Organization overview 

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, helping a range of partners implement $1 billion worth of aid and development projects every year.

UNOPS plays a critical role in providing management services for our life-saving, peacebuilding, humanitarian and development operations." Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary-General

By implementing around 1,000 projects for our partners at any given time, UNOPS makes significant, tangible contributions to results on the ground.

Mission: serve people in need

UNOPS mission is to serve people in need by expanding the ability of the United Nations, governments and other partners to manage projects, infrastructure and procurement in a sustainable and efficient manner.

Vision: advance sustainable practices

UNOPS vision is to advance sustainable implementation practices in development, humanitarian and peacebuilding contexts, always satisfying or surpassing partner expectations.

Read more on UNOPS principles and mandate.

Reconstruction in Haiti

A member of the United Nations family

UNOPS is a central resource for the UN system, providing project management and procurement services that range from managing the construction of roads in South Sudan to building shelters in Haiti and procuring educational computers in Argentina.

We are able to work in the most hard to reach areas, despite considerable security and environmental challenges. We are an active member of United Nations country teams, working closely with other UN organizations to support the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals in a sustainable manner. All UNOPS work is in line with UN values and principles and promotes the concept of 'One UN'.

Supporting our partners 

Our partners choose UNOPS because they realize our skills, experience and scope will give their projects a better chance of success.

UNOPS is fully self-financing and is neutral with no political or substantive mandate. UNOPS does not need a public profile for fundraising or advocacy, instead taking a low-key role and promoting the projects of our partners.

UNOPS services help partners supplement their own capacities, improve quality, reduce risks, boost cost-effectiveness and increase speed.

Whether we are engaged by the UN, the European Union, the World Bank, a government, private organization or an NGO, we help translate policies into action to deliver quality projects that matter to people in need.

UNOPS is a not-for-profit organization and ensures that any savings made during implementation are returned to the funder or reinvested to boost project impact.


Types of support

We customize our support to individual partner needs, offering three different types of service:

Sustainability diagram

Implementation: providing management services to our partners projects, for example construction services to the World Food Programme (WFP) for a new office and storage compound in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Advisory: building national capacity in our core mandated areas.

Transactional: providing stand-alone human resource management and procurement, for example managing over 300 personnel contracts for the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) across Asia in 2011.

We provide this support in three main areas:

We call these our delivery practices as we deliver projects and results for our partners. In the light of Rio+20 and the increasing United Nations sustainability agenda, we are working hard to make all our work more sustainable.

The UNOPS team

UNOPS colleague in South SudanUNOPS has more than 6,000 talented and committed personnel running essential operations around the world, providing key expertise through our focus areas and core services. An increasing number of our personnel are gaining external certifications in the PRINCE2 project management methodology, as well as from the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply.

With its headquarters in Copenhagen, Denmark and a network of regional and country offices, UNOPS supports activities in more than 80 countries. UNOPS role within the UN means that during periods of conflict or crisis we maintain a physical presence on the ground. Our size, scope and track record allows partners to benefit from economies of scale, shared knowledge and specialized expertise.

Global structure

Sustainable development

Burmese lady sewing in Myanmar A focus on high-quality results is built into the culture of UNOPS, with the economic, social and environmental aspects of sustainability core to our work. We have a strong belief in national ownership and work closely with governments and communities to ensure increased sustainability for the projects we support.

UNOPS helps its partners to build schools, roads, bridges, hospitals, prisons and police stations. On behalf of our partners we train construction workers, procurement officers and government officials and organize mass education efforts for elections and disaster preparedness. We also procure goods ranging from vehicles to medical supplies, manage funds and administer small grants, on behalf of our partners.

More information on UNOPS financial performance and the results achieved on behalf of our partners is available in our recent report, Delivering Sustainable Results.

World-class standards

Managing projects in Honduras

In UNOPS, quality means continually getting better at the things that our partners want from us. This means completing our partners’ projects on time, within budget and in line with their expectations. It means ensuring that the results we deliver really benefit the communities where we work.

As such we continue to strive for certification from independent bodies. In 2011 UNOPS became the first UN organization to receive the prestigious ISO 9001 certification of our global quality management system and we were also certified by CIPS for the quality of our procurement procedures. We have also adopted contracts for infrastructure works based on those of the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC).

Quality standards

Transparency and accountability

UNOPS is committed to increasing transparency and accountability through timely and thorough reporting of financial and operational results. Partners can access up-to-date financial and project data through the secure Partner Centre website, giving them clear insight into operations and spending. UNOPS has also signed up to the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI), becoming one of the first organizations to publish data in the standardized IATI format. We publish details about more than 1,000 projects we are implementing on our public website.

UNOPS and accountability
UNOPS and information disclosure