Head of Transformation Communications and Engagement

Job Description

Head of Transformation Communications and Engagement


Date: 4 Aug 2023

Location: London, UKM, GB

Company: British Council

We support peace and prosperity by building connections, understanding and trust between people in the UK and countries worldwide.

We work directly with individuals to help them gain the skills, confidence and connections to transform their lives and shape a better world in partnership with the UK. We support them to build networks and explore creative ideas, to learn English, to get a high-quality education and to gain internationally recognised qualifications.

Working with people in over 200 countries and territories, we are on the ground in more than 100 countries. In 2021–22 we reached 650 million people.

Role Purpose

Corporate Communications leads the global strategy, policies, and professional guidance for internal and change communications, media and PR, crisis communications, stakeholder engagement, events, and digital communications. They sit within the Deputy Chief Executive Officer’s area, together with teams that develop and communicate the British Council’s strategy, policies, and international operations.

The Transformation function sits within the Chief Operating Officers area and leads on Transformation strategy, and execution. The change function sits within the People Directorate and is responsible for the design and delivery of change, communication, and engagement activities. This role needs to work closely with the Heads of Change and all communication teams, to lead and tactically deliver communication and engagement activity across Transformation, ensuring alignment and cohesion for relevant stakeholders
To lead, develop and implement the British Council’s overall Transformation Communications and Engagement Strategy and Plan, ensuring clear strategic direction and alignment with the transformation strategy and organisational strategy.
This role will be the overall global strategic lead for all transformation communications, engagement and change communications best practice including responsibility for identifying and mitigating potentially significant communication and engagement risks at an organisational and, workstream level.

Main opportunities and challenges for this role:

Strategy and Planning
 Lead, develop and deliver a cohesive Transformation communication and engagement strategy and plans aligned with external best practice and the change management framework. This should support delivery of the programme’s objectives, the British Council’s strategic priorities and enhance programme performance.
 Develop, evaluate, and report on communication KPIs and provide insight relating to transformation, to improve internal communication and engagement effectiveness - demonstrating impact on engagement, employee behaviour and sentiment.
 Ensure that internal and external communication risks and issues are effectively identified, managed, and mitigated.

Consultancy, analysis & problem-solving
 Coach Transformation leadership to increase their skills in effective communication leadership, to increase trust in leadership and confidence in the transformation programme.

Internal customer focus
 Work closely with the Heads of Change and all communication teams, to lead and tactically deliver communication and engagement activity across Transformation, ensuring alignment and cohesion for relevant stakeholders.
 Lead, design and establish the communication and engagement approach and cadence for key stakeholders, ensuring alignment and integration across workstreams – these include but are not limited to Regional and Country Directors; HR Directors; and Regional Communications.
 Ensures that concerns and issues facing internal customers are fully understood at a senior level, acknowledging wider organisational, divisional, and geographical contexts are factored in accordingly.
 Consult closely with programme teams and other stakeholders to understand business needs and ensure the necessary resources and plans are in place so that the strategic communications advice they provide meets those demands.

Service improvement
 Leads the design, development, review and continuous improvement of Transformation communications and engagement, including digital, creative, editorial and events, providing oversight and governance for regional communications.
 Monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of the transformation communications strategy and individual workstream plans (all approaches, techniques, and activities), and leads the identification and management of improvements and actions including the reporting systems and approaches across transformation communications (this includes quality assurance of workstream messaging)

Relationship & stakeholder management
 Proactively builds and maintains collaborative relationships with leaders across the organisation and builds a network of internal sponsors and supporters to help influence decision-making, as well as external networks to access to bring in best practice as appropriate


Role specific knowledge and experience:
 Experience of building and leading internal communications within a large, complex, global organisation with a matrix structure
 Significant experience of building and leading strategic change communications for complex, high-profile, major organisational transformation
 Deep understanding of internal and change communications and employee engagement strategies, and wider employee experience strategy
 Experience in managing and mitigating internal and external communication risks
 Experience in providing strategic communications advice and coaching senior executives, and in providing thought leadership in change communications
 Experience of planning and leading communications insight and analysis

What you will receive in return
  • 32 days annual leave plus statutory public holidays and half day privilege Christmas leave
  • Non-contractual discretionary annual performance bonus
  • Extensive and generous family friendly benefits
  • Extensive range of voluntary benefit options
  • Outstanding defined benefit career average Civil Service Pension Scheme which includes life cover and pensions for eligible dependants, e.g., Spouse, civil partner, partner, dependent children

Further Information
Pay Band – 9
Contract Type – 12 month Fixed term contract
Location – London Manchester Edinburgh Cardiff Belfast
Requirements –Candidates must have the pre-existing (permanent) right to work in location. Mobility / relocation / visa sponsoring support will not be provided.
Closing Date – 20th August 2023 at 11.59 UK time

A connected and trusted UK in a more connected and trusted world.

Equality , Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Statement

The British Council is committed to policies and practices of equality, diversity and inclusion across everything we do. We support all staff to make sure their behaviour is consistent with this commitment. We want to address under representation and encourage applicants from under-represented groups, in particular, but not exclusively, on grounds of ethnicity and disability. All disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria are guaranteed an interview and we have Disability Confident Employer Status. We welcome discussions about specific requirements or adjustments to enable participation and engagement in our work and activities.

The British Council is committed to safeguarding children, young people and adults who we work with.

We believe that all children and adults everywhere in the world deserve to live in safe environments and have the right to be protected from all forms of abuse, maltreatment and exploitation as set out in article 19, UNCRC (United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) 1989.

Appointment to positions where there is direct involvement with vulnerable groups will be dependent on thorough checks being completed; these will include qualification checks, reference checks, identity & criminal record checks in line with legal requirements and with the British Council’s Safeguarding policies for Adults and Children.

If you have any problems with your application please email [email protected]

Please note: Applications to this role can only be considered when made through the Apply section of our careers website. Our ‘ASK HR’ email is only to be used in case of a technical issue encountered when applying through the careers website. Emails with supporting statements and CV/Resumes sent to this email address will not be reviewed and will be deleted.


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