Franklin County Manager’s Office is currently recruiting for the position of a Public Information Officer/Grants Administrator. An employee in this classification performs responsible, professional public relations work coordinating the information flow to the public, employees, and other units of governments on a broad range of County programs, activities and services, and preparing informational materials for release to and maintaining effective relations with the news media and the general public. Performs professional public relations work by gathering and disseminating timely and accurate information related to County government functions and events. The position works closely with and performs a coordinative role with the media, civic organizations, County government staff, and officials in the accurate dissemination of information. Work includes providing information through various mediums including press releases, taking photographs, updating the web site, and social media. This position works to identify and manage grant opportunities available to the County which may include assisting in the review or editing of grant documents. Tact and sound judgment must be applied in performing work as the position is expected to disseminate potentially sensitive and critical information in unbiased fashion, and within the laws, statutes, and policies dictated by providing information in a government setting. Work requires knowledge of journalism and significant writing skills, as well as use of office and media technology, and work requires coordination, organization, and research skills. This employee also manages the county website and social media outlets. Work is performed under the general supervision of the County Manager and is reviewed through observation of results obtained, conferences, and periodic reports or evaluations.
Duties and Responsibilities:
- Prepares and distributes public news releases and announcements to promote various activities and people to include researching events; writing, copying, editing, and preparing for publication of informational materials; writing and producing video and audio announcements.
- Assists with outreach efforts to enhance agency visibility and accessibility; responds to public inquiries.
- Researches and writes articles for newsletters and/or other publications; furnishes appropriate photographs.
- Recommends media outlets for placing paid ads.
- Recommends and administers grants as assigned.
- Assists with review, writing and editing of grants as needed.
- Coordinates, tracks, and reports grant activity to the County Manger.
- Performs other duties of a similar nature or level.
- Communicates County services to targeted audiences and provides quality control for unified, consistent, and favorable messages through every level of the organization regarding the core business of Franklin County government and its commitment to public service.
- Increases citizen awareness and positively promotes programs, events, and services of departments using a variety of methods.
- Coordinates media relations to create positive images of the services and results of County programs by cultivating and conducting media tours and providing internal training for media relations.
- Researches and collects information used to produce news releases and other high-quality communication and marketing products; responding to citizen inquiries and requests for public information; and organizing news conferences, special forums, and events.
- Serves as the webmaster for the County. Manages the county website and social media outlets.
- Remains vigilant of emerging technologies, tools, and capabilities. Identifies viable solutions to meet various communication goals.
- Tracks, measures, and analyzes the performance of various social media, and makes appropriate changes.
- Identifies problems with the County’s internal and external communication systems, and then researches and recommends solutions.
- Develops key statements and talking points and assists subject matter experts in preparation for media interviews.
- Drafts, distributes, and follows up on all news releases or other communication and marketing products.
- Organizes news conferences, special forums, and events.
- Proactively manages media relations to create a positive image of the services and results of County programs. Cultivates and maintains open relationships with media representatives. Conducts media visits, and trains staff in media relations.
- Responds to media and citizen inquiries and various public information requests.
- May organize and direct special programs and activities for the County Manager and organization.
- Must be available for evening and weekend work as required.
- Performs work during emergency/disaster situations.
- Performs related duties as required.
$56,262 – $59,223
Bachelor’s Degree in Communications, Public Relations, or a related field and three years of professional level public relations experience; experience in grants administration or grant writing; or an equivalent combination of education and experience sufficient to successfully perform the essential duties of the job such as those listed above.
Must possess a valid North Carolina driver’s license upon hire. Certificate in Digital Communication or Public Information Officer training preferred. Willingness to complete subject matter training offered through the UNC School of Government or other entities.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
- Considerable knowledge of public information and principles and practices of public relations and media relations in a government setting; considerable knowledge of writing and editing; working knowledge of grant process and requirements.
- Considerable knowledge of computer systems including social media and other methods of information research and distribution; general knowledge of public relations theories, principles, practices, and techniques.
- Ability to effectively express ideas orally and in writing; ability to write public information reports and releases.
- Ability to gather and analyze facts on a variety of subject matter and to assemble and present concise reports and presentations.
- Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with County officials, news media, and the general public.
- Ability to communicate complex ideas effectively, orally and in writing.
- Ability to use common electronic devices efficiently and effectively.
- Ability to exercise analytical judgment in applying standards to a variety of work situations.
- Knowledge of customer service, public relations, and communications principles; structure of local, state, and federal governments; county departments and division structures; communication materials and applicable software applications; web site management and software applications; media contacts and operations; event planning; and news writing.
- Ability to use various office equipment; desktop publishing; organizing and prioritizing work assignments; operating a camera and video equipment; establishing and maintaining effective working relationships; and communication, interpersonal skills as applied to interaction with coworkers, supervisor, the general public, etc. sufficient to exchange or convey information and to receive work direction.
- Ability to use computers and applicable software; preparing publication materials; conducting interviews; graphic design; desktop publishing; coordinating events; providing customer service
- Ability to coordinate between multiple parties including engineers, department leaders, the public, and senior management to implement and execute grant activity.
- Ability to research, seek, and administer grants including basic eligibility determinations, reporting, and tracking.
- Ability to manage and execute competing priorities.
- Knowledge of the geographic layout of the County.