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Communications and Engagement Manager

Soils For Life

A key player in the regenerative agriculture space, Soils For Life is seeking an experienced Communications and Engagement Manager to further build its influence and visibility at a pivotal moment in the transformation of Australia’s food production systems.

With a new strategic plan endorsed by the Soils For Life Board, Soils For Life is well positioned to take a stronger leadership role in the regeneration of soils and landscapes nationwide. Soils for Life mission is to support Australian farmers in regenerating soils and landscapes to build natural and social capital, and transform food systems.

The Communications and Engagement Manager has a critically important role to play in boosting engagement across the sector and positioning the organisation as trusted knowledge broker and champion of soil and landscape regeneration.

Soils for Life (SFL) is a national, registered charity governed by a board and led by the CEO. Soils for Life is based in Canberra and leads and supports projects Australia-wide.

We build communities of practice around regenerative cultures and thinking to create and enable strong networks and partnerships. We support the development and dissemination of a strong evidence base to validate and share understandings of principles and practices for soil and landscape regeneration. Our holistic and transdisciplinary approach encompasses all aspects of regenerative agriculture including ecological, economic, and social transformation. We create local, on ground farmer support mechanisms including mentoring programs and networks, and we do this in partnership with a range of local and regional organisations. For example, we hold field days, webinars and support local community activities. Soils For Life speaks with an engaged audience across multiple online and offline channels.

Our research, development and adoption activities are varied, and include an extensive and long-running agricultural landscape regeneration case study program which provides interwoven, evidence-based accounts of land manager and landscape change and regeneration.

Position Description

The Communications and Engagement Manager is responsible for the effective and efficient management of all communications and knowledge management activities. Current activities include our long-running farmer case study project as well as a range of other projects aimed at supporting farmers and farmer groups, and building the evidence base to support soil and landscape regeneration practices in agricultural systems.

You will be required to provide leadership across a diverse range of communications and knowledge management activities. Your initial challenge will be to work closely with the executive to develop a new communications and engagement strategy to complement a recent refresh of our organisational strategy. In addition, you will develop implementation plans, policies and procedures to ensure our entire suite of communications achieve impact.

The role works closely with the CEO in a small team environment. The CEO remains the key spokesperson for SFL.

You will also be responsible for ensuring that our messages are appropriate for our key audiences and delivered through appropriate channels to maximise reach and engagement. While the Communications and Engagement Manager must have excellent strategic and organisational skills, they must also be outcomes-oriented with solid hands-on skills as a writer and digital communications practitioner.

Specific Tasks

  1. Design, develop and implement a communications and engagement strategy in line with the organisational strategic plan.
  2. Position SFL as a transformational strategic partner with key stakeholders including farmers, farmer groups, policy makers, and researchers.
  3. Lead the development of the Soils for Life flagship knowledge hub and new web presence (including CRM and other platforms as required) and develop knowledge sharing and coproduction strategies.
  4. Develop and implement a media strategy and grow a strong network of influential media representatives.
  5. Represent Soils for Life at events and effectively share Soils for Life’s work at workshops, conferences etc when required.
  6. Draft editorial material and other content for Soils for Life CEO and Chair, and support CEO and Chair with media engagements.
  7. Amplify and accelerate the strategically-aligned work of partners and stakeholders.
  8. Identify and support strategic opportunities to grow Soils for Life’s audience and donor base.
  9. Supervise and professionally coach staff.
  10. Manage communication workflows and organisational outputs, including email, social media accounts and websites, and a regular organisation newsletter.
  11. Edit and repurpose research and case study reports to develop and promote online and other content and produce a range of other communication products.
  12. Manage external suppliers
  13. Monitor, evaluate and report on communications activities and initiatives.
  14. Other tasks as directed by the CEO

Selection criteria

  1. Understanding of sustainable and regenerative agricultural systems and soil, water and landscape management in these systems
  2. Tertiary qualifications and a minimum of five years’ experience in agricultural, natural resource management, science-based or sustainability-related communications.
  3. Excellent relationship building skills with proven ability to mobilise informal groups and teams around strategic objectives.
  4. Strong stakeholder management skills with demonstrated experience in effectively liaising with boards, funding bodies, government, academia, partners and clients.
  5. Digital experience design skills (including social media, digital communication strategies and digital platforms) to create a cohesive and compelling online experience.
  6. Experience in leading and managing staff and diverse teams.
  7. Proven ability to monitor, evaluate and report on the effectiveness of communication strategies.
  8. Exceptional written and oral communication skills.
  9. Proven ability to contribute to an inclusive, safe and healthy workplace.

Employment type

The position is 0.8FTE (with the possibility to extend to full-time) with an initial appointment period of three years, with the possibility of renewal or conversion to an ongoing position.

A position description is attached.

How to apply

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