About Queen's University
Queen’s University is the Canadian research intensive university with a transformative student learning experience. Here the employment experience is as diverse as it is interesting. We have opportunities in multiple areas of globally recognized research, faculty administration, engineering & construction, athletics & recreation, power generation, corporate shared services, and many more.
We are committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcome applications from individuals from equity seeking groups such as women, racialized/visible minorities, Indigenous/Aboriginal peoples, persons with a disability, persons who identify in the LGBTQ+ community and others who reflect the diversity of Canadian society.
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Reporting to the Executive Director, Advancement Communications, Marketing, Events, and Donor Relations (ACME&DR), the Director, Strategic Communications and Events (SC&E) plays a key role in the creation and execution of strategic high-impact, integrated content and marketing solutions aimed at donors, alumni, staff and the broader Queen’s community.
The Director, SC&E oversees all Office of Advancement communications and events initiatives, both internal and external, across multiple platforms and formats, to demonstrate the impact of Queen’s, a Queen’s education, and the Queen’s community, in order to build the alumni and Queen’s brands, drive engagement, retention, leads, philanthropic support and positive stakeholder behavior. This individual has expertise in all aspects of communications and events, the use of video in storytelling, brand consistency, segmentation, analytics and meaningful measurement, as well as best practices for in-person and virtual events. The position builds relationships and collaborates with colleagues across Advancement, as well as University Relations, faculty communications and marketing departments, the Queen’s University Alumni Association as well as others, to help define both the brand story, the perceptions of stakeholders, and create excellent day-to-day experiences for audiences through content and events. In this role, the Director, SC&E, ensures that all Advancement communications and events align with Queen’s content and brand positioning and support the communications and events decisions formulated in collaboration with the key stakeholders.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
- Identifies strategic communications and events opportunities (both in-person and virtual) and develops and implements initiatives on behalf of the Office of Advancement’s mission that serve to demonstrate the impact Queen’s has on the world and to enhance its image/reputation among key audiences.
- In conjunction with the Executive Director, ACME&DR, develops the Office of Advancement’s communication strategy in support of its mission, as well as the university vision and priorities.
- Provides operational leadership for the SC&E teams, guiding the implementation of the communications strategy and alignment of messages across internal and external communication channels.
- Builds relationships across the university community by providing customer service and advice, as well as developing integrated communications objectives for key stakeholders on emerging issues and strategic communications initiatives. Ensures all strategic communications are aligned according to brand and visual identity standards; consistent in terms of style, quality and tone of voice; compliant with best practices in grammar, messaging and writing; and optimized for search and user experience for all channels of content including online, social media, email, mobile, video, and print.
- Partners with the ACME&DR leadership team to ensure creative conception and rollout of communications and events strategies that are developed and delivered on time, error-free, on budget and oriented in a way that advances organizational goals.
- Leads the development of integrated crisis communications and issues management strategies for the Office of Advancement that could affect the reputation of Queens, Queen’s alumni, or the Office of Advancement.
- Guides Advancement leadership on reputational management strategies including developing supporting documentation such as briefing notes, Q&As, speeches, stories and web content, social media content, etc.
- Provides expert advice and leadership to Queen’s Advancement leadership and senior administrators on strategic communications and events.
- Supports and mentors Advancement departments and units on various communication events activities both in one-on-one and group settings.
- Partners with the Director, Strategic Content and Publications, the Director, Digital Engagement, and the Email Marketing Manager to leverage technology, analytics and metrics.
- Develops standards, processes, systems and best practices (both human and technological) for communications and events. Establishes workflow for communications campaigns and events.
- Measures and analyzes communications and events initiatives to assess ROI and ensure success and future direction. Conducts periodic competitive audits and performs ongoing environmental monitoring to gauge communications and events effectiveness.
- Gathers and leverages market data to develop communications and events strategies and executes a plan to develop campaigns and events that support engagement that leads to critical behavioral metrics. Works with content creators to revise and measure content and marketing goals.
- Sources and manages outside communications and events expertise, consultants, and service providers as required, and provides direction and guidance to individuals within Advancement and across the university who have a direct impact on communications and events activities.
- As applicable, oversees the preparation of internal/external billing as well as the tracking of hours, expendable items, and other costs attributable to individual projects. Prepares and manages annual budgets and provides strategic direction of funds towards paid content and publications to ensure cost-effective spending, as required.
- Takes initiative and ensures Office of Advancement communications and events are relevant by staying abreast of new and emerging technology, technological advancements, and current affairs, as well as communications and marketing trends in both traditional and non-traditional platforms.
- Plans, prioritizes and manages the work of employees and contractors, providing strategic and tactical advice, guidance and coaching.
- Identifies the need for staff resources, participates on staffing committees, and makes effective recommendations regarding employee selection.
- Manages performance by establishing performance standards, reviewing and evaluating performance and conducting formal performance reviews and talent reviews on an ongoing basis.
- Assesses staff training and development needs and ensures that employees receive training required to improve and sustain successful performance.
- Investigates, addresses and resolves employee/labour relations issues, including disciplinary matters.
- Represents the Office of Advancement on university-wide committees and working groups where a communications and events presence is required, ensuring understanding and adoption of university Advancement policies and procedures.
- Acts as a back-up during the Executive Director’s absence, providing leadership and representing ACME&DR in the university community.
