Sample Position Descriptions
General Summary of Function/Purpose of Position
The communications specialist has responsibility for the planning, preparation and implementation of news events and other earned media activities to promote seat belt and impaired driving enforcement mobilizations working closely with the State Highway Safety Office (SHSO) enforcement team. This position develops and implements an annual communications plan for all SHSO traffic safety programs, including research, planning, executing and evaluating programs, acquiring paid advertising, and utilizing contract vendors to effectively produce messages. This position oversees the production and storage of publications as well as distribution to the traffic safety community. This position also develops the SHSO annual report; provides support as needed for SHSO public information and education programs, campaigns, and special events; maintains the SHSO website; and develops the SHSO newsletter. This position assists with securing strategic partnerships to promote traffic safety at target venues.
Plan, develop and implement publicity for statewide enforcement efforts focusing on seat belt use and impaired driving. 30% of time
- Recommend materials and activities for law enforcement agencies to generate local awareness of upcoming increased enforcement.
- Direct and oversee development, procurement and distribution of new creative pieces as needed, such as posters, brochures, banners, billboards, etc.
- Write materials for news events, including media advisories, law enforcement action kits, news releases, news conference agendas, talking points, fact sheets and background information. Post information on website.
- Select news conference sites and host news events. Track and assist with implementation of all news conference venues in case of multiple events, and list events on the SHSO website.
- Recruit news conference participants and follow up to confirm attendance and receipt of materials.
- Distribute media advisories and news releases to media, make media follow up calls and respond to media inquiries.
- Write thank you notes to participants.
- Promote other SHSO grant projects as indicated through news releases and media contacts.
- Work with the program coordinators to determine audiences and distribution of public information materials.
- Provide SHSO staff with information regarding the status and progress of their public information projects.
Develop all aspects of the SHSO communications program to disseminate informational, educational and promotional materials regarding the SHSO’s activities for priority issues identified through the Highway Safety Plan. 25% of time
- Develop and implement the SHSO annual communications plan to ensure the coordination of activities and the maximum exposure of traffic safety messages to the identified target audiences.
- Present ideas for special events to garner attention and media coverage on a regular basis.
- Support the SHSO’s participation in special events, such as regional or national conferences.
- Identify the need for appropriate outside contractual services to assist with research/marketing/public relations, design, and execution of high-profile traffic safety campaigns.
- Use the State procurement process to obtain contractual services through purchase orders, and develop well-defined goals, objectives and deliverables.
- Direct activities of contractors and monitor invoices with stated pricing and available budget.
- Direct research activities to determine public attitudes and awareness of the SHSO programs, and recommend the development of programs based on the survey findings. Periodically evaluate the impact of the SHSP awareness campaigns.
- Oversee the expenditure of funds for public information activity and materials, purchasing and related grant-funded activities to ensure State and Federal policies are met.
- Monitor news media on a daily basis to identify stories and issues with traffic safety relevance.
- Provide analysis of State and national news stories and events and their possible impact on the State.
Develop, write, edit and produce new traffic-safety materials, publications and promotional items and arrange for reprinting as needed. Manage State contracts for graphic design, video and audio production, maintain budget and reconcile monthly billing statements. Oversee the storage of publications and other materials and special projects as assigned. Manage the SHSO display at conferences and events. 20% of time
- Write and edit copy for print materials, ensuring appropriateness for target audience in design, photos and graphics.
- Determine scope of specialty work for print, radio, or broadcast ads by developing specifications for vendors, and ensure property purchasing paperwork is filed.
- Utilize State procurement and purchasing rules to order materials and authorize payments for purchase.
- Assign priority levels as well as due dates for projects to ensure timely delivery. Provide guidance for the overall conceptual direction/proof print work.
- Secure contracts as needed by writing Requests for Proposals for services such as video, audio, design and photo services, and track expenditures.
- Coordinate the content, design and printing for annual Traffic Safety Summit materials and other large or special events as requested.
- Review monthly inventory reports for materials to determine reordering and storage space needs.
- Recommend conferences and events for the SHSO exhibit, and ensure proper paperwork is filed to register. Coordinate staff volunteers to attend events and assign duties.
- Determine materials to be used with the SHSO display at conferences and meetings.
Coordinate the content and organization of the SHSO website according to standards, and oversee production of the SHSO newsletter. 15% of time
- Write, edit, review and prioritize items to be posted on the website.
- Oversee the posting of items to the website ensuring information is posted and removed in a timely manner.
- Ensure that enforcement mobilization information is kept updated on the website.
- Make recommendations for improvements to the website and ensure compliance with State standards.
- Investigate and recommend the use of new software and technology to improve communications with media, traffic safety partners and the public.
- Edit, coordinate and produce the newsletter as an electronic document published every other month.
- Solicit story ideas from program staff, assign deadlines, edit submitted articles and write articles as needed.
- Secure necessary copy approvals.
- Find appropriate graphics and photos to enhance publication.
- Coordinate the editing, production and distribution of the regional newsletter.
Produce the SHSO annual report. 5% of time
- Edit the SHSO annual report copy provided by the staff for consistency in style, tense, grammar and content.
- Follow up with staff as necessary to maintain deadlines and answer questions about program write ups.
- Locate graphics to accompany the write ups, ensuring adequate quality for optimum reproduction.
- Direct and oversee the layout and design of the document by the vendor.
- Proofread draft copies of the report and ensure all corrections are made.
- Ensure that the report is completed in compliance with the Federal deadlines.
- Obtain printing quotes and complete paperwork for reproduction of the report.
Pursue and develop strategic partnerships to further the reach and effectiveness of traffic safety messages. 5% of time
- Identify major sporting events or festivals that reach a significant number of the SHSO’s target audiences.
- Identify potential partners and stakeholders that can assist the SHSO in reaching the target audiences.
- Recruit organizations and venues to take part in special promotions and events.
- Provide background about traffic safety issues and relevant statistics for each partnership.
- Recruit SHSO volunteers as needed for events.
- Evaluate each project to determine the effectiveness of the partnership.