reference material, or draft/scrap paper. If you bring any of these items you will be required to leave them outside the examination room for the whole duration of the examination and we cannot guarantee there will be a secure area for them. 

What is the difference between ‘YPP external’ and ‘YPP internal’ candidates?

The YPP external roster consists of successful candidates who are nationals of countries which are not adequately represented in the United Nations Secretariat. These may include candidates who are not staff members of the United Nations Secretariat as well as staff members who took the exam on the basis of their nationality (G to N). The YPP internal roster consists of UN Secretariat staff members in the General Service and related categories and Field Service category, FS-5 and below, who are aspiring to serve in the Professional category.

What is the format of the YPP examination?

There are three parts and each part is eliminatory. The written examination consists of a general paper and a specialized paper. Those successful in both written parts are invited for a subsequent oral examination. . For details on the format of the examination, please go to: careers.un.org/YPPapplicationprocess in English, or to careers.un.org/YPPderoulementdelaselection in French.

What is the level of the initial placement for staff members who are successful in the YPP?

Your placement level will be determined primarily by the budgeted level of the position which can either be at a P-1 or P-2 level. For all P-2 level positions, successful candidates holding a bachelor’s degree and no work experience will be offered placement at the P-1 level. Successful candidates holding a bachelor’s degree and two years of work experience or a master’s degree and no work experience will be offered placement at the P-2 level.

What is the structure of the written examination?

The written examination lasts a total of four and a half hours. You manage your own time to complete two papers:

  • The General Paper, which is the same for all job families, tests your drafting abilities can be drafted in either English or French and is eliminatory.
  • The Specialized Paper tests your substantive knowledge corresponding to the job family you are taking the exam in and your analytical thinking; it can be written in any of the six UN official languages. 
What kind of reference materials could I use to prepare for the written part of the YPP examination?

You may want to go over newspapers, journals and books you used while studying at university and any other publications which you think may be useful or relevant to the job family you are applying for.

For sample examinations, go to careers.un.org/YPPexemplesdepreuves in French, or careers.un.org/YPPsampleexaminations in English. It is important to note that the sample examinations are meant to give you an idea of the sort of questions that might be asked, based on past examinations. The examination you will take will have different questions.

What MUST I bring with me to the YPP examination centre?

Bring your convocation (invitation to examination) document, and a picture ID indicating your nationality (passport, citizenship card, etc.) You will need black pens, and pencils. You will be allowed, highlighters, a ruler, and eventually, depending on the job family, a calculator. Please see the list of acceptable calculators.

What professional development support is there for YPP staff?

Young Professional staff are invited to participate in an Orientation and Career Support Programme upon their appointment. The main goals of this mandatory programme are to provide participants with a broader understanding of the UN system, build key skills such as communication, presentation, conflict resolution and diplomatic skills in a multicultural workplace, developing a network of colleagues, and offering guidance and support for professional development.

Young Professional staff will also be matched for one year with a senior colleague who will act as a mentor. They also have access to most of the in-house training programmes, including language classes.

What type of contract is offered to staff that are recruited through the YPP?

The purpose of the YPP examination is to recruit candidates for career positions at the Secretariat. Staff members who pass the YPP (G to P/G to N) examination will be offered a two-year fixed term contract at the start of their Professional career with the Secretariat. After two years they will be granted a continuing contract, subject to good performance. Staff members who pass the YPP examination and already hold a permanent contract simply keep their permanent contract as they move over to a Professional position.

What will happen to the Managed Reassignment Programme?

NCRE staff members will be invited to attend a reassignment programme, normally after having served in the Organization at the Professional level for two years.

When can I expect to start my new job?

The placement of Young Professionals is conducted on a quarterly basis or

four times a year. This is a coordinated effort between the Hiring Manager, Headquarters Staffing Section in the Office of Human Resources Management and the respective human resources office in the duty station for which you are selected. The official start date of your new job will depend on the needs of the hiring manager and/or your availability; however, you do have up to 90 days to assume your functions from the date an official offer was made to you.

When should I expect the results of the YPP examination and how will I be notified?

The marking of the written examination takes 3-4 months after the examination. The status of each job family is updated on the UN Careers Portal. All examinees are notified via email to their last updated email address. Please inform us of any change in your email address during the examination process so that a notification can be sent to your current email. The application numbers of examinees invited to the interview are also published. The interview usually takes place 1-2 months after the written examination has been marked. This means that you should be prepared to wait up to five months after the written examination for an interview.

Where can I direct other questions I may have?

For questions related to the YPP exam and roster, please email us at Ohrm_YPP@un.org.

Where can I find out more about the Young Professionals Programme (YPP)?

More detailed information is available on the Careers Portal (https://careers.un.org/ypp in English, and https://careers.un.org/yppfr in French), and on an Information Sheet and FAQs which can be found on the it’s for real! website. Please refer also to ST/AI/2012/2 for information on the YPP.

Where will I take the examination?

A preliminary list of examination centres is included in the application, allowing you to indicate your preference for where you would like to take the examination. Once the application period is closed, we will confirm whether you will be able to take the examination in the location of your choice. Within a limited period of time, which we will communicate to you, you can also let us know if you need to move to another examination centre. We make every effort to invite candidates to the centre nearest their place of residence. However, once the deadline for moving examination centres has closed, we will no longer be able to accommodate any changes in examination centre. 

Where will my candidature be sent?

Your candidature will be available for consideration across the global UN Secretariat. This includes UN offices in various duty stations such as Addis Ababa, Geneva, Vienna, Nairobi, Santiago, Beirut, Bangkok and New York, subsidiary offices and special political missions. 

Why am I getting a "Sorry, no results matching your criteria were found" message when I search on the Examination centres page?

There are several possibilities as to why you are getting this message. First, if you already have an application number, double check that you have entered your application number correctly. Second, it could be that you have not yet been sent an application number. Please note that application numbers will only be sent after the deadline for applications. Third, it may be that the examination centres have not been confirmed. Please note that examination centres are assigned a few weeks after candidates have been invited to the written examination. Keep checking the site for updated listings.

