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Digital Systems Director

Lwala Community Alliance

Lwala Community Alliance

Posted on Thursday, May 9, 2024

Job Description

Title: Director of Digital Systems
Location: Kenya
Reports to: Chief Program Officer


Founded by a group of committed Kenyans, Lwala builds the capacity of rural communities to advance their own comprehensive well-being. We support communities to design, implement, and evaluate solutions to their most pressing health challenges. Then, we build coalitions of communities, health workers, government, and universities to generate evidence of impact and infuse these insights into the formal health system in Kenya and beyond. This bottom-up change promises holistic solutions that are custom-built for the systems they are meant to reform.


Lwala is pursuing a growing portfolio of innovative community-based health interventions backed by robust data systems to generate organizational learning and evidence at scale. Lwala’s extensive data system is heavily based on innovative digital health tools and platforms that generate high-quality data for decision-making and concurrently act as decision support for Community Health Workers (CHWs), reaching over 2.5M beneficiaries.

The Director of Digital Systems will lead and shape a quickly growing and innovative team that implements our flagship digital technologies, such as Lwala Mobile, a Commcare-based job aid for Community Health Workers, Salesforce-based information management system and the National Electronic Community Health System (eCHIS), a digital platform being used by CHWs. This role will also be responsible for the design and implementation of new digital system initiatives, including an ERP for the organization; as well as technical expertise to county and national MOH as they digitize Community Health Workers via Kenya’s eCHIS platform.

The Director of Digital Systems will be a vision manager who is technically savvy. Project management skills are a must, with experience in the software development cycle and Agile methodologies. In addition to defining Lwala’s strategy for growth in digital health information systems, you’ll need to have the technical know-how to offer a practical vision for product design and manage a team of technical staff and consultants. An understanding of M&E principles is critical, given the significant role digital data plays in Lwala’s learning and reporting ecosystem. You’ll especially impress us if you have worked in public health, implementing mHealth technologies in low-resource settings.

This position reports to Lwala’s Chief Programs Officer based in Nairobi and will work closely with the Director of Research, Learning & Impact, and Program leads.

Key Responsibilities

The responsibilities of the Director of Digital Systems will include:

Leadership and Management

  • Participates in Leadership level strategy and management responsibilities
  • Leads team structure and skills as Lwala rapidly scales and expands digital systems
  • Drives the conceptualization and development of new digital health strategies and interventions
  • Grows Lwala’s portfolio of digital health activities and maximizes use of digital health strategies within existing projects to accelerate achievement of project goals and objectives
  • Develops and maintains excellent professional relationships with colleagues, counterparts, partners, government stakeholders and donors worldwide to maximize Lwala’s impact, including developing new business opportunities and contributing to proposal design and production related to digital health systems.

Software Development and Product Management

  • Articulates a vision for the digital product team, management team, and stakeholders.
  • Works with the leadership team and other external stakeholders to provide resources for use in product management and software development e.g. systems, subscriptions, and other tools.
  • Interacts with users to understand their needs.
  • Further development of systems, including eCHIS in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health at the county and national level.
  • Ensures that each digital product vision is carried out and that the full software development life cycle is completed.
  • Ensures consistent use of (and participates in) the Agile sprint process.

Stakeholder Engagement

  • Engages with external stakeholders such as MOH and other partners to make sure that Lwala is developing products that fit the market’s needs.
  • Represent Lwala globally and develop and maintain relationships that grow Lwala’s portfolio and strengthen its reputation as a leader in digital health.
  • Participate in various national MOH Technical Working Groups and Forums to drive collaboration, knowledge sharing and solutions in the Digital Health and Community Health advocacy goals.

System Architecture and Technology Implementation

  • Define the strategic vision for Digital Health and enable the structures and people to be in place to execute it.
  • Leverage existing technologies to define solutions for digital health within the organization
  • Build software and/or leverage technologies that are replicable, resilient, and most of all scalable
  • Final decision maker on which technical platforms Lwala uses.
  • Ensure data pipeline is implemented and maintained for automated data processes that allow analysis and insights to be derived in a seamless manner
  • Provide oversight for digital health and system activities to ensure technical excellence across Lwala’s portfolio of digital health work.

