Plan International is a girls’ rights organization that partners with adolescents and children around the world to overcome oppression and gender inequality, providing the support and resources that are unique to their needs and the needs of their communities. Working in more than 75 countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas, Plan’s holistic, rights-based approach ensures that our project participants achieve their full potential with dignity, opportunity and safety. Our projects are designed in partnership with communities and strategically address systemic issues that often transcend sectors. As such, Plan demonstrates technical expertise across a range of intervention areas: education, health, water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH), protection and youth economic empowerment. In addition, Plan has a robust humanitarian response and disaster preparedness practice. With extensive local networks and community reach, Plan drives positive change through broad community participation, achieving sustainable results by actively engaging and providing services to individuals, families, communities and governments. Plan International has been working in Malawi since 1994.

Plan International is seeking a Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, and Learning (MERL) Advisor for the anticipated USAID-funded Secondary Success Activity. The MERL Advisor will be responsible for leading the design and implementation of the program monitoring and evaluation framework and information system to track delivery against targets, outcomes and impacts. S/he will lead analysis of data collected for assessment of progress and areas of improvement and overall data management. S/he will guide reporting processes amongst technical staff and consolidates program reports, and promote learning and knowledge sharing of best practices and lessons learned. The position is contingent upon award of the project by the donor.


  • Contribute to the design, implementation, and ongoing revision of the program’s MERL plan ensuring that it responds to the needs of the program and adheres to USAID guidance.
  • Develop data collection methodologies and tools.
  • Train staff and local implementing partners on MERL plan, systems, concepts, tools, and processes.
  • Ensure data quality by conducting routine data quality assurance activities.
  • Collaborate with technical leads to develop a comprehensive research and learning agenda that contributes to program implementation and documenting of program results through gender-sensitive project indicators, sex- and age-disaggregated data, and data-gathering and analysis modalities.
  • Oversee all research related activities, including developing terms of reference, reviewing research methodologies, and overseeing data collection of third party research partners.
  • In coordination with the program team, help with the identification, analysis, and synthesis of lessons learned and best practices.
  • Oversee donor reporting.
  • Work closely with the MERL Advisor at Plan USA to ensure that the program’s M&E systems are compliant with Plan USA policies and procedures and USAID rules and regulations.
  • Ensure Plan’s Child Protection Policy and Guidelines and Research Standards are adhered to during project implementation.
  • Represent the program positively and professionally to internal and external stakeholders. 
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


  • A masters’ degree in a relevant discipline, such as economics, statistics, Demography or international relations.
  • At least seven (7) years of experience designing and implementing monitoring and evaluating activities for complex programs.
  • Demonstrated experience managing MERL activities on USAID-funded projects;
  • A firm command of MERL issues with respect to improvements in USAID-funded programs.
  • Demonstrated experience in setting up and managing MERL systems that track performance as per the objectives of this project (e.g. service integration and performance against each result area).
  • Demonstrated analytical skills to measure the outcomes of the project’s activities and support project supervision.
  • Strong writing and organizational skills for monitoring and reporting on program and program outcomes and impacts.
  • Experience supervising a team of MERL specialists and officers.
  • Work experience in Malawi or East Africa strongly preferred.
  • Fluency in English and excellent oral and written skills required.


Plan is a diverse and inclusive organization. Candidates of all genders and backgrounds are encouraged to apply.