Reporting to:

Chief Design Officer

Salary:

Up to £60,000

Contract type:

Permanent

About Design Council

Design Council’s purpose is to create a world where design, as a force for change, makes lives better for all.

We are an independent charity and the government’s advisor on design. Our mission is to make life better by design, working with people to create better places, better products and better processes, all of which lead to better performance.

We are ambitious to be inclusive, collaborative and agile to respond to opportunities and value expertise but are not afraid to take risks to be innovative.

We value inclusion, equality and diversity, and we know that can only design better for all, when we bring together people from different backgrounds and perspectives.

Therefore, we are actively recruiting for a diversity of candidates that reflects the ‘all’ of the society we are designing with and for. We are happy to hear about and explore reasonable adjustments that we could make which mean that the role would be attractive to a greater diversity of person. This includes the ability to work from home, flexible working, part-time or compressed hours or other arrangements.

How does this role fit in?

Reporting to the Chief Design Officer and as part of the senior team working across the organisation, this post plays a key role in influencing for the greater use of good design in the UK, and inspiring organisations to work with us to do so. This involves:

  • developing and influencing policies and movements that promote good design and building alliances that can make the case more persuasively together
  • measuring the impact and telling the story of the value of our work, and design more broadly
  • communicating our core offer, and entrepreneurially creating new offers which lead to new funded partnerships that show the value of design
  • supporting delivery teams to use the best creative communication & storytelling methods as part of creating change, including harnessing & showcasing a diversity of talent within design.

Internally, the Design Council is organised around three functions.  There is single team for all our client delivery work (including Government and various public bodies), a team for Corporate Services and a team responsible for Policy, Impact & Communications, which this post leads. The team is made up of people working across graphic design, communications, impact and digital, and draws on networks of policy, marketing, PR & research agencies. Each team is led by a Director, who together with the Chief Exec, form the Executive which leads Design Council. The Policy, Impact & Communications team.

Working with the Chief Design Officer, the post holder will be the lead for our communications and influencing strategy, which capturing our collective impact and creatively telling our story, designing innovative responses to Government on policy, and developing new business propositions from our rich assets of insight, knowledge & expertise about the value of design.  Additionally, the Head of Policy, Impact and Comms may represent the Design Council on platforms and forums in the UK and internationally, championing the role and value of design.

What is expected from a Head of Policy, Impact and Comms?  

Policy & influencing

Work closely with the Chief Design Officer to:

  • lead policy development in key strategic areas
  • create influencing strategies for policy asks, spanning traditional and innovative approaches (e.g. consultation responses to alliance & narrative building work)
  • commission research & evidence (if not from our own programmes) in support of policy positions
  • build a network of policy partners and manage & commission any agencies used
  • attend events and develop key strategic relationships with policymakers, Ministers and MPs
  • identify business development opportunities in response to policy areas
  • be the key point of contact on all policy matters.

Impact & storytelling

Work closely with the Chief Design Officer to:

  • lead development of a collective impact framework used by Design Council to capture our value and creatively tell the story of it to key audiences
  • support quality assurance of all evaluation activities across Design Council
  • identify business development opportunities through impact assessment, including toolkits that can be used by the design sector to measure the sector’s wider impact
  • line manage the Impact Analyst.

Overall Communications

  • lead development of communications, influencing and marketing plans
  • manage and organise key messages, narratives, policy asks and commercial offers
  • create relationships with communications leads in our partner organisations and develop strategies that amplify each other’s impact
  • manage, commission and organise communications and marketing agencies
  • ensure all our comms and marketing work is of the highest design quality and delivered creatively and digitally (unless where appropriate)
  • use a wide variety of digital platforms and ensure they achieve their objectives
  • ensure effective line management of senior communications staff.

Marketing & business development

Work closely with the Chief Design Officer to:

  • develop compelling comms and marketing to support strategic and business objectives (i.e. spreading awareness of the value of design, and working with Design Council on programmes that use design to create further value)
  • develop a range of creative commercial offers or sponsorships which harness our assets (our people, insight and knowledge) and spread the value of design

Corporate Responsibilities

Work closely with the Chief Design Officer to:

  • line manage staff within the Policy, Impact & Communications team and build and develop the overall team and how it works across the organisation
  • contribute to the overall strategy of the business as it moves forward, ensuring that the organisation’s policies and direction are deeply integrated into all marketing and communications functions and strategy
  • demonstrate leadership in financial management and control within your area of responsibility and across Design Council
  • ensure you and your team comply with Design Council operational policies and procedures, including financial and risk management, project management and evaluation processes, brand guidelines and internal health and safety policy.

This role may involve some evening work and may involve some travel outside London as the pandemic allowed. The role can be performed digitally, although we would love to meet as a team in person in line with people’s personal safety preferences and Government guidelines.

Does this sound like you?

Essential skills

  • Professional experience in communicating and influencing
  • An understanding and interest in design & innovation and the built environment
  • Critical understanding of strategic or policy issues and ability to express ideas clearly and confidently to a range of people. 
  • Understanding of policy development & influencing, impact measurement and communications & storytelling
  • Understanding and experience of Business Development and marketing
  • Understanding and experience of commercial and contract development, management and monitoring and budget management
  • Effective communicator highly articulate with excellent written and spoken skills, with attention on accuracy, ensuring information is evidenced and relevant for both internal and external audiences
  • Expert at influencing, networking and building key relationships at a senior level
  • Proven skills leading and developing teams
  • Strong interpersonal skills with proven ability to work with cross-functional teams
  • Track record of delivering programmes within tight deadlines, with ability to work under pressure
  • IT literate with ability to work with Microsoft Office applications
  • Experience of web-based software and processes

Behaviours

  • Curiosity and creativity in how we communicate and influence
  • Head up - ability to spot new opportunities as they arise
  • Alliance & network builder with the ability to make connections across sectors and interest groups to further strategic goals
  • An inspiring and empowering team leader with a demonstrable track record of building, mentoring and developing a talented team

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion

We value inclusion, equality and diversity, and we know that can only design better for all, when we bring together people from different backgrounds and perspectives.

Therefore, we are actively recruiting for a diversity of candidates that reflects the ‘all’ of the society we are designing with and for. We are happy to hear about and explore reasonable adjustments that we could make which mean that the role would be attractive to a greater diversity of person. This includes the ability to work from home, flexible working, part-time or compressed hours or other arrangements. As well as wider feedback about the type of organisation we are.

To apply, please email your CV and supporting statement to demonstrate your suitability for the role to recruitment@designcouncil.org.uk by 1st November 2020.