Vacancy: Short Term Technical Assistant

Date 07 Oct 2019
Location Tamale
Job Type Contract

Company Profile

Nathan Associates London Limited is implementing the Market Development (MADE) Programme for Northern Ghana which is due to end in February 2020.


The MADE programme, funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), supports DFID Ghana’s objective of promoting growth and reducing poverty in the 63 districts covered by the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) covering the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone (NSEZ) of Ghana, now rechristened Northern Development Authority (NDA) by an act of parliament.  


More specifically, the MADE Programme is expected to improve the incomes and resilience of poor smallholder farmers (SHFs) and small-scale rural entrepreneurs (SSEs) in the NDA by improving the way that markets work. The programme uses the Market System Development (MSD) approach and aims to achieve a positive change in annual real incomes for 78,000 SHFs and SSEs by promoting, facilitating and supporting the development, adoption and use of new or improved business models, technology and agronomic practices to help increase agricultural yields, productivity and competitiveness and thereby contribute to increased sales and turnover. The programme is partnering with selected agribusinesses and support enterprises.

Job Description

Background information on the assignment

At the beginning of 2019 the Ghana MADE programme began designing a pilot to test the use of a benchmarking tool and examine its potential to both analyse the current 33 MADE partner agribusiness and highlight which parameters can be improved to allow them to follow higher growth paths. Within the context of a market systems approach, the pilot was expected to generate learning on the applicability of this new approach, with an explicit recognition that modifications to the approach may need to be undertaken during the course of implementation.


It was envisaged that the intervention would introduce a conduit by which SMEs can understand what and where their weaknesses are; what can be done to improve them; and identify specific and targeted professional support services to improve these deficiencies. By adopting this more targeted company specific support, coupled to working with commercially driven BDS providers, there was an opportunity for: i) agribusinesses over time to see the value of these services; and ii) allow more commercially driven and targeted BDS service providers to be established in Northern Ghana.


The initial assessments (using an off-the-shelf benchmarking tool) were undertaken through three contracted BDS providers: Open Ghana; Tradeline Consult which both have offices in Tamale; and MDF West Africa which is an international BDS / training provider. The exercise was overseen by a locally recruited company, Knowledge and Skills that acted as the Project Manager and responsible for coordinating the assessment component of the exercise.


An assessment of the 33 MADE partner agribusinesses were concluded in June 2019 which included feedback from firms, and ScopeInsight assessing and certifying the quality of analysis undertaken


Phase II assessment of non-MADE supported agribusinesses commenced in June 2019 and concluded by early July 2019 with 20 non-MADE agribusiness being assessed. The need to obtain a “control group” sample of agribusinesses was considered an important facet of the exercise as it would provide MADE supported partners an understanding of where they stood in the spectrum of general agribusiness performance within the country.


Objective of the Assignment

The broad objective of the benchmarking assignment are as follows; 

  • To create a framework for determining competitiveness MADE partner businesses. 

  • Develop a basis of comparing the performance levels of MADE partner agribusinesses with Businesses not supported by MADE.

  • Develop a detailed roadmap for each of the MADE partners businesses to guide their development for improved performance and competitiveness.

  • Provide BDS support to the businesses that are willing to address the gaps that need immediate attention and are possible to be worked on with the remaining time frame of the MADE programme.

The main objective of this short-term technical assistance support is to:

  • Facilitate the work of the MADE international consultant and owner of the benchmarking tool, ScopeInsight to improve how comparator analysis is used to drive the feedback session to the businesses.

  • Facilitate and ensure that the original benchmarking assessors deliver detailed feedback to all 53 benchmarked businesses

  • Coordinate the work of selected BDS providers to identify businesses that are ready to develop roadmaps and support the roadmap development process

  • Monitor how the roadmaps have translated into credible paid BDS services for participating MADE agribusinesses.

Key roles and responsibilities

  • Arrange and participate in meetings between the external consultants and MADE team.

  • Develop schedule for the external consultants and support them to schedule meetings with the agribusinesses to be debriefed. 

  • Participate in relevant meetings / workshops and provide support to ensure that existing assessors understand the purpose and messages to be delivered during the briefing sessions. 

  • Support the MADE team in concluding documentation for the selection of agribusinesses to move to the business roadmap stage. 

  • Provide follow-up support to the selected BDS providers / external consultants to develop individual business roadmaps for the agribusinesses assigned to them.

  • Provide follow up monitoring of any paid BDS services (by the agribusiness) that have been provided by those assigned to undertake the business roadmap process. 

  • Perform additional tasks, as requested by the MADE Market Development Manager.


This assignment will require 25 days of LOE starting in late October 2019, with a tentative end-date of no later than 15th December 2019.

Required Skills or Experience

  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in one or more of the following: Finance / Economics/ Management or related fields with strong business/ financial analytics background;

  • Minimum 10 years of relevant work experience

  • Knowledge and experience working with agribusinesses preferably in the North of GhanaSpecific Professional experience:

  • Strong work ethic and ability to carry out duties at a high professional standard

  • Strong technical, analytical and numerical skills

  • Strong organization and time-management skills 

  • Ability to deliver high-quality outputs on time and within budget 

  • Basic computer skills, including internet, email, spreadsheet and word processing software 

  • Strong writing and communication skills

How To Apply

Candidates must have the experience and qualifications listed above to apply

Applications close – 17th October 2019.



Please note, employers receive numerous applications per posting and will only shortlist the most qualified candidates. Also is not involved in any decision made by an employer/recruiter and therefore does not guarantee that applications sent
will result in a candidate being shortlisted/selected for that position.
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