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Corporate Press Officer


Job Description

Job Title: Corporate Press Officer
Location: Hertford + remote working with regular travel within the county
Salary Range: £20,903 progressing to £30,451 pa (pro rata for part time)
Hours: Full-time 37.5 hours per week (plus out of hours rota)
Contract: Fixed term - job shares welcome

Hertfordshire County Council is a leading local authority with a highly regarded communications service. You will be joining at an important time and play a key role in ensuring the council effectively communicates its vision and work to create a cleaner, greener, healthier Hertfordshire with residents, stakeholders, and partners.

The corporate communications team's role is to communicate the key priorities that will deliver on this ambition and create the best outcomes for the people of Hertfordshire. The Corporate Press Officer is an integral role within our busy press office, proactively promoting key aspects of the council's work and as well as ensuring reactive issues are handled efficiently.

Key Responsibilities:

  • To proactively and effectively manage and communicate the key corporate priorities of Hertfordshire County Council by creating and issuing accurate and engaging content across a broad range of channels, including press and social media;
  • To identify opportunities for positive media content, as well as potential risks to the council's overall reputation, and action as appropriate;
  • To develop excellent media relations with local media to ensure uptake of press releases and editorial content, influencing journalists where necessary;
  • To ensure that all communication activities conform to the council's media protocols and high standards;
  • To play a lead role in the management of the core press office function, including management of the press office inbox and phone, and taking part in the emergency out of hours cover rota.
  • To manage the monitoring and evaluation of all press coverage relating to HCC, including the creation and delivery of the daily media summary and the monthly and quarterly evaluation.
  • Liaison with senior stakeholders in the Resources Directorate and Executive Members to ensure positive, accurate and timely communication is disseminated about the council's core services;
  • Management of the team's financial functions, raising POs as and when required.
  • Providing support to the Media Manager and Chief Press Officer where appropriate, and provide in support of key corporate campaigns, such as the Budget Consultation.
  • To advise leading Members and senior officers on effective media techniques and to coordinate their contact with the media.

We are seeking an individual with:

  • Minimum of 2 years experience in public relations or media management with a strong track record in performance and delivering positive outcomes or a marketing/communications qualification or relevant degree or significant work experience, which provides an equivalent level of knowledge and expertise;
  • A strong news sense and a good knowledge of the needs of national, regional and local media;
  • Experience demonstrating creativity and a good knowledge of how to deliver engaging content including infographics, short film, imagery and animation;
  • An up-to-date knowledge of current best practice in media management and relations including the role of social media as a channel for news;
  • Excellent attention to detail in everyday activities, from planning creative work for the next month to drafting written comms or getting the perfect image and video content;
  • Ability to work effectively and network with a range of stakeholders including residents, Councillors, colleagues at all levels within the organisation and partners, handling sensitive issues appropriately
  • Excellent communication skills (written and verbal), a strong negotiator who thinks through the tone, method, channel and content that best suits the situation and audience, switching communication and influence style where needed.

You will sit within the media business unit as part of a corporate communications team of 20 colleagues. Collectively we employ a range of traditional, social, and digital communications methods to deliver high quality internal and external communications and campaigns to benefit Hertfordshire's 1.2 million residents and about 30,000 staff (including schools).

Closing Date: 25th October 2021
Interview Date: week commencing 8th November 2021

Benefits of Working for HCC:

  • Flexible Working Arrangements (depending on the role)
  • Excellent Career Development
  • Salary Exchange for Additional Benefits
  • Excellent Pension Scheme with Employer Contributions
  • Shopping Discounts
  • Support Groups & Wellbeing Schemes

How to Apply: Please follow the 'Apply for Job' button at the bottom of the screen. As part of the application you will be required to upload your most recent CV ensuring gaps in employment have been addressed and includes your current, or most recent, employer. You are also asked to provide a supporting statement which is your opportunity to evidence how your skills, knowledge and experience match what we are looking for based on the Person Specification area of the attached Job Outline. If you do not supply a supporting statement, your application will be rejected.

Important Note re Interviews: Where we are able to, and in accordance with current COVID-19 Government guidelines in regard to social distancing, all interviews will be held virtually via Microsoft Teams. Full details on how this will work will be sent to you, should you be shortlisted for an interview.

Fixed Term and/or Secondment: This is a Fixed Term or Secondment vacancy. If you work for HCC or any other Local Authority and would like to be considered as a Secondment contract, please ensure you complete the attached Secondment Form as part of your application. If you do not, your application will be considered as a Fixed Term Contract only.

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    Conferences, Events & Exhibitions Business Intelligence & Analytics Television, Cinema & Radio New Media & Social Media Strategy, Planning & Buying Editorial & Content Print & Publishing Media PR & Communication
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