USPSC Agriculture and Food Security Advisor

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USAID / OFDA
Published
June 23, 2020
Location
Washington, D.C.
Post Type
Experience (minimum)
5-10 Years
Education (minimum)
Bachelor's
Travel Required?
Not specified
Base Salary
Not specified

Description

SOLICITATION NUMBER: 720FDA20B00056
ISSUANCE DATE: June 22, 2020
CLOSING DATE AND TIME: July 22, 2020, 12:00 P.M. Eastern Time
SUBJECT: Solicitation for U.S. Personal Service Contractor (USPSC)

Dear Prospective Offerors:

The United States Government (USG), represented by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), is seeking offers from qualified U.S. citizens to provide personal services as an Agriculture and Food Security Advisor under a United States Personal Services Contract (USPSC), as described in the solicitation.

Submittals must be in accordance with the attached information at the place and time specified. Offerors interested in applying for this position MUST submit the following materials:

1. Complete resume. In order to fully evaluate your offer, your resume must include:
(a) Paid and non-paid experience, job title, location(s), dates held (month/year), and hours worked per week for each position. Dates (month/year) and locations for all field experience must also be detailed. Any experience that does not include dates (month/year), locations, and hours per week will not be counted towards meeting the solicitation requirements.
(b) Specific duties performed that fully detail the level and complexity of the work.
(c) Education and any other qualifications including job-related training courses, job-related skills, or job-related honors, awards or accomplishments.
(d) U.S. Citizenship
(e) Optional: How did you hear about this opportunity? (beta.SAM.gov, OFDA Jobs, Career Fair, etc.).

Your resume must contain sufficient information to make a valid determination that you fully meet the experience requirements as stated in this solicitation. This information must be clearly identified in your resume. Failure to provide information sufficient to determine your qualifications for the position will result in loss of full consideration.

2. Supplemental document specifically addressing the Quality Ranking Factors (QRFs) shown in the solicitation.

3. USPSC Offeror form AID 309-2. Offerors are required to complete sections A through I. This form must be physically signed. Electronic signatures will not be accepted. AID 309-2 is available at http://www.usaid.gov/forms.

NOTE REGARDING DATA UNIVERSAL NUMBERING SYSTEM (DUNS) NUMBERS AND THE SYSTEM FOR AWARD MANAGEMENT
All USPSCs with a place of performance in the United States are required to have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) database prior to receiving an award. You will be disqualified if you either fail to comply with this requirement or if your name appears on the excluded parties list. The selectee will be provided with guidance regarding this registration.

NOTE: As of March 28, 2018, all new SAM.gov entity registrations will now require a signed notarized letter identifying the authorized Entity administrator for the entity associated with the DUNS number. Additional information on the format of the notarized letter and where to submit can be found via the below Federal Service Desk link: https://www.fsd.gov/fsd-gov/answer.do?sysparm_kbid=d2e67885db0d5f00b3257d321f96194b&
sysparm_search=kb0013183

Offerors can expect to receive a confirmation email when offer materials have been received. Offerors should retain for their records copies of all enclosures which accompany their offers. Your complete resume and the supplemental document addressing the QRFs must be emailed to:

OFDA Recruitment Team
E-Mail Address: recruiter@ofda.gov
Website: www.OFDAjobs.net

Any questions on this solicitation may be directed to OFDA Recruitment Team via the information provided above.

Sincerely,
/s/
Renee Newton
Contracting Officer

I. GENERAL INFORMATION
1. SOLICITATION NO.: 720FDA20B00056
2. ISSUANCE DATE: June 22, 2020
3. CLOSING DATE AND TIME FOR RECEIPT OF OFFERS: July 22, 2020, 12:00 P.M. Eastern Time
4. POINT OF CONTACT: OFDA Recruitment Team, recruiter@ofda.gov
5. POSITION TITLE: Agriculture and Food Security Advisor
6. MARKET VALUE: $121,316 - $157,709 equivalent to GS-14 (includes locality pay)
Final compensation will be negotiated within the listed market value and based upon the candidate’s established salary history. Salaries over and above the top of the pay range will not be entertained or negotiated.
If the position is for a Washington based PSC, offerors who live outside the Washington, D.C. area will be considered for employment, but no relocation expenses will be reimbursed.
7. PERIOD OF PERFORMANCE: Two (2) years, with three (3) one-year options
8. PLACE OF PERFORMANCE: Washington, D.C.
9. ELIGIBLE OFFERORS: U.S. Citizens
10. SECURITY LEVEL REQUIRED: Ability to obtain and maintain a Secret up to Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information level clearance as provided by USAID.
11. STATEMENT OF DUTIES

