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Communications Director, DIAL

Position Overview

The Digital Impact Alliance (DIAL) is a “think, do, replicate” tank that investigates digital transformation best practice at the national, regional, and global level. We combine practical research with evidence-based advocacy to identify which digital efforts work, package them as re-usable solutions and encourage their use.

DIAL is funded through a collaboration among the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the United Kingdom’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCDO) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), and hosted within the UN Foundation in Washington, D.C.

The Director, Communications is a member of DIAL’s executive team and will be a key leader in the Insights and Outreach team, reporting to the Senior Director, Insights & Outreach. The Insights and Outreach (I&O) team shapes DIAL’s research, policy, communities of practice and communications work for the organization. The team gathers insights from digital development practitioners, curates replicable models that can be used to achieve policy objectives consistent with DIAL’s vision and mission and shapes our brand and communications strategy to achieve digital transformation and responsible data use. The I&O team houses all policy research, communities of practice, and communications expertise for the organization.

The Director, Communications leads DIAL’s brand, communications, and events team for the organization. The team works across DIAL to support program groups to shape our communications and brand strategy, market our products and communities of practice, disseminate our publications and raise our profile. The Communications Director will work closely with the CEO, the Senior Director for Insights & Impact, and the Senior Director for Strategy and Business Development to communicate DIAL’s strategy and set overall messaging and the communications calendar for the organization. S/he will also support the CEO on internal team communications. S/he will be an empathic and effective leader, managing a team of individuals to work collaboratively across DIAL projects and programs, deliver on time and on budget, and strive for continual collective and individual growth and learning.

This position is remote with preference for U.S. East Coast, UK, Central Europe.

Essential Functions

  • Accountable for working closely with the CEO, Senior Director for Strategy and Business Development and Senior Director for Insights & Outreach on the shaping and delivery of a global DIAL Communications Strategy to achieve our impact, fundraising and positioning agendas across our website, publications, social media, brands, events and other communications activities
  • Accountable for working with the Communications team to set operational priorities and deliver on effective communications activities, including messaging, brand presence, publications delivery and digital channels
  • Responsible for developing CEO executive communications presence and thought leadership brand and contributing to speeches, talking points and other materials as required
  • Responsible for supporting the CEO with the management of internal communications and acting as communications thought partner for the Strategy and MEL ‘pod’
  • Accountable for ensuring effective collaboration and coordination with UNF communications colleagues
  • Responsible for internal and external representation of DIAL, the Digital Principles, and the UN Foundation as a senior leader at meetings, events, and conferences, through thought leadership and as a member of the leadership team
  • Responsible for managing staff and workplans by fostering a culture that supports growth and creativity while requiring excellence and accountability
  • Responsible for team selection and management of external vendors (e.g. management consulting firms) supporting DIAL's agenda, including vendor selection, contract pricing, quality assurance and regular reporting
  • Accountable for ensuring the Communications team adheres to its implementation plan and budget, proactively mitigating project risks and issues and providing periodic reporting as required
  • Responsible for utilizing UN Foundation’s agreement process and systems appropriately, helping to draft and review agreements and maintaining an understanding of all agreement terms and applicable flow-downs, consulting with the UN Foundation’s finance/contracts team as needed
  • Responsible for other duties as reasonably assigned

Selection Criteria

  • College degree in relevant field required with 8-10+ years previous communications experience with at least 5+ years in a leadership role
  • Demonstrated leadership creating and delivering excellent communications strategies in high-performance settings
  • Track record of driving the production of world-class digital and analogue communications assets and moments in relevant sectors
  • Experience in advocacy and policy in relation to international systems
  • Strong and empathetic team leader capable of supporting professional and personal growth while holding colleagues to account for delivery and quality
  • Accomplished collaborator, comfortable with highly matrixed working structures
  • Outstanding written communication and presentation skills, with an ability to internalize internal and external audience needs and to translate these needs into high-quality communications strategies and assets
  • Proven track record working with topics and stakeholders relevant to DIAL, such as digital development, international aid and development, private technology sector, and public policy influencing
  • Substantive professional experience in emerging markets, ideally including in Africa
  • Demonstrated experience delivering results through teams, partners, colleagues, and consultants
  • Entrepreneurial and innovative, with a talent for creative problem solving, perseverance, flexibility, and resilience
  • Comfortable working under pressure and amid ambiguity, participating in debate with compassion and clarity, and managing conflicting priorities and tight timelines and budgets
  • A skill assessment is part of the interview process for this role
  • Sense of humor and an ability to work across cultures and working styles

The ideal candidate brings experience in non-profit communications; technology communications; policy and advocacy communications.

Benefits & Compensation 

For full-time, benefit eligible employees, UNF offers an excellent range of benefits, including:

  • a choice between two health plans through UnitedHealthcare (PPO or HDHP with HSA)
  • dental insurance
  • vision insurance
  • flexible spending accounts
  • 403b retirement savings plan with a generous matching contribution
  • group term and supplemental life insurance
  • short-term disability
  • long-term disability
  • health club discounts
  • commuter subsidy
  • back-up care
  • employee assistance program

Additionally, all benefit eligible employees have 12 paid holidays, 20 vacation days, 10 sick days, 3 personal days, and 8 weeks of family leave care.

The United Nations Foundation is proud to be an equal opportunity and affirmative-action employer. The United Nations Foundation provides equal employment opportunity to all employees and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.

This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

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