Communications Specialist

Open Society Foundations
  • Location
    London, United Kingdom
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Jun 08

Position description

The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant societies whose governments are accountable and open to criticism, whose laws and policies are open to debate and correction, and whose political institutions are open to the participation of all people. We seek to strengthen justice and the rule of law; broaden respect for human rights, including the rights of minorities; encourage pluralism and a robust diversity of opinion; deepen democratic practice and participation; expand economic equity; support effective governance; and invest in individuals, public and private organizations, and social movements that advance these goals.

We are a global network of foundations committed to local knowledge and national expertise. Our network includes national foundations, regional foundations, and other geographic programs operating in more than one hundred countries. At the same time, many programs with global reach operate from our four headquarters in Europe and the United States, including programs on digital information, documentary photography, drug policy, early childhood, education, fellowships, fiscal governance, higher education, human rights, international migration, justice, public health, scholarships, think tanks, women’s rights and independent journalism. Still other programs advance our special commitment to Roma communities. In addition to making grants to organizations and individuals, the Open Society Foundations engage in policy advocacy, legal advocacy and litigation, program-related investing, and public communications, as well as providing direct assistance to governments. Most programs and foundations in the network are governed or advised by their own boards.

The Open Society Foundations are the global philanthropies of George Soros, who, as chairman, plays an active role in the work of the foundations.

The Office of Communications plays a central role in the work of the Foundations by coordinating and strengthening the public presence of the global network and by helping to advance relevant issues. Communications works to raise the Foundations’ public profile by promoting the network’s many noteworthy achievements. The department employs media outreach, publications, and the web to assist dozens of Open Society foundations and programs in their communications efforts.

Candidate Profile: The Communications Specialist is part of a tightly-knit, collaborative and fast-paced team. The Communications Specialist is responsible for identifying and pursuing media opportunities, drafting and editing all forms of content from blogs to op-eds, and working collaboratively with the programs to develop communications strategies and projects. The candidate should have expertise on our issues and solid judgment on how to highlight them through different mediums.

Purpose of Position: The Communications Office of the Open Society Foundations is looking for a Communications Specialist with strong media experience, excellent writing skills, ability to turn around content under tight deadlines, and confident interpersonal skills with diverse stakeholders.

As a member of the Office of Communications, the Communications Specialist will report directly to the Head of Regional Communications. The position is based in London.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following. OSF may add, change, or remove essential and other duties at any time.
  • Candidate must have strong media experience, ability to find media opportunities in different international media markets and be comfortable pitching stories on a regular basis;
  • Candidate must have excellent writing skills, ability to turn around content under tight deadlines and confident interpersonal skills with diverse stakeholders;

Essential duties include:
  • Assist with the coordination and implementation of communications strategies for the Open Society Foundations and advancement of its goals through media, publications, and digital;
  • Build lists and relationships with journalists: identify and pitch stories, respond to press inquiries; help with media training
  • Draft, edit, and distribute press releases, op-eds, blogs, newsletters, briefing papers, brochures, speeches, website entries, and reports;
  • Manage website content: manage content development, upload and review materials, ensure the website’s effectiveness as a resource and advocacy tool;
  • Monitor, evaluate, and improve media outreach efforts;
  • Manage consultants and deliverables;
  • Input contracts and payments as assigned;
  • Perform other ad hoc tasks for/of/related to the Office of Communications;
  • Travel will be required.

Education/Experience: Bachelor’s degree and five years of relevant professional experience; foreign language skills (particularly French / German / Spanish) preferred

Skills Required:
  • Experience in a communications role working in a medium to large sized organization (public, private or third sector) in a multi-issue, fast paced environment;
  • Outstanding English-language writing, verbal, and editing abilities, as well as excellent research skills; additional languages strongly preferred;
  • Demonstrated practical experience in digital communications; strong understanding of social media
  • Effective management of multiple projects in a fast-paced environment;
  • Pleasant, diplomatic manner and disposition in interacting with program management, colleagues at all levels, contacts, and the general public;
  • Ability to work both independently and with others;
  • Integrity, professional discretion and ability to handle confidential matters.
  • Willingness to travel, sometimes at short notice

Application instructions: Please include a cover letter and resume (both required), and upload as one document when submitting an application.

We are strengthened by the diversity of our colleagues across the Open Society Foundations. We welcome applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and are committed to providing reasonable accommodations so that colleagues with disabilities are able to fulfill the essential functions of the job.

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