Will new NCRE staff members benefit from the YPP’s new style of orientation and training?

Yes, newly appointed NCRE and YPP staff members will attend the same orientation. They will be invited to the face-to-face Career Support and Orientation Programme normally within the first six months of serving at the Professional level.

Will staff members who are successful in the YPP examination be competing against other successful YPP candidates for the same positions, or are there particular P positions reserved for internal candidates?

When looking to fill a YPP position, Hiring Managers will review profiles of all eligible, successful candidates (including both those internal and external to the UN) and choose the most suitable based on merit. Whilst staff members who pass the YPP examination will fill up to 10% of all the YPP positions available, there are no specific posts earmarked for candidates moving from the GS and related categories to the P level.

Will staff members who are successful in the YPP examination be offered a P-1 or a P-2 position? Can they be offered a P-3 post if they have sufficient work experience?

Your placement level will be determined primarily by the budgeted level of the position which can either be at a P-1 or P-2 level. For all P-2 level positions, successful candidates holding a bachelor’s degree and no work experience will be offered placement at the P-1 level. Successful candidates holding a bachelor’s degree and two years of work experience or a master’s degree and no work experience will be offered placement at the P-2 level. Candidates shall be expected to serve for a minimum of two years in that position before being considered for appointment to another position.

Will staff members who pass the YPP examination have any choice about where they are placed (in terms of department and duty station)? Will they have to take the first position offered to them?

Whilst preferences made at the time of application will be taken into account where possible for all YPP recruits, all successful candidates must be prepared to accept the first position offered to them. Failure to do so will mean that they are removed from the list of successful candidates and made no further offers.

If you have passed the G to P it’s not mandatory that you accept to move to another duty station for the first assignment but possible if you so wish. However, as a G to P candidate you will have to accept the first position offered if it is in the same duty station.

Candidates who join the YPP through the G to N route (via a Job Opening marked ‘for UN Secretariat Staff G to N’) will have to take the first position offered to them (regardless of department or duty station). They will also be subject to mandatory rotation to a different duty station after their first two-year posting.

A staff member who applies and passes the examination both as an external (‘G to N’) and as an internal (‘G to P’) applicant and thus competes for the 90% of positions made available to external recruits will also be required to accept the first position offered to him or her (regardless of location) and be subject to mandatory rotation to a different duty station after the first two-year posting.

Will staff who pass the YPP examination be given the same personal development opportunities as external YPP candidates?

Yes. There is no distinction between YPP participants regarding development opportunities.

The enhanced Orientation and Career Support Programme consists of a blended learning methodology which include a pre-onboarding session and a face-to-face component. YPP participants will also be paired with a mentor who will provide further guidance to ensure successful and accelerated integration into the Organization.

YPP participants will also be expected to move to a different duty station after serving two years at the Professional level.

You previously asked for me to have all former employers and my universities confirm employment and degrees obtained. Do I need to take any further steps?

The YPP Team will be in touch if your file is incomplete. You do not need to contact your current employer until you are offered a position. If you still have pending verifications, have them mail the requested documents directly to the address below. Documents will not be accepted directly from candidates on the roster.

Headquarters Staffing Section, SPSD/OHRM/DM, United Nations HQ, Room 1980, 405 East 42nd Street, New York, New York 10017 USA

Health / Medical

Medical clearance

When do staff require medical clearance? Specifically, when is a medical examination required, especially for those staff working in a field mission?

Medical clearance is required for initial appointment and for travel purposes normally every two years. In addition to travel, to maintain medical clearance for the purposes of transfer and/or, reassignment travel medical evaluation will be required every two years, irrespective of age.

However, when a staff member travels on official business or is assigned to certain “hardship” duty stations, a peacekeeping, humanitarian or political mission, or redeployed or assigned from one mission to another, the Medical Director shall decide whether a new medical evaluation is necessary. Please refer to ST/AI/2011/3 entitled Medical clearance for more information.

Inspira

Inspira

Can I update information in an application that I have already submitted?

The substantive part of an inspira application, including the Cover Letter and work experience and education details, cannot be edited after an application is submitted. However, you may change the contact information in your profile at any time, including your e-mail address or phone number, even after submitting an application. To do this, log-in to inspira, click on the relevant section of ‘View/ Change Personal Information’, edit and save. Recruiters and Hiring Managers will see up-to-date profile information when they view applicants. On Galaxy, it is not possible to edit any aspect of your application after it has been submitted.

Do I have to fill out the whole application at once or can I pause and then come back to work on it later?

It is possible to complete the application in several sessions. However, within the application, individual sections have to be finished in one single session in order for the system to save your entries. In other words, you cannot pause and save in the middle of a section without having completed the required fields.
It is recommended that you hit “Save” regularly, ideally after completing all the mandatory fields within a section.
The system times out after 60 minutes, which means you lose any data you entered since the last time you clicked “Save”.

I am applying for a job opening. The deadline states the application is due on a particular date. As we are a worldwide Organization, which time zone determines the date and time of the deadline?

Inspira uses GMT-5 which is five hours behind the Greenwich Mean Time. Job openings are taken offline at midnight (GMT-5) on the specified closing date.
You are encouraged to apply well before the deadline. Staff should be mindful that hiring offices and departments may start reviewing the applications during the posting period.

I am in the Education and Work Experience section. How do I add several Work Experiences?

If you have multiple work experiences, you use the +Add Work Experience link on the Complete Application page to continue adding your work experiences until you have added them all. Use the “Save” button to save your entry and return to the main “Education and Work Experience” section of your Application (the page says Complete Application on top). Each entry for Work Experience has to be fully completed and saved in one session. You will not be able to save an incomplete entry for work experience.

I entered my employment history into the Work Experience section but it did not save the information. What happened?

There are two things to look out for to make sure you save your data correctly in the Work Experience section.
First you have to make sure that all required fields (marked with an *) have been entered correctly. If any required fields are missing, a message will appear after you click on “Save” and the empty required fields will appear in red. Please look through all the fields again and make sure that you have completed them all. Even if you don’t have the correct information, use your best judgment and/or just enter “not available”. After you have entered all the information, you have to click “Save”.
In addition, please note that after 60 minutes of inactivity the system times out, which means you lose any data you entered since the last time you clicked “Save”. Please note that typing alone does not register as activity, only clicking on the tool (eg the save button), so it is important to remember to save regularly.

