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The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is an international financial institution and a specialized United Nations agency dedicated to eradicating rural poverty and hunger. It does so by investing in rural people. IFAD finances programmes and projects that increase agricultural productivity and raise rural incomes, and advocates at the local, national and international level for policies that contribute to rural transformation.
Post's organizational accountability
As part of the External Resource Relations and Governance Department (ERG), the Communications Division (COM) leads implementation of IFAD's Communication Strategy and acts variously as facilitator, partner and leader with regard to delivery of IFAD's internal and external communication work. COM is a strategic partner for IFAD departments, divisions, offices and units in Rome and across the globe. The division has a team of expert staff in media relations, video production, writing, publishing, web and other digital media, graphic design, visual identity, brand management and internal communication to meet IFAD's communication priorities.
The Francophone Communications Officer, Global Media, reports to the Senior Communications officer, Global Outreach. As part of the Strategic Communication Team and in direct collaboration with members of the Global Outreach Unit, s/he plans and implements communication activities to increase IFAD's visibility, trust and engagement with key audience through effective outreach to media and across platforms.
Working with staff at all levels of the institution and in all specialties to translate data, results, strategies, technical matter and institutional knowledge into compelling human stories and messages, s/he ensures that media interactions and other communications content (social media, op eds, speeches) make a lasting impression on key audiences and build IFAD's reputation and brand. This position also contributes to corporate communication strategic planning, particularly in relation to francophone media and Member States. In our multilingual context, this communication officer writes fluently both in French and English.
Under the direct supervision of the Senior Communications Officer, Global Outreach, and in line with IFAD's communication strategy, the Francophone Communication Officer will be responsible for the following functional activities:
- Media outreach and strategy
- Storytelling and content development
- Advocacy and campaigns
Key results expected / Major functional activities
MEDIA OUTREACH AND STRATEGY:
- In coordination with IFAD units and the Communications Division team, gather intelligence, propose communications approaches, and outreach strategies that raise awareness of IFAD's effectiveness and global leadership in agricultural and rural development in selected priority (especially francophone) countries.
- Build and maintain media contacts (particularly with influential francophone media) and relationships with influential journalists to pitch stories and spokespeople around IFAD key themes and initiatives to increase visibility of the Fund.
- Act as a point of contact between IFAD and francophone media for requests concerning IFAD senior managers and technical experts.
- In consultation with the Senior Communications Officer, Global Outreach, identify priority media in target countries and propose outreach strategies in line with donor interests.
- Lead media outreach around key EU-IFAD initiatives, including the ABC Fund;
- In coordination with COM colleagues and concerned divisions, research the subject matter, gather information from IFAD units and offices in Rome and in the field, providing timely background information, talking points, press statements and other materials in support of media interactions.
- Write media releases, media advisories, letters to the editor, op-eds and blogs, ensuring accurate, effective media-friendly messaging.
- In consultation with concerned divisions, create and manage strategic communication and media opportunities for Francophone spokespeople and experts on official trips and at high-level events.
- Provide input and advice on media outreach opportunities, ensuring preparedness for interviews, encounters with journalists and presentations at press conferences and media events.
- Contribute to corporate planning and strategy, including for corporate communication initiatives and activities, in order to position IFAD and promote its image as an organization, and to strengthen IFAD's brand.
STORYTELLING AND CONTENT DEVELOPMENT:
- Develop stories and narratives based on IFAD's work in the field that compellingly highlight its work and results for a wide range of audiences, and bring technical information to life, including by traveling to the field if required.
- Build and maintain a network of contacts on key IFAD themes and operations, and take the lead in developing content around special initiatives and events when assigned.
- Remain continuously aware of IFAD priorities and positioning and be able to suggest topics and messages for inclusion in communication products.
- Monitor progress on the ABC Fund communications and visibility plan, and liaise with ABC partners, providing feedback and guidance as required, and support visibility efforts for the Fund;
- Liaise with IFAD experts and key staff before events and speaking engagements to ensure coordination, relevance and accuracy of content and establish timeframes for input and review.
- Stay informed on current events, emerging issues and trends and how they relate to IFAD's core business.
ADVOCACY AND CAMPAIGNS:
- Conceptualize, write, edit and adapt (English/French and vice versa) op-eds, blogs and other high-profile communication materials for a diverse range of outlets and audiences, in support of IFAD outreach around major initiatives and campaigns, including replenishments.
