Media and Communications Officer – Communications
Reports to: Media Relations Manager
This is a full-time, permanent position on Crick terms and conditions of employment.
As Media and Communications Officer, you will play a key role managing the Crick's reputation in the national and international media. You will help to position the Crick as a world-leading research institute that does science differently.
You will seek out and pitch original content and potential features about key initiatives, lead on promoting the Crick's scientific discoveries and act as the first point of call for journalists. You will help to brief staff for interviews, develop key spokespeople and use your news judgement and initiative to identify and capitalise on media opportunities.
You will work within the Communications team, a team of 14 responsible for a range of activity including media relations, internal communications, digital communications, publications, stakeholder engagement and events.
The Crick has a strong profile as a leading biomedical research centre, and effective ongoing internal and external communications are essential to maintain this. The team helps to position the Crick as a leader in the UK and global science community, promote public understanding of science and keep our staff informed as the institute develops.
These include but are not limited to:
- Developing media strategies and campaigns to achieve positive coverage of the Crick across key institutional aims, activities and developments.
- Advising scientists and other key staff on media issues using subject area expertise.
- Developing and delivering media training to a diverse audience.
- Developing and maintaining strong relationships with local, national, international and specialist media (print, broadcast and online).
- Proactively monitoring the news agenda to identify and seize opportunities to promote key Crick initiatives in the media.
- Working closely with scientists to communicate the significance of their discoveries, leading on promoting key scientific papers.
- Conceiving and creating original, clear and compelling content for a variety of audiences across a range of channels including the external website and some social media.
- Connecting scientists with the media to offer expert comment.
- Managing media enquiries.
- Monitoring media coverage and collating news coverage internally.
- Participating in an on-call rota.
- Contributing to content and forward planning for the communications team.
- Working with media offices at partner institutions including Cancer Research UK, the Medical Research Council, Wellcome, UCL, King's College London and Imperial College London.
- Supporting the Media Relations Manager on media strategy, media training, press conferences, set-piece events, crisis communications and reputation management.
- Supporting the work of the wider team as needed.
Key experience and competencies
The post holder should embody and demonstrate our core Crick values: bold, open and collegial, in addition to the following:
- Demonstrable interest and experience in science communication, with a good understanding of issues affecting the science sector.
- Proven experience working in a busy press office or newsroom, with good knowledge of print, broadcast and online media in the UK and internationally.
- A keen news sense to identify media opportunities, with the initiative and creativity to make the most of them.
- Experience developing and implementing media initiatives and campaigns.
- Experience writing articles, media releases and briefings on scientific subjects, with the ability to translate complex scientific information for a lay audience.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills, with a concise, compelling written style and strong written accuracy.
- Good interpersonal skills, with the ability to interact well with people at all levels and inspire confidence.
- Calm and effective under pressure, with the ability to prioritise in the face of competing demands and work to tight deadlines.
- Excellent IT skills including proficiency with Microsoft Office software and web content management systems.
- A good team player who can work constructively with partners and funders on joint initiatives.
- A first degree or equivalent qualification or experience.
- Experience working with scientists.
- Experience managing difficult or controversial high-profile issues.
- Experience working effectively in complex institutions (and/or with complex networks of stakeholders).
- Experience producing multimedia content such as videos and editing them using software (e.g. Adobe Premier Pro).