Short-term Consultant/Team for Scoping Study and Design of Women Leaders in Manufacturing Network

Terms of Reference

Short-term Consultant/team

Scoping Study and Design of Women leaders in Manufacturing Network


IFC—a member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries. In the fiscal year 2020, we invested $22 billion in private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit

The IFC's Gender and Economic Inclusion Group (GEIG) works across investment and advisory services to enhance gender-smart private sector development. We help companies close gender gaps by building the capacity of colleagues and clients to drive gender-aware and inclusive business growth. The three pillars that enable us to achieve these goals are i) providing research on the business case for gender equality, ii) providing direct client advice and investments as well as iii) creating private sector peer learning platforms that enable companies to distill best practice and learn from each other.

IFC is currently designing a program to promote advancement of women in the garment and footwear manufacturing supply chain of a selected global footwear and apparel brand.  The program will offer supplier factory groups a combination of bespoke advisory services and peer learning opportunities. One element of the program, initially in Vietnam only, is the Accelerator, a network of high potential women nominated by participating manufacturers. The Accelerator will target women professional employees at either junior-to-middle management or middle-to-senior management levels. It will include a program of technical and leadership skills training, career guidance and mentoring, as well as a community for support and encouragement. IFC is seeking a consultant team to assist in the design of the Accelerator. The project will involve interviews and focus groups with managers and employees in selected large manufacturing operations in Vietnam. The objective is to assess the needs, the market, and potential for development of this manufacturing network for women.  

The project team is seeking to hire a research team of at least one senior researcher and at least one native Vietnamese speaker. The team should bring strong expertise in qualitative research, gender, and experience with the private sector.

Scope of Work

  • Work with the GEIG and MAS Gender project teams to finalize the qualitative research/assessment methodologies and tools, including Focus Group Discussion (FGD) and In Depth Interview (IDI) tools.
  • Conduct desk research covering:
    • benefits of an accelerator program and network for women’s leadership;
    • best practices and success factors for such network, particularly in garment manufacturing;
    • local context of women’s employment and leadership in manufacturing in Vietnam, including barriers for women’s participation in leadership;
    • mapping of existing relevant networks of female leaders in private sector in Vietnam (or outside of Vietnam in the manufacturing sector), with information related, but not limited to, target groups, objectives, and key stakeholders.
  • Collect and analyze qualitative data by using FGD’s and IDI’s. The Consultant team is expected to travel domestically in Vietnam and conduct most interviews and FGDs in person. Interviews with relevant stakeholders can be organized virtually.
    • It is expected that the Consultant team will reach at least 40 women at different management levels from 4 to 6 manufacturing groups (contacts to be provided). Male managers and operations staff will also be interviewed.  
    • Interviews will also be conducted with HR and General managers about desired skills/attitudes for future leaders and career paths. 
    • Note: contact information and letters of introduction from our global brand partner will be provided, the research team will be responsible for securing appointments.
    • The Consultant(s) will also interview key IFC or partner personnel with expertise in manufacturing and skills development (up to 3, will include Better Work GEAR project team).
  • Draft short profiles of 5 selected female leaders to illustrate job roles, career paths, skills, aspirations, challenges that can be addressed, their needs/thoughts about the Accelerator program concept.
  • Lead design workshop with GEIG and MAS gender teams (hybrid virtual/in person) to discuss research findings and preliminary design proposal. (2 – 3 hours) (Target date: June 10.)
  • Submit a final report in PowerPoint format with key research findings and proposed design for ‘The Accelerator: Emerging Women Leaders in Manufacturing’ program. Design should include:
    • Target participants. Which level of management / technical roles should the program target to best meet the needs of the manufacturers)
    • Key Content. What skills or knowledge is most needed and valued by firms and by individuals? What are attainable targets/ goals to be achieved by the Accelerator and by participating firms and individuals? What constitutes success?
    • Delivery Modality. Should the network meet in person only, remote only, or a combination? What would be the most impactful, efficient way to engage firms/ individuals, develop momentum as to deliver the desired outcomes?
    • Schedule/timing. How often and over what duration? What is the exit strategy for the program?
    • Metrics and M&E plan. How will we know if the Accelerator is successful? What indicators are of most use to the manufacturers and the buyer?
    • Operator. What might be an effective training organization in Vietnam to administer the Network? Please develop a short list of 3 organizations listing key competencies and relevant experience.  
    • Pandemic risk management (including logistical shifts should they be needed)

Contract details

We are aiming to complete this project in May and June 2021 and is expect it to take approximately 45 person days. Daily rates will be determined based on the candidates’ seniority and prior experience.

The consultant team will directly report to the IFC regional gender lead for EAP and work closely with IFC project team. The senior consultant can work remotely.

Qualification and competencies

The assignment requires a senior researcher or head of a research team with:

  • Master’s degree in Social Sciences, Business, Gender or relevant disciplines;
  • A minimum of six years relevant experience in qualitative research. Familiarity with FGD and IDI tools, is a requirement;
  • Good understanding of Vietnamese context related to gender, labor market, human resources management, private sector, business case for workplace gender equality, including gender balance in the workforce and leadership;
  • Excellent writing and communication skills in English are required;
  • At least one researcher fluent in Vietnamese.
  • Research and working experiences in manufacturing, garment and footwear industry are an asset.

To apply

Interested candidate teams should send:

  • a cover letter indicating their interest in the job and outlining relevant skills and experience;
  • a short proposal of working plan (for a research team) in a maximum of 2 pages
  • CV(s) of lead and partner researcher(s) highlighting only the most recent and relevant experience.

to Ms. Ha My ([email protected]) by May 12, 2021. The Cover Letter must clearly indicate the candidate’s years and nature of experience with qualitative research on gender and engagement with gender and the private sector.

Job Details
Organisation Name: 
Application Deadline: 
Wed, 2021-05-12