Belfast, Northern Ireland : Cardiff, Wales : London : York, Yorkshire and the Humber
About the job
As Head of Digital Communications you will lead on a diverse and exciting range of work, from developing and owning the digital content strategy for the FSA for a new external website and internal communications platforms, as well as providing strategic direction and management to our social media channels.
A member of the Communications Management Team, this role will be important to driving key elements of the FSA Communication Strategy, which is one of the main corporate priorities for the coming few years.
The Head of Digital Communications role sits within the Marketing, Media and Digital team and requires joint management and leadership of that wider integrated team.
You will act as a point of expertise and quality control in the delivery of digital communication for the agency, developing and owning the digital content strategy, bringing significant experience to bear on the strategic planning and delivery of digital communications activity including social media, bringing the latest digital thinking into the FSA's work.
You will provide joint management of the Marketing, Media and Digital team: setting direction for the team; planning resources and strategic strategy; line managing three members of the team and playing an active role as part of wider communications management team.
You will be responsible for owning the content strategy to support the delivery of new external and internal digital platforms being introduced over the next 6-12 months, working closely with the Head of Digital, suppliers and external stakeholders at senior levels.
You will ensure the proactive and consistent day-to-day use of FSA digital communications channels, in particular the use of social media as a responsive and strategic channel to support wider communications priorities. Advise to a professional standard on digital planning, advertising, communications content, evaluation, analytics, trends, and ensuring that the communications team activity in these areas meets the highest quality standards of best practice.
Ensure that the team effectively delivers digital communications activity which supports the FSA’s strategic objectives and business plan, working collaboratively and in line with GCS/OASIS best practice, acting as a source of professional advice and overseeing the appointment of external advisers in areas such as digital content and advertising, ensuring that procurement standards are met.
The Food Standards Agency is a non-ministerial department of 1050 people, with a big vision – to drive change in the food system so that it delivers “food we can trust”.
Your work and the work of the communications team is critical to engaging our audiences – internally and externally – with the FSA mission. Identifying, reaching and engaging audiences through digital channels will be fundamental to building strong and participatory relationships with key stakeholders.
The communication team is changing. We’re building expertise and enhancing capability. We’re moving away from channel specific teams (press, stakeholder, campaigns etc.) and becoming project based teams of all round excellence. This doesn’t mean we are losing essential skills that people have built up over the years but adding to them, ensuring a strong professional skills base and the ability to work flexibly across communication disciplines. We’re working towards being more proactive, planned and outcome-focused ‘campaigning’ organisation, seeking to make a difference for consumers and citizens in the food system.
Part of this is bringing deep digital communications skills into management team so that we can stay at the forefront of a changing communications landscape.
The team supports a wide range of working patterns, and its members work out of our London, Cardiff, Belfast and York offices
Want to find out more? Then please take a look at the attached job description which details the key responsibilities.
• Act as a point of expertise and quality control in the delivery of digital communication for the agency, developing and owning the digital content strategy, bringing significant experience to bear on the strategic planning and delivery of digital communications activity including social media, bringing the latest digital thinking into their work.
• Experience of leading and managing busy and high performing teams:
o Setting direction for the team
o Resources and strategic planning
o Line management
• Experience and ability to build and maintain constructive and influential relationships with senior leaders across the organisation, and having the personal impact to influence them using evidence and analysis.
• Experience and ability to manage a diverse range of priorities, from organisational wide strategic programmes to day to day running of a digital communications team.
• Experience of bringing good practice and ideas from outside to improve the skills and delivery of your work within the organisation.
• Experience in advising to a professional standard on digital planning, advertising, communications content, evaluation, analytics, trends, and ensuring that the communications team activity in these areas meets the highest quality standards of best practice.
• Working in a fast-paced digital communications environment managing multiple external and internal communications channels.
• Leading teams – building their capability and skills in digital communications and coordinating resources and priorities accordingly, and motivating them during busy periods of activity.
• Leading on, or having a significant role in, developing a digital content strategy for which ties in with the wider communications content strategy for the organisation.
Managing remote and multi-location based teams
Membership of the Government Communications Service (GCS)
We'll assess you against these competencies during the selection process:
- Leading and communicating
- Collaborating and partnering
- Managing a quality service
- Delivering value for money
- GCS: Insight
Demonstrate a deep understanding of the digital landscape and emerging trends. Apply this knowledge to lead the content development strategy and to identify and develop digital channels. Reflect user needs back to the organisation to ensure content and services are designed with a user and citizen focus.
Building and maintaining momentum in the delivery of activity and evaluation of outcomes so that lessons are learned and built on and taking responsibility for this in their team.
- GCS: Implementation
Demonstrate excellent written communication skills and set standards for communication. Provide overall editorial control to ensure appropriate content, messaging, tone and consistency in all communication.
Be an advocate for digital engagement and social media, and share expertise to build capability across communication teams and the wider Department. Lead the development and implementation of digital content management strategy.
Civil Service Competency Framework
We offer excellent benefits, including a generous holiday entitlement, an attractive pension scheme, flexi-time and flexible working.
Things you need to know
Successful candidates must pass a disclosure and barring security check.
Candidates will be subject to UK immigration
requirements as well as Civil Service nationality rules
If you're applying for a role requiring security clearance please be aware that foreign or dual nationality is not an automatic bar. However certain posts may have restrictions which could affect those who do not have sole British nationality or who have personal connections with certain countries outside the UK.
Selection process details
Subject to the volume of responses we may conduct a preliminary sift based on the lead competency of Leading and Communicating.
We actively review the deployment of talent on a periodic basis in the interests of optimising personal development and the achievement of business plans.
Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.
Candidates in their probationary period are eligible to apply for vacancies within this department.
Working for the Civil Service
The Civil Service Code
sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.
We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equality of opportunity. There is a guaranteed interview scheme (GIS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
Apply and further information
Contact point for applicants
Addeel Khan, Addeel.Khan@foodstandards.gsi.gov.uk,
Sift/interview dates and location
Sift w/c 7 August
Interviews w/c 14 August
Candidates can claim travel costs if they attend an interview/selection stage for the vacancy.