POSITION DESCRIPTION
BACKGROUND
The Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) is the office within USAID that is responsible for providing emergency non-food humanitarian assistance in response to international crises and disasters. OFDA is part of the Bureau for Democracy, Conflict, and Humanitarian Assistance (DCHA) and is organized into six divisions.

The Africa (AFD) Response Division and the Asia, Latin America, Europe, and Middle East (ALE) Response Division are responsible for the provision of emergency humanitarian assistance through a grants mechanism to non-governmental organizations (NGOs), international organizations including United Nations (UN) agencies and to other partners to ensure the implementation and delivery of this assistance. These divisions also oversee OFDA’s non-response efforts in disaster risk reduction and resilience. AFD and ALE Response Divisions also coordinate with other organizations for the provision of relief supplies and assistance. They devise, coordinate and implement program strategies for a variety of natural and complex disaster situations. Both Divisions encompass groups of operations specialists who provide technical expert capability in assessing the quality and strategic function of disaster response and risk reduction activities. The AFD Response Division is divided into two teams: East and Central Africa (ECA), and Southern, West, and North Africa (SWAN). The ALE Response Division is divided into four teams: East Asia and the Pacific (EAP), Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia (EMCA), Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), and South Asia (SA).

The Operations (OPS) Division develops and manages operations for OFDA’s disaster responses by readying people and systems; projecting U.S. Government (USG) humanitarian capacity quickly into the field; and delivering material and technical assistance. The OPS Division maintains readiness to respond to emergencies through several mechanisms, including managing Urban Search and Rescue Teams, coordinating, staffing, training, and equipping Disaster Assistance Response Teams (DARTs), and Washington-based Response Management Teams (RMTs), and stockpiling emergency relief commodities in key locations around the globe to ensure OFDA’s capacity to execute and coordinate USG humanitarian assistance and response to natural disasters and complex emergencies. The OPS Division provides technical guidance and expertise in Disaster Logistics, Urban Search and Rescue, Operations Center management, activation/readiness, Civil-Military Liaison, and Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive Consequence Management. It also provides overseas support to OFDA offices and personnel and to other sectors necessary to ensure OFDA’s capacity to execute and coordinate USG humanitarian assistance and response to natural disasters and complex emergencies. The OPS Division is divided into four teams: the Disaster Assistance Support Program (DASP), Military Liaison Team (MLT), Operations Support Team (OST), and Overseas Administration Team (OAT).

The Program Support (PS) Division provides operational management support, including general administration, budget and financial services, procurement planning, information technology, human resources management including staff care, and contract and grant administration support to OFDA. The PS Division supports OFDA's mandate by providing innovative solutions in the areas of Information Technology, staffing, funds control, budgeting, human resource management, and procurement to facilitate timely disaster responses. The PS Division is divided into four teams: the Award, Audit, and Risk Management (AARM) Team, Human Resources Management (HRM) Team, Budget, Finance, and Information Technology (BFIT) Team, and the Acquisition and Management (ACQ) Team.

The Preparation, Strategic Planning and Mitigation (PSPM) Division is responsible for the technical oversight of all OFDA response and mitigation programs, as well as preparation for response, mitigation, and disaster risk reduction activities. The PSPM Division houses technical experts in all sectors potentially affected by disasters, and leads the Agency in developing and promoting best practices for programming in these specific sectors. In addition, PSPM will be the focal point for technological innovations for humanitarian assistance in areas such as monitoring and evaluation, assessment, and information management. The PSPM Division is divided into four teams: Cross-Cutting Sectors Team, Natural Hazards Team, Health Team, and the Food Security and Livelihoods Team.

