Working for British High Commission Nairobi

Information on job vacancies at the British High Commission-Nairobi

B3 - Personal Assistant to the Defence Advisor

Defence Section

Position type : Permanent

A vacancy has arisen at the British High Commission for a Personal Assistant to the Defence Advisor. The position is graded at B3 for which the current salary scale starts at Kshs. 201, 161/- per month before deduction of tax. Where the jobholder is not liable to Kenyan tax, the scale will be abated under HM Treasury rules and starts at Kshs.147, 205- per month to take account of the tax they would have paid.

Due to the nature of the role it is necessary that any applicant be security cleared to LE CONF status, or demonstrate that they can easily obtain such clearance. Clearance is most easily obtained by UK nationals with at least 3 years residence in the past 10 years in the UK, USA, Australia, Canada or New Zealand. Nationals of the latter four countries may also be able to get clearance. Candidates must have a traceable history over the last 5 years.

Main purpose of job

To provide Administrative support to the Defence Adviser and the wider Defence Section. The job combines standard secretarial support and diary management as well as general budget management. Facilitating travel in the region, basic IT support as well as organising events on behalf of the Defence Section

Roles and responsibilities

  • Provide support to the Defence Adviser (Brigadier) and Military Adviser (Lieutenant Colonel);
  • Monitoring incoming DipTels/emails and despatch as required, assisting the Staff Assistant with incoming and outgoing mail;
  • Booking appointments on behalf of the Defence Adviser and running his diary, coordinating with the High Commissioner’s office and other PAs to ensure accuracy;
  • Arranging all travel and meeting requirements for the DA/MA and incoming visitors to countries for which they have responsibilities;
  • Providing social secretarial duties, writing invitation cards, place cards, menus and compiling guest lists, maintaining contact lists, arranging caterers etc;
  • Carrying out office filing and maintenance of the filing system and the ordering and managing of stationery and other office supplies as directed by the Staff Assistant;
  • Liaison with Kenyan Ministry of Defence (KMOD), Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other ministries as required;
  • Obtaining Diplomatic Flight Clearances for all RAF flights and Royal Naval Ships entering countries for which the Defence Adviser has responsibilities in the absence of the Staff Assistant;
  • Assistance with UK visas for Senior Military Personnel from countries for which the Defence Adviser has responsibilities;
  • Facilitating attendance on UK courses for military personnel from countries for which the Defence Adviser has responsibilities;
  • Provide assistance for UK VIP’s visiting Kenya including visit programs;
  • Support to BHC social events including production of invites and menus etc;
  • Assistance in the management of the Defence Adviser’s residence, specifically act as the point of contact between the residence and the BHC management section and other agencies involved in its upkeep;
  • Liaison with Kenyan, Tanzania and Seychellois Armed Forces including production and tracking of Notes Verbales and following up on responses;
  • Ensuring Defence Section driver is fully briefed on schedules;
  • Managing the office refreshment fund and producing refreshments for principals and visitors, keeping refreshment area, crockery and equipment clean and tidy;
  • Providing cover for the Staff Assistant during absences;
  • Providing cover for the Personal Assistant to the High Commissioner during absences;
  • Undertaking other duties detailed by the Defence Adviser or Staff Assistant.

Key competences required

  • Delivering at pace
  • Delivering a quality service
  • Collaborating and partnering
  • Making Effective decisions

Skills / experience / qualifications required

  • Extensive experience of developing good working relationships with key stakeholders at all levels
  • At least 3 years work experience
  • Excellent IT skills (a working knowledge of Microsoft Excel and Word is essential)
  • Good oral and written communication skills, attention to detail and initiative
  • Must have the ability to respond flexibly to competing demands.
  • Previous work experience as a PA will be an added advantage.


  • All applicants must be legally able to work in Kenya with the correct visa/status or work permit.
  • The British High Commission in Nairobi is an equal opportunities employer, dedicated to inclusivity, a diverse workforce and valuing difference.
  • Employees recruited locally by the British High Commission in Nairobi are subject to Terms and Conditions of Service according to local employment law in Kenya.
  • Spouses/registered partners of UK Based Staff, are able to work within the BHC/BCG but their salary will be abated at the appropriate tax rates.
  • Reference checking and security clearances will be conducted.
  • If you have not heard from us 3 weeks after the closing date, please consider your application unsuccessful. Any questions you may have about this position will only be answered during interview, should you be invited.

To Apply

Please read these notes carefully to ensure that your application is received and processed.

Applications will only be accepted by email.

All applicants should submit a short (1 page maximum) covering letter stating why they are a suitable candidate for the position along with a copy of their CV (2 page maximum) in English and BHC application form, by email to:

BHC External Application Form - PA to Defence Advisor (MS Word Document, 84.5KB)

Internal candidates should also submit the above with a copy of their appraisals covering the past 24 months.

All candidates should use the following subject line for their email; 23/15 NR, PA to the Defence Advisor

Please submit only the requested documents. Also ensure that your email, including attachments, is no larger than 2 megabytes (2MB), otherwise it may be rejected by our email system or the systems through which it will pass en route to us.

Internal candidates and spouses of diplomatic officers: Please quote in the subject line of your email, the Vacancy Notice No: 23/15 NR, PA to the Defence Advisor and also indicate that you are an internal candidate or the spouse of a diplomatic officer.

The closing date is 10 August 2015 and no further applications will be accepted after this date.