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Manager, Public Affairs
Job Type: Contract
Location: Halifax, NS, CANADA;
Job Category: Marketing ; Public and Media Relations
Job Industry: Government and Public Sector
Job Career Level: Experienced
Year(s) of Experience: 5
Number Of Positions: 1
Date Posted: Mar 7, 2013

Job Posting Date: March 7, 2013
Competition #: 13-052N

Manager, Public Affairs (1 year temporary position)
Corporate Communications (CAO)

Halifax Regional Municipality is seeking applications for the position of Manager, Public Affairs, Corporate Communications - CAO Office.

Halifax Regional Municipality is seeking a strategic leader to provide direction and advice on all external and Regional Council communications and input into marketing strategy and initiatives, including crisis management; with the purpose of assisting the municipality in the sharing of information and building positive relationships with the stakeholder. Reporting to the Managing Director, Corporate Communications, the Manager, Public Affairs provides strategic advice to build, preserve and protect the reputation of the HRM.

The Manager, Public Affairs is accountable for leading, producing, implementing and evaluating communications strategies that increase public awareness and understanding of HRM’s initiatives; provides advice on complex issues affecting Regional Council and external stakeholder and plays a pivotal role in communicating the municipality’s mandate. The Manager, Public Affairs will work with a team of professionals in the corporate communications, marketing, web-site development and public affairs teams as well as the municipality’s business units. The Manager, Public Affairs is responsible for overseeing the dissemination of the business units’ public relations, news conferences, news releases, briefing notes and public information and works closely with HRM Marketing to ensure consistent messaging, branding and outreach.

Other position requirements include experience taking complex subject matter and integrating simplified messages into a variety of public relations initiatives for political, general public, media, government and other stakeholder audiences.

The Manager, Public Affairs represents HRM to internal and external audiences as required; and provides the public with clear information on emerging issues and matters of interest.


Management functions:
• Leads Senior Communication Advisors.
• Coordinates, monitors and approves attendance, overtime and vacation.
• Conducts performance appraisals.
• Ensures that staff is well-equipped to perform within their job responsibilities, and is trained and supported.

Communication functions
• Leads the development and implementation of communications strategies and ensures that active communications with Regional Council and external audiences remains a priority.
• Ensures public understanding of HRM’s initiatives by directing, implementing and evaluating communication, marketing, branding and public consultation strategies that include research, analysis of issues and assessment of stakeholder opinions.
• Facilitates accurate and timely communication of information on municipal issues by maintaining positive relations with internal and external organizations.
• Pro-actively identifies and analyses potential issues that may develop as a result of municipal policies, programs or Council decisions and recommend effective responses.
• Works closely with Mayor, Council, Senior Management and Corporate Communications to co-ordinate and manage the HRM’s reputation with regard to business and public policies.
• Builds and maintains positive working relationships with local, regional and national media and serves as primary spokesperson for HRM.
• Ensures that key staff and/or spokespersons are knowledgeable about and prepared to address complex and sensitive public policy issues to Council, or the community and that stakeholder and the public understand the municipality’s position on those issues.
• Leads the communications management of issues and crisis situations. In carrying out this responsibility, the incumbent develops crisis communication plan(s) and is an active member of the provincial emergency response team as needed.
• Identifies trends in public opinion and media coverage; briefs senior staff on those trends and provides strategic advice on building and maintain positive relationships between HRM and its various stakeholders.
• Assists senior staff in identifying ways to increase the effectiveness of existing tools, processes and procedures for external communications.
• Consults with marketing and design team to ensure consistency in key messaging and HRM’s overall communications approach.
• Coordinates the HRM Media Room website and provide advice on content within HRM.


Education and Experience
• University degree in Public Relations, Marketing or Journalism and a minimum of 5 years’ experience in a government environment or large, complex organization. An equivalent combination of education and experience will be considered.

Technical/Job Specific Knowledge and Abilities
• Demonstrated ability in enhancing internal/external communication and building strong working environments and stakeholder relationships.
• Demonstrated experience or ability to work in the public sector with elected officials, public, media, community organizations, etc.
• Excellent interpersonal skills with ability to effectively communicate in both oral and written form.
• Ability to coordinate multiple projects.
• Prioritization of work flow, managing projects, and completing time-sensitive and critical tasks.
• Demonstrated experience in organizing media announcements/conferences.
• Possess strong media, community, government and corporate networks/contacts.

Communication, Impact and Influence, Innovation, Risk Management, Organizational Awareness, Team Work & Cooperation, Customer Service Orientation, Networking /Relationship Building, Valuing Diversity.

Job Description

Reports to: Managing Director, Corporate Communications
Supervises: Senior Communication Advisors (3)

Internal Contacts:
All HRM Business Units
Senior Management
Elected Officials

External Contacts:
Citizens, Community organizations, Corporations, etc.
Other levels of government (federal and provincial)

Hours of Work: Regular work schedule is on a 35 hour per week, Monday to Friday, and beyond those on as-required basis.

Salary: Non-Union Salary Scale - P3 ($78,000 - $100,000); salary will commensurate with education and experience.

Closing Date: Applications will be received up to midnight  March 13 , 2013. 

     This is a temporary position, however, if the position becomes permanent,the internal incumbent may have their status changed from temporary to permanent without going through a second competition, provided that all performance expectations are being met.

As an Employment Equity Employer, the Halifax Regional Municipality is seeking to increase the representation of qualified racially visible persons, women in non-traditional positions, persons with disabilities and Aboriginal persons in the workplace. HRM encourages applicants to self-identify.

Qualified HRM retirees may also be considered for competitions if other qualified candidates are not available, and the retiree possesses specialized knowledge and/or a unique skill set not otherwise available. In these circumstances, a form of employment may be offered, including term and/or contract employment.

Please Note: Once you have submitted your resume, an on-line questionnaire(s) will appear on screen and must be completed in order to be considered for this position.

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