Manager, Communications

Back to Blogs Posted: August 8, 2023
Michael Smith Health Research BC
August 8, 2023
1285 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Job Type
Level of Experience
Established professional
Job Location
Application Deadline
Until Filled
Membership #


About Michael Smith Health Research BC

Michael Smith Health Research BC, funded by the Government of British Columbia, is BC’s health research agency. We strengthen the province’s health research system by supporting the people, institutions and activities that generate and use research-based knowledge to promote, restore and maintain the health of British Columbians. Our ambition is to inspire and connect curious, creative and passionate minds to drive discovery and innovation in health research. And we’re driven by the belief that health-related decision making should be informed by high quality research produced in an equitable, diverse and inclusive research system.

We are a team of dedicated professionals who care deeply about each other and our work. We believe in embracing diversity as a strength and core value, creating spaces that are inclusive of all peoples, and are grounded in our ongoing commitment to reconciliation and respect for Indigenous self-determination. We value and support a diverse workforce, reflective of different backgrounds, skillsets, perspectives and life experiences.

Our benefits package includes a pension plan, generous dental and health insurance and a wellness allowance; our professional development policy supports learning and growth.

We have a hybrid work model. When you are in the office, our beautiful space offers views of False Creek, an outdoor patio (think summer BBQs!) and a fitness centre, and it’s walking distance to restaurants and other amenities. Our social committee, Team Good Times, organizes events throughout the year.

If you are looking for meaningful work in a supportive environment, and you are inspired by making a difference in BC’s exceptional health research community, read on to learn more.

Position Summary

Health Research BC is a relatively small organization. We take a team-based approach to achieving success across all communications disciplines. Managers are expected to provide leadership and guidance to multiple areas of practice and this role will provide oversight to both digital and internal communications. The Manager, Communications will develop, lead, and implement digital communications initiatives, internal communications and brand storytelling to position Michael Smith Health Research BC as a leader in BC’s life sciences sector.

The Manager leads digital strategy and graphic design bringing unique visual concepts to complex scientific information. Through their keen eye and creative style, they will elevate communications campaigns to a higher level and stand out with audiences within the life sciences sector. The Manager will also create a strategic and timely internal communications plan building and advancing current activities. Both responsibilities rely on excellent writing and the ability to translate organizational strategy and priorities into strong communications.

To achieve organizational success the manager provides coaching and mentoring to two direct reports, helping them accomplish strategic goals and objectives within their portfolio of work and supporting their professional development. The Manager will create a team-based approach to the provision of digital and internal communications ensuring all team members are skilled and efficient in advancing actions. They will work closely with all members of the communications team leading and supporting marketing and communications efforts, department plans and processes.

Key Responsibilities

Digital Communications

  • Serves as the strategist and product manager for all Health Research BC digital channels (internal and external)
  • In collaboration with the Director, Communications, supports shared content development by creating, implementing, and leading collaborative and effective digital governance plans and content strategies
  • Strategically assesses the needs of the organization to develop campaigns and materials for digital channels (website, newsletter, social media), and proactively investigate, recommend, and lead the development, implementation, and evaluation of new mediums (such as podcasts and videos) to engage and expand target audiences
  • Responsible for all campaign metrics leveraging Google Analytics and various social platforms to build business insights. Co-develops Key Performance Indicators with colleagues to measure campaign ROIs
  • Provides strategic direction and oversight for email campaigns and list management (Mailchimp)
  • Leads the centralization of processes, tools, and resources to enhance efficiencies and consistencies and increase collaboration across the organization
  • Stays at the forefront of emerging technology and current digital trends to recommend enhancements or experiments with new digital tools

Internal Communications

  • Serves as the strategist and manager for all Health Research BC internal communications channels (digital and other)
  • In collaboration with the Director, Communications, supports internal portfolios of work by creating, implementing, and leading collaborative and timely internal communications
  • Provides strategic internal communications advice to leaders and cross-functional teams and develops high-priority internal messaging for the CEO (e.g., talking points, written messages)
  • Provides strategic oversight in the development of content strategies and facilitates ongoing management of internal communications channels and tactics

Graphic Design

  • Leads the development of organization-wide communications collateral and tools including style guides and templates to enhance brand awareness and consistency
  • Leads all brand management activities and provides leadership to ensure all staff follow best practices and adhere to brand guidelines
  • In collaboration with Manager, Communications, provides graphic design expertise and direction in the development of communications campaigns and tactics aligned with organization goals and objectives


  • Manages and coaches’ direct reports; includes recruiting, setting direction, mentoring and supporting professional development, and assessing performance
  • Provides expertise and insight in the development of departmental strategic plans, working closely with all members of the communications and external relations team
  • Translates strategy and drives success in engagement both digitally and with employees
  • Ensures equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and the principles of Indigenous reconciliation are represented in all strategies, campaigns, and materials


  • Five years’ experience in a senior communications role with experience in digital platforms (including metrics). A thorough understanding of the digital media landscape is required
  • Experience providing strategic oversight and direction of multi-channel internal communications
  • Two years of supervisory or management experience with direct reports
  • Undergraduate degree in marketing, communications, journalism, digital media or related field
  • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, with a demonstrated ability to write in a variety of styles for a range of audiences. Superior editing and proofreading skills, with an impeccable eye for detail and accuracy
  • An aptitude for creativity and design applied to communications activities is required
  • Demonstrated experience in developing effective communications plans, developing ROI metrics and supplying analytics measurement of communication efforts
  • Demonstrated expertise with digital communications tools including (but not limited to) Adobe Creative Suite, Google Analytics, social media monitoring (Sprout Social), MS Office 365
  • Advanced expertise in website management, including advanced editing skills using a content management system, content strategy, usability and information architecture, and search engine optimization skills. Advanced understanding of HTML and WordPress
  • Demonstrated collaborative spirit with experience in building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders across various levels and organizations, and ability to work in a collaborative manner with diverse groups in a complex environment
  • Work experience in a research, not-for-profit or health care setting an asset
  • Track record of staying on top of best practices and updating skills through professional development
  • Strong project management skills with the ability to deliver content accurately and on time during periods of high workload
  • Working knowledge of the health research system in BC
  • Ability to exercise tact and discretion when handling sensitive and/or confidential matters
  • Committed to equity, diversity and inclusion and Indigenous reconciliation; training and/or experience in equity, diversity, and inclusion and/or Indigenous cultural safety an asset

How to Apply 

If this sounds like you and you would like to play a role in maximizing the impact of health research in BC, please submit your resume and cover letter online at  We thank everyone for their interest, however, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

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