I have a question on how to use inspira. Who can I contact?

If you cannot log in to inspira, or if you have a question on how to use inspira, please contact the Inspira Support Centre:
Use the Contact us link on the inspira home page or Contact us on the Careers Portal (careers.un.org): http://careers.un.org/support.aspx . Please include your index number in the request.
Please read the How to get started with inspira guide available in both English and French. For more details and guidance on how to apply for a job in inspira please read the Guide: ‘How to Apply for a Job opening using inspira’.

I have seen a number of different status messages in inspira. What do they all mean?

For those applying to a standard job opening, the following terms are currently in use:
Status shown to applicant What it means
Draft An application is being worked on by an applicant but has not been submitted. It is visible only to the applicant at this stage
Applied An application form has been submitted via inspira, but the pre-screening process (which checks candidates’ eligibility for a post) has not yet begun.
Under consideration The recruitment process is underway but no candidate has yet been selected. This status will display to all applicants throughout the shortlisting, interview and recommendation process, until a candidate has been selected.
Recruitment completed A candidate has been selected for the post and the recruitment process has been completed.
Rostered The applicant has been placed on a roster but they have not been offered the post. The applicant may be called upon in the future and – without further assessment – offered the position they originally applied for, or another that they are deemed qualified for.

I started entering my data in the Profile section but it does not save the information?

When you enter the information in My Profile you have to fill in all the required fields at once in order to be able to save. Once you have completed all mandatory fields please click “Save” in order to save your entries. In order not to lose data, it is recommended that you save your entries regularly, ideally after completion of each profile section.

I understand that inspira and Galaxy will run parallel for a while. Does that mean I have to keep updating the information in both systems?

When you apply to jobs posted in Galaxy you have to enter your data and send in your PHP in Galaxy, and when you apply to jobs posted in inspira you have to enter your data and send in your application in inspira.

I want to apply to a job that is posted in Galaxy. Which system do I use now, inspira or Galaxy?

When you apply to a job in inspira you should fill out and submit your application in inspira. When you apply to a job in Galaxy you should fill out your PHP and submit it in Galaxy. Jobs posted in inspira are processed in inspira; jobs posted in Galaxy are processed in Galaxy. However, all job openings are published on the Careers Portal (careers.un.org) and when you apply for a job you will automatically be directed to the appropriate system.

Is an applicant automatically rejected if he or she answers no to a pre-screening question?

For each screening question the Hiring Manager determines one answer as satisfactory – this may not be the “yes” or “true” option. Applicants are expected to provide accurate answers and may be asked for clarification or justification during later stages of the application process.
While an applicant is expected to provide satisfactory answers to all questions, inspira accepts a small margin of unsatisfactory answers. However, every applicant has to pass the 80% threshold of satisfactory answers for a particular job opening or his/her application will not be eligible for further review.

Is there a manual on how to fill out the Profile and Application Form?

Yes, there is a How to get started with inspira guide available in both English and French as well as Quick Tips on Application process and How to Apply for a Job Opening Using inspira.
There are also Instructional Manuals for all participants and parties with a role in the Staff Selection System which are now available online in inspira – please click the ‘Documents’ tab on the upper right hand side of the browser.

Is there any way to import my data in Galaxy to inspira without typing all the information again?

No, as the systems are based on different software, the information cannot be transferred from one system to another. When it comes to employment history, a tip is to copy and paste from Galaxy into the fields in inspira. You may also want to save the PHP in Galaxy in a word document for easy reference.

What is inspira?

Inspira is the new IT system that was introduced in March 2010 to support Talent Management. Inspira is built on an Oracle PeopleSoft software platform but has been adapted by developers to meet the Organization’s special needs.
Inspira will integrate processes that have so far been supported by different and separate systems into one platform. E.g. Galaxy, Nucleus and e-PAS will all be replaced by Inspira. It will also provide a strong linkage to IMIS and to the new ERP system “Umoja” that is being developed.

Why the name ‘inspira’?

The name Inspira is unique to the United Nations. It was suggested by our colleague Saiful Ridwan, from the United Nations Environment Programme in Paris, and was selected through the world-wide contest conducted through iSeek.
Inspira comes from the Latin root ‘inspiro’ and means ‘animated, or imbued with the spirit to do something, by or as if by supernatural influence’, which captures the essence of the vision for Talent Management: the Organization’s mandates can only be achieved through the efforts and inspiration of our current and future staff.

Performing For Results

Performing for Results

Can a missing performance appraisal be substituted by a note from the supervisor indicating that performance has been satisfactory for the continuing appointments review?

Performance appraisals cannot be substituted by a note written by a supervisor. A duly completed performance evaluation for one year or more is required.

Can I access my completed e-PAS documents now that the system is no longer available?

To access completed e-PAS documents, all staff and managers have to write to the HR Help Desk [ hrhelpdesk@un.org ] to obtain a copy. All e-PAS documents will be migrated to inspira in due course.

How is performance management linked to development in inspira?

One of the new features of performance management is that it will link to staff development and learning management to allow for better career planning. The improved learning management system in Inspira will make it easier to enroll, track and keep records of learning programmes, including the mandatory courses in which you have you have participated. Moreover, the skills portal provides anytime, anywhere access to online learning programmes.

I am a temporary appointment; can I create my work-plan in e-Performance?

No, a manual form (P.333 -available on iSeek) has been designed for use by staff members with temporary appointments. You may refer to the provisions of the administrative instructions on temporary appointments (ST/AI/2010/4).

I have a performance evaluation report for 2012-13. Since the review is starting in 2013, can I use this one as part of the four required reports?

Yes. Performance reports that have been finalized before the eligibility date can be considered. For this review exercise, the eligibility date is 1 July 2013.

I have unfinished e-PAS documents from previous cycles. How can I complete them?

