Director of Communications - STARs

About Opportunity@Work
Opportunity@Work is a nonprofit social enterprise with a mission to increase career opportunities for the 71 million adults in the U.S. who do not have a four-year college degree but are Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs). For STARs, the American Dream has been fading due in part to an “opportunity gap,” in which access to the good jobs required for upward mobility often depends less on people’s skills and more on whether and where they went to college, who they know professionally and socially, or even how they look. We envision a future in which employers hire people based on skills rather than their pedigree. We are uniting companies, workforce development organizations and philanthropists in a movement to restore the American Dream so that every STAR can work, learn and earn to their full potential. Visit us at www.opportunityatwork.org.

About the Role
The Director of Communications is responsible for crafting and implementing communications strategies that raise awareness for O@W’s STARs initiative and inspire employers, partners, and other target audiences to take action in support of STARs. 

The ideal candidate will have experience shaping narratives and messaging for complex issues such as economic policy, business innovation, education, workforce development or adjacent topics. They will play a vital role in supporting executive writing, elevating thought leadership and leveraging partners’ communications to achieve the growth and impact goals of the STARs initiative. 

Key Responsibilities 
  • Collaborate with senior stakeholders to develop, implement, evaluate and optimize a comprehensive communication plan to support O@W’s goals for the STARs initiative
  • Drive awareness and action through messaging that is clear, compelling and tailored to a diverse set of constituencies, including c-suite level business leaders, hiring managers, workforce development partners, policymakers, think tanks, academics, and staff
  • Architect a thought leadership strategy that elevates O@W’s initiatives and spokespeople through targeted speaking events and editorial opportunities
  • Oversee an earned media strategy that generates high-impact earned media coverage, and assist with media relations, including outreach and story development
  • Partner with MarCom colleagues to implement communications strategies across channels, including media relations, social media, owned media (e.g. websites, print collateral), speaking opportunities, stakeholder convenings, paid media and others
  • Expand and continually improve on a suite of communication tools for both internal (talking points, FAQs, briefs) and external (one-pagers, infographics, emails, FAQs, campaign) audiences
  • Manage external creative resources to deliver persuasive and compelling content, including infographics and explainer videos that inform and inspire target audiences to action
  • Roll up your sleeves to research, develop, write and edit executive communications, including outreach emails to c-suite partners, funders and thought leaders in policy and academia; summaries and fact sheets: articles and opinion pieces; and presentations
  • Collaborate with partners to advance our joint goals for the broader “opportunity movement.”
  • Evaluate, analyze, and report on campaign performance against KPIs in order to evolve and optimize communications strategies
  • Empower staff with the necessary materials, resources, and training to successfully communicate our message externally

Required Skills & Experience:
  • 10+ years developing strategic communications plans with a track record of using a range of digital and traditional communications channels to achieve goals and deliver impact 
  • Outstanding writing and editing skills, with 5+ years, experience writing op-eds and other communications for c-level executives, ideally in the context of economic policy, business innovation, workforce development, education or another complex subject 
  • Demonstrated ability to seed and move narratives, especially using thought leadership and influencer strategies. 
  • Proven track record of building strong and collaborative relationships with colleagues, partner organizations, journalists, and other stakeholders
  • Experience in a fast-paced, dynamic environment that requires collaboration problem-solving and comfort with ambiguity
  • A confident, articulate communicator with strong executive-level written and oral communication
  • Excellent people and project management skills, including staff development and agency/vendor management.
  • A passion for Opportunity@Work’s mission

Preferred Skills & Experience:
  • 5+ years experience working on labor market policy, workforce development, inclusive hiring and/or the opportunity youth space, at an employer, advocacy organization, academic institution, think tank or other relevant organization
  • A track record of advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion at the intersection of business goals and economic mobility
 
Compensation and Benefits
Opportunity@Work offers a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package. Some of our benefits include medical/dental/vision, life insurance, both short and long-term disability, flex savings accounts, pre- and post-tax retirement accounts with company match, commuter benefits, professional development funding, flexibility to work remotely when necessary, paid parental leave and generous paid time off.

Accommodations
Accommodations are available for applicants with disabilities in all phases of the application and employment process. 

Equal Opportunity
Opportunity@Work is an equal opportunity employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce at all levels of the organization. We value and encourage the contributions of our employees and strive to create an environment where everyone can reach their full potential and drive outstanding results. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by local, state, or federal law. This policy applies with regard to all aspects of one’s employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits and termination. 

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