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Head of Communications and Engagement x2. Ministry of Defence
Location: London main building.
Apply before 11:55 pm on Sunday 5 July 2020
Salary: £55,241
Grade 7 B2
Department: MOD – Defence Nuclear Organisation
Number of posts: 2

This is a genuinely exciting time to join the Ministry of Defence and to be at the heart of real Defence issues, delivering against one of the Department’s top three priorities and in a high-profile area which is rarely out of the news.

Established in April 2016, as part of recommendations set out in the 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review, the DNO was set up to oversee all aspects of nuclear business within the MOD and across the wider Enterprise. The Director General Nuclear is responsible for all submarines (from buying them through to disposal when they reach the end of their life), nuclear warheads, skills, related infrastructure and day-to-day nuclear policy.

Our mission is to keep safe and capable submarines at sea today and in the future. We need a capable and credible nuclear deterrent to successfully deter the most extreme threats to our national security and way of life. DNO consists of the people, equipment and infrastructure required to make that happen.
Job description
We are advertising for two Grade 7 / MOD Band B2 communications professionals to join the Defence Nuclear Organisation. These exciting and challenging positions will play a crucial role in planning and delivering coherent, consistent and engaging communications in one of the most complex policy and programme environments in Government.

The ideal candidates will be energetic, enthusiastic and engaging, with the confidence and ability to engage with colleagues across the Ministry of Defence and wider Government, academia and industry. Highly motivated self-starters, the post holders will lead on developing a comprehensive and engaging internal and external communications and engagement strategy

1. Head of Policy Engagement Team

It is recognised that a critical enabler of the UK’s Nuclear Deterrent is public support. Within the DNO, the policy engagement team manages, on behalf of the Cabinet Office, HMG’s nation-wide public communications campaign and external affairs activity on the Nuclear Deterrent and Nuclear Deterrence. You will be responsible for developing and delivering this, working to increase key audience understanding (including within Parliament, with the Next Generation and in Scotland).

Embedded within the Defence Nuclear Organisation Policy team, you will work closely with colleagues across DNO, MoD, wider HMG, external organisations to deliver a nuclear deterrence policy engagement programme comprising narrative development, event and other activity delivery and some direct communications work.

2. Defence Nuclear Organisation Head of Communications

The Defence Nuclear Organisation Head of Communications will be responsible for all Defence Nuclear Organisation’s overall approach to communications, playing a leading role engaging with the Ministry of Defence, other Government departments, and other organisations that deliver the Defence Nuclear Enterprise. The successful candidate will set the strategic objectives for Defence Nuclear communications, develop a coherent, compelling and engaging communications strategy, aligned with the policy engagement team and wider secretariat and parliamentary business team. You will be responsible for building a high performing proactive communications team, aligned with the Modern Communications Operating Model, with strategic planning, creative design and content production capability, internal communications, and research and insights functions.

Responsibilities
As the Head of the Policy Engagement team (i.e. Head of the Nuclear Deterrence Communication Campaign) you are responsible to the Cabinet Office – as the communication commissioner – through the DNO Deputy Director (Policy) for developing and managing the required communication and engagement campaign on a day-to-day basis, in particular:

• Working with the DNO Head of Communications to build the UK Nuclear Deterrence narrative;
• mobilising, briefing and motivating the X-WH (virtual) campaign team;
• developing a campaign plan in collaboration with the communication commissioner and managing progress towards its achievement, ensuring work is completed within defined constraints;
• keeping the campaign’s commissioner up to date on the progress, providing advice and seeking guidance and direction as appropriate;
• keeping those working on the campaign informed of the context and progress, providing direction as appropriate;
• developing, managing, and delivering engagement events (including personally presenting at these events, as required);
• managing issues and risks, escalating as appropriate and requesting changes to the plan, in consultation with the campaign commissioner; and
• evaluating the outcomes of the campaign and taking preventative or corrective action when needed

To achieve this, you will need to deliver through others, building effective and proactive relationships with the Foreign Office, the Cabinet Office, BEIS, The Scotland Office and other Government departments, as well as Armed Forces colleagues, especially the Royal Navy, to enable cross-government ways of working on deterrence policy engagement. You will also be expected to build and maintain a strong working relationship with Directorate of Defence Communications to ensure successful delivery of communications elements of the engagement programme. You will use Strategic Communication, Media and External Affairs communication skills.

You will additionally manage the Ministry of Defence’s equity in the UK Project On Nuclear Issues (PONI), working with RUSI to foster the emergence of a next generation of nuclear experts and build a broad a knowledge base for the nuclear community, from technical intricacies to international security dynamics.

You will also support wider DNO communications activities, ensuring that all communications and engagements are co-ordinated, coherent and consistent
Line manages a C1 (SEO) Policy Engagement direct report.

As Defence Nuclear Organisation Head of Communications, you are responsible to the Director General Nuclear through the Deputy Director Strategy and Performance for creating a high-performing proactive communications function within the Defence Nuclear Organisation, in particular.

  • Working with the DNO Head of Policy Engagement Team to build the UK Nuclear Deterrence narrative;
  • Setting the strategic objectives for Defence Nuclear communications,
  • Providing leadership, strategic direction and support to defence nuclear communications activity, including advising ministers and senior officials on proactive nuclear communications, mindful of national security consideration
  •  Work in partnership with the wider departmental communications teams and across Government to deliver a professional, collaborative and co-ordinated communications service for the business.
  • Identifying and mapping stakeholder community in order to develop a coherent, compelling and engaging communications strategy, aligned with the policy engagement team and wider secretariat and parliamentary business team.
  • Pro-actively identify opportunities for wider communications and engagement to support the development of our work
  • Building a high performing proactive communications team of five posts, aligned with the Modern Communications Operating Model, with strategic planning, creative design and content production capability, internal communications, and research and insights functions.
  • Develop and implement an visible, attractive and recognisable brand and identity for the Defence Nuclear Enterprise.
  • Act as Head of Profession within the Defence Nuclear Organisation, ensuring all communications officers have access to and are undertaking continued professional development.
  • Embed measurement and a culture of continuous improvement into change and internal communications more widely.
  • Use insight and evaluation to identify target audiences and partners and inform communication objectives, messages and solutions.

Requirements

  • Able to confidently and credibly liaise with a wide range of often senior stakeholders to plan and deliver work.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Experience of working within Government communications is essential.
  • Ability to work independently to deliver high profile events and publications to project milestones while identifying and mitigating delivery risks.
  • Confident presenting formally and informally to a variety of audiences.
  • Able to work collaboratively to deliver activity through others they do not manage.
  • Excellent stakeholder management and influencing skills.