Part-time Communications Director

IRLE seeks an experienced Communications Director to develop and oversee a comprehensive, strategic and multidisciplinary communications program to raise the profile of IRLE as a hub for research and intellectual engagement addressing all issues of working life, employment policy, and labor dynamics.

The Communications Director will be responsible for developing strategies for publicizing IRLE’s mission and activities to a range of audiences on- and off-campus, including faculty, students, funders, policymakers, and the media. S/he will be responsible for ensuring that all IRLE materials are of high quality and reflect the Institute’s mission and activities, and are targeted to appropriate audiences.

This position reports to IRLE’s Associate Director and works closely with a Communications Specialist and events manager, as well as with key staff in IRLE’s Centers. S/he will have indirect and direct supervisory responsibilities.


Strategic Communications Planning

  • Works with the Associate Director and Faculty Director to develop comprehensive long and short-term strategic communications plans for the Institute and its centers, including goals, measures of success, action items, and resources.
  • Identifies specific communications needs and develops methods for evaluating the effectiveness of the Institute’s communications.
  • Identifies approaches to expanding the audience and new communication tools for IRLE’s work.
  • Works with Institute leadership to build an institutional identity that represents IRLE’s mission and activities to key stakeholders and audiences.

General Communications Oversight

  • Develops and oversees a complex comprehensive communications program, including written, visual, and electronic communications for the IRLE and its centers. Sample projects include media release plan for new research publications, a newsletter, event publicity, and developing video and blog features.
  • Provides oversight and improves effectiveness of IRLE’s web and social media presence and email communications, in coordination with relevant IRLE staff.
  • Oversees the production of printed materials, such as annual reports and brochures, coordinating with external consultants as needed.
  • Advises Institute staff about effective communications practices and techniques, and ensures that consistent messaging is communicated to key audiences and partners.

Media Relations

  • Oversees the development and maintenance of targeted media relationships relating to IRLE’s research areas, provides oversight to Communications Specialist on press releases and other media outreach.
  • As assigned, handles breaking news situations, including developing strategies for dealing with sensitive and/or controversial issues.

Communications Leadership and Training

  • Occasionally called upon to act as spokesperson for the IRLE, and to represent IRLE to campus, professional and community organizations.
  • Provides communications trainings to institute staff.
  • Other responsibilities as assigned.

Required Qualifications

  • Advanced knowledge and understanding of all aspects of communications, including strategic planning for various media venues, technical aspects and requirements of various venues, and most appropriate and effective applications.
  • Experience creating, developing, and implementing long and short term strategic communication plans.
  • Experience directing and working with organizational leadership on all aspects of communications, ranging from developing effective communication strategies to appropriately responding to inquiries regarding sensitive or complex issues or information.
  • Advanced skill in creating clear and effective communications materials, including websites, promotional materials, newsletters, and press releases.
  • Strong ability to creatively identify newsworthy stories and events.
  • Experience raising the profile of an organization to a range of stakeholder audiences.
  • Familiarity with graphic design applications and web-based technologies (Adobe products, wordpress, and contact management systems) to effectively direct staff who perform technical work.
  • Excellent written, verbal, interpersonal communications, active listening and political acumen skills.
  • Excellent analytical and critical thinking, project management, and problem recognition, avoidance, and resolution skills.
  • Experience supervising the work of communications, events, or other staff.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Familiarity with academic research settings
  • Familiarity with UC Berkeley communications protocols
  • Knowledge of and interest in IRLE’s research areas (e.g. labor markets, unions, wages, the safety net, tax policy)

Salary & Benefits

This appointment is for one year at 50%, the appointment may be extended depending on funding. The salary range for this position is $85,000 – $125,000 (full time rate), depending on experience. Preferred start date is November 2017.

From December 1 to April 15 the incumbent may increase their appointment to 100% to cover the parental leave of IRLE’s Communications Specialist. Note that staff holding 50% appointments qualify for University benefits.

For information on the comprehensive benefits package offered by the University visit:

How to Apply

Go to and search for job 24009

Please submit your cover letter and resume as a single attachment when applying.

The first review date for this job is: October 27, 2017; applications will be reviewed until the position is filled.

About Berkeley

The University of California, Berkeley, is one of the world’s most iconic teaching and research institutions. Since 1868, Berkeley has fueled a perpetual renaissance, generating unparalleled intellectual, economic and social value in California, the United States and the world. Berkeley’s culture of openness, freedom and acceptance—academic and artistic, political and cultural—make it a very special place for students, faculty and staff.

Berkeley is committed to hiring and developing staff who want to work in a high performing culture that supports the outstanding work of our faculty and students. In deciding whether to apply for a staff position at Berkeley, candidates are strongly encouraged to consider the alignment of the Berkeley Workplace Culture with their potential for success at

Departmental Overview

The Institute for Research on Labor and Employment’s (IRLE) mission is to conduct and support research on labor and employment at UC Berkeley. Our goal is to bridge the gap between academic research and the policy world. To achieve this goal, IRLE supports policy-relevant and policy engaged research; disseminates the latest research from our centers, affiliated faculty, and scholars to a wide audience of policymakers, academics and the public; and educates California’s labor, business, and community leaders.

IRLE is a research unit at the University of California, Berkeley. We stand apart from individual academic departments under the Vice Chancellor for Research and support research on the entire range of labor and employment issues across campus.