The e-Pas system will remain available until 31 December 2012 to complete documents from previous cycles. Staff members and managers must complete all documents by this deadline. e-PAS cannot be used to create new documents from 1 April 2010 onwards.

If I haven’t yet started my work-plan for the 10-11, and or the 11-12 cycles do I use e-PAS or e-Performance?

e-Performance.

In the previous version of inspira, I was required to create a performance document as well as a development document. Is this still the case?

No, in the new version the development document has been merged with the performance document.

Is the second reporting officer required to make comments in my e-Performance document?

The second reporting officer is not required to make comments on the e-Performance/e-PAS document. The role of the second reporting officer is to ensure that the evaluation is completed in a timely manner and that it is fair (i.e. there is consistency between competency ratings, value ratings, comments, and the overall rating). The second reporting officer’s approval, without comments, is an endorsement of the first reporting officer’s evaluation of the staff member. The second reporting officer may, however, choose to make comments on the e-PAS/e-Performance document to highlight certain aspects of the evaluation, such as a particular achievement. Often, this depends on the second reporting officer’s familiarity with the staff member’s work.

My office was part of the e-Performance pilot that began on 1 April 2010. What changes can I expect on 1 April 2012?

Based on pilot user feedback and experiences, the functionality of the new tool has been significantly streamlined and improved. It is now more user-friendly and follows the same basic workflow as e-PAS (establishing a work-plan, mid-point review, and end-of-cycle evaluation).

What are the differences between e-PAS and e-Performance?

e-Performance follows the same basic workflow of e-PAS (i.e., the Work-plan, Mid-Point Review, and End-of-Cycle stages). The interface of the new system is flexible, modern and user-friendly but, most importantly, much more stable than e-Pas.

What kind of training materials are available for e-Performance?

The following training tools have been developed to meet the needs of different learning styles.
• e-Performance Quick Guide: A three-page reference tool with step-by-step instructions for each phase of the process. This guide will address the needs of most users who need minimal guidance.
• e-Performance Handbook: A comprehensive 33-page manual with step-by-step instructions, screenshots, navigation tips, process overview and guidelines for all actions. This guide will address the needs of novice users as well as more experienced ones.
• e-Performance Videos: Eight interactive videos on each step of the process. These videos have been broken down by role and activity (e.g. Second Reporting Officer Approves Evaluation). Each video contains engaging audio and ‘see-it’ and ‘try-it’ interactions. Easy access and succinct messages between 2 and 5 minutes in length make this resource practical and convenient for all staff.
• Power Point Presentation: Used to train PM focal points, this provides a general overview of the process and highlights of key learning points.
• Recorded WebEx sessions: On-line training sessions have been conducted for all focal points. These 1 ½ hour workshops have been recorded for your convenience.

When will I receive training for the new e-Performance tool?

The training strategy is self-paced learning by users through the use of training materials that provide step-by-step instructions for e-Performance.

Where can I find the e-Performance training materials?

The training materials can be found under the ‘Training Materials’ section of inspira.

Who should I contact if I need help with e-Performance?

The following three-point support network has been established in order to ensure that users will be able to obtain all the help they need.
• Focal Points: A comprehensive focal point network has been established at all duty stations and offices. Contact your local administrative/human resources/executive office for colleagues who have been trained locally.
• Help desk: A dedicated 24-hour help desk located inBangkok,Thailandis available for all system or technical related issues. They can be reached by clicking on the ‘Contact Us’ link located on every Inspira page.
• The Performance Management and Development team: The team in NY is available for focal point support, training materials, guidance on policy and substantive matters. They can be reached via e-mail at performancemanagement@un.org

Who should use the e-Performance tool in inspira?

All UN Secretariat staff will use e-Performance for the 2012-13 performance cycle which begins on 1 April 2012 and ends on 31 March 2013.

Will I be able to use the multi-rater functionality to receive feedback from my peers and supervisees in e-Performance?

Not for the time being. The multi-rater processes are currently being evaluated based on pilot experiences, and industry best practices. The Organization is examining how to best implement this process globally. Stay tuned for more information on this. However, those who started multi-rater processes will be able to complete them.

Staffing

Careers Portal

I am looking for a job. Which website do I use to see all the available vacancies in the UN Secretariat?

All job openings in the UN Secretariat are published on the Careers Portal (careers.un.org), in English and French. Depending on your preference you may switch between languages at the main home page by clicking on the link available in the top right hand corner. The languages are listed as “EN” for English or “FR” for French.
The human resources management IT system, inspira, is replacing a number of the HR systems including Galaxy. However, the transition from Galaxy to inspira is gradual, which means that there will be a period when the two systems run in parallel.
During the transition period, both inspira and Galaxy are being utilized. Previously job openings in peace operations were posted in Galaxy while job openings at headquarters locations and the regional commissions were posted on Inspira. Today, as part of the inspira roll out in the field many of the field missions have now been trained and are posting their job openings in Inspira. All job openings, both in inspira and Galaxy, are searchable through the Careers Portal. When you apply for a job, you will be automatically directed to the appropriate system.
Note: the Organization is transitioning to inspira which will run in tandem with Galaxy until this legacy system is decommissioned in early 2014.

inspira

How do I know if I have been placed on the roster?

Following the endorsement of a central review body, candidates who are placed on a roster are informed in an e-mail of such placement after the selection decision has been made(for position specific job openings), or following the endorsement of the central review body (for generic job openings).
Candidates can see the rosters they are on in inspira. Candidates can view their roster membership on the inspira landing page, under “My Career Tools”.
If you think that your roster status is being reflected incorrectly in inspira you should seek the assistance of the Inspira Support Team by clicking on the link titled “Contact us” on inspira and raising a ticket.

How do managers access inspira and the module relating to posting job openings?

In order to obtain the necessary access rights and to attend a training session on how to build a job opening in inspira, Hiring Managers should consult with their respective Human Resources or Executive Office.

I have two inspira accounts, one is from when I was an external candidate which includes my rostered details and the second is the account I opened as an internal candidate with my index number. Which account should I use to apply for job openings?

