Birmingham, West Midlands
Remote
EC1A, London
£35,000 - £39,000 per year (+ £3,000 London Weighting, where applicable)
Permanent, Full-time
Job description

About the job.

  • Applications close: 9am, Monday 10th May 2021 (Please note that late applications cannot be accepted)
  • Salary: £35,000 - £39,500 p.a. (+ £3,000 London Weighting, where applicable)
  • Contract: Full-time, permanent
  • Hours: 37.5 hours per week. We are open to agreeing a flexible working pattern to best suit the successful applicant.
  • Location: London or Birmingham (with travel to London for meetings). Remote working initially until staff return to office-based working.
  • Interviews: Tuesday, 18th May 2021 (TBC)
  • Start date: ASAP
  • Function: Partnership Team
  • Reporting to: Partnerships Director

About The Access Project

In the UK today, students from the most advantaged backgrounds are six times more likely to make it to a top university compared to their least advantaged peers. To change this, The Access Project supports students from disadvantaged backgrounds to access top universities, through a unique combination of tuition and in-school mentoring. We work with them to make good applications, get the grades and transition to university.

Our approach works: our students are more than twice as likely to place at top universities compared to similar peers.

Through the COVID crisis, we have remained student-focussed and continued our support by rapidly moving all provision online. In summer 2020, we were selected as a Tuition Partner for the highly competitive National Tutoring Programme, in recognition of the quality of our work. This partnership has enabled us to expand and we now serve 1,700 students in London, the East and West Midlands and Bradford. As the country emerges from COVID, tackling educational disadvantage is an urgent social challenge - a challenge we aim to meet by expanding our footprint and reaching more students than ever before.

Why we need you

We are looking for an experienced communications professional to capitalise on our media profile and brand awareness as we expand into new regions. You will be finalising and embedding a new communications strategy while we prepare for our next phase of growth.

The pandemic has put the national conversation on higher education, inequality and social mobility into the spotlight. The Access Project has the insight, data and student stories to be prominent in this debate and has achieved a significant increase in national media coverage over the last year. Making the most of the charity’s growing profile will play a central part in attracting more volunteers and donors, raising awareness of the educational disadvantage and influencing change.

The successful candidate will be passionate about levelling the playing field for disadvantaged young people in education, with significant experience of communications strategy development. You will have a strong editorial eye and copywriting skills. You will build strong relationships with colleagues across the organisation and with journalists and ambassadors for our cause.

Some initial focus areas for the role will be:

  1. Work with the Partnerships Director and senior management team to finalise an integrated communications strategy. As part of this, identify key pieces of work to take forward and recommendations for the future structure of the communications team.
  2. Lead a review of TAP’s website, refreshing content and consulting across the organisation to produce recommendations for redesign and future maintenance of the website.
  3. Secure high profile press coverage for The Access Project around A Level results day in August and proactively spot and take advantage of other media opportunities as they arise.
  4. Look into the feasibility of TAP using high profile ambassadors to build its profile and how these would be managed, and research candidates.
  5. Line management of our Senior Communications Officer.

Please see below/attached for full job description and person specification

Job description

Integrated Communications Strategy

  • Development & implementation of integrated communications strategy to support TAP’s strategic plan.
  • Set appropriate indicators of success for effective delivery.
  • Develop processes, tools and ways of working to deliver integrated communications.
  • Participate in external relations working group to develop stakeholder relationship strategy and public affairs objectives.
  • Ensure best practice in crisis communications and reputation management for TAP.

Raising TAP’s profile

  • Develop powerful campaigns and secure national, regional and local press and broadcast coverage to raise the profile of The Access Project, placing us in the national conversation around social mobility, equality and university access.
  • Develop media campaigns to support communications strategy objectives.
  • Build relationships with journalists, proactively pitch stories and maintain a media contacts database.
  • Make the most of local and regional press opportunities where our partner schools and universities are based.
  • Coordinate interviews and brief spokespeople.
  • Facilitate media training for TAP spokespeople.
  • Keep track of relevant news and policy developments in social mobility and higher education.
  • Help to source and steward high-profile ambassadors for TAP.
  • Grow our profile in the higher education sector, promoting us as leaders in our field through specialist HE platforms.
  • Ensure The Access Project is nominated for relevant awards.
  • Work with MPs and relevant select committees to gain traction for TAP on priority policy areas.

Communicating our impact and student stories

  • Ensure our sector-leading impact is clearly communicated on our website, social platforms and other channels.
  • Ensure our student stories are told in a compelling way, working with colleagues to source these and giving guidance on interviewing and storytelling techniques where needed.
  • Work with our student ambassadors to bring their voice into media coverage.
  • Develop publicity materials for the organisation including our annual review, brochures, leaflets and short films.
  • Ensure the privacy and safety of the young people we work with in all communications and media work.

Developing our messaging and brand

  • Ensure our brand guidelines are up-to-date, practical and accessible
  • Work with colleagues across the organisation to ensure they have suitable messaging and materials for their key audiences (e.g. funders, volunteer tutors, school partners).

Internal Communications & cross-organisational collaboration

  • Ensure joined-up communications plans across TAP.
  • Contribute to internal communications, including our internal newsletter.
  • Editorial oversight of internal communications platform.

Line managing our Senior Communications Officer

  • Provide oversight and guidance; develop and monitor objectives..
  • Create opportunities for professional development.

Person specification

Essential

  • Experience developing and implementing an organisational communications strategy.
  • Proven track record of pitching and securing press and broadcast coverage.
  • Superb copy writing skills.
  • Ability to convey complex and technical information in an appealing way, understanding the needs of different audiences.
  • Ability to form excellent working relationships with colleagues, journalists and ambassadors.
  • Flexible and able to work under pressure to short deadlines.
  • Good knowledge of digital communications and what a good digital and social strategy looks like.

Desirable

  • Knowledge of the higher education and social mobility policy environment.
  • Line management experience.
  • Experience of brand development.
  • Experience of crisis communications and reputation management.

For detailed information regarding this job opportunity, please see the following link below to our online application portal.

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About
The Access Project

About The Access Project

The Access Project works with bright students from disadvantaged backgrounds, providing in-... Read more

Refreshed on: 01 May 2021
Closing date: 10 May 2021
Tags: Communications, PR

The client requests no contact from agencies or media sales.

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