Senior Business Development Specialist

Posted about 1 year ago by Near East Foundation
Location Baghdad Job Type Permanent
Salary Sector NGO

For over 100 years, NEF has worked to build more sustainable, prosperous, and inclusive communities in the Middle East and Africa through education, governance, and economic development initiatives. Its programs are organized around three themes: Inclusive Economic Development, Climate-resilient Development, and Stabilization and Peacebuilding.


The position


The Near East Foundation (NEF) is seeking candidates for a Senior Business Development Specialist position to be either based in or with frequent travel to Ramadi, Iraq. These are dual roles that require the ability to (1) build capacity of a cohort of locally embedded Master Trainers and associated modules and systems to support individual beneficiary businesses through the business diagnostic and development process; and (2) assess the relevant markets and sectors to deliver support package that can facilitate enterprise growth, job creation, and access to markets for the project beneficiaries. The latter will include building relationships with a variety of stakeholders relevant to market facilitation, from large businesses to business associations.


Main duties include:

Business development tasks 

  • Support the recruitment of Master Trainers and Coaches in three locations;
  • Lead on updating business diagnostic and development curricula;
  • Build capacity of Master Trainers through training, coaching, mentoring and monitoring;
  • Oversee and optimize the business development process, including the development of business plans, financing, and post-financing coaching and mentoring to facilitate enterprise growth and job creation;
  • Build and maintain relationships with entrepreneurs, Master Trainers, and local partners;
  • Assist with the identification of new entrepreneurs to receive project support;
  • Update and manage post-financing business strengthening, coaching, and acceleration support;
  • Ensure tight management of milestones and progress of supported businesses;

Market engagement and programming

  • Monitor and report on market trends, including skills, market, and enterprise-level analysis to inform programming;
  • Conduct internal technical reviews, programmatic reflections, best practices, and learning and adaptation exercises;
  • Oversee the design and implementation of market and labor study and regular market diagnostic exercise to inform programming, including sectorial prioritization and market access facilitation; 
  • Develop the market engagement strategy to facilitate the delivery of project outcomes;
  • Collaborate with other teams to ensure mainstreaming and integration of technical or supporting area related to market access facilitation and sectorial and enterprise growth.


  • Support periodic reporting to funders and donors;
  • Support other NEF activities as needed.

Required Qualifications:

  • University degree in any relevant Field;
  • Five years of demonstrated experience in business development;
  • Two to three years’ relevant experience in market engagement and facilitation;
  • Ability to use known business analysis tools to identify problems and to propose solutions;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office package (Excel, Word, Outlook);
  • Strong verbal and written communication in English and Arabic, consultation and interpersonal skills
  • Excellent facilitation skills
  • Capacity to work independently, and collaboratively in a team environment

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Based in Al-Anbar province, Iraq
  • Experience in market systems or value chain development

  • Experience in Training of Trainers

NEF will accept a rolling application until the position is filled.  Interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.  A review of applications will begin on November 7, 2022.


To apply:

  1. Cover letter outlining relevant experience and skills based on the requirements outlined above.
  2. Curriculum Vitae;

  3. List of three references (including one from current, or most recent, employer).

Applicants are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with the Near East Foundation by visiting the NEF website at

The Near East Foundation promotes Equal Opportunities for all applicants seeking employment and NEF employees.



  • Reports to: Project Manager
  • Location: Baghdad or Ramadi
  • Travel: Yes, 50% of time

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