For now, staff members are advised to apply with the account which is associated with the roster. If you apply with an external account, please ensure your index number and active staff status is included in your application. This will inform the hiring manager that you are a current staff member. If you want to confirm that your application has been submitted properly, please click on the “Contact us” link on the upper right side of the inspira screen, explain your situation, and request confirmation that your application has been submitted. Similarly, if you are concerned that your roster status may not be properly reflected for a job opening that you have already applied for, please click on the “Contact us” link on inspira explaining your situation and request for confirmation of your application status.

Mobility

Are there provisions for exceptional circumstances under the new mobility and career development framework?

There will be a Special Constraints Panel composed of senior managers. If a staff member is recommended for a position in a location for which they have medical constraints or other compelling personal circumstances, they can submit an exceptional request for an exemption to a “Special Constraints Panel”. The panel will review all requests and make recommendations to the Assistant Secretary-General for Human Resources Management. Staff and their supervisors can also jointly request that a staff member remains in his or her position if the staff member is essential to a project and its success could be hindered by a change in position at that time.

A staff representatives will serve as an observer on the Special Constraints Panel.

Does everyone have to move geographically under the new mobility and career development framework?

A change in position does not need to be geographic. However, one geographic move (a change in country of one year or longer) is required to be eligible to apply for positions at the P-5 and higher levels.

How will managed mobility work?

Staff will be subject to minimum and maximum position occupancy limits that depend on the hardship level of the duty station in which they serve. The minimum position occupancy limit, which is the minimum time a staff member has to be in a position before being able to apply to vacant positions or participate in the lateral reassignment exercise, is two years in H through C duty stations and one year in D and E duty stations.[1] The maximum position occupancy limit in H and A duty stations is seven years; in B and C duty stations four years; and in D and E duty stations three years. Staff will be expected to change position by the end of their maximum position occupancy limit. If this has not been possible by that time, the Organization will assist in finding a suitable lateral reassignment for them. The calculation for position occupancy limits will include time served in the staff member’s current position; however staff members who have reached the maximum position occupancy limit when managed mobility comes into effect for their Job Network (see below for information on the implementation timeline) will not be subject to reassignment in the first year of operationalization in that Job Network.

 


[1] The International Civil Service Commission has placed each duty station in one of six categories. H duty stations are headquarters and similarly designated locations, where the United Nations has no development or humanitarian assistance programmes, or locations in countries which are members of the European Union. A to E duty stations are field duty stations. Duty stations are categorized on a scale of hardship from A to E, with A being the least difficult.

How will selection decisions be made under the new mobility and career development framework?

Selection recommendations for both vacant positions and reassignment options will be made by “Job Network Boards”[1]. These will be composed of senior managers in the respective Job Networks. The Boards will be supported by Network Staffing Teams, which will include both human resources staff and staff with expertise in that Network.

The Boards’ recommendations will be guided by organizational priorities, such as moving staff from non-family duty stations to family duty stations; moving staff between duty stations; moving staff amongst Departments and Offices.. As is the case today, due consideration will be given to gender, geographical status, and representation of troop- and police-contributing countries.

Staff representatives will serve as observers on the Job Network Boards.


[1] A Job Network is a grouping of job families with closely linked mandates or programmes of work and which require similar skill sets.

What is considered a change in position under the new mobility and career development framework?

A change in position can involve one or more of the following: a change of role, function, Department, duty station, or a move from the Secretariat to and from a UN agency, fund or programme.

Staff can change position by applying to a vacant position or by participating in a lateral reassignment exercise. Staff will be eligible to apply for different positions after reaching their minimum position occupancy limit and can apply to a vacant position at their current level or higher, or they can opt for lateral reassignment at the same level, within their current Job Network.

What is the lateral reassignment exercise under the new mobility and career development framework?

Staffing exercises will take place twice a year and will include vacant positions (open to staff and external applicants) as well as a lateral reassignment exercise for serving staff. Staff members who have reached their maximum position occupancy will be required to participate in a lateral reassignment exercise. A staff member can choose to “opt in” and participate in the lateral reassignment exercise earlier, if preferred.

Staff will be able to indicate their interest in positions announced via a compendium. This compendium will contain lateral positions that will only be open to currently serving staff. Although Staff participating in the lateral reassignment exercise will indicate their preferences, they could also be reassigned to a different position for which they are qualified.

When will the new mobility and career development framework be implemented?

Mobility will be phased in by Job Network. Commencing in 2016, the first Job Network will be open to mobility, followed by another Job Network in 2017, and thereafter, two Job Networks will be subject to mobility annually. This gradual approach to deployment will provide both the Organization and its staff with a two year preparation period, which also gives time for our human resources systems to be operationally ready by the time managed mobility takes effect. Certain transitional measures will also be put in place, which, for example, recognize lateral moves already made by staff under the current staff selection system and will allow staff to carry over, until 2019, their eligibility for P-5 positions.

Who will the managed mobility and career development framework apply to?

The new framework will apply to all internationally-recruited staff in the Field Service, Professional and Director categories who are on fixed term, continuing and permanent appointments, have been recruited through a competitive process, and whose appointments are not limited to service within a specific Department/Office or mission. Staff on a limited number of “non-rotational” posts will be exempted.

Recruitment

Are there any restrictions when consultants from UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes apply for Secretariat positions? As a consultant, do I need a break of 6 months before applying for a position?

Consultants at non-Secretariat United Nations Agencies, Funds and Programmes may apply for any position and at any level they consider themselves qualified, and are screened for eligibility according to the same criteria as any other external applicant.

Consultants at the United Nations Secretariat (as well as interns, individual contractors and gratis personnel) may not apply for any position in the Professional or above categories and for positions at the FS-6 and FS-7 levels in the Field Service category within six months of the end of their current or most recent service. This restriction does not apply to Associate Experts (Junior Professional Officers).

How soon are candidates selected for a position expected to take up their new functions?

Staff members should be released as soon as possible and no later than one month after the date on which the releasing office is notified of the selection decision, if the move is within the same duty station.  If the new position is in another duty station, including  peacekeeping or special political missions, then the release shall be no later than two months. Please refer to ST/AI/2010/3  for more information.

