UN Careers (2023)

United Nations Volunteers

(Video) How to Get a Job at the United Nations in 2023

  • UN Volunteers directly mobilizes up to 8,000 volunteers every year.
  • Eight out of ten UN Volunteers come from developing countries themselves.
  • More than a third of all UN Volunteers work within their own countries.
  • Almost half of all UN Volunteers are female. More than 1 in 4 UN Volunteers is younger than 29. UNV makes special efforts to recruit people with disabilities.
  • In 2017, almost 18,000 people volunteered over the internet through the UNV Online Volunteering service.
  • Based in Bonn, Germany, UNV is represented worldwide through the offices of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and reports to the Executive Board of UNDP/UNFPA.
(Video) 4 ENTRY POINTS for getting your FIRST UN JOB

Volunteer programme

If you are inspired to take concrete action for global peace and development, take a look at the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme.

Every year, up to 8,000 qualified and experienced women and men of some 160 different nationalities volunteer at least six months of their lives to help others. These UN Volunteers work in some 130 countries promoting peace, responding to disasters, empowering communities and helping to build sustainable livelihoods and lasting development.

(Video) Do NOT Apply to the UN without this...

UN Volunteers come from dozens of professional backgrounds but all of them are catalysts of positive change. They are encouraged to be creative and entrepreneurial, and foster volunteerism for peace and development both within and beyond their assignments. They work at the heart of communities in partnership with governments, United Nations entities and civil society.

Being a UN Volunteer is not a career (you are currently limited to four years of service), but it is rich with opportunities and experience and offers huge personal rewards.

As a UN Volunteer you receive a Volunteer Living Allowance (VLA) which covers basic needs, housing and utilities. Additionally, UNV will provide a settling-in-grant, life, health, and permanent disability insurance, return airfares and a nominal resettlement allowance.

(Video) Career Insights: The United Nations

UNV is looking for a diverse cross-section of volunteers: just like you. Be our inspiration in action. Join this team of remarkable people and make real change happen.

Take the first step and visit www.unv.org to find out more and register your details, or go directly to the special calls for UN Volunteer assignments.

Are you ready to be a volunteer?

(Video) How to Get a Job in a United Nations Mission - UN Peacekeeping and Special Political Missions

  • Do you have a university degree or a diploma of higher education?
  • Do you have a working knowledge of English, French, Arabic or Spanish?
  • Is it important for you to work in a spirit of partnership and solidarity?
  • Are you motivated by and dedicated to volunteerism?
  • Are you available for short-term assignments (six to 12 months)?
  • Are you ready to serve in hardship locations? (UNV supplies 25% of all international civilian UN peacekeeping personnel and 17% of UNHCR field personnel).


What careers are in the UN? ›

There is a wide range of jobs in the eight job networks: management and operations support; economic and social development; political, peace and security; information systems and communication technology; legal; public information and external relations; conference management; and safety and security.

Is it hard to get a job for the UN? ›

UN Jobs are Highly Competitive

As a result, UN jobs receive a lot of applicants and often from people with lots of experience and high qualifications, meaning competition can make getting a UN job difficult. The high-level of competition can definitely make it hard to get a job at the UN.

What qualifications do you need to work at the UN? ›

Requirements normally stipulate a Master's degree (or equivalent) in a development-related discipline, a minimum of two years of paid working experience in a relevant field, preferably in a developing country, written and spoken proficiency in at least two of the three official UN languages (English, French and Spanish ...

Are UN jobs worth it? ›

It has access and resources no other organization does. Even if you don't spend your entire career working at the UN, there are many opportunities available there, including travel, good pay, good job benefits, and projects that make a real difference in the world.

Which is the highest paid jobs in UN? ›

High-Paying Jobs at United Nations
  • Director, D2. ...
  • Chief of Section, Logistics, P5. ...
  • Executive Director, Universal Access Project and Policy. ...
  • Political Affairs Officer, P3. ...
  • Director, Peace & Security Policy, Better World Campaign. ...
  • Director, Talent Acquisition. ...
  • Senior Information Systems Officer, P5.

How well do UN jobs pay? ›

For entry level professionals (P1 - P3) the annual net base salary for example can range from USD 37,000 - 80,000 (obviously this can range from organization and is used as a guideline only). Having said that, salaries, grants and allowances paid by the United Nations are normally exempt from income tax!

How do I start a career in UN? ›

Here are common requirements for many positions at the UN:
  1. Fluency in English or French, the working languages of the organization. Fluency in additional languages, particularly Arabic, Chinese, Spanish, or Russian, is helpful for most positions.
  2. A bachelor's degree or higher. ...
  3. Work experience in a related field.

How do I land a job at UN? ›

UN Careers

Professional positions are available by applying on the Careers Portal, or through the examination process. Candidates for jobs in the General Service and related categories, including those in the trades and crafts, security and safety, secretarial and other support positions, are recruited locally.

How do I pass UN interviews? ›

Useful tips for your interview:
  1. Prepare a wide range of brief real life stories about your accomplishments. ...
  2. Be ready to discuss your strengths and your ability to learn from past experiences. ...
  3. Review the competencies mentioned in the job opening.

How long does it take to get a UN job? ›

While some organisations and agencies fill positions quickly, others move slowly; this often depends on the size if the organisation and the urgency to fill a role. The end to end process of applying to securing a job with the United Nations system can take up to 4 months or even longer!

Can anyone join the UN? ›

Membership in the Organization, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, “is open to all peace-loving States that accept the obligations contained in the United Nations Charter and, in the judgment of the Organization, are able to carry out these obligations”.

