Project technical manager

Position summary

Proforest is seeking a new team member to play a key role in our dynamic global team contributing to the delivery of positive change on the ground for workers in Malaysia. The person will be managing and implementing project activities on behalf of Proforest for a USDoL (US Department of Labour) grant-funded project in Malaysia to combat forced and child labour in the apparel and palm oil industries (MY Voice), for which Proforest is a sub-recipient.

This is an exciting opportunity for someone passionate and knowledgeable about human rights to make a difference to workers and local communities involved in palm oil production. We are looking for someone with strong stakeholder management skills as well as practical experience in the application of business’s responsibility to respect human rights (UNGPs) and/or practical experience addressing labour rights in the palm oil sector via supply chain mechanisms and broader engagement.

The position is based at Proforest’s office in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, with periodic travel within Malaysia and occasional travel outside the country. All applicants are expected to have the right to work in Malaysia.

About Proforest

Proforest is a dynamic non-profit organisation with global presence that has established itself as a leader in the development and implementation of sustainable production and sourcing of natural resources including a range of agricultural commodities.

We work at every stage of the supply chain, from production and processing, through to purchasing and investment. Our almost 20 years of experience covers major commodities such as oil palm, soy, sugarcane, timber, pulp & paper, rubber and beef at a range of scales that includes smallholders and local communities through to multinational businesses. We focus on the opportunities for conservation and social benefits within the production landscape, and never lose sight of the need for pragmatic and workable practices. More information on Proforest is available at


This position is responsible for developing, implementing and managing project activities on behalf of Proforest for the USDoL grant-funded project MY Voice. This position will also have the opportunity to engage with and contribute more widely to the other work areas of the Proforest global team. The role of the Technical Project Manager throughout the course of the project will include, but not be limited to:

  • Developing, implementing, managing and coordinating My Voice project activities by Proforest to ensure their adequate and timely delivery and completion
  • Coordinating with other Proforest team members and project grant recipient and sub-recipients and contractors responsible for implementing project activities and monitoring progress
  • Maintaining communication and acting as a liaison between Proforest team members, project partners and stakeholders. This includes actively seeking out new partners and stakeholders of interest while maintaining active engagement with current project partners and stakeholders.
  • Lead and/or facilitate consultation meetings/workshops with government, civil society organisations and private sector
  • Provide training and/or facilitating knowledge sharing workshops with stakeholders of the MY Voice project
  • Contributing to/lead on technical guidance/toolkit development, training modules and their roll out
  • Work closely with and oversee the Project Coordinator in managing all the reporting aspects of the project as well as monitoring and evaluation. This includes coordinating with grant recipient and sub-recipients ahead of communication with donor.
  • Reviewing and advising on changes and adaptations to project strategy, workplan and budget as needed. Keeping updated on latest national developments and trends on labour risks and issues, and advising relevant Proforest team members and project partners of any emerging matters that may impact project delivery.
  • Represent Proforest in relevant meetings and forums relevant to the project delivery, ensuring close collaboration with Proforest team members to agree positions and share outcomes
  • Other responsibilities as they arise.

Qualifications / experience:

  • Tertiary level (masters or equivalent) qualification in a relevant discipline;
  • At least 5 years relevant applied work experience in one or more of the following:
    • Supporting upstream operations (preferably in the Malaysian palm oil sector) to apply best practice in business and human rights (UNGPs), labour standards, stakeholder engagement etc.
    • Engaging with government stakeholders, civil society organisations and/or private sector actors
    • Applying ethical trade and/or labour and/or human rights standards as part of responsible production and/or responsible sourcing of agricultural commodities
    • Initiatives and frameworks for the protection of human rights by businesses
  • Direct experience of supporting sustainability in the private sector (e.g. production, supply chains, consultancy) and/or engaging with the private sector on sustainability
  • Experience with multi-stakeholder dialogue and coordination, engaging in coalition building and promotion of public-private partnership
  • A strong, practical understanding of the main issues in relation to workers’ rights in agricultural production (small and large scale) and/or global supply chains;
  • Experience of working with grievance mechanisms and/or the provision of remedy to workers exploited by forced labour or child labour;
  • An understanding and an interest in the drivers and root causes of poor labour rights practices in agricultural commodity production;
  • A good knowledge of the relevant international frameworks, conventions, and guidelines; national regulations, policies and guidelines; and voluntary standards / certification schemes designed to address labour rights relevant to agricultural community production;
  • Excellent project management skills (including excellent time-management, problem-solving and organisational abilities); ability to multi-task;
  • Highly developed interpersonal and team working skills, as well as proven ability to operate in a multi-cultural environment;
  • Ability and willingness to travel for training, field work, meetings
  • Proficiency in English and Bahasa Malaysia is a must
  • Strong verbal & written communication skills.

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