- Craft or adapt speeches or other executive communications in French for the President and senior management.
- Create compelling content that can be shared across platforms working with other COM experts in media and video to develop scripts, sound-bites and tweets, including for senior management, and help devise ways to exploit new channels and opportunities.
- Support communication campaigns to extend reach and penetration in francophone markets to advance IFAD's visibility and brand identity with those audiences.
- Craft or contribute to the development of other high profile and priority communications when necessary.
Impact of Key results / Key performance indicators
The Francophone Communications Officer, Global Media, is a seasoned professional in the field of Communication. The quality of work and external communications performed by the Officer directly impacts on the professionalism of the incumbent and the overall reputation of the Communication Division in terms of both substantive depth and adaptive relevance to emerging issues and changing client needs. S/He follows established procedures but is expected to make recommendations on strategies for engagement and communications products. The Officer is accountable for quality, substantive input and ability to project a competent and trusted image of the Fund to partners within IFAD and outside.
Representation / Work relationships
Representational functions of the Francophone Communications Officer, Global Media are focused on establishing and maintaining relationships, building stronger relationships, identifying and pursuing of opportunities for outreach, engagement, and collaboration, and projecting the image of a credible/reliable partner. S/He presents policy positions, seeking to inform and build partnerships, within the limitations of guidelines set by the supervisor. Work relationships are established and maintained with counterparts both inside as well as outside the Fund. Exchange of information typically requires proactivity to clearly establish the policy, positions or practices of the Fund. S/He functions as a collaborative partner within the Fund to enhance Communication.
- Strategic thinking and organizational development: Personal influence (Level 1)
- Demonstrating Leadership: Personal leadership and attitude to change (Level 2)
- Learning, sharing knowledge and innovating: Continuously seeks to learn, shares knowledge and innovates (Level 1)
- Focusing on clients: Focuses on clients (Level 1)
- Problem solving and decision making: Demonstrates sound problem solving and decision making ability (Level 1)
- Managing time, resources and information: Manages own time, information and resources effectively (Level 1)
- Team Work: Contributes effectively to the team (Level 1)
- Communicating and negotiating:Communicates effectively: creates understanding between self and others (Level 1)
- Building relationships and partnerships: Builds and maintains effective working relationships (Level 1)
- Fluent spoken and written French and excellent English with proven experience writing materials for the media and pitching stories and interviews to journalists;
- good understanding of the global media market;
- strong contact base of Francophone journalists, including top tier media;
- familiarity with current trends, styles and developments in media;
- ability to conceive of, write, edit and deliver new and effective media products;
- ability to exercise independent judgement, to make appropriate choices, ensure accuracy and currency of data and facts;
- knowledge and experience related to EU initiatives and development;
- proven ability to effectively manage relationships with journalists;
- effective communicator with the ability to convey technical concepts and recommendations to non-technical staff at all levels;
- excellent interpersonal skills and ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity;
- results-oriented, team contributor applying excellent technical skills and knowledge to communications strategies and approaches;
- proven ability to meet tight deadlines, often under pressure;
- commitment to personal performance and self-development.
Minimum recruitment qualifications
- Advanced university degree from an accredited institution in journalism, communications or social sciences. The advanced university degree may be substituted by a first university degree (Bachelor or equivalent) plus at least four additional years of relevant professional experience, over and above the minimum number of years of experience as stipulated below.
- Knowledge or familiarity with UN, agriculture, IFAD and its mission is an asset.
- Minimum of five years of relevant experience as a writer or journalist (francophone), in highly disciplined and demanding communication environments, with experience in the media (particularly francophone)
- and public information and communications.
- Fluency in written and spoken French and excellent written and verbal skills in English. Working knowledge of Italian desirable.
Applicants should note that IFAD staff members are international civil servants subject to the authority of the President of IFAD, and they may be assigned by him/her to any of the activities of IFAD, including field assignments and/or rotation within IFAD.
In the interest of making most cost effective use of funds and resources, we are only able to respond to applicants who are short-listed for interview. Candidates who do not receive any feedback within three months should consider their application unsuccessful
Candidates may be required to take a written test and to deliver a presentation as well as participate in interviews.
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