Which is the best UN agency to work for? ›

Best United Nations agency to work for
  1. United Nations Development Programme. ...
  2. United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund. ...
  3. United Nations Volunteers programme. ...
  4. 4 . ...
  5. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. ...
  6. World Health Organization. ...
  7. United Nations Environment Programme.
Nov 5, 2022

What are the cons of joining the UN? ›

The Pros and Cons of Working for the UN
Positives of Working for the UNNegatives of Working for the UN
You can work all over the worldThe UN can be highly bureaucratic
It can be well paidCorruption within the organisation
You get to work on global issuesThe UN can be overly complex
2 more rows

Do UN workers travel a lot? ›

Many UN workers get to travel to many different countries throughout their career and this can definitely be one of the reasons the UN is a good place to work. UN staff can also travel to countries or areas experiencing disasters or conflicts.

Is UN income tax free? ›

Income taxes: Most member states have granted United Nations staff exemption from national income taxation on their United Nations emoluments. However, a few member States do tax the emoluments of their nationals. In such cases, the organizations reimburse the income tax to the staff member.

What is the entry level salary in UN? ›

Minimum salary at United Nations depends on the role you are applying for. For Programme Officer the minimum salary is ₹4.5 Lakhs per year, for Software Developer the minimum salary is ₹8.9 Lakhs per year and so on.

What is the lowest salary in UN? ›

For entry level professionals (P1 - P3) the annual net base salary for example can range from USD 37,000 - 80,000 (obviously this can range from organization and is used as a guideline only). Having said that, salaries, grants and allowances paid by the United Nations are normally exempt from income tax!

What benefits do UN workers get? ›

UN Volunteers

A monthly volunteer living allowance and a range of additional benefits, including relocation support, paid leave, medical coverage, life insurance, on-the-job learning, and development opportunities.

Do you need a college degree to work for the UN? ›

While the UN does offer some internship programs and volunteer programs that are open to candidates with just a bachelor's degree, a master's degree is a crucial ingredient for most people who are looking for consultancies or international staff positions with the United Nations.

Do UN volunteers get paid? ›

A UN Volunteer receives a Volunteer Living Allowance (VLA) per month and is paid at the end of each month to cover housing, utilities, transportation, communications and other basic needs.

What are the most common UN interview questions? ›


What did you like about working in the group? What did you dislike? How did you get the team members to cooperate? When have your personal objectives been at odds with those of the team?

What are the questions asked in UN interview? ›

Invariably, in competency based interviews, you're asked two types of questions. One is on how you work in teams and how you resolve conflict.
Key messages:
  • Tell me about a time when you where part of a successful team?
  • What was your role in the team?
  • What were the problems in the team and how did you solve them?

What motivates you to apply for UN job? ›

SUGGESTED ANSWER: “I first became aware of the great work carried out by the United Nations when I was younger and being someone who feels passionately about the values and ethics you abide by, the passion, skills and experiences I possess are a natural fit for this role.

Do you need a PHD to work at the UN? ›

A Masters degree is generally the minimum qualification for most professional UN positions, or an undergrad plus two years relevant work experience (in lieu of the masters degree).

What 3 countries are not in the UN? ›

Three countries in the world could not become a member of the UN - Taiwan, Kosovo, and Vatican City. The UN does not consider Taiwan and Kosovo as sovereign; rather, as part of China and Serbia, respectively.

Can UN members go to war? ›

Against the UN as the lawful authority

From a strictly legal point of view UN member states actually have given up their right to wage war, since they are bound by Article 2.4 of the Charter which says that "all members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force".

Do UN interns get paid? ›

Cost: United Nations interns are not paid. All costs related to travel, insurance, accommodation, and living expenses must be borne by either the interns or their sponsoring institutions.

Can a UN member be kicked out? ›

Article 6. A Member of the United Nations which has persistently violated the Principles contained in the present Charter may be expelled from the Organization by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.

What are 3 criticisms of the UN? ›

Philosophical and moral criticisms
  • Moral relativism. In 2004, former Israeli ambassador to the UN Dore Gold published a book called Tower of Babble: How the United Nations Has Fueled Global Chaos. ...
  • Threat to national sovereignty. ...
  • Debates surrounding population control and abortion.

What are the 5 main areas of work for the UN? ›

The work of the United Nations covers five main areas:
  • Maintain International Peace and Security.
  • Protect Human Rights.
  • Deliver Humanitarian Aid.
  • Support Sustainable Development and Climate Action.
  • Uphold International Law.

What skills does the UN look for? ›

We want people with integrity. People who are fair, impartial, honest and truthful. We want dynamic and adaptable persons who are not afraid to think creatively, to be proactive, flexible and responsive. If you think you embody these values then this is the place for you and your career.

What does the UN look for in an employee? ›

Development studies

The United Nations looks for employees who are dedicated to three pillars: integrity, professionalism, and respect for diversity.

What is a P3 salary for the UN? ›

37,000 - 80,000for entry level professionals (P1 - P3)
67,000 - 106,000for mid-career professionals (P4 - P5)
95,000 - 123,000for senior level professionals (D1 - D2)


1. TEDxUW - Tanya De Mello - Here's how you get a job at the UN
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2. United Nations Salary Level and Grades
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3. Why intern at the United Nations?
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4. UN Jobs Salary Scale | United Nations Salary Range
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6. United Nations Levels and Salary - What are they? - UN Jobs #5
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