Vacancy: Communications Coordinator, Southern Africa

Role Overview

The Engagement Unit, established in 2019, plays a critical role in the success and sustainability of the AB network. There are two teams in the unit: Communications Team and Resource Mobilization Team under a Director of Engagement. The former comprises a longstanding team, including the Head of Communications, Communication Managers in Southern, East, Francophone, North and West Africa. The role is exciting, challenging and rewarding, working for an organization that is considered the premier African citizen research organization globally. The latter team is responsible for forging partnerships built on trust and mutual accountability and for attracting philanthropic contributions to support AB’s goals. These two teams work closely together in disseminating Afrobarometer findings, raising the profile and securing the sustainability of Afrobarometer.

 

The Communications Team commits itself to:

  • Ensure effective, timely dissemination of survey findings
  • Develop and maintain a world-class website that enables access to and use of AB.
  • Ensure inventive, effective data-visualization expertise in the communications unit.
  • Strengthen other communications unit capacities
  • Enhance dissemination of survey findings through new formats, technologies, audiences, platforms.
  • Effectively demonstrate how AB data is used to shape policy or strategy.
  • Liaise with Capacity Building unit to build capacity among stakeholders/potential users in data analysis and use, including the use of online data analysis tools.
  • Monitor and respond rapidly to opportunities to inject Afrobarometer data into contemporaneous or
  • emerging national, regional or global events or trends.
  • Explore new opportunities for partnerships to enhance the uptake and impact of AB data
  • Strengthen National Partner communications capacities

In addition, the Communications Coordinator, Southern Africa, has responsibilities to the Institute of Justice and Reconciliation, Afrobarometer’s Core Partner for Southern Africa, based in Cape Town.

 

Main Duties and Responsibilities:

Core Function 1 – Leading Afrobarometer’s National Partners (country-based partners) in Southern Africa with matters relating to their communication requirements

  • Reviews and edits publications based on statistical analysis of survey results from National Partners

  • Supports National Partners to plan, organize and manage their outreach projects

  • Promotes National Partner presentations, events and media interviews and programmes

  • Works with National Partners to build their communications skills, to develop dissemination and media

    engagement strategies and plan and prepare for dissemination events

  • Works with the Head of Communications and other staff in training National Partners in communications skills, public speaking, use of social media and related skills.

     

Core Function 2 - Spearheading the tracking, use of Afrobarometer data and the dissemination of the survey data in South Africa and other countries under the jurisdiction of the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation

  • Prioritizes and attends regional governance meetings related to Afrobarometer convened by NGOs, government and donors, among other institutions
  • Co-creates and executes outreach and other projects to keep generating coverage for Afrobarometer following the close of official disseminations
  • Plans and executes project-oriented media and NGO outreach/community events
  • Utilizes various computer programs to track data and create presentations, charts, graphs, tables, and memos
  • Works with the Digital Communications Manager, the Head of Communications, and other Afrobarometer Communications Coordinators to keep constant flow of new materials for website
  • Builds relationships with influential individuals to engage them as partners and collaborators in Afrobarometer work 

 

Core Function 3 – Communications and media relations

  • Initiates, builds and maintains relationships with journalists and civil society and governance organizations

  • Monitors media outlets within jurisdiction for news that relates to Afrobarometer

  • Works with Head of Communications and other Managers to tweet regularly (either directly or through the Digital Communications Manager) about dissemination events, Afrobarometer-relevant conferences and meetings, and related events

  • Assists National Partners with the rolling out of social media in their operations

  • Prepares reports: quarterly, annually, etc. (Afrobarometer only)

  • Creates and executes outreach and other projects to keep generating coverage for Afrobarometer following the close of official disseminations

  • Under the direction of the Network Communication Manager, initiates and maintains relationships with journalists and civil society and governance organizations

  • Monitors media outlets within countries under Core Partner jurisdiction for news that relates to Afrobarometer

  • Works closely with the Communications Team, Publications Manager, Digital Portfolio Manager, Central Management Team and other partners on global releases for each round

  • Participate as researcher, analyst, author or co-author at national, regional and network level

  • Researches specific issues or inquiries regarding program- or project-related topics and reports back findings to Institute of Justice and Reconciliation project team and Head of Communications

     

Core Function 4 - Monitoring and Evaluation

  • Ensures that all Afrobarometer communications-related M&E is captured to Afrobarometer’s Google Shared Drive

  • Helps maintain dissemination, press releases and report calendars

  • Analyzes the effectiveness of National Partners’ work in communications to assess the need for coaching and follow-up

     

Core Function 5 - Stakeholder management and partnership building

  • Proactively identifies opportunities for Afrobarometer and its partners to:

o Injects data into emerging and ongoing policy debates by tracking current events in partner countries, engaging with relevant policy actors and media, etc. (e.g., “hot” issues in supported countries, international/national observances, platforms for engagement with key government officials, media leaders, civil society organizations working in relevant areas)

o Builds and strengthens partnerships with stakeholders, policy actors, and potential donors at local, national, regional, continental, and global levels.

 

Core Function 6 - Duties and responsibilities to Afrobarometer’s Core Partner in Southern Africa, the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (IJR)

  • Provides editorial support to the IJR

  • Writes articles for the IJR

  • Provides media representations on behalf of the IJR

  • Helps strengthen the IJR’s social media presence

  • Provides communication support to specific projects

  • Follows all IJR protocols 

 

Selection Criteria:

Minimum experience, knowledge & skills

  • Bachelor’s degree in social sciences and preferably postgraduate studies or degree in journalism/communications/public relations

  • At least 5 years of related work experience, or a combination of education and experience that would provide for the following knowledge, skills and abilities:

o Experience in networking with policymakers such as members of parliament and local government leaders
o Experience developing and implementing communications strategy o Thorough knowledge of media relations strategies
o Thorough knowledge of electronic and print media systems

  • Strong interpersonal and communications skills and demonstrated ability to work in a multinational environment are essential

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills

  • Skills in quantitative data analysis is desirable

  • Demonstrated capacity to continuously develop knowledge and skills related to use of technology

  • Strong time management skills

  • Ability to handle multiple “priority” projects and set and meet deadlines, and use communications skills to ensure that National Partners and senior leaders do the same

  • Must have demonstrated ability to manage own work with minimal supervision

  • Skilled in the use of personal computers including Microsoft Office Suite; G-suite; experience in SPSS is desirable but not required; experience with Final Cut pro or other video editing software is an advantage but not required.

  • Some experience with Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms

  • The ability to communicate fluently in English is required; French/Portuguese proficiency is a strong advantage, but not required

  • Willingness to travel across Southern Africa, and occasionally beyond, on a regular basis

  • Short-listed applicants will be asked to complete a writing, presentation and basic data analysis test

 

Desirable

  • African citizenship or heritage
  • Knowledge of survey research
  • Multilingual, ideally fluent French, Portuguese and African languages

 

Personal qualities

  • Alignment to Afrobarometer core values including equality, diversity, and inclusion
  • Attention to detail and persistence to ensure thoroughness and accuracy
  • Self-starter with the ability to set priorities, meet deadlines, and manage multiple tasks
  • Highly organized, with the ability to deal with lots of information
  • Diplomatic with a cooperative, problem-solving, and positive ‘can-do’ attitude
  • Ability to build rapport with both leadership and other colleagues
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Ability to maintain privacy and confidentiality

The main duties and responsibilities, person specifications and the technical/functional competencies that are included 

 

Salary

The salary for this post will be competitive with the market and based on the skills and experience of the successful candidate.

How to Apply

The deadline for all applications is 15 September 2021.

PLEASE READ THE SELECTION CRITERIA CAREFULLY BEFORE APPLYING.

Please send your application to ekotze@ijr.org.za Include your name and position title in the
subject field of your email. Example: “Subject: [YOUR NAME] AB Communications Coordinator S/Africa” Documents to include:

  1. An up-to-date curriculum vitae with contact details (your email, phone, postal and WhatsApp Number)

  2. A personal statement describing:

    1. your interest in the post and in working with Afrobarometer

    2. evidence of how your skills, experience and knowledge meet the Selection Criteria. If you lack experience or evidence in any area listed, please state how you would gain theknowledge or competency needed to succeed in the role.

    3. your availability for the post (notice period in your current role) and preferred working location. 

 

Download the full job description below