The Humanitarian Policy and Global Engagement (HPGE) Division assists the DCHA front office, the OFDA Director and OFDA Deputy Director with tracking trends and policy developments in the humanitarian assistance field. It engages in policy dialogue with other parts of USAID, the USG interagency, other donors, multilateral agencies, and NGO partners; recommends strategies for action to DCHA; initiates development of policy and internal guidance for OFDA; maintains global relationships with implementing partners, other donors, and the broader humanitarian architecture; and engages with the UN to advance USG humanitarian policy objectives and promote humanitarian principles within the USG and internationally. The HPGE Division leads OFDA's communications and social media outreach to effectively communicate OFDA’s story to a variety of strategic audiences. It serves as the office’s primary interlocutor on strategic issues with other federal partners to provide guidance to OFDA on policy issues pertaining to the interagency, and to improve USG humanitarian coordination and response during large-scale crises. The HPGE Division staff manages global programs, policy and outreach, strategic communications, and interagency training and engagement. HPGE is divided into seven teams: Policy Team, Global Programs Team, Strategic Interagency Team, Strategic Communications Team, Global Capacity and Leadership Development Team, Public-Private Engagement Team, and the United States Mission to the UN (USUN) in New York, Geneva, and Rome.

INTRODUCTION
The Food Security and Livelihoods Team, within the PSPM Division advises OFDA and DCHA Senior Management on food security, livelihood, and agriculture issues for populations at risk in famine, conflict, or disaster affected areas. The Food Security and Livelihoods Team supports global initiatives, but the primary geographic emphasis is on Africa. The team’s objectives are to:
● Ensure that the projects OFDA supports are of the highest technical quality and maximize impact for local communities and globally.
● Monitor existing programs, meet with partner staff, advise on strategy, participate in disaster assistance response teams and ensure effective responses.
● Advance the overall practice and knowledge base of the Food Security and Livelihoods sector and promote best practices.
● Promote USAID’s humanitarian voice through active participation and leadership in interagency and global fora.

OBJECTIVE
OFDA requires the services of an Agriculture and Food Security Advisor in order to meet its objectives of providing sound technical support to the global agriculture humanitarian assistance portfolio. The Agriculture and Food Security Advisor will also provide input on programs related to disaster risk reduction and resilience in areas of chronic food insecurity.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
● Conducts sector-specific assessments and make expert technical recommendations for appropriate activities, both for the initial disaster response phase and for longer-term disaster risk reduction or rebuilding of livelihoods.
● Provides critical field-level assessments of the agricultural situation as it relates to food security. Applies assessment information to programming decisions, based on a thorough understanding of the seed security framework, seed system security assessments, and how both the framework and assessment information inform emergency programming in the agricultural sector.
● Actively represents USAID/OFDA in emergency agriculture and food security sector discussions and activities. Provides expert technical and organizational leadership in sectoral activity commensurate with the role as a primary resource person for emergency agriculture and food security.
● Guides OFDA thinking on agriculture and food security activities, and formulates sector strategies and recommendations, both for response and disaster risk reduction, and provide expert technical support for OFDA field offices, other offices within USAID, and to OFDA’s PSPM Division for the agriculture and food security sector.
● Responsible for program planning in area of expertise and informing USAID management of potential issues associated thereof. Supports regional teams in program development, monitoring and evaluation. Plans and schedules activities and coordinates program planning with relevant USAID and U.S. Department of Agriculture staff and external partners.
● Provides technical, analytical, administrative, and/or managerial support for all stages of program implementation. Integrates program activities to meet planned results and anticipated impact or revisions thereof.
● Provides USAID Bureau(s) and field Missions technical and analytical guidance on issues related to program area of responsibility; identifies options for technical assistance in view of economic, ecological, research, and/or policy considerations.
● Sign-up for and serve as needed, on Washington-based RMTs, which provides services and support to DARTs deployed in response to disasters. The duties on RMTs will be varied.
● Serve as the OFDA after-hours duty officer on a rotational basis, for approximately one week every six months; and
● As needed, serve on DARTs which may require immediate (within 24 hours) deployment overseas for an extended period of time.
● As needed, may serve on temporary detail within the office to meet operational needs during staff shortages, not to exceed six months. Duties performed while on detail will be aligned with the Team’s existing duties and responsibilities as well as directly related to the scope of work provided.

