London WC1H (Hybrid working, with around 40% of your time per month being office based.)
About the role:
The ACU is the world’s first and oldest international university network. Our mission is to build a better world through Higher Education, and we believe that international collaboration is the key to tackling the global challenges that we now face. We are looking for a creative and strategic communicator to help us reach new audiences with the work and impact of the ACU and our members.
This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to our ambitious strategy to advance the position of universities and their contribution to sustainable development on the global stage and with funders and decision makers.
Working closely with the Director of Strategic Communications, this role will support the development and implementation of the communications and engagement strategy, ensuring our activity is insight-led and impact-focused, and our multi-channel approach to strategic communication is delivering the right messages, to the right audiences, at the right time.
You will be confident developing innovative, creative campaigns that deliver results, finding new ways to grow our influence and impact and engage our external and internal audiences, including 500+ member universities in over 50 countries, funders, multilateral agencies, and governments.
You will be tenacious at spotting opportunities to build and enhance the ACU brand and reputation, and profile our diverse membership, including overseeing the creation of a media relations strategy and building relationships with key journalists and stakeholders.
Working closely with the policy and strategic partnerships team to position our work on leading policy issues, you will be familiar with or have an interest in the processes and structures of national or international policy making and will be confident in developing communication and advocacy campaigns to reach and engage decision makers.
You will be responsible for leading the ACUs marketing and communications team, coaching and developing colleagues to build a high performing team and promote a team culture of professional development, learning and knowledge sharing. You will oversee the marcomms shared service, providing colleagues with professional and strategic guidance and promoting delivery against shared objectives and finding new ways to collaborate on joint campaigns, whilst developing a culture of measurement and evaluation to help demonstrate maximum impact from our activities.
This role will suit someone looking to lead, empower and motivate colleagues, championing a shared and inclusive work culture and developing a communications function that delivers high impact.
As Head of Communications and Marketing, your responsibilities will include:
- Support the development and implementation of the ACU communication and engagement strategy, working with the Director of Strategic Communications, Head of Policy and Strategic Partnerships, and with other ACU teams to deliver the ACU strategic priorities within The Road to 2030 strategy
- Lead the development and management of proactive and impactful communications, marketing, and public affairs campaigns to find new ways to grow our influence and impact and engage our diverse external and internal audiences
- Lead the creation of a media strategy to enhance and build the ACU’s reputation, profile our diverse membership, and support our policy influencing; including building relationships with key journalists
- Develop engagement strategies to build influence with partners and profile members at key national and international events
- Represent the ACU at external meetings and build an extended network of relevant external relationships to build the ACU’s profile and develop partnerships which support the ACU’s strategic objectives
- Develop and maintain the identity and brand of the ACU and support the individual brand identities of ACU-managed scholarship schemes and (where appropriate) programmes.
- Champion the strategic role of MarComms, providing professional and strategic guidance and leadership to colleagues within the team and across the organisation.
- Lead the marketing and communications team, role modelling our values and coaching and developing colleagues to encourage innovation and high-performance and the development of an outcomes-focused, collaborative shared service
- Develop the team’s monitoring and measurement of the effectiveness of all MarComms activity, in line with agreed KPIs and business partner agreements, and use this insight to make recommendations to enhance impact
- Be responsible for developing, leading, managing and quality assurance for the Marcomms shared service, including effective planning, business partnering and reporting, to achieve agreed KPIs and SLAs which meet the needs of ACU teams and clients.
- Be responsible for the operational performance of the Marcomms team including communications methodologies and content, processes, tools and formats, financial management, delivery models, continuous improvement and team performance.
Some of the skills you need to be able to demonstrate include:
Leadership/ Team Management
- Strong track record of managing and building the capacity of Marcomms teams, experience of leading, empowering and motivating teams to promote a high-performance culture
- Extensive experience of business planning, including KPIs, shaping strategies, and developing and leading Marcomms work/projects
- Ability to champion a shared culture working across teams and integrated shared services
- Strong commitment to the values of the ACU – Quality, Collaboration, Innovation, Respect, and Inclusion.
Experience and Knowledge
- Educated to degree level in a relevant discipline
- Demonstrable knowledge and extensive experience of strategic communications, public relations, media and digital communications
- Strategic thinker, with significant experience of working at a senior level in marketing or communications, skilled in devising and implementing successful communication strategies and plans, audience segmentation, content creation, delivery and the use of the various channels for effectiveness
- Knowledge/ interest in processes and structures of government in the UK, in key Commonwealth countries, or international/multilateral bodies, including the UN would be an advantage
- Strong commitment to higher education and its influence throughout the Commonwealth and beyond
- Track record of effective external relationship management and experience of complex stakeholder relations/management
- Strong interpersonal, communication, influencing and negotiating skills, including an ability to present complex ideas and information in a clear, succinct and persuasive manner and make effective presentations
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with the ability to tailor content to a wide range of audiences taking into consideration sensitivity for different cultural contexts
- Client and account management experience and the ability to instil customer service principles
- Proven financial skills, with knowledge and experience of budget development, financial monitoring and reporting.
Closing date: 2 February 2022
Interview date: 9-10 February 2022 (possible 2nd interview 16 February 2022)
For further information and details of how to apply please visit our website.