Position title: Communications Manager
Reports to: Technical Adviser
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Deadline: 5 January 2024
Teaching at the Right Level (TaRL) Africa is a not-for-profit organization registered and headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, with teams in Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria, and Zambia. TaRL Africa began as a joint venture by Pratham and J-PAL in 2019, with the goal of supporting governments and organizations across Africa to accelerate children’s foundational skill learning using the evidence-based TaRL approach. TaRL Africa's mission is to support every child across Africa to build foundational skills for a better future. We support governments and organizations in over 12 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa to design, deliver and scale impactful TaRL programs while learning and sharing how the approach can be improved for different contexts. Together with partners, TaRL Africa reached over four million children with TaRL programming by 2022.
Summary of the Role
The communications manager role will develop and implement a communications strategy for TaRL Africa. This will include global brand building, communications strategies for all online and offline media and events, and country-specific communications support. The role works in close coordination and is in frequent contact with the TaRL Africa Central team, based in Nairobi, as well as country teams in Zambia, Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria. The communications manager role will support TaRL Africa country offices by developing and implementing communications, media and advocacy strategies
- To develop and implement communications and support advocacy to raise awareness of programs and activities in TaRL Africa
- Provide strategic media counsel and support to the country offices
- Support donor engagement and reporting
- Manage a small communications team and support communications staff in supported countries
- Oversee and support all internal and external communications activities for TaRL Africa
- Leading the development and deployment of an engaging and compelling TaRL Africa internal and external communications plan and structure for the organisation
- Working closely with key team leads to design and leading the execution of the communications strategy that advances the organization’s goals. This will include, but not be limited to, the dissemination of programmatic and research insights through high quality audience-sensitive content, greater use of program and research results , refinement of TaRL Africa brand and expansion of its reach through social media and other channels and tracks progress through intelligent metrics.
- Developing and implementing comprehensive joint media and advocacy strategies that raise awareness of key program issue
- Developing and maintaining strategic, creative, and proactive media and outreach mechanisms to highlight TaRL Africa’s work, activities, projects, and its overall mission to ensure all children in Africa attain basic reading and arithmetic skills
- Coordinating and executing the delivery of a digital communications and social media strategy
- Positioning TaRL Africa staff as subject matter experts and issue spokespersons
- Proactively identifying communications needs of country offices and support in hiring and development of communications staff in countries as needed
- Providing hands-on crisis communications support and counsel at the country level
- Leading in the development of communications work plan and budget
- Taking lead in outreach and coordination of high-level visits to Africa region by senior staff, donors and partners, and supporting the preparation of briefing materials, as required
- Revisiting and refining brand guidelines from time to time
- Leading the development of high-quality information design assets including static and interactive visualizations
- Designing visual imagery for publications, annual reports, presentations and other print and electronic materials
- Managing events including planning, marketing, logistics, execution and follow up; both online and offline
- Media Relations
- Providing on-going strategic media counsel and support to the country offices and liaise with media houses
- Supporting the development of communications messaging, materials, and campaigns for use in-country
- Leading in the generation of meaningful press coverage with key country, regional and international media that highlights TaRL Africa's programs
- Responding to media requests promptly; use these opportunities to insert TaRL Africa’s messages, shape proposed story ideas and suggest appropriate sources that advance a story or concept
- Working with country teams to develop and disseminate press materials that integrate key messages, to include the development of press releases & backgrounders
- Preparing staff (and partners/sub-grantees) in the field for media interviews, speaking engagements as appropriate
- Keeping Communications and Advocacy officers, Country Managers and senior-level staff informed of significant shifts in programmatic field procedures, media mentions, or potential coverage
- Providing editorial input and oversight including performing editorial function as needed across all organisation communications materials and activities
- Identifying, recruiting and supervising technical resources and consultants (photographers, freelance writers) as necessary to enhance visibility on TaRL Africa’s work, programs, and initiatives specifically, as well as education issues in countries across the continent where TaRL Africa has a presence
- Working with country offices on to develop and write country-specific stories and photographic assets, to be shared across various digital platforms (blog, social media and websites)
- Liaising with Country Managers to secure appropriate feedback and approvals of materials and ensure proper sign-off procedures are followed
- Obtaining relevant programmatic and statistical information for Nairobi office and in-country offices as needed to incorporate into selected products; share this information regularly with countries
- Ensuring TaRL Africa’s branding and messaging is consistent in all TaRL Africa’s documents and collateral; monitor adherence to agree upon branding policies
- Editing materials prepared by other writers or in-country staff to ensure they are consistent with TaRL Africa’s messages and policies
- Managing all content generation and editing for social media and website
- Maintaining and managing quality across all collateral
Required Minimum Qualifications:
- Bachelor’s degree in communications, Marketing, New Media or Public Relations with a strong bias in Digital Media
- 5 years of relevant work experience in a similar role
- Excellent written, verbal and non-verbal communications in English
- French skills will be an added advantage
- Display in-depth knowledge and understanding of social media platforms, their respective participants (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube) and how each platform can be deployed in different scenarios.
- Demonstrate creativity and documented immersion in social media
- Experience with print and/or electronic and broadcast media and developing strategic communications initiatives.
- Demonstrated history of successfully building critical, long term, engaging relationships with stakeholders and relevant partners for positive change
- Willing to travel within Africa (up to 40% of time)
- A team player who can skillfully coordinate activities with senior leadership, management, project directors, and staff, and who has the sensitivity and interpersonal skills to work cooperatively with a group of diverse personalities
Required Minimum Skills and Competencies:
- Interest in children’s learning and education
- Familiarity with major Africa press
- Ability to synthesize feedback quickly and efficiently
- Attention to detail
- Problem-solving skills
- Excellent communications and organizational skills, with demonstrated success working in a team environment
- Pleasant, flexible, and efficient communicator with credibility, good judgement, honesty and integrity
- Strong understanding of online platforms such as Zoom, Teams, Canva etc
TaRL Africa Values
- We put children’s learning first.
- We are always learning, improving, and innovating.
- We are locally rooted for high-quality delivery and sustainable impact.
- We are kind, respectful and collaborative.
- We are proactive, committed to integrity and doing our best each day.
How to apply?
Please fill in APPLICATION by 5th January 2024. Only applications submitted through the form will be accepted. Please note that, due to the large volume of applications, we will only be able to respond to short-listed applicants.
TaRL Africa is an equal opportunity employer and committed to having a diverse workforce.