|Published||September 20, 2023|
|Location||Pretoria, South Africa|
The Communications Manager is responsible for developing and realising communication that contributes to SmartStart's success through information, engagement, and influence which enrich SmartStart's brand and mobilise people and resources. This should be informed by the Comms Manager’s monitoring the early learning and wider ECD environment for opportunities.
The Communications Manager is responsible for crafting compelling messages, managing internal and external communications, building productive media relations, and enabling judgments about the effects of SmartStart's communication. The ideal candidate should have exceptional writing and interpersonal skills, a strategic mindset, and a deep understanding of effective communication practices.
Monitor early learning and wider ECD news, policy developments, and research to identify opportunities and/or issues for consideration and potential communication or other responses.
Develop, realise, and innovate effective, contextual communication approaches
Develop communication plans for Information, engagement and influence across contexts and modes in service of SmartStart's success — mindful of all key stakeholders, constituencies and audiences incl. children, franchisees, practitioners, parents, staff, partners, and the public
Amplify the voices of the SmartStart network incl. by guiding and supporting the SmartStart network to communicate more effectively
Craft compelling communications
Write clear, concise, informative, engaging, and influential communications and other content for distinct stakeholders, constituencies, and audiences across channels and platforms while maintaining consistent brand voice and tone. This includes inter alia press releases, articles, speeches, newsletters, organisational reports, and website copy
Manage internal and external communications
Guide and oversee all internal communication channels incl. FundaApp, newsletters, and email updates, to keep staff, partners and practitioners informed and engaged.
Manage external communications to maintain a valuable brand image — incl. media relations, crisis communication, and public relations activities.
Build productive media relations
Cultivate relationships with journalists, media entities, and influencers to promote positive, valuable (informative, engaging, influential) coverage of the early learning sector in general and the SmartStart network in particular (incl. franchisors and other partners)
Qualifications & Experience:
Degree in communications, public Relations, journalism, or other relevant degree Advantageous: relevant master’s degree
Min. 5 years’ experience as a communications manager or similar realising effective communications in a development / social / non-profit context developing
Abilities, Skills and Attributes:
Excellent, evidenced written and verbal communication skills across constituencies and platforms
Experience in media relations incl. cultivating relationships with journalists, managing press releases, and organising media events
Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to build effective relationships with stakeholders at all levels
Proficiency across multiple communication tools and platforms incl. social media management, content management systems, and relevant analytics tools
Ability to see the big picture and attend to details rigorously
Strong management skills including prioritising between and managing across multiple demands
Ability to work independently and collaboratively in a fast-paced environment
Strong problem-solving capability