The Strategic Communications Advisor reports directly to the Vice President for Human Resources (HR) at the Johns Hopkins University. This position is a member of the human resources leadership team and works closely with other human resources and communications professionals across the Johns Hopkins Institution. This role collaborates with leadership to understand HR priorities, challenges and programmatic planning and then utilizes that knowledge toward the creation of comprehensive communications strategies that drive engagement to achieve key priorities.
The incumbent in this role will serve as the strategic communications lead for all HR activities, program launches, critical updates and policy changes, working in close collaboration with the Vice President for HR, HR leaders and other identified internal and external stakeholders. The Strategic Advisor will be responsible for the design, creation, and execution of all human resources communications, including communications internal to HR staff and external messaging to employees, faculty, and staff of the university. This role will have direct and intentional collaboration with members of the University’s Office of Communications and Office of the President, to ensure widespread, consistent and effective communication efforts across various internal and external audiences. The Strategic Advisor works to reinforce existing communications strengths and further develop an innovative, substantive and proactive stance to enhance the overall HR communications presence and effectiveness across the University. This position requires a strong operational ability to translate the strategy set by the HR Leadership Team into effective communications and the ability to influence outcomes. This position is an independent contributor who is highly effective at building credibility and relationships at all levels of the institution.
Specific Duties and Responsibilities:
Leads the communication efforts for the University-wide Human Resources function, ensuring messages regarding programs, initiatives, and policies are clearly and effectively communicated to employees using a variety of appropriate methodologies. This includes strategic oversight and development of all communication efforts in support of employee benefit programs with an overall annual budget of more than $550M.
Initiates and maintains effective communication tactics to embed and reinforce HR vision, strategy and priorities into the organization through strategic communication vehicles.
Facilitates stakeholder meetings to assess scope of communications needs.
Develops strategies, programs, content, and delivery mechanisms for communication of HR activities to a variety of audiences internally from senior executives through to managers and individual employees as well as retirees. External audiences include perspective employees, regulatory agencies, peer institutions and community stakeholders.
Creates targeted, innovative communication plans that provide a wide variety of audiences (including HR, managers, faculty, executives and employees) with messaging, tools and context for key initiatives. Types of HR Communications include:
HR activities and programs, both on-going (e.g. New Employee Orientation, Career Architecture, Unconscious Bias Training) and annual (e.g. Open Enrollment for Benefits, Employee Recognition events, Diversity Roadmap, Employee Childcare)
Policy and program updates and changes
New systems and tool offerings
Engagement and recognition activities
HR websites and social media platforms
Speeches and presentations delivered by VP of HR and senior HR staff
Collaborates with other dedicated professionals in University Communications, as well as across Divisions and departments to ensure consistency of standards and messaging as well as to learn/share best practices.
Guides and supports the Vice President of HR and other HR leaders in their role as strategy leaders and spokespeople for various matters related to HR issues response, programming, participating in public forums and events and consultative editing.
Supports the facilitation of desired organization behavior through use of strategic communication (e.g. enroll in benefits, participate in wellness programs, complete performance evaluation process, etc.).
Identifies and monitors specific relevant metrics to evaluate effectiveness of communication strategies and initiatives for University-wide efforts, along with targeted Divisional and Central HR goals. Gathers and analyzes relevant data from available resources and uses those details to continually improve communications effectiveness. Monitors, measures, and gauges the most effective communication channels for messages including the end-to-end communications cascade.
Strives to deliver communications in a more efficient and effective way by challenging current processes and recommending new approaches. Introduces tactics that incorporate leading-edge communication strategies, leveraging technology as a means to engage consumers of content.
Manages and optimizes employee communications channels to enable the efficient and effective delivery of communications to targeted audiences. Routinely gathers and incorporates employee feedback, best practice research and other external learning into communications strategies to drive optimum results. Continually seeks information on trends and techniques in internal communication, as well as best practices.
Collaborates on the development of strategic communications projects across various Central HR Centers of Excellence (Total Rewards-Benefits and Compensation, Employee/Labor Relations, Talent Acquisition, Talent Management and Business Services) and/or the Divisions as directed.
Coordinates with relevant HR leaders to ensure that human capital needs are integrated into strategic plans in schools and departments, at the request and approval of the VP of HR, Deans and Divisional Business Officers and related leadership.
Secures and analyzes critical metrics of human capital performance that need to be addressed by HR strategies and plans. Facilitates processing of all stakeholder and other input into the development of HR strategies and plans.
Measures and communicates status of HR achievement of strategies and plans. Continues to monitor internal and external forces that could impact HR strategies and plans and require them to be updated and adapted. Participate in annual HR goal setting meetings and discussions.
Supports the various HR functions/Divisions in developing processes and tools for the cascading of annual goals throughout the rest of the university.
Minimum qualifications (mandatory):
Bachelor’s degree in business, communications, Human Resources or a related field
Five years of related experience in an academic and/or other large, complex, and matrixed environment.
Demonstrated experience in stakeholder management and change communication.
Proven achievements of large scale communications and change program.
Knowledge of information dissemination and advocacy techniques, including alternative ways to inform and motivate via written, verbal, and visual media.
Excellent verbal and written communication skills, communicating effectively as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Ability to analyze information and evaluate results in order to choose the best solutions and solve problems.
Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills.
An advanced degree in business, communications, Human Resources or a related field is strongly preferred. Advanced degree may substitute for required experience, to the extent permitted by the JHU equivalency formula.
Demonstrated experience and effectiveness working with senior management during times of significant and substantive change, including a major programmatic launch/revision, organizational structure redesign, leadership transition or transformational shift in priorities
Special knowledge, skills and abilities:
Exceptional interpersonal skills with the ability to interact effectively with a broad range of people in a variety of organizational situations.
Ability to work in a complex decentralized institution, with a high tolerance for ambiguity.
Must possess the professional ability to act as a catalyst for change through positive energy.
Able to effectively articulate goals and objectives and help others to clearly understand their value in supporting the accomplishment of those goals.
Proficiency in interacting with and influencing senior organizational leaders in a highly matrixed organization.
Demonstrates flexibility and manages change in ways that result in productive performance.
Must be able to work effectively and independently in an environment with multiple priorities.
Must be able to adapt to varying business challenges, while always maintaining a focus on professionalism and customer service.
Technical qualifications or specialized certifications:
Samples related to previous communications efforts may be requested during the selection process.
Classified Title: Communications & Marketing Manager Working Title: Strategic Communications Advisor-Human Resources Role/Level/Range: ATP/04/PE Starting Salary Range: Commensurate with Experience Employee group: Full Time Schedule: M-F, 8:30am-5:00pm Exempt Status: Exempt Location: 03-MD:Eastern High Campus Department name: 10001537-VP of Human Resources Personnel area: Johns Hopkins University
The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check.
If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the HR Business Services Office at firstname.lastname@example.org. For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711.
The following additional provisions may apply depending on which campus you will work. Your recruiter will advise accordingly.
During the Influenza ("the flu") season, as a condition of employment, The Johns Hopkins Institutions require all employees who provide ongoing services to patients or work in patient care or clinical care areas to have an annual influenza vaccination or possess an approved medical or religious exception. Failure to meet this requirement may result in termination of employment.
The pre-employment physical for positions in clinical areas, laboratories, working with research subjects, or involving community contact requires documentation of immune status against Rubella (German measles), Rubeola (Measles), Mumps, Varicella (chickenpox), Hepatitis B and documentation of having received the Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) vaccination. This may include documentation of having two (2) MMR vaccines; two (2) Varicella vaccines; or antibody status to these diseases from laboratory testing. Blood tests for immunities to these diseases are ordinarily included in the pre-employment physical exam except for those employees who provide results of blood tests or immunization documentation from their own health care providers. Any vaccinations required for these diseases will be given at no cost in our Occupational Health office.
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