Senior Writer, Strategic Content

Job description

Senior Writer, Strategic Content

Date Posted: 10/13/2020
Req ID: 1182
Faculty/Division: VP - Division of University Advancement
Department: Adv Communications and Marketing
Campus: St. George (Downtown Toronto)


About us:

The Division of University Advancement (DUA) promotes and supports the University of Toronto by
engaging a worldwide community of more than 600,000 alumni, plus many donors and friends. DUA encompasses a highly skilled team of staff focused in the areas of development (fundraising), alumni and volunteer engagement, advancement services, and advancement marketing and communications. The uniquely integrated structure encourages each division to bring its particular strengths and expertise to the common cause of advancing U of T’s relations with alumni, donors, and friends. DUA at the University of Toronto is engaged in a transformative agenda deeply rooted in the University’s vision for growth and innovation. DUA is focused on doubling fundraising performance on a sustainable basis; enhancing the effectiveness and satisfaction of alumni participation and programs; building advancement capacity within and across divisions; creating an organizationand culture that fosters leadership, initiative, effectiveness, and community; and contributing to the creation of an external relations strategy for a transforming image, reputation and standing of U of T along an axis of differentiation and excellence.

Your opportunity:

Serving as part of the Editorial Services team within Advancement Communications and Marketing, the Senior Writer, Strategic Content will provide high-quality writing and editing for, and strategic communications advice to, the University's Division of Advancement.

Under the general direction of the Director of Strategic Content, the incumbent will be responsible for researching, developing and producing strategic cultivation materials, such as targeted fundraising proposals, discussion papers and cases for support that further University advancement objectives. Working closely with colleagues in Advancement and other divisions across the University, the Senior Writer, Strategic Content will craft coherent, credible and motivating documents to advance the University’s highest priorities and aspirations. Developing these texts will involve extensive consultations with academic, development and volunteer stakeholders, highly original content research, drafting of creative briefs and outlines, as well as writing and design coordination. The writer will work closely with colleagues in the Advancement Communications and Marketing team to drive multiple projects forward from inception to final delivery, often with competing deadlines.

In this role, you will play a vital role in fulfilling our commitment to delivering high-quality writing, editing and communications services to the University.

Your responsibilities will include:

  • Developing plans that support proposal development strategies
  • Researching and writing strategic cultivation materials, such as targeted fundraising proposals, discussion papers and cases for support that further University advancement objectives.
  • Writing project-specific proposals and briefings on complex interdisciplinary initiatives.
  • Probing for information from clients to determine target audience, key messages, appropriate voice and tone of communication
  • Planning and developing an integrated multi-channel communications strategy independently
  • Advising on communication strategies to engage and attract major donor prospects
  • Keeping abreast of the University’s messaging and metrics and advising on how best to incorporate these effectively into written materials.
  • Interpreting highly complex market data to evaluate the effectiveness of advancement communication strategies

Essential Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's Degree (communications, journalism, English, etc); or an equivalent combination of experience in communications.
  • Minimum of six (6) or more years related experience in the area of advancement communications
  • Superior writing ability is an essential requirement. The successful candidate will have demonstrated, through a portfolio of samples, professional-level writing ability with respect to style, organizationand structure, rhetoric, appropriateness to subject, breadth of subject matter and clear understanding of the target audience(s) and presentation of key message(s)
  • Familiarity with the development of proposals, discussion papers, cases for support and other communications integral to a fundraising environment.
  • Knowledge of university environments preferred and understanding of academic community
  • Project management skills
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office suite (Mac or PC-based) is required. Broad familiarity with web-based research tools for content development is also essential. Design capability and familiarity with design software are definite assets.
  • Ability to conduct focused interviews with constituents in developing content.
  • Ability to process various inputs and data into coherent, persuasive narratives.
  • Ability to craft coherent narratives based on sometimes widely divergent perspectives.

Assets (Nonessential):

  • Experience writing about topics in engineering, medicine, science and technology preferred.

To be successful in this role you will be:

  • Articulate
  • Communicator
  • Intuitive
  • Perceptive
  • Resourceful
  • Team player

Closing Date: 10/22/2020, 11:59PM EDT
Employee Group: USW
Appointment Type: Budget - Term
Schedule: Full-Time

Pay Scale Group & Hiring Zone:
USW Pay Band 17 -- $94,126 with an annual step progression to a maximum of $120,369. Pay scale and job class assignment is subject to determination pursuant to the Job Evaluation/Pay Equity Maintenance Protocol.
Job Category: Administrative / Managerial
Recruiter: Yarlesha Anantharajah

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Diversity Statement
The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas.

As part of your application, you will be asked to complete a brief Diversity Survey. This survey is voluntary. Any information directly related to you is confidential and cannot be accessed by search committees or human resources staff. Results will be aggregated for institutional planning purposes. For more information, please see

Accessibility Statement
The University strives to be an equitable and inclusive community, and proactively seeks to increase diversity among its community members. Our values regarding equity and diversity are linked with our unwavering commitment to excellence in the pursuit of our academic mission.

The University is committed to the principles of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). As such, we strive to make our recruitment, assessment and selection processes as accessible as possible and provide accommodations as required for applicants with disabilities.

If you require any accommodations at any point during the application and hiring process, please contact [email protected].
All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

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Job No:
Posted: 10/14/2020
Application Due: 10/23/2020
Work Type: