Senior Communications Manager/S

Job description

Senior Communications Manager/S

Job no: 676987
Work type: Support Staff
Pay Grade: 15
Major Administrative Unit / College: University Communications
Department: Media And Public Information 40001077
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Full Time (90-100%), Professional Supervisory- APSA, PR/Media/Graphics/Comm/Fund Raising, Union
Position Summary

The Director of Internal and Executive Communications will work in collaboration with the entire University Communications team to design, plan, implement and lead internal and executive communications, including content, channels, desired impacts and measurement goals. Working directly for MSU VP and Spokesperson, this position will be responsible for building important internal relationships and informing and engaging external stakeholders in order to increase the university's visibility, strengthen MSU's reputation as a world-class education and research leader, and respond to issues of concern and advance its mission.

This position is also responsible for developing a comprehensive strategy for both internal and executive communications and for driving metrics that increase the effectiveness of the messages and expand the reach of owned and earned channels that reach internal and external audiences. The position will directly integrate and support programs and initiatives that are presidential priorities and will work to build a collaborative and open culture within University Communications and across the institution.

Internal Communications is a newer function of University Communications, launched in March 2018. This position would oversee the development of the primary internal communications suite of products – InsideMSU. The Director would manage the strategic direction of the channel, layout and distribution strategies and is responsible for staying up-to-date on trends in internal communications, specifically related to higher education. They also will work with vendors and consultants to gather best practices and research how the MSU community likes to receive their information and content creation. Additionally, the Director will continue to seek out, create and expand other internal communication efforts across campus.

This role includes budget, planning, procedure development and analytics responsibility and will supervise employees within the Media and Public Information unit.

Related to issues and crisis, this position may contribute to message development and audience segmentation on daily breaking issues, providing insight into university protocols and background knowledge on a diverse range of issues. Further, the Director of Internal and Executive Communications may contribute to identifying, analyzing and collaborating complicated issues and developing strategies to ensure the right messages are communicated to the right audiences, both internally and externally.

The position also manages a communications manager II, AP14 position that oversees communications for the university's Title IX and Civil Rights function. The manager reports to the Director of Internal and Executive Communications and takes direction from both University Communications and leaders in the Office for Civil Rights and Title IX.


  • Oversees development of and implementation of a comprehensive communications plan, and ensure alignment, accuracy and timeliness for key presidential communications (i.e. speeches, presentations, community letters)
  • Creates and implements internal communications plans with an emphasis on sharing important information and key priorities with internal audiences, recognizing the many sources of information and collaboration with other units
  • Creates and executes content for the InsideMSU suite of products
  • Advises stakeholders across campus on their communications planning and efforts, serving as a consultant and assisting in the execution of timely information
  • Demonstrates a commitment to and knowledge of diversity, equity and inclusion and trauma-informed communications
  • Develops methods for integrating various communication efforts and initiatives to endure effective and efficient messaging, key stakeholder understanding and successful outcomes
  • Provides advice to key campus leaders on internal and executive communications as well as issues of concern
  • Oversees monitoring of social and digital media presence for the president and other executives as assigned, assessing the platforms and recommending adaption and/or expansion
  • Ensures, in all instances, accurate, timely and appropriate communications from the unit
  • Strong writing and editing skills.
  • Knowledge of content management systems, content production, and web management systems

Leadership and Planning Skills

  • Is an effective leader who can set strategy and implement tactics and processes
  • Directly supervises the internal and executive functions, currently four FTEs, also involves others within the unit and the potential for interns
  • Can apply audience insights, understands MSU priorities, University Communications goals and can design strategies to achieve outcomes
  • Builds teamwork, shows process discipline and grows individual competencies, fostering a collaborative, growth-oriented culture, including in a matrixed structure
  • Responsible for annual planning, managing multiple priorities and projects, able to supervise and ensure distribution of work across the media and public information unit
  • Handles a complex environment with multiple projects and deadlines
  • Shows flexibility and resourcefulness, and reacts appropriately to changing needs and deadlines
  • Proposes alternative possibilities and engages team members in finding creative solutions
  • Is outcome focused and able to build commitment to results
Unit Specific Education/Experience/Skills

Bachelor's degree program in communications, public relations, advertising, marketing or related communication arts or liberal arts program; five to eight years of related and progressively more responsible or expansive work experience in a fast-paced communications environment, including specific experience with internal and/or executive communications functions; experience preparing strategic plans, integrating projects and setting goals; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.

Desired Qualifications

Master's in strategic communication or related field; at least 10 years of related and progressively more responsible experience in leading communication teams; excellent editorial and visual content judgement; demonstrated ability to communicate to identified audiences; enthusiastic about being part of a higher education communications environment; flexible, collaborative, positive with significant experience leading internal or executive communication efforts.

Proven collaborator with the ability to effectively manage multiple workstreams while also possessing the ability to quickly and appropriately react to changing circumstances or priorities; able to be strategic and detail oriented, an analytical thinker with strong leadership qualities; able to lead the development and delivery of content in a compelling manner; strong leadership and accountability; ability to work independently and as part of an interdependent team; able to lead multiple projects, ensuring seamless execution and quality in a fast-paced environment; proactively offers solutions that improve current processes; constantly working to improve efficiency and productivity; a proven "team player", committed to developing others, while leading for results; track record in project management, developing procedures and improving work processes.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, disability or protected veteran status.

Required Application Materials

Cover Letter
Three Professional References

Work Hours


Bidding eligibility ends on 10/13/2020, 11:55 PM

Advertised: Oct 7, 2020 Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close: Oct 27, 2020 Eastern Daylight Time




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Job No:
Posted: 10/9/2020
Application Due: 10/27/2020
Work Type: