Associate Director Communications - Information Technology

Looking to join a creative team at the heart of a world-class institution? Northwestern University is a great place to work, and it is adjacent to Chicago, with its fantastic restaurants and entertainment. Are you passionate about working together? The Associate Director of Communications is a key position within the central IT division and works in partnership with technology leaders and business partners across the schools and departments to develop a campus-wide communications program that advances, supports, and aligns with the university's strategic goals.

The Associate Director plans and directs essential communications for Northwestern IT. You will collaborate with IT leadership, lead and mentor a team of support specialists responsible for developing communications to diverse constituencies, and establish consistent protocols. Your team will maintain the Northwestern IT website, Digital Learning website, and the IT service catalog, as well as deliver information via web, print, video, and social media, all in support of an exceptional service delivery standard. This position reports to the Associate Vice President of IT Services and Support with a dotted line to the Vice President of Information Technology / CIO.

Please visit:

Job Opening: 29230 to read the full job description. In brief, your key responsibilities will be:

Key Responsibilities:

  • Focus on Partnership and Alignment - build a coordinated, consistent approach to developing and publishing communications in accordance with University best practices.
  • Plan Strategic Communications and Marketing - You will plan, develop, and implement a comprehensive communications and marketing strategy for Northwestern IT.
  • Manage Projects and Staff - You will write, edit, and review feature stories, digital media, and presentations. Mentor, lead, and develop the communications team to ensure they have the skills to deliver high-quality communications.
  • Lead Accessibility and Compliance Efforts - You will ensure adherence to communications, branding, and accessibility standards across central IT.

Minimum Qualifications:

  1. Bachelor's Degree in Communications or relevant discipline.
  2. Ten years of experience in developing strategic communications, public relations, media relations, or marketing, preferably within a complex organization.
  3. Five years proven experience working strategically with developing digital communications and materials, including the use of analytics tools to measure effectiveness.
  4. Experience managing a team of communications support specialists.
  5. Experience building effective partnerships at the senior level of an organization and collaborating with executives in an intense, dynamic environment.

Minimum Competencies:

  • Exemplary written and verbal skills and the ability to develop compelling, creative, and effective messages and statements; translation of technically-oriented concepts into customer-friendly content.
  • Gravitas and persistency, enthusiasm, leadership, and solid influencing and negotiation skills. Exercise of exemplary judgment, utmost discretion and confidentiality in all matters.
  • Excellent analytic, planning and execution skills, with demonstrated ability to analyze problems from multiple points of view, lead consensus building within groups with differing views, and translate consensus into action.
  • Ability to work effectively and collaboratively with a range of people, either as a project leader or as a team member, to successfully bring projects in on time and on budget.
  • Ability to act on own initiative to further organizational and University goals.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • MA in Communications or relevant field.
  • Experience in developing communications for a highly-decentralized corporate or academic environment, with career emphasis on planning and implementation of large, multi-divisional communication initiatives.
  • Extensive management experience related to organizational strategy, change management, and service excellence initiatives.

Equal Opportunity Statement:

Northwestern University does not discriminate or permit discrimination by any member of its community against any individual on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, parental status, marital status, age, disability, citizenship status, veteran status, genetic information, or any other classification protected by law in matters of admissions, employment, housing, or services or in the educational programs or activities it operates. All candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.