Vacancy announcement
Geneva, Switzerland

Individual Contractor – Web application development (Full-stack) and IT support

Vacancy type Consultant/Individual Contractor
Duration of the contract
6 months (with possibility of renewal)
Deadline for submission of applications
23 February 2024
Organizational Unit
Communication and Information Technology Support Unit (CITSU)
Number of job positions
Area of Specialization:

Web applications development and IT Support


The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) delivers on its mandate to strengthen the capacities of beneficiaries through training, capacity development, applied research and related activities. Annually, the Institute organizes over 1,300 learning and knowledge-sharing events benefiting close to 400,000 beneficiaries all around the world.

The position of Individual Contractor – Web application development and IT support - is located in the Communication and IT Support Unit (CITSU), which oversees all communications activities and IT resources at UNITAR.  The Unit manages various online platforms such as the intranet, website, Event Management System, virtual learning platform as well as several internal platforms.

The Unit also provides assistance and expertise in solving the technical problems of its clients, namely staff, collaborators and beneficiaries of UNITAR. To better serve the software and web applications needs of its clients, CITSU provides in-house services in the development and maintenance of software solutions.

Under the supervision of the IT Specialist, the incumbent will be accountable for providing services in the design, development and maintenance of different software applications and websites for UNITAR. The incumbent will also be accountable for providing support to all categories of IT issues.

The incumbent will:

Assist in designing and updating software solutions by:

  • Analyzing business needs for software application solutions
  • Producing mockups and user interfaces to give stakeholders a good idea of the outcomes of a software project.
  • Developing the appropriate software solution given the size and scope of the project
  • Working iteratively to take advantage of the development feedback loop.
  • Design and manage large complex web applications from supplied specifications using agreed standards and tools
  • Create, update, and monitor web application programs following the approved design.
  • Plan, design, and conduct tests of website application programs; correct errors and re-test to achieve an error-free result.
  • Conduct reviews of supplied specifications of requirements, with involved stakeholders, as necessary.
  • Conduct a review of own work and lead reviews of colleagues'/external contractors' work.
  • Provide guidance and assistance to colleagues in any aspect of program design, creation, testing and documentation.
  • Take part in evaluations and reviews of application software programming methods, tools and standards.
  • Keep informed of developing technologies and their application.

Maintain the software solutions by:

  • Documenting software requirements and scopes of software development projects
  • Documenting all the components of applications developed (including data model, workflows, database schemas, code comments)
  • Refactoring and improving code written.
  • Debugging of code
  • Perform technical review, security and functional testing.
  • Backing up of code and data
  • Understand and influence the journey to solutions by considering both of-the-shelf and bespoke alternatives.
  • Document source code and all development processes, configurations, and solutions
  • Deliver end-user training and share knowledge with internal team members.

Design and update software solutions by:

  • Conducting user research and usability testing to inform design decisions.
  • Creating wireframes, storyboards, and prototypes to propose new design elements.
  • Collaborating with developers to ensure technical feasibility of UI/UX designs.
  • Monitoring user interactions and gather feedback for continuous improvement.
  • Ensuring design consistency and intuitive user navigation across platforms
  • Collaborating and taking part in design working groups to contribute and learn from collective expertise, facilitating a more integrated and cohesive design approach.

Support the IT Specialist in providing a reliable IT infrastructure by:

  • Providing support in workstation installation and maintenance
  • Responding to virus detections and performing data cleanups
  • Setting up workstations in the local network
  • Providing technical support to all UNITAR end-users
  • Updating inventory platform and performing periodic verification
  • Keeping website content and online platforms up to date
  • Document incident handling

Other tasks assigned by the IT Specialist and the Chief of CITSU.

Work implies frequent interaction with the following:
  • Staff and collaborators of the whole Institute.
  • Managers and focal points of the various programmes with whom projects are undertaken and discuss the most appropriate solutions for a given set of IT requirements.
  • Vendors and service providers of communication services that are used by UNITAR.
Results Expected:
  • Delivery of timely, effective, and user-friendly web application solutions.
  • A continued stable server, application, and network infrastructure.
  • Delivery of timely and effective IT support.

Professionalism – Excellent knowledge in the field of software development, particularly of web-related technologies; working knowledge of mobile/hybrid development; very good knowledge of general IT concepts and techniques.  Experience in providing IT support to non-technical clients.

Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

Planning & Organizing – Sound planning and organizational skills and ability to prioritize own work, delivering results and quality work, including when working under pressure.

Commitment to continuous learning – Willingness to keep abreast of new developments in the field of software development.

Communications – Excellent communication skills (spoken, written and presentation), including the ability to draft/edit a variety of written documents, such as proposals for software solutions to develop, and documentation of components and packages used in projects. Ability to explain technical issues in a non-technical term.

Technology awareness – Fully proficient in computer skills, with ability to use a variety of software and applications.

Teamwork – Strong interpersonal skills; ability to deal effectively with multiple constituencies and to establish and maintain effective working relations in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.

Minimum requirements

Education: University degree in computer science or a related field, or equivalent working experience.

Language: Fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language would be an advantage.

Experience: Minimum three years’ experience in the area of software/web development and IT support. The following technical skills are required:

  • Full-stack web development:

    • Server-side development – Proficiency in PHP and its various frameworks/packages (e.g., Laravel, Processwire, Drupal)
    • Client-side development – Proficiency in JavaScript, and its various toolsets
    • Proficiency in HTML, CSS, Bootstrap or other CSS frameworks
    • Ability to query databases and model data.
    • Ability to produce mockups and design user interfaces.
  • Understanding of object-oriented and functional programming paradigms
  • Administration of Linux servers
  • Experience in Microsoft Office 365 platform and SharePoint web services/APIs
  • Knowledge of Learning Management Systems (e.g., Moodle)
  • Experience with videoconferencing equipment and platforms
  • Knowledgeable in data privacy, web security and information security practices
  • Strong interest in working with data analytics and visualization.
  • Excellent problem-solving skills, critical thinking abilities and willingness to learn new concepts, methods, and technologies.
  • Good communication skills, both written and verbal, with the ability to present technical solutions to non-technical stakeholders.
  • Ability to write technical documentation, including processes, procedures, and workflows.
  • Knowledge of UI/UX for web applications.
  • Knowledge of SEO.
  • Day-to-day support in the areas of:
    • Workstation support (Windows and Mac)
    • Network support
    • End-user support for both internal and external users
    • Updating database records

This position is located in Geneva, Switzerland and the individual contractor is required to work from the UNITAR office in Geneva.

General conditions of contracts for the service of individual contractors apply. Individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local laws. UNITAR does not reimburse individual contractors for any taxes, duty, or other contribution payable by the individual contractors on payments made under the Individual contractor contract.

The Institute does not provide or arrange life or health insurance coverage for individual contractors, and they are not eligible to participate in the life and health insurance schemes provided by the UN for its staff members.

This is a locally recruited post and no relocation allowances apply. The successful candidate will be employed under a local contract and will not hold international civil servant status nor is he/she a “staff member” as defined in the United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations.

The United Nations shall place no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. (Charter of the United Nations - Chapter 3, article 8). English and French are the two working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. Priority will be given to the applicants from the underrepresented regions at UNITAR. There will be a probation period of 3 months.

How to apply

All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible after the vacancy has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the vacancy announcement.

Due to high number of expected applications, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.