Head of Communications

This job has now expired
at Church House Guildford, 20 Alan Turing Road, Guildford
Competitive salary with generous pension provision

We are looking for a proven leader and skilled communications professional with a strong track record of taking overall editorial responsibility for our broad range of materials and channel management (from social media, through website, to new ways of communicating); reputation and brand management; and all aspects of media relationship management including crisis support.

We want someone who can both deliver, inspire and support their own small team, our leadership team, and the wider organisation through our parishes. But most of all we are looking for a colleague who shares our missional passion and heart to reach and serve communities in this place.

  • To lead on the development and implementation of a Communications and Information Management strategy agenda in line with the “Transforming Church, Transforming Lives” vision and mission of the Diocese of Guildford and specifically Goal 11.
  • To move our communication approach from a ‘broadcast’ mode towards more personalised audience and role tailored methods supported by a clear annual audience communications plan with the communications team acting as gatekeepers for audiences.
  • To lead the review and refresh of our website improving navigation and search tools, ensuring clear audience based sign-posting with curated content designed around user journeys (focused on priority topics and parish roles).
  • To take the overall lead for delivery of ‘Transforming Church, Transforming Lives’ goal 11 – helping to ensure that every parish and chaplaincy develops effective communications, promoting a church that is visible, attractive and accessible.
  • To develop, manage and deliver an annual comms plan for Church House that ensures a strong audience focus, parishes are well connected, that great stories are shared on the most appropriate platforms and that media and public relations are well managed.
  • Promote and provide guidance for good communications practice within parishes and to develop model resources and policies for use by parishes, chaplaincies and schools.
  • Develop key messages, lead on creating and maintaining appropriate and consistent language and terminology across all media, acting as a ‘brand guardian’ ensuring consistency across all internal and external communications.
  • Take the lead in encouraging employees to share knowledge and information, ensuring they are aware of the information management resources available to support their work, are appropriately trained and are using the systems efficiently and productively.
  • Act as the organisation’s Data Protection Officer by managing the organisation’s GDPR policies and any breaches, any necessary registration or notification with the Information Commissioner, leading on data protection audits as required.
  • Provide professional advice to senior colleagues on all communications matters, contributing to the formation of relevant policies.
  • Keep up to date on best practice within the charity sector generally and particularly changes to communications and codes of practice.
  • To provide out of hours communications contact where required.
  • To undertake any other ad hoc duties or tasks as required by the Diocesan Secretary.



  • Degree level or equivalent.
  • Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations or other relevant professional qualification (e.g. Dip CIPR, NCJT).



  • Previous experience of managing a Communications team in a professional environment such as financial or legal services or a charity/public sector organisation.
  • Previous experience of managing communications across a broad range of platforms and media to deliver a consistent brand and message to internal and external audiences.
  • Previous experience of leading organisational and cultural change in a people based organisation.


  • Working in a complex organisational structure.
  • Can quickly establish credibility and respect and build strong working relationships with department managers.
  • Demonstrable maturity, professionalism and gravitas.



  • Proven writing skills of a journalistic style, with clear and precise use of written English.
  • Ability to present opposing sides of an argument evenly.
  • Proactive approach, with ability to spot news stories prior to publication.
  • High standards of accuracy and rigorous proof reading ability.
  • Social media savvy, especially with Twitter, Facebook.
  • Effectively plans ahead to anticipate problems, plans for worst-case and best-case scenarios.
  • Makes sensible, intelligent decisions in difficult and deadline driven situations.
  • Results-focused - understands what is important to key stakeholders- is committed to achieving goals.
  • Tenacious approach to delivery, quality of output and organisation.


  • Able to problem solve both operational and strategic issues through a pragmatic and commercially sound approach.

The Diocese of Guildford covers the western two-thirds of Surrey and a significant area of north-east Hampshire. It also includes one parish in a London borough and one in rural West Sussex. In the north-east, it is largely suburban, but moving south and west, there are a number of distinct towns and numerous villages. The south-west has a more rural feel to it, but the north-east is largely suburban. The population is just over a million, rising in line with the national rate.

The Diocese has two archdeaconries, each with six deaneries, and a total of 161 parishes.A great deal of the work of the church is done at a local level by the parishes. The diocesan teams support and encourage the work of the parishes, and also work with wider networks to the mutual benefit of the church and society at local, regional and national levels.

Transforming Church, Transforming Lives is the vision of the Diocese of Guildford, launched in September 2016 following a long period of prayer and consultation. It envisages individuals and church communities open to the transforming work of God’s Spirit in their own lives, and so becoming agents of Christ’s transformation to the world around them.