Is there a difference if I was cleared by a Central Review Body (CRB) or a Field Central Review Body (FCRB)?

No.  There is no difference if you were rostered by either the CRB or FCRB

Secondments and transfers

How is my employment security affected if I go on secondment and maintain a lien on my post?

Staff on secondment who maintain a lien on their post have certain “return rights” as stated below in the Administrative Issuance on Staff Selection (ST/AI/2010/3 – section 6.7). Please note that OHRM is revising this issuance which will address the issue of “return rights”.

6.7 A staff member who is considered an internal applicant and who is on secondment to a separately administered United Nations fund or programme, specialized agency or organization of the United Nations common system shall be granted a lien against a specific post for up to two years. If the staff member, while on secondment, applies for positions in the Secretariat he/she will be considered an internal applicant and is eligible to apply for a position one level higher than the one he/she currently has in the receiving organization in which the staff member is on secondment. After two years should the staff member wish to remain on secondment, the lien on the specific position shall be surrendered but the staff member retains return rights to the Secretariat up to a maximum of five years. At the end of the five years, a transfer to the receiving organization shall be initiated unless the staff member indicates that he/she would like to return to the Secretariat. In order to return to the Secretariat, the staff member is eligible to apply for positions at the level he/she had at the receiving organization or one level above. If the staff member is unsuccessful in his/her applications, he/she will have the right to return to the Secretariat at his/her level at the time of his/her release on secondment.

Umoja

Umoja

I am staff member with supervisory/managerial responsibilities. What is my role in Umoja?
Friday, May 29, 2015

Your role and responsibilities as a supervisor/manager will not change. The process to approve or initiate various managerial transactions, such as leave, will change with the implementation of the new system. Managers will be able to log into the Umoja Manager Self-Service (MSS) and access information, approve requests from their staff as well as perform tasks (initiate contract renewal) that will automatically send notifications or trigger workflows to other colleagues such as HR Partners.

I understand my accrued annual leave will not be available until 5 June 2015 (for duty stations deploying Umoja in June). How do I apply for leave during that period?
Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Leave Balances:  On Day 1, staff members are able to check all leave balances, with the exception of Annual Leave, and apply for various leave, again with the exception of Annual Leave, from the Portal.

Annual Leave balances as of 31 May will be loaded in Umoja on 4 June 2015.  Therefore, staff members must note that their Annual Leave balances and the ability to request Annual Leave will not be available until 5 June 2015.

Between 1 June and 4 June 2015, staff members must apply for leave offline, with approval of their Time Manager.  Once the Annual Leave balances are loaded on 4 June 2015, staff members will be able to enter all leave taken from 1 June 2015 forward.

 

What are the Key Changes in Human Resources? How will HR and related processes be handled online through Umoja?
Friday, May 29, 2015
  • Employee Self-Service portal will allow staff to:
    • View and update their HR information and profile
    • Initiate and track requests for leave requests, benefits and entitlements
    • Make travel requests directly and submit claims electronically
    • Own and be accountable for their information and entitlements
  • UN staff data will be stored centrally and shared across the organization
  • Transfer of staff across duty stations will be seamless, no more script transfer and delays in processing payroll
  • Managers will have access to up-to-date staff information, work schedule, calendar and organizational structures for pro-active planning, and to efficiently perform many tasks related to the administration of their staff.
What are the most common/typical Umoja transactions?
Friday, May 29, 2015

The deployment of the first extension of Umoja deals with transactions related to personnel administration, entitlements, benefits, time management, payroll, and travel

Example 1:

All staff will be responsible for entering their leave in Umoja. If a staff member is out of the office (e.g. sick leave or annual leave), the staff member must record the absence through the Employee Self-Service (ESS) portal.  The supervisor will be notified of the entry and will need to review and it will be routed to the right person for approval.

Example 2:

If a staff member’s family situation changes (e.g. new spouse or new baby), he/she will need to initiate action through the ESS portal in order to add a dependent and to enroll the new dependent in medical insurance.

Guidance, tutorials and additional material including the Umoja User Manual is available on the Umoja website and the Umoja Resource Center on Unite Connections.

What information should I check on day 1 of Umoja deployment at my duty station?
Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Prior to Day 1, staff members are encouraged to activate their Unite Identity Account and set up a permanent password.  They are also strongly encouraged (and sometimes required) to familiarize themselves with Umoja Self-Service functionality by taking Umoja Self-Service tutorials, which are available on Umoja website.

Day 1:  Refer to "Umoja Login User Quick Guide", which describes step by step what to do to get access to the Self-Service Portal, and login to Umoja Employee Self-Service Access at https://selfservice.umoja.un.org/https://selfservice.umoja.un.org

Once logged-in, please check the following personal information. 

Address and Beneficiaries:  If your address or beneficiaries are not correct or up to date, please update the information on-line using the Umoja Portal. 

Dependency Status:  Please check the accuracy of dependency records.  If you have a new dependant (spouse, child or secondary dependant), you can make a request to add them using the Umoja Portal.  However, please contact your HR Partner for any modification of existing dependants or discontinuation of dependency status.

Rental Subsidy:  Staff Members can also use the Umoja Portal to apply for rental subsidy.  The existing rental subsidy data is converted from IMIS to Umoja and therefore staff members do not need to reapply for existing rental subsidy.

However, staff members can submit a new rental subsidy application through the portal.  Before actually submitting the new request, please familiarize yourself with the process using the Self-Service tutorials and simulation, which are available on Umoja website. 

Banking Information:  Check the correctness of the banking information.

Salary Statement:  Once June salary is disbursed at the end of June 2015, staff members will receive pay-slip via email but can also check  the salary statement in the Portal.

What is Umoja and what does it mean to staff as the end user?
Friday, May 29, 2015

Umoja is an initiative for the United Nations Secretariat that includes a thorough streamlining of UN business processes. It is an implementation of SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software. The system changes the way we do a wide variety of administrative and management activities and puts the focus on the staff member to be responsible for initiating actions and managing their own personal information.   It will transform the way staff and managers work, which will require a change in behaviours.

