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Communications Specialist FAO

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Organizational Setting

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger and malnutrition.  The main aim of the FAO country offices, which are headed by an FAO Representative, is to assist governments to develop policies, programmes and projects to achieve food security and to reduce hunger and malnutrition, to help develop the agricultural, fisheries and forestry sectors, and to use their environmental and natural resources in a sustainable manner.

Reporting Lines

The Communications Specialist will coordinate the work of the communications unit at FAO Zambia and work under the overall supervision of the FAO Representative to Zambia, and direct engagement with the Representation Management and Sub-Programmes and functional collaboration with the Regional and HQ communication teams to align activities, plans and strategies. The incumbent will supervise and allocate tasks to the staff in the unit and oversee communication activities in the Representation.

Technical Focus

The Communications Specialist will be required to generate content from technical work, reports and projects to enhance the visibility of FAO’s work to the Zambian public and beyond.  The incumbent will need to ensure coherence with FAO’s corporate communication policy and operational guidelines for all communication and information outputs. Furthermore, the incumbent will be required to provide technical advice in the design and implementation of communication and outreach products and ensure that the FAO brand is well represented.

Tasks and responsibilities

  • Communication Strategy: Develop, implement, and track impact of country and programme specific communication strategies in consultation with technical teams.
  • Communication Visibility Materials: Coordinate, produce and disseminate communication and advocacy materials, including brochures, project briefs, policy briefs, posters, and other visibility products in close coordination with focal points in RAF and in observance of corporate and branding guidelines. Publicize milestones through message packaging for various channels and diverse audiences.
  • Media Relations and Management: Develop a media database and partnerships with media organizations and journalists; interact and pitch stories/op-eds of interest; organize media field visits and sensitization of reporters and editors. Coordinate and collaborate with programme teams on media engagement during events and missions and collect visual and audio footage for archiving. Draft and disseminate press releases and talking points; organize press conferences; prepare media kits; provide information to querying journalists; keep track of FAO mentions/media coverage.
  • Corporate/Project Events: Manage flagship FAO events (e.g., World Food Day, and other international observances related to FAO’s mandate, project launches, workshops, etc.); update FAOZM website  and coordinate developing of monthly bulletins.  Coordinate with programme teams while organising high-level and high-visibility events; Coordinate and manage media engagement for high profile events. Ensure FAO brand visibility during events.
  • Internal Communication: Sensitize FAO staff on importance of communication for publicity of FAO activities to different audiences including but not limited to branding, presentation skills, farmer engagement/extension strategies.
  • Technical/Science Communication: Synthesize and repackage technical reports, information and events for the public and policy makers.
  • Support Country Communication efforts: Offer support to communication needs of various government Ministries and agencies that collectively implement FAO projects and programs, for example policy briefs development, Behaviour Change Communications (BCC), development and implementation of Communication Strategies, mass media engagement, risk and crisis communication, advocacy among others.
  • Knowledge Management: Take lead in the knowledge management by transformation of tacit knowledge resources into explicit knowledge resources for seamless continuation of FAO programs. Document and share lessons learned, nurture Communities of Practice within the FAO national community for information sharing and adaption of innovative approaches to field challenges
  • Digital Content Creation and Management: Coordinate and manage content production for traditional and digital media channels in compliance with corporate policies. Increase FAO Zambia’s social media engagement. Coordinate production of stories from the field/web stories  such as documentaries and photo essays; this includes drafting TORs for production team, writing script, conducting interviews, managing vendors, arranging logistics, etc.
  • Social Media Communication: Manage FAO Zambia’s Twitter account to ensure good visibility and publicity of activities.
  • Donor Relations: Keep donors abreast of the impact of the projects they have funded, through success stories (photo, video, text); Donor Visibility during traditional and digital media engagement.
  • Resource Mobilisation: Actively play a role resource mobilisation through the development of the resource strategy, developing external relationships for collaboration opportunities, resource mobilisation campaigns and project proposal development among others.
  • UN Communication Group: Participate and represent FAO in inter-agency communication meetings (UN Communication Group) and ensure FAO representation and participation in UN events.
  • Emergency Communications: Coordinate and manage FAO country emergency communications, in collaboration with RAF and OCC/HQ. Gather information from project teams to respond to media queries and update talking points; schedule strategic media interviews for spokes persons; share status updates on digital platforms; coordinate documentation and disseminate digital content from the field on impact of emergency response.
  • Perform any other allied task as given by management as needed.


Minimum Requirements

  • A minimum university degree in Information Studies, Social Sciences, Business Administration, or fields related to the mandate of FAO.
  • 3 years + work experience part of which should be in Project, Operational or Senior Management role.
  • Proven skills in Information management, Communications, undertaking research and surveys, preparing research and management reports using Microsoft word and PowerPoint,
  • Proven experience and knowledge  in website development and maintenance;  graphic design, designing communication materials, infographics and technical implementation of user interfaces in a web-based environment. Data analysis including statistical elaborations with Excel.
  • Candidates should provide a portfolio containing examples of their achievements in similar assignments.
  • Experience in working with media teams.
  • Working knowledge of English.
  • National of Zambia

FAO Core Competencies

  • Results Focus
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Building Effective Relationships
  • Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Technical/Functional Skills

  • Work experience in more than one location or area of work.
  • Capacity to work effectively as part of a multi-disciplinary team.
  • Demonstrated ability to synthesize complex information and present ideas and recommendations in a clear and understandable manner.
  • Ability to work independently, strong analytical skills and problem-solving
  • Computer literacy with Word, PowerPoint and basic spreadsheets (Excel).
  • Excellent communication (both written and oral) and presentation skills.


  • FAO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing)
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered. If you need help please contact:
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be accepted
  • Only language proficiency certificates from UN accredited external providers and/or FAO language official examinations (LPE, ILE, LRT) will be accepted as proof of the level of knowledge of languages indicated in the online applications
  • For additional employment opportunities visit the FAO employment website:

FAO seeks gender, geographical and linguistic diversity in its staff and international consultants in order to best serve FAO Members in all regions.″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Submit your CV and Application on Company Website : Click Here

Closing Date : 20th June, 2021.

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