PR Associate Director
Our client is an award winning, independent consultancy providing integrated communications services across public and corporate affairs. The agency has created one of the strongest and most dynamic communications offers of its kind, with more than 45 consultants operating across the UK and an international network of partners. It is their job to alert clients to issues that might impact their businesses and to help represent their interests at a local, national and European level. And they are very good at it – they consistently deliver the outcomes that their clients want through strategic thinking, commercial awareness and creativity. Their sustained growth of over 20% per annum is due to their strong emphasis on client care and ethics. They adhere to and strongly support the APPC and PRCA industry codes of conduct and are signatories of the Statutory Register of Consultancy Lobbyists and the EU Transparency Register.
About the role:
Over the course of the last 18 months, our client has gradually begun to deliver more corporate affairs support to both new and existing clients. This has primarily been to complement and promote their public affairs work – ensuring that audiences beyond solely political ones are aware of our clients’ issues and their aims and they build a wide base of support.
With these increasingly strong credentials in hand and a growing move towards integrated campaigning across the sector, the agency wants to more formally launch its corporate affairs offer to the market. They no longer want to be known solely as first-class public affairs and planning communication specialists and instead want to also add corporate affairs and integrated campaigning firmly into the mix. Recruiting you is an essential step towards achieving this. Alongside providing support to existing clients and developing the capabilities of those within the consultancy as a whole, they also want you to help build awareness of their corporate affairs offer across the market through effectively leveraging your track record, profile and wider experience.
Job description - role summary:
Based at the agency’s London head office, the Associate Director, Corporate Affairs, will be responsible for providing line management to the corporate affairs team and delivering high-quality strategic communications advice to existing and new clients. The post-holder will work closely with the Director of Corporate Affairs to shape and implement the strategy to deliver the team’s financial targets and seek out opportunities to grow the business. This includes supporting the development of the organisation’s corporate affairs offer, working in collaboration with colleagues across the business. Reporting to the Director of Corporate Affairs, the post-holder will contribute to the Management Team and the wider development of the business.
Your key responsibilities will be to:
- Act as an ambassador for corporate affairs, representing the agency with existing and new clients, media and other key external stakeholders
- Work closely with the Director to shape and implement the strategy to deliver the team’s financial targets and seek out opportunities to grow the business
- Day-to-day line management of the corporate affairs team in line with the overall business plan and the organisation’s values
- Support the development of a highly-motivated and effective team with a strong emphasis on the team’s ongoing development.
- Work collaboratively to ensure the highest professional standards across all corporate affairs collateral and excellent quality service to existing and new clients on budget and on time.
Support for existing clients:
As detailed above, the agency has a range of clients that they already provide corporate affairs support to. They are keen for you to get actively involved in these accounts in the following ways:
- Working with the team to develop and execute integrated public and corporate affairs strategies in line with the objectives of their clients
- Providing strategic guidance to clients on how best to present their issue/campaign to politicians, policy officials, the media, and other stakeholders
- Identifying and providing creative advice to the team to develop momentum behind campaigns
- Managing the delivery of the team’s campaign collateral, position papers, and media outputs, ensuring it is delivered to a high professional standard in line with client objectives and resources
- Proactively engaging with relevant stakeholders to secure client objectives and help attract new business.
Marketing and New Business:
Your role will involve marketing and new business development, specifically:
● Supporting the development and implementation of a new strategy for the corporate affairs team to deliver its targets and maximise opportunities, including promoting core marketing materials for the corporate affairs ‘offer’ – including details on the range of our services and our credentials in these areas ● Building the agency’s profile and your personal profile across the public and corporate affairs industry as a whole, but also within the agency’s core sectors including finance, energy, transport and education ● Proactively reaching out to potential new business targets and supporting consultants in their activities, such as through attending introductory meetings and making introductions ● Developing new business proposals and pitches, with support, and contributing to those of others ● Supporting development of the digital office and capability. Team management and leadership
Your role will involve working with the Director of Corporate Affairs to build a high performing corporate affairs team, specifically by:
● Providing line management to the team to deliver its target of £800k for 2016/17 ● Supporting the growth and development of a motivated and effective team of consultants and fostering a positive team culture ● Ensuring the delivery of excellent client care and maintaining the highest standards of quality across our client offer, ensuring the team’s output is of a professional standard and delivered in an impactful way, on time and on budget.
Company-wide training and development:
Your role will involve building the wider company’s corporate affairs capacity, specifically by:
● Supporting the delivery of formal and ongoing training for consultants across the agency to develop their corporate communications expertise
● Mentoring, coaching and offering constructive feedback to consultants on a regular basis to develop their expertise and confidence.
As part of the agency’s Management Team, you will:
● Contribute to the Management Team’s work and provide strategic counsel and communications support to the Senior Management Team.
Knowledge & Experience:
You are expected to have the following knowledge and experience:
● A proven background in corporate affairs/corporate communications, media relations, marketing, sponsorship and events ● Educated to degree level or above ● Extensive public affairs and public relations experience, including experience of devising high impact media strategies, campaigns and strategic communications plans ● Experience in public affairs, media, communications, journalism, and digital communication ● Experience of crisis communications ● A strong understanding of UK and international business, economic and political issues, as well as the media and digital landscape ● Proven management experience, including managing change, team building, coaching and mentoring ● Budget planning and resource allocation skills.
You are expected to have the following skills:
● A creative and imaginative approach to problem solving, with the ability to be an independent thinker with clear judgement ● A dedicated manager and leader who is able to share our client’s vision and inspire action through both setting a clear direction for the team and in his/her own direct management relationships ● Excellent written and oral communication skills, with the ability to interact with a variety of different audiences ● The ability to engage, influence and persuade whilst remaining sensitive to different perspectives, particularly at senior leader level ● Commitment to work, motivate and develop as part of a team, investing in personal development and aligning the work of the team to the wider business strategy ● The ability to work to tight deadlines while maintaining attention to detail and accuracy.
A flexible approach and some out of hours working and travel may be required.
An excellent opportunity for an ambitious, creative, self-motivated and commercially aware individual to take their career to a new level in a dynamic and forward thinking environment, with excellent future career progression prospects.