Human Rights & Social Performance Principal Consultant at ERM | May 2024

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Job Description

Human Rights & Social Performance Principal Consultant (Mid-Senior Level)

ERM has a well-established and fast-growing Social Performance and Human Rights practice of around 300 people globally and 60 people within EMEA which we are looking to expand further due to significant client demand. ERM has delivered Human Rights related work for more than 20 years around the world often driven by international standards and evolving regulatory requirements. In recent years we have increased our advisory to our corporate, banking, and other clients on how they can best undertake Human Rights Due Diligence per the UNGPs, applying our global teams experience on the ground working in local languages and conditions, aligned with Boardroom experience in assisting clients in meeting international standard and establishing and managing performance systems and responding to investor challenges. We work across a range of sectors including extractives, finance, manufacturing, chemicals and pharma and technology.

The post is based in one of our Africa Offices, including South Africa (Johannesburg, Durban, Cape Town), Tanzania (Dar es Salaam), Kenya (Nairobi), Ghana (Accra). The candidates will be supported to develop a career in Social/Human Rights advisory.

The ideal individual will help us continue to drive the growth of ERM’s business in Social Performance across a wide range of business sectors in the Africa and across the EMEA region. They will be able to draw on a global network of ERM Partners and consultants working with clients on a broad range of social consulting issues.  As a key contributor to this important sector within ERM’s strategic growth plans, you will be fundamental to the growth of ERM’s business in EMEA through selling and delivering world-class services, recruiting and developing others in order to expand our current team, and further advancing our reputation for human rights, labour rights and social performance consulting more widely. Demand for our services is expanding and this role offers a rewarding role for the right individual within a close knit and high functioning team. This opportunity will enable you to contribute significantly to key decisions, including the overall strategic direction of our UK & Northern Europe and EMEA strategy.

This is an exciting opportunity for an experienced professional with a passion

for Human Rights and experience within the areas of due diligence, impact assessments, ethical trade, supply chain, labour standards and working conditions, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), indigenous peoples, and gender keen to pragmatically advise businesses on how they might meet, or influence business partners to meet Corporate Responsibility, Human Rights and Sustainability expectations. 

Job Profile Summary

As a Principal Consultant joining our team, your key focus will be on helping our clients to define and implement strategies for Human Rights policy and practice.

Technically, the consultant should have experience in some or all of the following areas:

  • Experience with human rights topics such as modern slavery, living wage methodologies, labour and working conditions, indigenous peoples, gender, diversity & inclusion, Just Transition and supply chain/ responsible sourcing.

  • Experience of developing Human Rights policies and implementation guidance.

  • Experience in undertaking human rights due diligence using standards such as the UN Guiding Principles, OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, IFC Performance Standards, Equator Principles as a benchmark.

  • Experience in delivering human rights impact assessments (HRIAs) in line with international standards.

  • Experience in delivering human rights / labour audits and developing and managing pragmatic corrective action plans (CAPs) for remedy.

  • Previous experience within industry or consultancy is desirable.

  • Proven ability to confidently deliver to tight timelines and work cross-culturally in an international working environment.

  • Excellent project management and communication skills

As a Principal Consultant within the team, you will be responsible for:

  • Managing or coordinating medium to large sized projects or whole elements of larger multidisciplinary or global projects – as ERM works closely with some of the world’s largest organisations, we anticipate that this role will require close collaboration with our regional and global social performance teams.

  • Delivering multiple project tasks or components, including proposals.

  • Supervising project team(s) and coaching and mentoring more junior staff.

  • Understanding the interrelationships between ERM services and policies and how these are applied within the clients’ business model.

  • Establishing strong working relationships with clients through project delivery.

  • Developing social performance and public affairs services across EMEA.

  • Advising our key local, regional and global clients and finding solutions for their ESG and climate change related challenges.

  • Making use of effective working relationships with business unit and participate in global technical communities to ensure strong network of resources.

  • Remaining up to date with external market and client industry trends.

  • Sharing expertise and knowledge within the business unit and/or global practice area.

  • Understanding how work of the project team and or practice community contributes to ERM’s success.

  • You will be part of our interdisciplinary and international team and will collaborate with ERM offices in the Americas, Asia-Pacific, and Europe, Middle East and Africa regions.

Job Requirements

  • Postgraduate degree (preferably a Master’s-level degree) in a relevant discipline (i.e. Human Rights, Social science, Geography, International/ Socio-economic Development, Anthropology).

  • Minimum of 8 years of experience in Human Rights or Social Performance.

  • Strong technical delivery experience.

  • Understanding of relevant international Safeguards and Standards, i.e. UNGPs, ILO, etc.

  • Commercial acumen, business development and project management skills.

  • Commitment to excellence, and to health and safety.

  • Excellent leadership and communication (both verbal and written) skills.

  • Experience with using data and technology to solve clients social performance challenges.

  • Willingness to travel.

  • Ability to work under pressure.

  • Excellent reporting skills in English.

  • Second language is highly desirable, preferably French, Spanish, Dutch.

  • Willingness to travel for work on short trips to interesting locations mostly in Africa, Middle East and or CIS countries.

Who We Are:

As the largest global pure play sustainability consultancy, we partner with the world’s leading organizations, creating innovative solutions to sustainability challenges and unlocking commercial opportunities that meet the needs of today while preserving opportunity for future generations.

At ERM we know that creating a diverse, equitable and inclusive work environment is an essential part of making our company a great place to build a career. We also see our diversity as a strength that helps us create better solutions for our clients. Our diverse team of world-class experts supports clients across the breadth of their organizations to operationalize sustainability, underpinned by our deep technical expertise in addressing their environmental, health, safety, risk and social issues. We call this capability our “boots to boardroom” approach for its comprehensive service model that allows ERM to develop strategic and technical solutions that advance objectives on the ground or at the executive level.