- Undertakes other duties as assigned in support of the unit and/or department.
- University degree, preferably at the honours level, in journalism, public relations, marketing, communications, or related field.
- Minimum seven years of progressive experience and demonstrated track record of success at a leadership or managerial level, within a large, complex, multi-stakeholder organization, focused on the strategic creation and execution of communications and events (in-person and virtual), or in a related marketing and communications capacity.
- Proven track record in strategy development and implementation, project planning, budget and revenue forecasting, program analysis, and meeting objectives.
- Proven management, leadership and relationship building experience, with demonstrated ability to promote inclusion in the workplace and effectively organize, motivate and direct professional staff and colleagues to achieve objectives; and work effectively with senior leadership.
- Demonstrated leadership experience overseeing and producing communications and events across diverse platforms including print, web, social media, video production and other forms of digital communications, and writing and editing to deadlines.
- Demonstrated substantial experience creating engaging content, in compliance with the Canadian Press Style Guide.
- Comprehensive knowledge of issues-management practices with communications.
- Knowledge of the Canadian philanthropic and university environment, including the challenges faced by post-secondary institutions.
- Consideration may be given to an equivalent combination of education and experience.
- Demonstrated commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive work environment where there is mutual respect and collaboration across all teams.
- Demonstrated experience working with stakeholders to advise on strategic communications and issues management and develop effective response plans.
- Strong customer service orientation with a demonstrated passion for the university and its people.
- Excellent business insight, political and cultural awareness, and influencing skills, with the ability to think about institutional information in an interdisciplinary way and strategically place marketing and communications objectives in a larger organizational context.
- An innovative and strategic thinker able to draw on substantial experience to provide clear, focused leadership and advice on the use of communications and events to achieve organizational priorities.
- Extensive knowledge of strategic planning processes and the ability to develop and write strategic communications plans. Ability to think creatively and strategically in approaching various communications and events initiatives.
- Exceptional editorial judgement to ensure clear and timely understanding of complex/sensitive issues. Ability to assimilate information quickly and accurately.
- Superior English communication skills, including excellent writing and editing. Proven ability to attend to detail and to be clear, concise, and accurate. Recognize diversity of abilities and adapt content, tone, medium, and style to audience to be inclusive.
- Strong organizational, problem solving and project management skills. Ability to coordinate multiple resources while consistently delivering high-quality solutions according to required timelines. Ability to effectively prioritize and structure work of a service unit, lead and coach others to manage projects effectively, while remaining focused on strategy and key objectives, in the context of university wide strategies.
- Ability to embrace change to effectively translate objectives into strategic communications and events solutions.
- Highly professional; project a positive and credible representation of the Office of Advancement. Act as a professional role model to others, raising their professional standards.
- Strong analytical research skills and the ability to strategically use information gleaned through market research to improve and enhance communications to target audiences in support of the overall university brand.
- Strong administrative skills in managing and tracking budget requirements.
- As a senior member of the ACME&DR leadership team, and in collaboration with the Executive Director, ACME&DR, leads in strategic discussions, making decisions on direction that influence the department and the Office of Advancement more broadly.
- With the Executive Director, determines Advancement strategic communications plans and tactics given stated objectives and the Queen’s Advancement strategic plan.
- Determines how to harmonize Advancement’s marketing and communications activities and initiatives, with those across the university, including University Relations, faculties, schools, and departments. Recommends optimal integrated communications and events plans and approaches to ensure alignment with key messages, brand character and strategy, and overall university plans.
- Recommends and implements new strategic communications and events initiatives to build the Alumni brand.
- Recognizes opportunities to leverage messages and objectives across different formats and platforms, to enhance branding and communications consistency across Advancement.
- Determines how to protect and enhance the Office of Advancement and university’s reputation and image in all marketing and communications strategies, content, events, objectives, and crisis/issues management.
- Determines optimum strategic use of university leadership, including the Chancellor and the Principal, and/or top university volunteers to build and maintain engagement among stakeholders.
- Collaborates with all ACME&DR colleagues to establish communications and events priorities for the team. Makes decisions regarding allocation of resources against content needs using integrated plans to guide decisions.
- Determines necessary strategies to measure and benchmark the effectiveness of communications and event efforts. Makes recommendations and implements changes.
- Exercises judgment on when to involve the Executive Director and/or senior administration in new initiatives or on issues that require decisions, or to make decisions and take independent action.
- Evaluates job candidates and makes effective recommendations on suitable hires.
- Decides and/or makes effective recommendations regarding transfers and promotions.
- Evaluates employee performance and decides on appropriate training or coaching to address lack of proficiency in carrying out responsibilities, or remedial action for staff disciplinary situations.
- Assesses investigation outcomes of grievances and makes effective recommendations on appropriate course of action or next steps on grievances.
- Makes effective recommendations on level of discipline up to discharge and probationary termination.
Employment Equity and Accessibility Statement
The University invites applications from all qualified individuals. Queen’s is committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcomes applications from women, visible minorities, Aboriginal Peoples, persons with disabilities, and persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity. In accordance with Canadian Immigration requirements, priority will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents.
The University provides support in its recruitment processes to applicants with disabilities, including accommodation that takes into account an applicant's accessibility needs. Candidates requiring accommodation during the recruitment process are asked to contact Human Resources at email@example.com.