Executive Director of Strategic Communications

May 15, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
Classification Title:

Director, Communications

Job Description:

The Executive Director of Strategic Communications will provide leadership, oversight, and technical direction for communications and marketing to support UF Advancement's core objects.

Essential Functions:

Proactive Communication

  • Identify and assess the public information value of University activities as they relate to our philanthropic objectives and develop strategies for communicating them to core audiences including alumni, donors, internal constituencies, and media outlets.
  • Manage the production of proactive communications to internal and external audiences, ensuring successful implementation and delivery of value to strategic partners. Serve as a strategic partner to internal clients to assess needs and deliver impactful communications.
  • Utilizing storytelling, build messages to drive high visibility for UF Advancement across the university, industry, and to donors, prospects and other stakeholders.
  • Build and maintain a cadence of internal communications that support defined initiatives necessary to further organizational objectives; implement and track the effectiveness of a comprehensive internal communications strategy.
  • Provide final editorial oversight and strategic direction to major content distribution vehicles including University and local news mediums and digital publications.
  • Develop and leverage earned media strategies; assess how to best drive earned media through strategic marketing initiatives; proactively position UF Advancement with earned media opportunities.
  • Work with fellow communicators centrally and across colleges/units in the creation and dissemination of strategic content and news and information about UF Advancement.
  • Offer strategic counsel and support to the Associate Vice President of Strategic Communications/CMO, including detailed evaluation and recommendations for realigning and building communications to best serve the interests of UF Advancement.
  • Work with team members across UF Advancement and within Strategic Communications & Marketing to ensure accurate and timely delivery of content.

Campaign Communications

  • Collaborate with the Advancement Strategic Communications and Marketing team, senior Advancement leaders, college and unit development officers and communicators, as well as other internal and external stakeholders to ensure the delivery of creative, compelling and high-impact campaign communications.
  • Assist in the creation of communications and marketing materials that will mobilize alumni and friends of the university and inspire philanthropy.
  • Serve as a storyteller, responsible for crafting inspiring narratives to articulate campaign communications and execute strategic communications through multiple mediums.
  • Assist in the implementation of a multi-faceted campaign communications plan using broad concepts to include: strategic communications; brand, theme and messaging; best-practice consultation; print and digital communications production; campaign event communications and marketing; and related digital communications coordination (e-mail, website and social media).
  • Utilize metrics and assist in tracking integrated campaign effectiveness utilizing internal reporting and system audits and then report on program outcomes and progress to the AVP of Strategic Communications.
  • Assist in developing a campaign communications stewardship plan in partnership with the Director of Donor Relations and the AVP for Strategic Communications and Marketing.
  • Develop creative briefs for campaign projects and priorities, as necessary.
  • Drive the strategic campaign communications plan, developing and implementing goals, objectives and systems, in partnership with the AVP for Strategic Communications and the AVP for Development.
  • Manage high-performing team and provide guidance and objectives using talent management best practices.
  • Within Strategic Communications & Marketing team, allocate the workload of professional and support staff, supervise and evaluate their performance, and handle other administrative and personnel functions.
  • Promote a culture of high standards and continuous improvement that emphasizes learning and a commitment to quality through a supportive and collaborative approach.
  • Ensure smooth operation of day-to-day activities of the Strategic Communications & Marketing team.
  • Evaluate and analyze programs using established attributes and metrics to produce accurate reports, to guide effective decision making and to achieve the vision .
  • Oversee programs and resources to ensure they are in alignment with the vision of TB and R.A.I.S.E. Values; ensures best practices in office systems, practices, files and record keeping; ensure effective use of strategic tools and resources.
  • Plan and monitor the budget, using resources for best results. Ensure agreed-upon deliverables and costs are tracked and delivered on schedule, as appropriate.
  • Research industry standards, trends, breakthroughs and best practices, communicating results to the team and senior leadership. Implement changes accordingly to maintain competitiveness among peers and to meet agreed-upon goals and objectives as determined by strategic plan and goals.
Advertised Salary:

Compensation is competitive and commensurate with education and experience.

Minimum Requirements:

Master’s degree in an appropriate area and six years of relevant experience; or a bachelor’s degree in an appropriate area and eight years of relevant experience.

Preferred Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will possess:

  • Five to 10 years of professional experience leading multi-channel and multi-stakeholder communications and marketing campaigns in higher education, similar complex organizations or at a creative agency
  • Bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications, public relations, liberal arts, business or related field
  • Three or more years of successfully leading and supervising a creative team in the field of communications, marketing or public relations
  • Demonstrated excellent verbal, written and visual communications, presentation, and motivational skills
  • Ability to respond effectively to change in a creative, demanding and fast-paced environment
  • Ability to be self-motivated and self-managing while collaborating closely with senior leadership and delivering the division and university vision
  • Experience working in a complex environment in higher education, serving many internal clients and external constituents with the ability to network throughout the university, serving as a resource and identifying resources
  • Demonstrated excellent attention to detail and work quality
  • Ability to listen carefully and take into account stakeholder needs and react appropriately
  • Ability to deliver creative, high-quality work quickly, in a dynamic organization under time pressure
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and prioritize work to maximize productivity
  • Demonstrated, proven success with communications and marketing analytics and research
  • Effective time management and organizational skills that are essential for success in this position
  • The ability to work strategically, develop and implement programs and activities for stakeholders, along with a talent for motivating staff, partners and volunteers
  • The ability to communicate clearly and effectively with diverse constituencies, meet deadlines, and work independently
  • Accuracy, attention to detail and a customer service oriented attitude
  • Ability to work collaboratively and as a team player
  • Competency in problem solving
  • Working knowledge in these areas: Windows, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, Internet browsers, preferably Internet Explorer, email; Working knowledge of a donor database, contact management and tracking system
  • The ability and willingness to travel; A valid driver license and good driving record are essential.
Special Instructions to Applicants:

In order to be considered for this position, applicants must upload a cover letter, résumé, and list of three references.

Application must be submitted by 11:55 p.m. (EDT) of the posting end date.

Health Assessment Required: No


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