Dublin

Ibec, the group that represents Irish business, is inviting applications for the the position of Head of Public Affairs. 

The closing date for applications is Monday, 20 September 2021. 

Role Purpose: 

The Head of Public Affairs has responsibility for the development and implementation of a Public Affairs Strategy ensuring an integrated approach across the business to Policy Campaign Management; PR and Media Communications; Lobbying and Stakeholder Relationship Management.  

The role ensures an integrated approach within the Public Affairs team so that resources and capability are leveraged and optimised. The successful person also provides the appropriate PR expertise and recommendations on the management of potential crisis and reputation risk issues. Public Affairs is a business unit that plays both a leadership and support role across the business to ensure a strategic and consistent approach to public affairs activity.  The Head of Public Affairs works collaboratively with colleagues across the business.

The Public Affairs Strategy will be delivered through three main strands of activity

• Campaign Management 
• Lobbying and Stakeholder Relationship Management 
• Media and PR Communications
 
Key Activities/Responsibilities: 

Strategic Planning and Management 
• Work with the Executive Director of Lobbying and Influence to set the strategic direction for Ibec’s approach to Public Affairs
• Proactively and reactively provide a company-wide source of expertise in Public Affairs recommending short and long term goals to business leaders across all divisions and sectors
• Operationalise and align the key strands of the Public Affairs Strategy with each other to support Ibec’s   Business Strategy
• Develop an annual business plan and operating budget in agreement with the relevant senior members of the team; monitor the implementation of these to ensure that targets are met.
• Collaborate to design, implement, and modify frameworks, processes and procedures to improve workflow or look for ways to simplify processes 
• Lead and/or be part of relevant project and working groups across the business 

Ibec Profile/reputation
• Benchmark Ibec’s reputation and develop a strategy to further enhance and protect same including a cross divisional implementation plan and crisis management communications protocols
• Play a lead role in establishing a reputation management framework across the organisation, with a particular focus on the organisation’s Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) agenda 
• Create maximum opportunities to position Ibec as the foremost business representative organisation and similarly work with Sectors to position relevant Trade Associations
• Work collaboratively with the marketing and digital teams to position and profile Ibec using multi media channels strategically 

Public Affairs
• Ensure the establishment of an external stakeholder management system to maximise impact and influence 
• Drive the implementation of policy campaigns via a range of channels to ensure maximum effectiveness, leading on positioning content and ensuring brand alignment.
• Ensure a collaborative approach with Digital and Marketing in the design of campaigns and utilisation of digital channels 
• Ensure appropriate media strategy, framework and implementation plan is in place for Ibec 
• Ensure an organisation wide strategic approach to Ibec’s lobbying activity in line with lobbying legislation requirements
• Lead and co-ordinate a forum for Public Affairs professionals from member companies
• Lead out on policy related member communications  
• Develop an internal communications strategy to ensure key policy messages are communicated internally in a co-ordinated way to maximise engagement and support with external communications

Leadership and Development
• Coach, mentor, and develop a team of Public Affairs professionals, leading them to meet or exceed Ibec’s expectations for productivity, quality, and achievement. 
• Demonstrate a management style that encourages mentorship, teamwork, participation, communication, and service orientation.               
• Provide leadership to develop a team of public affairs professionals focused on business alignment, accountability for outcomes, and continuous improvement.
• Consciously create a workplace culture that emphasizes Ibec’s purpose, mission, vision and values.
• Drive an integrated approach to all aspects of Public Affairs across the business
• Provide leadership and guidance to the Public Affairs team to achieve secure, reliable, and cost-effective operations

Person Specification: 

Qualifications
• Third level degree in a relevant discipline
• Relevant post graduate qualifications 
 
Knowledge 
• Excellent insight into the broad Public Affairs landscape and key policy challenges facing Irish business
• Excellent knowledge of policy areas and policy development
• Insightful understanding of the communication needs of an organisation like Ibec
• Working knowledge of ways to maximise engagement with broad stakeholder groups 

Experience 
• Experience working at a senior level in Public Affairs related role/s
• Experienced at policy development and managing multiple stakeholders
• Experience delivering significant projects in related fields 
• Has previously led a team of professionals
• Excellent stakeholder relationships across policy makers; media contacts and other relevant influencers

Competencies
• Very strong leadership skills
• Strategic planning and implementation 
• Excellent communicator
• Excellent stakeholder relationship management skills
• Very strong collaborator with ability to navigate in a multifunctional environment
• Action oriented
• Project management

Ibec is an equal opportunities employer.