Salaries for professionals working in United Nations

Today I would like to comment about the payments of a Professional Staff (P level, or more commonly name as "P Position") within United Nations (be it in a Peacekeeping Operation, be in a U.N. agency)

Short answer (if you don't want to read everything): from US$77,338 (entry level) to approximately US$187,392.(senior level)

First, of all, what are the job posts related to a P Position?

To answer, please take a look at a extract of the job posts by the United Nations on 30th July 2015:

Source: United Nations careers portal

Lots of people think that you need to be from the military or a diplomat to work within United Nations. That's wrong. There are lots of civilian vacancies being posted all the time and the salaries are tempting. In above examples, you can see some opportunities for persons graduate in Public Information. Nevertheless, there are lots of other vacancies related to Law, Finance, Information Technology and Project Management, just to name a few.

What about the salary?

According to United Nations (information got in July 2015) P positions receive a "base salary" plus "post adjustment".

What people usually don't know is that this "post adjustment" is quite high. For example, if you are selected for a P2 or P3 position (entry level, the P positions goes from P1 to P5), in New York, you will receive a base salary between US$46,730 and US$80,521 (year).

Then, with New York post adjustment (for example) your final salary in a P2 or P3 position will be between US$$77,338 and US$133,262 per year.

Good for starting your career in United Nations. With some more experience, in the same duty station as a P4 or P5, your annual salary would be between US$101,292 and US$159,872.

The "post adjustment" calculations take into consideration the living conditions, cost of life and other variables of the duty station.

Civilians can apply in the United Nations Careers Portal, previously know as Galaxy, and currently known as Inspira.

Recently the U.N. launched a new Human Resources Portal that also contains some very helpful tips. (

Basically you should write your PHP (which is kind of an electronic resumé), apply for a position, wait to be shortlisted (luckly), and then you may have do a written and/or an oral assessment .

I myself was selected for two interviews in P Positions in my ten applications in Inspira. In one of them, I had to do a written test (via Internet), and in the other one I was asked questions related to the U.N. core values, and job competencies, such as teamwork and planning.

I know some persons that applied for more than one hundred positions and were never selected. I am waiting, though, the results from the Central Review Board process, which can take months. If you want personal advise on how to create a good PHP and how to be selected to a U.N. interview, I can give you personal advise (from my real experience, and not only from what you can get from the U.N. portal). Since I won't share this kind of information publicly, please kindly contact me via email:, so we can discuss on how to improve your chances to get a job in United Nations as a civilian in a P Position.