SUPERVISORY RELATIONSHIP:
The USPSC will take direction from and report to the Food Security and Livelihoods Team Lead or his/her designee.

SUPERVISORY CONTROLS:
Supervisor provides administrative directions in terms of broadly defined missions or functions. The USPSC independently plans, designs and carries out programs, projects, studies or other work. Results are considered authoritative and are normally accepted without significant change
12. PHYSICAL DEMANDS
The work is generally sedentary and does not pose undue physical demands. During deployment on DARTs (if required), and during site visits, there may be some additional physical exertion including long periods of standing, walking over rough terrain, or carrying of moderately heavy items (less than 50 pounds).
13. WORK ENVIRONMENT
Work is primarily performed in an office setting. During deployment on DARTs (if required), and during site visits, the work may additionally involve special safety and/or security precautions, wearing of protective equipment, and exposure to severe weather conditions.
14. START DATE: Immediately, once necessary clearances are obtained.

II. MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION
EDUCATION/EXPERIENCE REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION
(Determines basic eligibility for the position. Offerors who do not meet all of the education and experience factors are considered NOT qualified for the position.)

Bachelor’s degree with significant study in or pertinent to the specialized field (including, but not limited to, international relations, human rights, economics, food policy, public health, gender studies, disaster management, or a related field plus nine (9) years of progressively responsible experience working in emergency relief and humanitarian assistance. Three (3) years of this experience must be field (domestic or overseas).

OR

Master’s degree with significant study in or pertinent to the specialized field (including, but not limited to, international relations, human rights, economics, food policy, public health, gender studies, disaster management, or a related field plus seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience working in emergency relief and humanitarian assistance. Three (3) years of this experience must be field (domestic or overseas).

III. EVALUATION AND SELECTION FACTORS
The Government may award a contract without discussions with offerors in accordance with FAR 52.215-1. The CO reserves the right at any point in the evaluation process to establish a competitive range of offerors with whom negotiations will be conducted pursuant to FAR 15.306(c). In accordance with FAR 52.215-1, if the CO determines that the number of offers that would otherwise be in the competitive range exceeds the number at which an efficient competition can be conducted, the CO may limit the number of offerors in the competitive range to the greatest number that will permit an efficient competition among the most highly rated offers. FAR provisions of this solicitation are available at https://www.acquisition.gov/browse/index/far.

SELECTION FACTORS
(Determines basic eligibility for the position. Offerors who do not meet all of the selection factors are considered NOT qualified for the position.)
● Offeror is a U.S. Citizen.
● Complete resume submitted. See cover page for resume requirements. Experience that cannot be quantified will not be counted towards meeting the solicitation requirements.
● USPSC Offeror form AID 309-2. Offerors are required to complete sections A through I. This form must be physically signed. Electronic signatures will not be accepted.
● Supplemental document specifically addressing the Quality Ranking Factors (QRFs) submitted.
● Ability to obtain and maintain a Secret up to Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information level clearance as provided by USAID.
● Ability to obtain a Department of State medical clearance.
● Must not appear as an excluded party in the System for Award Management (SAM.gov).
● Satisfactory verification of academic credentials.

OFFEROR RATING SYSTEM
The offeror rating system factors are used to determine the competitive ranking of qualified offerors in comparison to other offerors. Offerors must demonstrate the rating factors outlined below within their resume, as they are evaluated strictly by the information provided. The rating factors are as follows:

Professional Experience (10 points)
 Demonstrated experience as an Agriculture and Food Security Advisor/implementer in field humanitarian relief settings, developing and implementing programs with NGOs, UN, International Organizations, and/or USG.
 Demonstrated experience in designing, and reviewing technical Agriculture and Food Security proposals in humanitarian contexts for best practice and technical merit.

Skills and Abilities (10 points)
 Demonstrated experience representing in a humanitarian coordinating unit or body such as the Global WASH Cluster in the IASC and/or having a leading role in national sectoral meetings or working groups.
 Demonstrated ability to interact with high ranking officials at national and international levels in unstructured settings, including host nations, USG, and/or UN entities.
 Ability to design and carry out operational research, rapid assessments, monitoring, or evaluation in the environmental (WASH) field in humanitarian contexts.

