Communications Specialist

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ORGANISATIONAL SETTING & REPORTING

The post is located within the Executive Office of the Secretary-General at the Headquarters of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) located in Kingston, Jamaica, and reports directly to the Senior Policy Officer and Special Assistant to the Secretary-General.

RESPONSIBILITIES

Within delegated authority, the incumbent will be responsible for the following:

  1. Takes the lead in strategy, planning, development and implementation of large, complex communications campaigns (e.g. global promotion initiatives, public information programmes for a region, broad-reaching subject specific issues) in coordination with relevant departments; supports communication initiatives positioning the Organisation, the Secretary-General and Senior staff in the media; where appropriate, works to develop ways to implement campaigns supporting the “Blue Economy” and to incorporate the campaign message and themes into all relevant events and products.
  2. Develops strategic partnerships with targeted constituencies to increase understanding of ISA’s missions and strategic objectives and, especially, increase recognition of the value and impact of its contribution, thereby raising profile and visibility of ISA ; serves as a point of contact to media organisations, governmental bodies, national groups, private sector organisations, educational organisations, international organisations, non-governmental organisations (NGOs).
  3. As the lead champion of communication in the Organisation, strengthens ISA’s organisational ability to communicate effectively through initiatives that foster a culture of and a capacity for communication. Strengthens internal communications with improved systems for increased information- sharing; identifies opportunities for strengthening of communications capacity. Among specific tasks: builds on  existing photo and public information material library; updates guidelines on communications activities such as: dealing with the media, communicating results, writing a press release, event media management; and through training and advisory support, strengthens the ability of ISA staff to clearly communicate results to different audiences.
  4. Builds information networks; plans and oversees maintenance of publicly accessible information materials on ISA; propose, edit, draft and pitch op-eds, letters to editor, and other written, digital and broadcast commentary.
  5. Prepares or oversees preparation of a diverse range of information communications products in support of ISA strategies and initiatives.
  6. In close cooperation with the Senior Policy Officer – Special Assistant to the Secretary-General, plans and develops outreach activities to support the goals and strategic directions of ISA.
  7. Organises media coverage and arranges for media contacts, briefings, interviews; organises seminars, lectures, conferences, public events on major issues and events concerning ISA mandate; is involved in the public information aspects of managing reputational risk.
  8. Develops and maintains strong strategic relationships with communications counterparts with Member States, multilateral institutions, partner organisations, civil society and other United Nations agencies related to deep sea mining. Manage select communications tactics to support those relationships, as needed.
  9. Evaluates results and impact of communications activities; reports on developments, trends and attitudes regarding ISA; monitors media for potential reputational risk issues; reads and summarizes audit and evaluation reports, identifies potential reputational risk issues.
  10. Identifies sources and seeks funding and other assistance for major communications campaigns.
  11. Contributes strategically and operationally with communications dimension to resources mobilisation initiatives mounted by the Organisation.
  12. Manages publications programme; produces materials for print/electronic/voice/visual media.
  13. Coordinates information sharing and intelligence gathering with ISA campaigns & initiatives based on conversations with multilateral institutions and partnerships.
  14. Performs other duties as requested.

COMPETENCIES

Professionalism:

Knowledge of the full range of communications approaches, tools, and methodologies essential to planning and executing effective campaign strategies and programmes, e.g. campaign management, advocacy, engagement, media operations, message targeting. Ability to produce a variety of written communications products in a clear, concise style. Ability to use a web content management system; Ability to address a range of issues in the context of political developments, public attitudes and local conditions. Ability to rapidly analyse and integrate diverse information from varied sources. Solicits inputs by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise. Ability to handle diplomatically sensitive situations with target audiences and cultivate productive relationships. Ability to deliver oral presentations to various audiences. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

Communication:  Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify and exhibits interest in two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Planning & Organising:  Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently ; works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organisation goals.

Client Orientation: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; Establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; Identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; Monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; Keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; Meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.

Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; Makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; Accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; Monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; Regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; Encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; Actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; Appraises performance fairly.

EDUCATION

Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in communication, journalism, international relations, public administration or related field.

A first-level university degree in combination with additional two years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

WORK EXPERIENCE

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in public information, journalism, international relations, public administration or related area.

Experience managing digital channels (website and/or social media) in a professional context for a multilateral or intergovernmental organisation is required.

Experience in developing and implementing global and multi-stakeholder communication and engagement strategies for an international multilateral sector organisation is required.

Proven ability to design and implement impactful communications and marketing campaigns and events on behalf of complex international organisations is required.

Experience in representing an international organisation in liaising and building partnerships with Member States, Corporate, UN agencies, international development partners, Foundations and NGOs is highly desirable.

A professional track record of developing and delivering creative internal and external communications for professional and public audiences in local, national and international settings is desirable.

Proven experience in organising and running communications and marketing campaigns for advocacy or intergovernmental organisations, preferably on environment and sustainable development topics, is desirable.

Experience communicating complex environmental policies and issues to a variety of target audiences is desirable.

Established track record of maintaining effective and pro-active media relations and mobilising the media.

LANGUAGES

English and French are the working languages of ISA. Fluency in written and oral English is required. Knowledge of other United Nations official languages is highly desirable.

ASSESSMENT METHOD

Candidates may undergo a substantive and a competency-based interview. Candidates may also be required to undertake a written test prior to the interview. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

SPECIAL NOTICE 

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

OTHER INFORMATION

  1. The selected candidate will be subject to a reference verification process in accordance with the ISA policy. The process will include but is not limited to, verification of the information provided in the personal history form and a criminal record check. All candidates should be in a position to submit electronic copy of their passport and all diplomas listed on their profile when requested;
  2. Applicants may check the status of vacancies on ISA web-site;
  3. Only nationals of ISA Member States are eligible for consideration;
  4. Consideration is given to achieving diverse gender, geographical and economic representation at the ISA, to the extent possible;
  5. The ISA reserves the right to not make any appointment to the vacancy, and/or to make an appointment at a lower level from the one advertised.

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