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Communications and Engagement Manager

NHS AfC: Band 7

Main area
NHS AfC: Band 7
Full time - 37.5 hours per week
Job ref
Tavistock Centre
£45,780 - £51,393 per annum inclusive of HCAs
Salary period
Today at 23:59

The Trust

The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust is a specialist mental health trust with a focus on training and education alongside a full range of mental health services and psychological therapies for children and their families, young people and adults.

We are committed to improving mental health and emotional wellbeing, believing that high quality mental health services should be available for all who need them. We bring a distinctive contribution based on the importance we attach to social experience at all stages of people’s lives, and our focus on psychological and developmental approaches to the promotion of health and the prevention and treatment of mental ill health

We contribute to the pool of ideas through our own research and development, but are also committed to bringing together the best ideas of the time, old and new, from inside and out, together with the most gifted and able professionals in our fields of endeavour. We aim to share our ideas and practice through as many routes as possible.

As a Trust we aim constantly to be evolving in nature and form in relation to the environment in which we work, to ensure that our contribution remains relevant.

The team

We are a small, experienced and dynamic team working to destigmatise mental health and make the case for the value of relational and talking therapies. We are responsible for managing all aspects of the communications for the organisation, internal and external, across all channels. We work closely together on a portfolio basis, sharing our skills and expertise to teach and learn from one another. In this way we strive to be resilient and to allow every team member to grow in their role as they work to protect and enhance the reputation of the Trust.

The role

Are you an experienced and proactive communications manager, with extensive experience of working with the national press, planning and delivering communications and engagement projects and initiatives, and influencing public affairs, along with a strong desire to gain expertise in all other key comms skills? If so, we’d love to hear from you.

We are a specialist mental health NHS trust looking for someone to bring communications nous, creative flair and a keen eye for detail to the wide range of fascinating work that we do here. You will be responsible for the day-to-day management of a small but busy press office and play a key role in shaping our external national profile, as well as leading on multi-channel communications initiatives across the Trust.

You are a communications all-rounder and team player who is equally comfortable working under pressure with internal stakeholders and big national news outlets. A significant proportion of the Trust’s media work is related to our gender services, particularly the Gender Identity Development Service, and you will be expected to be able to handle contentious and sensitive issues with the impact on our patient group first in mind. You will also be expected to use your expertise to raise the profile of the other areas of the Trust, making the case for our distinctive approach in a strategic fashion to influence public policy.

You enjoy variety and are capable of working on comprehensive communications projects and campaigns. With a keen eye for detail and graphic design skills, you are also capable of writing high quality, targeted content, and bringing insight and analysis into how to make our communications really sing. Fluent across multiple channels, you will bring innovative ideas for how to promote the work of the Trust, raise our profile and tell our story.

The team works on an ‘agency’ basis, and you will be have a portfolio of services across the Trust for which you will own the communications. You will work with the leads of the service to deliver strategic communications as well as the day-to-day corporate support. Through this approach, our communications team members will share their expertise and gain experience in all areas – every role will include a variety of press, publications, internal comms, social media, copywriting, events delivery, as well as video and podcast creation as we grow as individuals and as a team.

Applicants must have previous experience in a similar role. Previous experience with the mental health sector or the wider NHS would be an advantage but more important is the ability to work proactively and flexibly to adapt to changing environments and work priorities.

Main duties of the post

  • Be the communications relationship manager for a portfolio of Trust services, working with the team, division and directorate leads to identify, design and deliver effective multi-channel communications for that area of work.
  • Raise the profile of the Tavistock and Portman through proactive communications and identifying opportunities.
  • Provide expert communications advice and practical support to major internal and external stakeholders.
  • Lead on the production of a broad range of written communications to the highest standard, using expertise and experience to identify the right channels and styles for specific audiences.
  • Lead on the development of communications plans for specific time-limited multi-channel projects and campaigns and manage their effective implementation and evaluation.
  • Be a confident media handler – including in reactive and/or crisis management and proactive media work. Whilst briefing and preparing staff and other stakeholders for national news, you will brief journalists and take a proactive role in shaping their stories.
  • Influence public policy in line with our mission and values and make the case for the Tavistock and Portman’s distinctive psycho-social and psychotherapeutic approach.
  • Raise public awareness about our mental health work and specialisms and to demystify psychoanalytic, psychodynamic, and systemic psychotherapeutic approaches.
  • Develop policy papers on key aspects of communications, including consultation, formal sign off through the appropriate channels and hosting and promotion.
  • Promote research and academic publications by Trust staff through stakeholder engagement plans
  • Commission blogs and compose and publish media statements and responses
  • Design and deliver public affairs activity and other key engagement events
  • Feed into the communications planner and ensure activity is largely aligned to Trust objectives.
  • Create and update analysis reports and make informed recommendations on the basis of the findings.
  • Post to our social media platforms, regularly and proactively update and produce content for them and contribute to the development of our digital channels.
  • Plan and execute regular communications and stakeholder engagement activities with internal and external stakeholders, including the Trust membership and Council of Governors.
  • Research, write, edit, proofread and co-ordinate core communications with content using Plain English and a consistent style.
  • Lead on the dissemination of internal and external communications using a multi-channel approach (intranet, website, social media, press notices, publications and via our Virtual Learning Environment, Moodle)
  • Have knowledge of content management systems including Wordpress and Wagtail, and be confident in producing content for and uploading content to the website.
  • Act as the communications lead on various internal projects.
  • Have extensive knowledge of InDesign to support the development of new and existing print collateral, using professionally designed templates where appropriate.
  • In collaboration with relevant services (patient and public involvement team, Trust Secretary, clinical services etc), plan and run events. These will include staff events, focus groups, and patient-focussed events, and the design and management of the Annual General Meeting.
  • Manage the development of key Trust publications, such as the Patient and Public Involvement annual report and the Quality Account.
  • Be prepared to work flexibly, sometimes working outside normal working hours during campaigns and events or at particularly busy times.
  • Manage a small budget for collateral production and events, such as the AGM.
  • Line manage the Communications Officer, plus potentially any interim agency staff for specific projects.

This job description is an indication of the type and range of tasks that are expected of the post holder. It can be reviewed and amended in consultation with the post holder to take account of changing organisational need.

Our commitment to equality, diversity, inclusion and anti-racism

The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion. In 2021 we formally announced our commitment to becoming an anti-racist organisation and are developing a new Race Equality Strategy to help us achieve this goal.

We would warmly welcome applications from underrepresented backgrounds and LGBTQI+ identities to better understand and meet the needs of our staff, service users and students.

We have a number of staff networks which provide peer support and safe spaces for staff who hold these and other identities.

Apprenticeships logoNo smoking policyPositive about disabled peopleInvestors in People: GoldMindful employer.  Being positive about mental health.Age positiveCare quality commission - GoodStonewall equality policy. Equality and justice for lesbians, gay men, bisexual and trans people.

Applicant requirements

The postholder will have access to vulnerable people in the course of their normal duties and as such this post is subject to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (Amendment) (England and Wales) Order 2020 and as such it will be necessary for a submission for Disclosure to be made to the Disclosure and Barring Service to check for any previous criminal convictions.

Documents to download

Apply online now

Further details / informal visits contact

Mike Smith
Job title
Head of Communications (Gender and Digital)
Email address
Telephone number
020 8938 2629