Handshake is the number one site for college students to find a job. Today, the Handshake community includes 17 million students and young alumni at over 1,000 colleges and universities — including 120+ minority-serving institutions. We connect up-and-coming talent across all 50 states with nearly 500,000 employers recruiting on Handshake — from every Fortune 500 company to thousands of small businesses, nonprofits, startups, and more. Handshake is democratizing opportunity and ensuring college students have the support they need to find a great job and kick-off a meaningful career regardless of where they go to school, what they choose as a major, and who they know.
We welcome all people. We celebrate diversity of all kinds and are committed to creating an inclusive culture built on a foundation of respect for all individuals. We seek to hire, develop and retain talented people from all backgrounds. Individuals from non-traditional backgrounds, historically marginalized or underrepresented groups strongly encouraged to apply.
If you are not sure that you’re 100% qualified, but up for the challenge - we want you to apply.
Handshake is hiring a Director of PR and Communications reporting to our COO and working closely with our CEO, VP of Corporate and Student Marketing, VP of Higher Education & Student Success, VP of Employer Marketing and other key spokespeople. In this role you will lead Handshake’s press efforts to be known as the leader in early career talent among employers, universities, and students. You will build and lead the function across all sides of our business working with a range of media outlets. This role will span opportunities from influencing HR decision-makers at top companies to university leaders, students, and investors. You will have the opportunity to build an in-house team, manage our external PR agency and drive a world-class program to ensure brand recognition and category leadership in career search and higher education.
- Develop the external communication strategy and strengthen authentic connections for a three-sided marketplace: students, universities, and employers
- Work with senior leaders to develop key narratives that elevate Handshake’s corporate brand and thought leadership
- Act as primary contact for top-tier press, giving us both broad and deep connections to business and consumer press
- Generate rich, engaging coverage of Handshake in areas that will make the biggest impact with our customers, particularly with senior recruiting leaders and senior education leaders, driving near-term business impact and long-term brand awareness.
- Build and execute an events and speaking strategy that puts Handshake leaders and spokespeople in the right position to build our brand with the right audiences
- Play a key role in driving and implementing a thought leadership agenda leveraging Handshake’s unique data and user stories to drive coverage and category leadership
- Coordinate and manage our executive team as spokespeople, including creating positioning, facilitating training, and producing executive communications ranging from ghostwriting to prep for broadcast
- Proactively report on outcomes, tactics, and program evolution to internal teams (executives as well as the company at large)
- 8-10+ years experience with proven track record in PR/corporate communications, including direct experience working with a variety of media, such as print, broadcast, digital
- Expert skills in communications, media relations, writing, message development and reputation management.
- Sound judgement and demonstrated ability to work with C-level executives on message development for key corporate priorities and timely issues
- Strong written and spoken communication skills. Ability to present projects clearly and collect and act on feedback from a broad group of stakeholders
- Ability to effectively manage high-pressure crisis situations, and work in ambiguity to define a clear path
- Ability to “see the bigger picture” and ensure you are leveraging Handshake’s resources to greatest impact
- Experience with analyzing and drawing conclusions from a broad set of data. Ability to work with data teams to turn insights into actionable recommendations
- Acute attention to detail and highly organized — able to successfully prioritize across multiple projects
- Ability to work creatively and demonstrate strong entrepreneurial skills in a startup environment
- Understanding of domestic and international media markets
- Excellent relationship-building skills
Bonus Areas of Expertise:
- An understanding of the higher education landscape and the complex web of factors at play in the college to career transition
- Stock: Ownership in a fast-growing company.
- 401k: We care about your ability to save for your future.
- Family Focus: Parental leave and flexibility for families.
- Time Off: Flexible vacation policy to encourage people to get out and see the world.
- Healthcare: World-class medical, dental, and vision policies.
- Goodies: Whatever hardware and software you need to get the job done.
- Team Fun: Regularly scheduled events, sports, game nights, book clubs.
- Learning: Learning & Development opportunities for you to grow your skills and career.
- Great team: Working with fun, hardworking, nice people who are committed to making a difference!
- ...And much more!
We value diversity of all kinds, and are committed to building a diverse and inclusive workplace where we learn from each other. We are an equal opportunity employer and welcome people of all different backgrounds, experiences, abilities and perspectives.