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Corporate Communications Director

The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, known by its Spanish acronym, CIMMYT®, is not-for-profit agricultural research for development organization with partners in over 100 countries. Please refer to our website for more information: https://www.cimmyt.org

CIMMYT is seeking a dynamic and results-oriented Corporate Communications Director. The selected candidate will work as a member of CIMMYT’s DG Office and will work in close other relevant programs at CIMMYT.

Under the direct supervision of the Director General, the Head of Communications manages all functions led by the Communications Department and its staff and other personnel, providing leadership in the continued objectives, while delivering through an efficient, highly focused, and effective service-oriented process. CIMMYT has a new strategic plan contributing to the OneCGIAR Innovation and Research Strategy. CIMMYT can provide sustainable solutions for not only the looming food crisis, but also relevant issues such as climate change, nutrition, production within planetary boundaries, and more. One of the Director of Communications’ main tasks will be to contribute to positioning CIMMYT as a valuable and important partner in this global field.

The position will be based in Texcoco, Mexico. 

Specific duties: 

  • Strategic engagement and outreach:
    • Lead the development, implementation, and monitoring of communications, media, and outreach strategies to build CIMMYT’s reputation and maximize the policy and development impact of its research across the main target regions of Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
    • Led the strategic use of a broad range of communications tools, including events, media engagement, social media, web presence, blogs, and multimedia packages, direct mail, contact lists, video, and photography, among others. This includes overseeing editorial planning and strategic use of CIMMYT’s communications and outreach digital platforms.
    • Strategic communications support for CIMMYT’s Director General.
    • Lead media tracking and monitoring, key message development, strategic positioning, and crisis management, and provide strategic communications advice to CIMMYT’s management and researchers.
    • Lead the development and implementation of communications plans for CIMMYT’s involvement in major global events and projects and contribute to CGIAR’s plans for global events and projects as required.
    • Lead internal communication strategies, plans, and tactics in support of CIMMYT’s Human Resources’ staff development, satisfaction, diversity, and retention strategies and objectives.
    • Ensure that Communications exemplify ethical practices and support the CIMMYT Code of Conduct, consistent with CIMMYT’s overall strategy, regulatory framework, and organizational values.
    • Liaise and coordinate with the CGIAR Communications & Outreach Global Group (C&O Group) in areas of cross-collaboration including events, global campaigns, branding and funder acknowledgments, thought-leadership narratives, key messages, media outreach activities, and digital publishing. Provide input into the C&O Global Group’s strategy and activities to ensure strong representation for CIMMYT in global communication efforts and initiatives.
    • Contribute to the proposal and report writing and fundraising efforts.
    • Raise the positive public profile of CIMMYT in support of fundraising and the successful pursuit of its mission.
    • Work on impactful donor communications with the donor relations and fundraising support team.
    • Foster existing communication partnerships and help build new ones to increase visibility and impact.
    • Increase CIMMYT’s brand potential as a trustworthy partner for excellence in science and operations.
  • Editorial and digital content:
    • Oversee all editorial and digital content publishing at CIMMYT and contribute to CGIAR publishing as required. Act as the lead within CIMMYT on all matters to do with publishing, branding, and funder acknowledgments.
    • Write and edit a wide variety of information, knowledge, and corporate products as required, ensuring that content is delivered at the highest quality and according to requirements.
    • Work closely with team members to ensure that design is an integral part of the messaging process for each output. Be responsible for the quality of all team outputs.
    • Strategize on how to best use all of CIMMYT’s communications and outreach digital platforms. Develop and regularly update a digital roadmap for CIMMYT that links all its digital assets and maximizes readership to each.
    • Be responsible for the monitoring and evaluation of CIMMYT’s communications and outreach digital platforms and downloads and regularly provide analysis and recommendations for improvements. Provide quarterly CIMMYT’s Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for social media, media, website, and publications.
    • Establish and enforce editorial policies and procedures, in line with C&O global policies and procedures. Assist in the elaboration of and regularly update publishing guidelines for staff and consultants working with content development.
    • Translate CIMMYT’s mission and projects into concrete, tangible storylines with high human interest.
    • Handle/streamline the communication needs across the Center, including a successful social media approach.
    • Review the existing website and lead the creative process of a new, modernized website.
  • Team management and cross-collaboration:
    • Manage CIMMYT’s Communication unit budgets.
    • Manage workflow and plans of CIMMYT’s Communication unit and ensure all outputs and deliverables are produced cost-efficiently and according to predetermined timelines.
    • Create a high-performing team that strives for excellence and supports the CIMMYT mission for impact in the context of the CGIAR Research and Innovation Strategy with a culture of shared accountability and results orientation.
    • Supervise a multicultural team of staff and consultants across multiple time zones to maximize their productivity, innovation, and outputs in support of CIMMYT’s communications strategy as part of contributing to the broader CGIAR C&O global strategy.
    • Develop and constantly update a global roster of cost-efficient, high-quality freelance editors, translators, designers, web programmers, and other specialists.
    • Work closely with scientists and stakeholders to develop and produce appropriate research publications and outputs.
    • Collaborate closely with colleagues in the Corporate Communications Unit in constantly monitoring, reviewing, and adapting CIMMYT’s communications strategy to meet and surpass clear targets.
    • Collaborate closely with colleagues in CGIAR’s C&O Global Group to provide inputs into CGIAR’s global communication and outreach strategy as required.
    • Liaise with the CGIAR C&O team.
    • Mentor and empower the communication team to pursue innovative approaches and set demanding metrics for engagement that deliver results in a fast-changing, competitive external communications environment and build the organization’s brand.
    • Create a work environment that is creative and fun and that rewards risks and innovations.
    • Perform other duties and responsibilities as may be assigned.

Required academic qualifications, skills, and attitudes:

  • Master’s Degree in Communication, Journalism, Digital Communications, or related.
  • More than 10 years of experience in similar roles or activities.
  • Demonstrated knowledge, ability, and understanding of principles of copywriting, graphic design, layout, and publishing.
  • Familiarity with social media platforms and social media interactions/marketing including the creation of collaboration networks and influence/interest groups.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and proficiency with communications technologies and strategies.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English and in Spanish.
  • The selected candidate must exhibit the following competencies: Proactivity, Problem Solving, and Decision-making, Negotiation, Conflict Resolution, and Teamwork.

The position is for an initial fixed term of three (3) years, after which further employment is subject to performance and the continued availability of funds. CIMMYT’s internationally competitive salary and benefits include housing allowance, car, comprehensive health, and life insurance, assistance for children’s education, paid vacation, annual home travel airfare, contribution to a retirement plan, and generous assistance with relocation shipment.

Candidates must apply online for IRS22162_Corporate Communications Director. Screening and follow-up of applications will begin on Friday, January 6th, 2023. Applications must include a CV, with contact details (telephone and email address) of 3 work-related references along with the confirmation that we can contact them) and a cover letter. Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration. For further information on the selection process, please contact Yessica Castillo, at y.castillo@cgiar.org

Please note that only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

This position will remain open until filled. 

CIMMYT is an equal-opportunity employer. It fosters a multicultural work environment that values gender equality, teamwork, and respect for diversity. Women are encouraged to apply.

To apply for this job please visit cimmytrecruitment.wufoo.com.