Here at West Sussex County Council (WSCC) we currently have a number of exciting new roles within our busy Communications and Engagement team. This particular role is a new permanent opportunity for a Press Officer to join our Communications and Engagement team. The COVID-19 pandemic has jump-started WSCC into a period of change. We have demonstrated our uncompromising commitment to the residents of West Sussex. Things are different already and we need to keep changing to build on the progress we have made.
The key areas of focus include our commitment to put residents at the heart of everything we do; to create strong and visible leadership; to work closely with our partners; to invest in and value our staff; and to make the way we work as straightforward as possible. You will be joining us at an exciting time as we start on Our Council Plan to achieve this. For more information, please visit our WSCC website.
About The Job
Salary: £25,991 - £28,672 (Full time)
Working Pattern: Full-time (37 hours per week)
Location: County Hall, Chichester (Flexible working arrangements available)
As a Press Officer in the Communications & Engagement Team you will deliver a first-class range of communications and engagement activity, focusing on key strategic traditional and social media management and relations activities, while supporting campaigns.
You will work on a number of creative projects at one time ensuring that all communications activity is evaluated to show its impact by creating, managing and monitoring plans and providing quantifiable data through a variety of methods to track the success of the activity.
You will help to identify and support the council's promotional campaigns, behavioural change programmes, and projects in order to maximise opportunities.
You will need to gain a real understanding of council services in order to spot opportunities and make relationships with key staff within the organisation. You will also have an understanding of the news agenda both locally and nationally to make sure the county council is exploiting every opportunity and reacting to the stories of the day.
You will be required to participate in an out-of-hours on-call rota, for which an additional allowance is provided.
Experience and Skills
You'll need to be able to manage your own workload, juggling competing priorities and organising your work to meet deadlines. You'll be comfortable providing low- to medium-level campaign support, with guidance from a Lead, and responding to routine enquiries. You'll be able to apply focus when preparing and analysing complex information. In addition you will also be able to demonstrate the following key skills and experience.
- Ability to develop creative ideas and editorial across all forms of communication and editing input for a range of platforms.
- Ability to write effectively for a range of audiences and communication channels including for the web and social media.
- Developed communication and interpersonal skills in order to interact effectively with a range of clients/stakeholders and create and maintain effective working relationships.
- Strong problem-solving skills with the ability to anticipate problems and resolve issues independently and making sound pragmatic decisions.
- Ability to manage and prioritise workloads effectively, in response to changing demands, and meet deadlines.
- Excellent literacy and numeracy skills in order to understand and interpret research data and customer feedback and present analysis in the most appropriate way.
Qualifications and/or experience:
- Relevant degree, or equivalent qualification e.g. NCTJ, or equivalent experience.
- Relevant theoretical and practical knowledge of processes, procedures and policies associated with working within a demanding communications service.
- Knowledge of communication methods, including social media, to effectively contribute to changing campaign objectives.
- Understanding of the media landscape and management of media sensitive issues.
- Understanding of the political landscape and politically sensitive issues.
- Experience of working on a variety of communications activities, particularly in a public sector environment. Also of working in a rapidly changing environment.
- Experience of / confidence in dealing with a range of people and services and planning on more than one campaign at a time.
- Experience of mentoring or coordinating staff and activities to meet team objectives.
- Sound and accurate IT knowledge e.g. Microsoft Office, in order to accurately analyse information/data.
Rewards and Benefits
In addition to 26 days holiday as an employer we recognise that it is our employees that are central to everything we do. We aim to create a supportive and dynamic working environment where employees can achieve their full potential, achieve a healthy work-life balance and are rewarded for the work they do.
For a full list of the benefits offered to you as a West Sussex County Council employee you can find them on our Rewards and Benefits page.
The reference number for this role is CRS00464.
Closing Date: 13/05/2021
To apply, upload your CV and complete the application explaining the skills and experience you can bring to the role ensuring that any gaps in employment are covered in your CV. Please ensure you have saved the job description attached to the main advert on our website as, once the job has closed, you may not have the opportunity to download again.