All staff (as end users) regardless of where they are working in the world will use the new Umoja Employee Self-Service portal. Umoja will simplify the way we process HR transactions and will reduce the amount of manual paper based processes that we currently have.

By having a single way of delivering administrative services using a single source of data, there will be more coherence and increased consistency across the Organization and in various duty stations. With Umoja staff members can focus on strategic work and spend less time on routine, fragmented administrative tasks.
 

What training do I need to take to get ready for Umoja?
Friday, May 29, 2015
  • All staff will require some training to use the new system. How much training is needed depends on your role and responsibilities.  All UN staff are advised to review general Umoja self-study training materials/tutorials/computer-based training.
  • Training to carry out transactions with the new system is available through the Umoja website and on inspira.  A variety of learning approaches are used to deliver training to accommodate different learning requirements and facilitate knowledge transfer which depend on the role of the staff member/user. The Umoja training programme integrates: computer-based training, instructor-led courses, simulation learning, job aids and hands-on practice sessions.
     
  • Staff members who have been identified with a higher official Enterprise Role in Umoja must complete Level 1, 2 and 3 Umoja Training courses through the e-learning platform on inspira in order to be certified.  Other staff will be trained in areas related to their functional responsibilities.
When will Umoja be implemented in my duty station?
Friday, May 29, 2015
  • Since 2013, Umoja has been gradually deployed to various duty stations.
  • HR, Payroll, Benefits, Organization Management and Travel are within the scope of Umoja Extension 1. Deployment of this functionality began in July 2014 in MINUSTAH, and continues in June 2015 in OCHA, UNON, UNEP, UN Habitat, UNAKRT and ESCAP, and November 2015 for the remaining of the Secretariat, except local staff in Peacekeeping missions. Full roll-out will be completed in March 2016.
  • An interactive deployment timeline detailing when will Umoja be implemented in organizations and duty stations can be found on the Umoja website
    (https://www.unumoja.net/display/public/Interactive+Deployment+Timeline)
Where do I go to get more information/help on using Umoja?
Friday, May 29, 2015

There are numerous training materials and guides available to help staff and managers navigate the system and can be accessed on the Umoja website (https://www.unumoja.net/display/public/Umoja+Employee+Self-Service+Tutor...). Specialized training is provided to transactional users (HR, travel, finance, procurement, etc.)

If you need help and support, please contact the Employee Self-Service (ESS) or Manager Self-Service (MSS) focal point (HR Office) in your duty station. You may also visit the Umoja Resource Center to search the Umoja User Manual and ask questions in the Forum. If encountering a serious technical issue, work with you Umoja LPE or focal point to open a service ticket via the iNeed Self Service by emailing esc@un.org or contact your local help desk.

Where does the data from Umoja come from? What should I do after logging in?
Friday, May 29, 2015

Personal and financial Information about staff will be converted from the current system, IMIS.  There will be a “blackout” period where no changes will be permitted in IMIS during this conversion.

In addition, personal addresses and emergency contact information are converted from Inspira, if available and if no data is found in Inspira the IMIS data is converted.  The last day for a staff member to make changes to address and emergency contact information in Inspira that will be transferred to Umoja is 15 May 2015 (for duty stations deploying Umoja in June 2015).

Once a staff member logs in to Umoja, they should check their personal details, contractual status and review the current list of entitlements/allowances to ensure this information matches what they are currently receiving.  In order to get paid, staff should also double check their banking details to ensure their salaries are properly deposited.

Where is Umoja and how do I log into Umoja for the first time?
Friday, May 29, 2015

Umoja is an on-line web based system that can be accessed from any location.

If Umoja is being deployed to your duty station, the Umoja/SAP password will be provided to you by email 2 days prior to the go live/deployment date.  The User Quick Guide on the Umoja website for step by step instructions on logging in to Umoja (https://www.unumoja.net/display/public/Resources#Resources-User-quick-guide).

To log into the Umoja Production Systems (Enterprise Central Component (ECC), Supplier Relationship Management (SRM), Business Intelligence (BI), Manager Self-Service) (MSS)) at http://login.umoja.un.org (Umoja Dashboard).

To access the Employee Self-Service ONLY log in at http://selfservice.umoja.un.org (ESS Portal)

Which processes will not be handled in Employee Self-Service?
Friday, May 29, 2015

Business processes related to education grant will not yet be available through the Umoja Employee Self-Service Portal. Staff will still be required to submit hard copy applications to their HR Partner.

Who has access to employee self-service in Umoja?
Tuesday, June 2, 2015

All staff members (international or national staff) who are working in C3 entities (UNEP, UN Habitat, UNON, OCHA, ESCAP and UNAKRT) as well as MINUSTAH, regardless of their duty station, have access to employee self-service in Umoja.  All non-staff (Consultants, Individual Contractors, UNVs, Interns, etc.) will not be given access to self-service functionality at this time.

Who should I contact if my Employee Self-Service (ESS) information in Umoja is incorrect?
Tuesday, June 2, 2015

If staff members notice any discrepancies in their data in Umoja, they must contact HR Partners (i.e. HR Assistants or Officers) of their Department/Office.  The relevant HR Partner will find out where issues are and make arrangements to have the discrepancies corrected. 

 

Your Career

Career Development

I am interested in having a mentor. Do we have a mentoring programme?
Monday, January 11, 2016

There is a facilitated mentoring programme for staff members who entered the Organization through the Young Professionals Programme (YPP). For all other staff members, mentoring is an informal learning option. Read more about mentoring and how to find a mentor.

Who can I talk to about my career development?
Monday, January 11, 2016

Your supervisor is a great resource for you when it comes to career development. If you wish to speak to someone else, mentoring might be an option for you. Click here for more information on mentoring, including tips on how to find a mentor. Alternatively, you may book a career coaching session. Career coaching is offered by trained career coaches and is entirely confidential. Read more about career coaching and how to book a career coaching session.

