Manager III – Strategic Communications Manager
The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) is committed to delivering the first-rate, multimodal transportation system that Montgomery County needs. We ensure that the County has a well-functioning, balanced transportation system that uses our roads more efficiently and supports more walking, bicycling and transit use. We build and maintain the transportation infrastructure; reduce traffic congestion; increase mobility; improve pedestrian, bicyclist and vehicle safety; provide transit and alternative transportation services; and promote access to our central business districts. MCDOT’s mission is to move people and connect places with the best transportation choices and services.
MCDOT is seeking a Strategic Communications Manager (Manager III). This is a senior level staff position with the MCDOT Director’s Office that reports to the department’s Deputy Director and provides direct support to the Department Director and Deputy Directors, Division Chiefs and senior staff. The successful candidate must possess tact; political acumen; creativity in problem solving; a highly collaborative style that positively builds relationships; high energy and maturity. The Manager should have the ability to lead, serve as a unifying force and position communications discussions at both the strategic and tactical levels.
The Manager oversees all aspects of the department’s strategic communications for internal and external audiences. The Manager proactively keeps MCDOT in the public’s eye by promoting the department’s accomplishments in a variety of ways; proactively and reactively advises senior managers on high profile and sensitive issues; and manages communications responses. The Manager will develop and implement a short-term and long-term strategic communications plan with the goal of further refining MCDOT’s brand, messaging and marketing and take the Department’s efforts to the next level.
The mission of the Department of Transportation (MCDOT) is to move people and connect places with the best transportation choices and services.
Duties include but are not limited to:
- Establish and implement strategic communications plans. The Manager will anticipate Department needs and be a champion for developing strategic initiatives to satisfy those needs. The Manager will work closely with MCDOT’s senior management group to develop, implement and evaluate an annual communications plan and longer-term strategies. The plan will guide consistent communications and public relations messages that articulate the County Executive’s and MCDOT’s vision, mission and strategic goals for transportation. Strategies will address the best ways to continue productive relationships with key internal and external stakeholders, such as policymakers, the media, advocacy groups, the public and others.
- Manage community and public relations,bow MCDOT’s social media presence and MCDOT’s brand and image. The Manager will proactively and reactively enhance the Department’s reputation and promote all the good things the department does. The Manager will:
- Implement communications strategies to proactively create a more positive image of the Department, preserve MCDOT’s brand and aggressively enhance MCDOT's reputation when responding to incidents or crises.
- Develop, distribute and maintain department-level print and electronic collateral including, newsletters, brochures, press releases and annual reports.
- Manage department-level social media and advise department division staff on implementation and maintenance of social media efforts.
- Support staff in responding to elected officials, County, state and agency staff, advocacy groups, the general public and others on sensitive, complex or controversial issues.
- Assist in the department’s marketing and education/outreach campaigns.
- Manage departmental media relations. Working closely with the County’s Public Information Office, the Manager serves as the media spokesperson for the department; writes press releases, speeches and talking points; identifies press-worthy activities; and helps organize press events. The Manager also:
- Establishes and maintains relationships with local reporters.
- Trains departmental staff on interacting with the media.
- Connects media representatives to appropriate staff and oversees media contacts.
- Writes talking points, quotes and other responses for staff responding to media.
- Develops talking points/speeches for department representatives attending County and other press events.
- Manage staff. The Manager will maintain an atmosphere conducive to excellent relations with employees and exert a positive influence on the professional development of employees. The Manager supervises:
- A Program Specialist who works on a variety of public outreach programs and community-service events, including Adopt a Road, Adopt a Spot, Adopt a Bus Stop, GRAB (Graffiti Abatement Partners), GreenFest, PARK(ing) Day, Community Service Day and others.
- The departmental Senior Information Technology Specialist, whose duties include MCDOT’s website redesign and maintenance, implementation of the IT strategic plan, server administration, strategic and enterprise initiatives and user support.
- Oversee departmental website. Direct redesign of the departmental website and new content creation. Work closely with staff throughout the department to ensure the website remains user-friendly, timely and comprehensive. Oversee MCDOT’s website maintenance and updating.
The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of success in the communications sector or related fields and experience developing and implementing successful communications strategies; have excellent written, verbal, social media and website content communication skills; and demonstrated public relations, community, strategic and media communications success in a complex and dynamic environment. The candidate also should have experience presenting policies and rationales for action, including high-profile, politically sensitive issues, to stakeholders, community leaders, business groups, the general public, elected officials and others.
As a manager/supervisor of unionized employees, this position has a responsibility for fostering a positive labor relations environment based on mutual trust, respect, and cooperation.
This position requires the ability to attend meetings or perform work at locations outside the office.
If selected for an interview, you may be required to provide a portfolio of writing samples, including strategic communications plans, press releases, social media posts, annual reports, policy statements, responses to inquiries on controversial topics, marketing campaign plans and/or materials and other appropriate work samples.
To view the job posting and submit an application, please visit Montgomery County Government’s Career website at www.montgomerycountymd.gov/careers and click on Search Jobs. You will find the job posting under the General Professional job category – IRC34521 (Closing Date November 26, 2018). EOE: M/F/D