Return Counsellor

Bern | Geneva

Position Title: Return Counsellor
Duty Station: Bern, Switzerland
Classification: General Service, Grade G5 at 80% - 100%
Type of Appointment: Fixed term, one year with possibility of extension
Estimated Start Date: As soon as possible

Closing Date: February 25, 2016
Reference Code: VN2016/01(GS)-EXT

Established in 1951, IOM is the leading inter-governmental organization in the field of migration and works closely with governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental partners. IOM is dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. It does so by providing services and advice to governments and migrants.

Please be advised that this is a local position and as such only applications from candidates with a valid residence / working permit residing in Switzerland or within commuting distance in neighbouring France will be considered.


Under the overall supervision of the Chief of Mission the successful candidate will serve as focal point for providing Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) support and provide specific return counselling services.

Core Functions / Responsibilities:

  1. Manage and administer the IOM  Return Counselling Office at the Federal Asylum reception & registration centre in Bern and at any of the additional satellite reception centres that may be set up in the Bern Region

  2. Provide specific return counselling services and extensive information on    Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) to all residing at the centre.

  3. Organize and facilitate journeys home in co-operation with relevant Swiss governmental authorities (Federal Office of Migration and swissREPAT), while giving special support to cases requiring it.

  4. Regularly liaise with IOM Bern, particularly when using its various AVRR supportservices, such as the “Return Information Fund” (RIF) or reintegration assistance (REZplus), and when booking flights via swissREPAT-IOM-Movements (SIM).

  5. Liaise with all relevant partners at the reception centre and ensure good information flow with all partners, especially with the designated focal point of the Federal Office for Migration (SEM) for the project.

  6. Prepare statistical analysis, narrative reports and communication materials, as required.

  7. Perform general administrative duties within responsible reception centres.

  8. Provide support to IOM colleagues at reception centres as required (as well as temporary replacements).

  9. Undertake duty travel within Switzerland as well as abroad as required.

  10. Perform such other duties as may be assigned.

Required Competencies


• Takes responsibility and manages constructive criticism;
• Works effectively with all clients and stakeholders;
• Promotes continuous learning; communicates clearly;
• Takes initiative and drives high levels of performance management;
• Plans work, anticipates risks, and sets goals within area of responsibility;
• Displays mastery of subject matter;
• Contributes to a collegial team environment;
• Incorporates gender-related needs, perspectives, and concerns, and promotes equal gender participation;
• Displays awareness of relevant technological solutions;
• Works with internal and external stakeholders to meet resource needs of IOM.


• Effectively applies knowledge of migration issues within organizational context; 
• Correctly frames migration issues within their regional, global, and political context.

Required Qualifications and Experience


• University degree in Social Sciences or a related field from an accredited academic institution with five years of relevant experience.


• Knowledge of migration and assisted voluntary return and reintegration;
• Knowledge of migration issues and Swiss Migration an advantage;
• Having worked with directly with migrants a distinct advantage;
• Familiarity with multi-cultural environments a distinct advantage.


Fluency in English, French and German is required. Working knowledge of other languages such as Spanish, Italian or Arabic is an advantage.

Interested candidates are invited to submit their applications via PRISM, IOM e-Recruitment system, by February 25, 2016 at the latest, referring to this advertisement.

For further information, please refer to:

In order for an application to be considered valid, IOM only accepts online profiles duly filled in and submitted with a cover letter not more than one page specifying the motivation for applications.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. You can track the progress of your application in your personal application page in the IOM e-recruitment system.

Posting period:

From 16.02.2016 to 25.02.2016

Requisition: VN 2016/01 (GS) - Return Counsellor (G5 at 80% - 100%) - Bern, Switzerland (54747135) Released

Posting: VN 2016/01 (GS) - Return Counsellor (G5 at 80% - 100%) - Bern, Switzerland (54747136) Released

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.
  • Organization: IOM - International Organization for Migration
  • Location: Bern | Geneva
  • Grade: Mid/Senior
  • Occupational Groups:
  • Closing Date: 2016-02-25

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