Career Path

How can I create a development plan?
Monday, January 11, 2016

Once you have gone through the planning steps above, your next step is to identify learning activities that help you acquire the knowledge, skills and competencies required to help you achieve your goals. You may discuss suitable learning activities with your supervisor or the Learning Focal Point in your department/office. You can capture your development goals in your action plan.

How can I plan my career?
Monday, January 11, 2016

As a start, reviewing the resources provided in the career path section on the HR portal can help inform your choices. Use the Career workbook  to reflect on your career.  The career workbook is designed to help you identify your strengths, skills, and work preferences. It contains tools for determining your career goals and developing an action plan.

The workbook consists of three parts divided into eleven chapters called “activities”. You can either work on the activities sequentially, or just choose the ones most relevant to you. You may wish to discuss your plan with your supervisor or a career coach. Click here to read more about career coaching and how to book a career coaching session.

I am not sure what the best next career move is – how can I find out about what my options are?
Monday, January 11, 2016

Review the information on the “Your Career” tab on the HR portal. You might want to consider going through the career workbook, then have a conversation with your supervisor or book a career coaching session. Click here for more information on career coaching.

I need time off to finish my studies, what are my options?
Monday, January 11, 2016

Find out more about flexible working arrangements that can be used to support external learning activities if approved by your supervisor. There is also a provision of special leave with full pay for up to 20 working days, pending approval by your supervisor and by your head of department/office. See section 6.3 of ST/AI/2010/10, the policy of upgrading of substantive and technical skills, for more information.

What are career paths?
Monday, January 11, 2016

A career path is the pattern of moves completed by a staff member, be it laterally/vertically, within the same or across job families, geographically or within the same duty station. Career paths within the Organization are unique and reflect each staff member’s professional aspirations, background and experiences. Click here for more information on actual career paths taken by UN staff members.

What career paths are available to me?
Monday, January 11, 2016

This depends on your professional aspirations, background and experiences. It might be useful for you to look at the information on career path on the HR portal, including actual career paths taken by UN staff members. You might also want to consider going through the career workbook, then have a conversation with your supervisor or book a career coaching session. Click here for more information on career coaching.

Where can I find examples of how other UN staff members have moved in their careers?
Monday, January 11, 2016

Each staff member has a unique career path. Click here for more information on actual career paths taken by UN staff members.

Career Support

What kind of career support is available to me?
Monday, January 11, 2016

The “Your career” section of the HR portal is a good place to start: it contains information on a range of career support– both in terms of career development and career path. You can also talk with your supervisor about your action plan career development plan, or Use the career workbook to find out more about your values, strengths, skills and work preferences and create an action plan for our career goals. You can also talk with your supervisor about your career aspirations and your action plan.

Sabbatical Leave Programme

Are weekends and official holidays counted in the four months sabbatical leave?
Friday, January 8, 2016

Yes, the sabbatical leave is for 120 calendar days including travel days, weekends and official holidays.

Does the Organization provide any additional financial payment during the sabbatical leave?
Friday, January 8, 2016

Selected staff members are placed on special leave with full pay for the sabbatical leave period. Staff members on sabbatical leave continue to receive their salary, post adjustment and all related entitlements, such as rental subsidy and education grant, applicable to their regular duty station. No additional payments are made by the United Nations to the staff member during sabbatical leave. Staff members may receive scholarships or stipends for room, board or travel expenses to support their sabbatical leave from an entity other than the United Nations with the pre-approval of the Assistant Secretary-General for Human Resources Management.

 

How do I select my sabbatical institution?
Friday, January 8, 2016

Interested staff members are responsible for identifying the institution or organization in which they propose to carry out their study or research project.

In addition to universities and independent institutions worldwide, including participating research and training centres of the United Nations University and institutions that are members of the Academic Council on the United Nations System, research or study projects may also be pursued in other relevant organizations and institutions.

Staff members are also responsible for securing their acceptance by the selected institution and for ascertaining the type of support services and facilities that the institution is willing to provide. This information has to be included in the application.

I am a staff member under General Service category, am I eligible to apply for the sabbatical leave programme?
Friday, January 8, 2016

Yes. The sabbatical leave programme is open to all staff members who meet the eligibility requirements.

If I am selected, can I defer my sabbatical leave to the following year?
Friday, January 8, 2016

Under exceptional circumstances, such as exigencies of service or illness, the Office of Human Resources Management may authorize the deferral of sabbatical leave to the following year. A request for deferral has to be submitted by staff in writing with the endorsement of the head of department or office.

What do I need in order to apply for the sabbatical?
Friday, January 8, 2016

ST/IC/2015/28 describes the details of the application process. The application includes:

  1. An application form, contained in annex I to ST/IC/2015/28;
  2. Proposal form, contained in annex II to ST/IC/2015/28;
  3. Endorsement form, contained in annex III to ST/IC/2015/28 completed by the head of department/office/mission or Director/Chief of Mission Support responsible for the work of the applicant during the proposed research or study project;
  4. Written correspondence between the applicant and the proposed sabbatical institution confirming acceptance;
  5.  The signed declaration contained in the annex to ST/AI/2015/5;

Application checklist contained in annex VII to ST/IC/2015/28

What is the sabbatical leave programme?
Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Sabbatical Programme is an opportunity for staff members to:

  • add value to their contribution to the Organization and enhance their intellectual growth through research on issues relating to the work of the UN;
  • enhance dialogue and contacts between the UN and other organizations and institutions engaged in related work worldwide; and
  • gain exposure to state-of-the-art research and practices on issues on the international agenda.

The sabbatical leave programme is leave with full pay that can be approved for up to four months, subject to release of the staff member by the head of department or office. It is one of the career development tools that the Organization provides.

When do I have to submit the report on the research conducted during the sabbatical?
Friday, January 8, 2016

All sabbatical participants are required to submit a report within two months of the end of their sabbatical leave. The report must follow the format provided in ST/IC/2015/28.

Who is eligible to apply for the sabbatical leave?
Friday, January 8, 2016

Staff members with at least five years of service with the United Nations Secretariat under continuing, permanent or fixed-term appointments, and who are expected to serve for at least two years after the completion of the sabbatical leave are eligible to apply.