Human Resources Senior Manager at The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International



The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund is the world’s largest and longest-running organization fully dedicated to gorilla conservation. As a global non-governmental organization, we partner with the Rwandan government, scientists around the world, communities, and other conservation thought leaders to create innovative, sustainable programs and solutions that enable gorillas and people to thrive together.

The heart of our operations is in Musanze, Rwanda at The Ellen DeGeneres Campus of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, from which we oversee daily protection and research of the gorillas and their habitat, teach and train future conservation leaders, and lead economically viable programs for the surrounding communities. Our team of over 180 employees work together to create lasting impact, underscored through our core values of integrity, equity, courage, collaboration, and passion.

Position Overview

Title: Human Resources Senior Manager

Department: Human Resources

Reports to: Country Director

Location: The Ellen DeGeneres Campus in Musanze, Rwanda

Direct reports: 1

Position Summary

The Human Resources Senior Manager will be responsible for developing and executing a human resource strategy in support of The Fossey Fund’s overall organizational mission and strategic direction, specifically in the areas of talent recruitment, compensation and benefits, performance management, training and development, employee relations, policy enforcement, and compliance with employment regulations. The Human Resources Senior Manager will provide strategic leadership by developing and articulating Human Resources needs and plans and serves as a strategic advisor to the leadership team. The Human Resources Senior Manager will supervise the HR Assistant and will oversee all HR-related functions across the organization to create and ensure a workplace that attracts and retains a workforce of high performing professionals.

Key Responsibilities

Human Resources Policies, Processes, and Procedures

  • Personally lead and steward all Human Resources (HR) policies, processes, and procedures, including development and implementation, including but not limited to employee handbook, recruiting/hiring, compensation, performance management, compliance, discipline, investigations, training and development, and payroll administration
  • Ensure compliance with employment regulations (including but not limited to employment contracts, personal data protection regulations, work visas), stay informed of changing employment regulations and update policies, processes, and procedures accordingly; ensuring all staff are aware of changes and impacts on a timely basis
  • Oversee the HR Information system (HRIS) is used properly and provides accurate and timely information, ensure HR files, information , and other HR resources are maintained and updated.
  • Continuously improve Human Resource policies and procedures to incorporate learnings and best practices

Recruitment and Hiring

  • Key collaborator on leadership team to ensure current and future HR needs are proactively considered and planned
  • Collaborate with the Country Director on staffing needs
  • Oversee recruiting and hiring of new employees and interns, ensuring procedures are clear, transparent, and promote diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Ensure job descriptions are complete, identify media/advertising sources, advertise vacancies, develop screening and interview criteria, provide compensation offer to selected applicants, perform background checks, provide final signoff on new hire.
  • Manage the onboarding and offboarding processes for all staff

Salaries and Benefits

  • Evaluate the salary and benefits of staff relative to location, industry, and market to optimize compensation plans within budgets
  • Provide timely recommendations to Country Director and Chief Financial Officer regarding compensation trends
  • Oversee the implementation of the staff health policy and ensure timely renewal of the policy

Professional Development

  • Promote staff growth and development through the development and implementation of performance management system, compensation system, and other professional training and development initiatives, which includes training, monitoring, and coaching of supervisors and employees to ensure strategic outcomes are achieved.
  • Work with leadership team to identify areas of potential growth and development for employees and managers

Employee Relations

  • Proactively contribute to developing and modelling the organizational culture in line with The Fossey Fund’s vision, mission, core values, and strategic plans.
  • Provide information, advice and guidance to managers on employee relation issues
  • Train organization on HR policies, processes, and procedures
  • Oversee staff engagement surveys
  • Primary point of contact for disciplinary or investigation processes, in close collaboration with the Country Director and Leadership Team.
  • Develop and implement sustainable individual and team effectiveness programs to ensure a thriving culture of trust and respect, including communication and teambuilding events.


  • Supervises HR Assistant
  • Prepare and manage the annual HR budget participating in the overall budgeting process to ensure HR plans are included.
  • Other duties as may be assigned by the Country Director.

Qualifications, Skills and Experiences

  • Education and Prior Experience:
    • Minimum Bachelor’s degree in Human Resource Management, Business Administration or any other HR related field plus ten (10) years’ proven experience working as a Human Resources leader, OR
    • Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management, Business Administration or any other HR related field plus five (5) years’ proven experience working as a Human Resources leader
  • Certification in Human Resources (e.g., SHRM-SCP, SPHR, TMP, STM, GTML…) or any equivalent certification is highly desirable.
  • Strong training and leadership skills; demonstrated ability to supervise staff
  • Knowledge of and working experience with HRIS
  • Highly proficient in English and Kinyarwanda, fluency in French is an added advantage
  • Works strategically and tactically to develop and effectively manage HR policies, procedures, and programs.
  • Comfortable with uncertainty; manages stressful situations with win-win outcomes
  • Outstanding diplomacy and communication skills in individual, team, and large-group settings
  • Able to maintain a high level of confidentiality in handling sensitive information
  • Possess problem-solving skills, be a self-starter and a team player
  • Able to conduct regular visits with employees in field
  • Has a strong network within the HR community to share best practices with the organization for continuous improvement
  • Experience with I-NGO or a national civil society is an advantage

How to Apply

Interested candidates looking for this exciting opportunity to make a meaningful impact in human resource management The Fossey Fund are requested to submit their resume (no longer than 2 pages) and a cover letter outlining their work experience and achievements, their qualifications via the apply button.

The Fossey Fund is an equal opportunity employer, and therefore all are encouraged to apply.

Only successful applicants will be contacted for interviews.

We also encourage you to visit our website: for more information about our work.

Application Deadline: 30 June 2024

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