Job Opening at Social Accountability International: Chief Executive Officer - NYC, NY

Dec 4, 2014 4:55 PM ET

December 4, 2014 /3BL Media/ - Social Accountability International (SAI) is a non-governmental, international, multi-stakeholder organization dedicated to improving workplaces and communities by developing and implementing socially responsible standards.

SAI convenes key stakeholders to develop consensus-based voluntary standards, provides training and technical assistance, assists corporations in improving social compliance in their supply chains, conducts cost-benefit research, and contracts with SAAS (Social Accountability Accreditation Service) which accredits qualified auditors to certify compliance with SA8000.

SAI partners with companies, trade unions, NGOs, multi-stakeholder initiatives, standards organizations, and development charities to carry out research, training and capacity-building programs.

Among SAI’s highly successful capacity building programs are TenSquared and Social Fingerprint

In 1997, SAI launched the pioneering SA8000 (Social Accountability 8000) – a voluntary  standard for workplaces, based on ILO and UN conventions and an ISO style management system.  Recognized as one of the most robust workplace standards, it is used by businesses and governments around the world. Over 2 million people work in SA8000 certified facilities.

SAI’s Signatory Members include Hewlett-Packard (HP), The Walt Disney Company, VF, Tata Steel and Eileen Fisher. SAI works closely with others, including the IFC (International Finance Corporation of the World Bank), the Dutch development organization ICCO, the German development agency DEG, the Danish Institute for Human Rights, and numerous companies.

Annual revenue: $4 million to $5 million

Staff: 20 full time plus 15 regular consultants based abroad

Direct reports: Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial & Administrative Officer, Executive Assistant (optional)

Office: Headquarters, New York City

International operations: countries (current projects primarily in India, China, Brazil, Bangladesh, the Netherlands; courses delivered in 30 countries primarily Asia, SE Asia & Latin America)

For more information, please visit us at:



Reporting to the SAI Board of Directors, the CEO provides inspirational leadership and ensures that SAI’s program, fiscal and resource development, human resources, and operational strategies are implemented effectively across all segments of the organization.



1. Strategic Vision and Leadership

  • Collaborate with the Board of Directors and SAI’s multi-stakeholder Board of Advisors (this board advises the CEO on policy and program matters, with two 3-day meetings a year) to create and implement the SAI strategic plan while ensuring that the plan, budget, staff, and priorities are aligned with SAI’s mission.
  • Provide inspirational leadership and direction to SAI staff and ensure the continued development and management of a professional and efficient organization.
  • Establish effective decision-making processes that will enable SAI to achieve its long- and short-term goals.
  • Cultivate a strong and transparent working relationship with the Board of Directors and Board of Advisors; ensure open communication about the measurement of SAI’s objectives.
  • Help build a highly competent, fully qualified, diverse and inclusive staff, and members of our boards representative of SAI’s stakeholders and the workers SAI serves.

2. Building Partnerships and Representing SAI Publicly

  • Create and execute SAI’s partnership strategy; initiate, cultivate and maintain strategic SAI partnerships.
  • Represent SAI and its standards externally, to the business community, public, NGOs, certifying bodies, and governmental organizations.
  • Provide high-level guidance on the creation and execution of SAI’s communications strategy and be closely involved in critical communication situations that arise.
  • Serve on external boards, committees and panels as appropriate and consistent with SAI’s strategic plan.
  • In pursuit of these and other objectives, travel within the US and globally 25% of the time on average.

3. Program Development and Implementation

  • Assure that SAI’s programs effectively and efficiently advance its mission and are aligned with its strategic plan.
  • Expand existing programs as appropriate; seek new program opportunities; eliminate programs as appropriate.

4. Resource Development

  • Ensure that the flow of funds permits SAI to make continuous progress towards the achievement of its mission and that, consistent with SAI’s strategic plan, those funds are allocated to reflect present needs and future potential.
  • Formulate and execute a comprehensive development strategy that will enhance revenue from donation funders and fee-for-service clients.
  • Lead the SAI Board of Directors and Board of Advisors to understand their development roles and responsibilities; inspire members of both boards to be highly engaged and willing to play their roles in securing resources.
  • Actively raise funds to enable SAI’s fulfillment of its mission and growth to expand its reach and continue its tradition of innovation and leadership in its field.

5. Operational Effectiveness

  • Lead and support the Chief Financial & Administrative Officer to develop and propose to the Board of Directors  the annual budget; oversee the financial status of SAI including developing long- and short-range financial plans; set financial priorities to ensure SAI is operating in a manner that supports the needs of its programs and staff.
  • Select, develop and manage direct reports in a rigorous and professional manner.
  • Assure that SAI maintains a culture that motivates, supports and develops its people; work relentlessly to sustain high levels of employee engagement and satisfaction.
  • Fcilitate collaboration and strengthen internal communication throughout SAI, between and among its board and staff members, and with SAI’s external stakeholders.

6. SAI Board Responsibilities

  • Convene SAI of Board of Directors and Board of Advisors.
  • Prepare and distribute to the Boards materials respecting program, finance, and the external environment.
  • Report to Boards on progress towards goals.
  • Appoint staff to support Board committees.
  • Participate in committees as appropriate.  
  • Assure smooth logistics for meetings, preparing and distributing materials for Board meetings.



  • Demonstrated commitment to the advancement of human rights and to decent, safe and healthy workplace conditions.
  • An appreciation of SAI’s multi-stakeholder approach and demonstrated experience bridging corporate, nonprofit, labor and governmental sectors; excellent coalition building skills with an ability to communicate and work effectively with a variety of internal and external stakeholders; a persuasive negotiator able to achieve consensus amongst differing opinions.
  • An ability to set clear priorities and effectively delegate. Financial skills & knowledge. Politically astute leadership with the ability to guide investment in people and systems; keen analytic, organization and problem solving skills which support and enable sound decision making.
  • Significant board development, revenue development and fiscal management experience
  • Outstanding presentation and communication skills and the ability to be an influential spokesperson, relationship builder, and fundraiser. Fluency in English required; other languages are an advantage, especially Asian languages.
  • Strong commitment to the professional development of staff; successful track record of recruiting and retaining a diverse team.
  • At least 10 years of senior managerial experience, preferably in corporate social responsibility, labor relations, international development or other decent workplace human-rights-related field; both corporate and nonprofit experience preferred; management of a global or multisite organization preferred.
  • Minimum of a BA; advance degree in a relevant discipline preferred (e.g. MBA, International Relations, Development Economics).


To apply, please send resume and cover letter to All applicants MUST include job title in the subject line of their email submission.

The position is at SAI Headquarters in New York City.  Compensation commensurate with experience and appropriate for a charitable organization of SAI’s size. Excellent benefits package. SAI is an Equal Opportunity Employer.