Teamwork Experience (10 points)
 Demonstrated success in working with diverse teams in various and austere settings.
 Demonstrated success in working effectively with teams to reach shared objectives that requires adaptive, flexible, and collaborative team work.
 Demonstrated ability to manage, monitor, and adapt projects in humanitarian contexts.

QUALITY RANKING FACTORS (QRFs)
(Used to determine the competitive ranking of qualified offerors in comparison to other offerors. The factors below are of equal value. The evaluation of QRF responses will also take into consideration the quality of written responses. Aspects of written responses including, but not limited to typos, grammatical errors, spelling errors, and incomplete sentences will be factored into the evaluation process.)

QRF #1 In 250 words or less, discuss your perspectives on one major challenge in the field of humanitarian agriculture, either globally or in a specific response.
QRF #2 In 250 words or less discuss one major technical improvement in humanitarian agriculture programming over the last decade.

BASIS OF RATING: Offerors who meet the Education/Experience requirements and Selection Factors will be further evaluated in accordance with the Offeror Rating System and the QRF responses. Those offerors determined to be competitively ranked may also be evaluated on interview performance and satisfactory professional reference checks.

Offerors are required to address each factor of the Offeror Rating System in their resume, describing specifically and accurately what experience, training, education and/or awards they have received as it pertains to each factor.

Offerors are required to address each of the QRFs in a separate document describing specifically and accurately what experience, training, and/or education they have received as it pertains to each factor. Be sure to include your name and the announcement number at the top of each additional page. Failure to address the selection factors, Offeror Rating System factors and/or Quality Ranking Factors may result in not receiving credit for all pertinent experience, education, training and/or awards.

The most qualified offerors may be interviewed and required to provide a writing sample. OFDA will not pay for any expenses associated with the interviews. Professional references and academic credentials will be evaluated for offerors being considered for selection. Note: Please be advised that references may be obtained independently from other sources in addition to the ones provided by an offeror. OFDA reserves the right to select additional offerors if vacancies become available during future phase of the selection process.

The Offeror Rating System is as Follows:
QRFs have been assigned the following points:
QRF #1 – 15 points
QRF #2 – 15 points
Interview Performance – 30 points
Satisfactory Professional Reference Checks – 10 points
Total Possible Points: 100

IV. SUBMITTING AN OFFER
Offers must be received by the closing date and time at the address specified in the cover letter.
Qualified individuals are required to submit:
1. Complete resume. In order to fully evaluate your offer, your resume must include:
(a) Paid and non-paid experience, job title, location(s), dates held (month/year), and hours worked per week for each position. Dates (month/year) and locations for all field experience must also be detailed. Any experience that does not include dates (month/year), locations, and hours per week will not be counted towards meeting the solicitation requirements.
(b) Specific duties performed that fully detail the level and complexity of the work.
(c) Education and any other qualifications including job-related training courses, job-related skills, or job-related honors, awards or accomplishments.
(d) U.S. Citizenship
(e) Optional: How did you hear about this opportunity? (beta.SAM.gov, OFDA Jobs, Career Fair, etc.).

Your resume must contain sufficient information to make a valid determination that you fully meet the experience requirements as stated in this solicitation. This information must be clearly identified in your resume. Failure to provide information sufficient to determine your qualifications for the position will result in loss of full consideration.

2. Supplemental document specifically addressing the QRFs shown in the solicitation.
3. USPSC Offeror form AID 309-2. Offerors are required to complete sections A through I. This form must be physically sigsned. Electronic signatures will not be accepted. AID 309-2 is available at http://www.usaid.gov/forms.
Additional documents submitted will not be accepted.

By submitting your offer materials, you certify that all of the information on and attached to the offer is true, correct, complete, and made in good faith. You agree to allow all information on and attached to the offer to be investigated. False or fraudulent information on or attached to your offer may result in you being eliminated from consideration for this position, or being terminated after award, and may be punishable by fine or imprisonment.

To ensure consideration of offers for the intended position, please reference the solicitation number on your offer, and as the subject line in any email.

DOCUMENT SUBMITTALS

Via email: recruiter@ofda.gov

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