Digital Field Operations

  • Enable the digital systems field teams to provide field support to the County Ministry of Health teams in maintaining the shift from paper to digital systems for community health.
  • Ensure Data Quality Assessments (DQA) are conducted in collaboration with the Research & Learning teams
  • Influence and facilitate the use of CHW tools including the devices, software (eCHIS/ Commcare), and other commodities to ensure the uninterrupted and complete flow of data
  • Support the program interventions that are geared towards Primary Health Care goals.

Qualifications and Experience

  • Advanced degree in Digital Health, Informatics, Computer Science, Computer Information Systems or another relevant field
  • Minimum 10 years progressive experience in leading, managing and advising field implementation for health information strategies and digital health, preferably in a public international health program environment of which 5 years in supervisory experience managing teams.
  • Demonstrated leadership and management skills, with the ability to galvanize support and action within the organization for existing and new strategic directions
  • Recent prior experience (within the last 3 years) as information systems or digital health project manager
  • Up-to-date knowledge of technologies, methodologies and technology standards and an understanding of the constraints and benefits of different technologies
  • Strong knowledge of public health programs and eHealth/mHealth applications or health information systems for these programs
  • Ability to develop productive working relationships with counterparts in other agencies and organizations worldwide
  • Deep understanding of evolving international health funding priorities, the key players, technical state-of-the-art thinking and priorities, and program development roles and opportunities
  • Experience managing a budget, and implementing a grant-funded project from inception to close
  • Experience developing strategic and tactical plans in cooperation with others who represent a wide range of interests and needs
  • Strong results orientation and decision-making skills
  • Ability to coach, mentor and develop technical capacity in regional and national programs and technical staff
  • Experience in national health information systems, Commcare, Salesforce, Javascript, OpenFN OpenMRS, SQL is an added advantage
  • Ability to travel up to 20% between Nairobi and field sites
  • Ability to work in a complex environment with multiple projects/tasks, short deadlines, competing deadlines and intense pressure to perform
  • Ability to interact with established networks of senior-level international health professionals, donors, universities and other partners
  • Appreciation for socio-cultural differences in countries, preferably having lived and worked in one or more low resource settings
  • Excellent organizational skills, work independently with minimal supervision, manage several major activities simultaneously, and work in a complex environment with short deadlines and intense pressure to perform


  • People manager – Strong ability to build teams and ensure cohesion in a manner that delivers organizational goals.
  • Visionary innovator - Must be able to build strategy and vision for sustainable, right-sized and high-quality digital tools that contribute to strong local community health systems.
  • Commitment to impact – Must be passionate about Lwala’s mission and the population we serve, and relentless in pursuit of generating evidence and learning to understand our impact as we test our community-based innovations and scale with government and partners.
  • Communication skills – Strong written and verbal communication skills are essential, in particular, ability to communicate complex thoughts and ideas simply and effectively and tailor communications to the non-technical audience.
  • Ability to create “structure out of nothing” – Strong ability to turn a visual reality or imagined outcome into a codified set of steps, actions and goals on paper.
  • Self-starter – Must be a highly motivated self-starter who can creatively ensure that the engagement between different teams (mainly Programs, Research & Learning, and Operations) is cohesive while ensuring that the main decisions are evidence-based.
  • Effusive - The role can be demanding and, at times, subject to external pressures for timely completion. The candidate must be adaptive, creative, organized, and highly motivated.

How to apply:

Please apply by following the link here >>> Director of Digital Systems Vacancy

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis with an application deadline of 30th May 2024.

Lwala Community Alliance is an equal opportunity employer and does not ask for fees at any stage of the recruitment process. Successful candidates must abide by Lwala’s Anti Fraud & Bribery Policy and Safeguarding Policy, including protection of children and vulnerable adults.