Reporting to the Department Manager and taking direction from the Department Head, the Communications and Research Coordinator is responsible for planning, developing and executing communications and providing administrative support for departmental research projects and events in support of the Department of Political Studies. The incumbent will be responsible for overseeing the department’s online presence, developing other communication products, organizing departmental events, overseeing departmental research accounts, and acting as the contact person for faculty with regard to research-related software and systems.
Committed to equity diversity and inclusion, the Communications and Research Coordinator is an experienced communications professional who understands how to communicate to diverse internal and external stakeholders. The incumbent will be required to work in a fast-paced, complex environment with competing demands, requiring a high level of initiative, efficiency, accuracy, flexibility, confidentiality and discretion.
Note: This position may require the incumbent to occasionally work flexible hours including evenings and weekends to accommodate events and/or meetings.
• Coordinate and maintain social media presence:
o Work with the Department Manager to research social media trends and develop a social media strategy.
o Pursue strategies to increase awareness of the department amongst key stakeholders.
o Manage the department’s social media accounts – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.
o Design the page layouts, oversee written content, and monitor external content to ensure it is positive and beneficial and in compliance with the Queen’s Visual Identity guidelines. Engage in growth planning and conceptualizing innovative ways to attract more followers.
o Respond to comments and address questions on social media platforms.
• Maintain the department website and develop content pertaining to educational information, research, upcoming events, and news articles that relate to departmental activities and successes. Monitor the accuracy of information on the website and ensure it is constantly up to date, while also determining layout, updating content, and tracking visits. Ensure alignment with Queen’s Visual Identity, Web and Brand Standards and AODA guidelines.
• Research, write and edit content and articles for various media (websites, news stories, social media initiatives, videos, and brochures).
• Coordinate various print and digital communications, including announcements, publications, letters, reports, videos, podcasts, which involves selection of content, formatting of information, as well as production and distribution of material.
• Lead the development of other communications products, including the annual department newsletter.
• Maintain stakeholder distribution lists, email accounts associated with internal and external communications and act as the point person for management of the departmental drive.
• Research and define measurement criteria for evaluating effectiveness of communications and initiatives. Analyse data and provide recommendations to the Department Manager.
• Coordinate and execute all logistics in support of select events, including the John Meisel Lecture in Contemporary Political Controversies, the departmental Speaker Series and the J.A. Corry Lecture.
• Assist in the planning of conferences organized by the Centre for the Study of Diversity and Democracy (CSDD) and other projects.
• Organize arrangements to support these activities including booking speakers, arranging photographers, planning catering arrangements, procuring technical support etc.
• Oversee event budgets, timelines, and other aspects of special projects, ensuring that events are delivered on time, within budget and with a high degree of guest satisfaction. Work effectively with event external suppliers to reach optimum event solutions and services.
• Act as the departmental contact for the Queen’s Political Studies Summer Institute and coordinate enrolment of students and various communications.
• Prepare and review evaluation forms, integrating this feedback with information from other sources to recommend changes for future offerings.
• Oversee all department research accounts; monitor project spending, maintain spreadsheets and accurate records, analyze data to reconcile the accounts monthly and resolve problems as they arise.
• Coordinate the establishment of projects in conjunction with faculty members and other departments; act as the contact person for systems related to research within the department including but not limited to acQuire, TRAQ, and Concur ERS.
• Communicate relevant information to faculty and graduate students regarding research opportunities such as grants.
• Administer the CSDD’s research, trust and operating funds; reconcile statements, and assist the Director in preparing and monitoring the centre’s budgets.
• Lead the completion of the centre’s Annual Report; liaise with relevant stakeholders and the centre Director.
• Coordinate the centre’s Board of Director’s meeting(s) in conjunction with the centre Director.
• In consultation with the Department Manager provide work direction and technical/functional guidance to work study students. Assigns work, and oversee its completion.
• Participate in screening and interviewing job candidates, provide input into the selection of student staff.
• Act as the department IT representative and maintain oversight over internal communications systems such as emails, calendars, and the department drive.
• Complete other duties as required in support of the unit.
• University degree, preferably with a focus in the area of communications.
• Superior writing and editing skills demonstrated through relevant experience.
• Several years of relevant experience in communications, event planning and administration in a fast-paced environment with competing priorities, requiring quick and appropriate decision-making skills.
• Experience and expertise/proficiency with communications processes and tools including, but
not limited to content management systems for web publishing and social media tools to maximize outreach and communication to targeted audiences.
• Experience maintaining website content and drafting/distributing newsletters.
• Knowledge of internal university systems (acQuire, TRAQ, FAST, PeopleSoft, Concur ERS) an asset.
• Knowledge of Microsoft Office, Adobe Creative Suite, web management (e.g. WebPublish) an asset.
• Leadership ability and proven project management skills.
• Supports diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
• Consideration may be given to an equivalent combination of education and relevant experience.
• Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, both verbal and written to professionally and effectively interact with a wide variety of people with diverse backgrounds and at many different levels both internal and external to the department.
• Technical aptitude and the ability to quickly learn new systems and software.
• Demonstrated successful experience in coordinating multiple tasks, while meeting deadlines and maintaining accuracy.
• Superior organizational skills to manage and coordinate high-profile special events.
• Strong attention to detail and accuracy, with an appreciation for the implications of errors for the University with respect to reputation and relationship building.
• High level of tact, discretion and good judgement. Ability to respond to sensitive and/or controversial situations with maturity and sound judgment and use discretion when handling confidential information.
• Excellent writing and interpretive skills required when preparing correspondence.
• Ability to handle stress and maintain composure with stakeholders.
• Proven accuracy and attention to detail, creativity, resourcefulness and task completion.
• Highly motivated, innovative, creative and strategic thinker with a high level of self-confidence and energy to undertake diverse responsibilities.
• Knowledge of financial and accounting practices to perform advanced financial duties: analyze financial data and trends; generate financial reports and statements.
• Determine which communication methods will be the most effective to engage audience.
• Determine and implement communication and distribution strategies.
• Determine content and format of newsletters and other communication tools.
• Make decisions affecting the planning and execution of events in consultation with the Department Manager. Decide most appropriate format, venue and logistics, within guidelines including budget, for effective and efficient event planning and delivery.
• Under the direction of the Department Manager and Department Head, identifies optimum practices for organizing and publicizing events by evaluating several factors such as cost effectiveness, need, interest, etc.
• Set priorities and determines which projects require the most urgent attention.
• Ability to prioritize numerous tasks and adjust priorities in response to changing requirements.
• Ability to make independent decisions, take initiative and work with minimal supervision.
• Decide on how best to balance time and priorities to ensure responsibilities are effectively completed and in accordance with required timelines.
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