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Company Name:
Harvard University
Approximate Salary:

Cambridge, Massachusetts
United States
Position type:
Experience level:
Education level:

Managing Creative Director, Communications Creative Services

Harvard University

Managing Creative Director, Communications Creative Services
Alumni Affairs and Development

Duties & Responsibilities
  • Upholds the brand standards.
  • Drives creative strategy to clarify goals and objectives and provides creative vision.
  • Conceptualizes and pitches innovate creative ideas and executions that demonstrate the power of design via different mediums/platforms.
  • Hires and onboards new staff.
  • Provides consistent feedback and conducts performance reviews.
  • Manages own portfolio of print and digital design projects.
  • Partners with project managers and other team members and stakeholders to deliver creative materials that are on schedule and on budget, based on the guidelines defined in the project/creative brief to ensure flawless and seamless execution.
  • Assigns work to team members, oversees execution of design and multimedia efforts, and ensures team meets deadlines. Provides a critical eye to the team's work, ensuring both high quality and alignment with strategic business goals. Provides strong conceptual solutions that meet partner needs.
  • Manages multiple projects with shifting priorities, consistently meets deadlines, and champions projects from concept to completion within a fast-paced environment.
  • Seeks inspiration beyond higher education with a vision for industry innovation and shares knowledge with colleagues regarding emerging trends in design, multimedia, and branding. Keeps up to date on current professional activities (software and technology training, graphic design seminars, etc.).
  • Advances the strategic and design thinking within the department. Creates, maintains, and implements a thorough and consistent visual style guide and overall aesthetic across print, digital, and social channels.
  • Hires and directs outside vendors as appropriate on projects, including freelancers, directors, editors, and other production staff. Serves in an advisory role to creative partner agencies and vendors to ensure that all creative deliverables are on brand and of high quality.
  • Presents and sells work through to the partners. Articulates rationale, builds consensus, manages challenges, and presents with enthusiasm.
  • Adapts to changing priorities and business needs.
  • Works collaboratively with team members and stakeholders regarding approach and art direction to deliver strategic and emotionally compelling design.
  • Ensures all communications department procedures are followed.
  • Maintains a high level of understanding of audience, business priorities, desired outcomes, and messaging for Harvard generally and AA&D in particular.
  • Keeps an open attitude to constructive feedback and refinement as part of the collaborative effort.
  • Communicates regularly with colleagues outside own team and department regarding project updates.
  • Uses Workfront project management software regularly to track own projects and monitor work of team.
  • Fields other duties as assigned.
  • Possibly works occasional nights and weekends as needed.

Basic Qualifications
  • Graduate from an accredited institution with a BA degree, with a major in Graphic Design or Graphic Communication.
  • Minimum of 8 years of experience in graphic arts, digital/interactive design, and project management in a fast-paced deadline-driven environment required, with a proven track record of supervisory experience.
  • Knowledge of InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, web design, CSS, HTML, and video editing software required.
  • Thorough knowledge of the Macintosh system with the ability to troubleshoot required.
  • Candidates will be required to submit a portfolio with their application that includes print and digital work.

Additional Qualifications
  • Experience managing integrated marketing projects.
  • Studio/agency experience preferred.
  • Strong conceptual and problem-solving skills regarding both online and offline communication solutions (branding, messaging, marketing, design, typography, photography, animation, video, audio, and programming).
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • Outstanding leadership and interpersonal skills.
  • Must be detail-oriented and possess strong organizational skills.
  • Performs and completes assignments on time while multitasking.
  • Superior customer service and client relations skills.
  • Experience with website usability and design, mobile design, and email design best practices preferred.
  • A track record for solving problems and completing projects on-time and on-budget.
  • Knowledge of current design industry best practices and trends.
  • Proven ability to create original illustrations and other design assets.
  • Positive attitude, open to constructive feedback, and a great team player.
  • Has strong leadership and mediation skills, and enjoys mentoring and fostering growth of junior team members.
  • Can discern individual team members' abilities and match the right people with the right projects.
  • A great collaborator with people from different creative disciplines and teams.
  • Understanding of higher education, development, and/or alumni affairs is a plus.
  • Possibly works occasional nights and weekends as needed

Additional Information
As a key member of the Communications Creative Services group within Alumni Affairs and Development (AA&D), the Managing Creative Director is responsible for leading and mentoring the creative team of 3-5 staff who collaborate with colleagues across AA&D to execute highly crafted creative deliverables in support of our partners in the Harvard Alumni Association, University Development Office, and Faculty of Arts and Sciences Development.
As an experienced team leader, the Managing Creative Director plays a central role in developing creative strategic solutions that align with our partners' goals and objectives-drawing upon a firm understanding of graphic design, videography, photography, and content, to deliver communications that articulate a consistent voice and vision across a variety of creative media, both print and digital.
The Managing Creative Director is both a manager and a doer-overseeing and contributing to the development, execution, and delivery of a variety of communications materials for alumni and donor audiences, including email, websites, custom donor gifts, marketing materials, videos and slideshows, and print publications. The team also does work in support of internal activities within AA&D, such as staff conferences and training programs. The team collaborates closely with other departments within AA&D, other Schools, and the Harvard University Public Affairs Office.
This position requires the ability to lead and participate in a collaborative creative process, as well as to manage a high volume of work while navigating shifting priorities of various partners in a large and complex organization. The Managing Creative Director must bring a creative mindset and a flexible, solutions-oriented approach-understanding business traditions, desired outcomes, and challenges to ensure the team produces consistently superior work. An ability to effectively communicate and present creative concepts to a variety of stakeholders is crucial, as is the capacity to foster an environment rooted in accountability, creativity, and collaboration.
Familiarity with higher education and development is helpful but not required.

Please include a cover letter with your application.

Skills testing may be a component of the interview process for this position.

The department of Alumni Affairs and Development at Harvard University is committed to diversity. We welcome applicants who bring varied experience, thought, and practice to the department's mission to maintain and enhance an engaged community of alumni and friends worldwide and to lead the University's fundraising efforts.

Harvard University Benefits Package
Vacation/Sick/Personal/Holidays: Harvard offers 3 (union roles) - 4 (exempt) weeks paid vacation, a paid holiday break between Christmas and New Year's Day, 12 paid sick days, 11.5 paid holidays, and 3 paid personal days each year.
Medical/Dental/Vision Benefit: Harvard offers a variety of excellent medical, dental, and vision plans which all begin on the first day of employment.
Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with full vesting after 3 years of service.
Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive tuition assistance program, $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and discounted study options through participating Harvard Graduate Schools.
Transportation: Harvard offers a 50% discounted MBTA pass as well as parking options to assist employees in their daily commute to campus.
Wellness Options: Harvard offers programs and classes at little or no cost, including stress management, massages, nutrition, meditation, and complimentary health services. There are also fee-based athletic facility memberships available at various locations around the university for employees.

Job Function
Alumni Affairs and Development, Communications

Sub Unit

USA - MA - Cambridge

Alumni Affairs and Development - Communications Creative Services

Time Status

00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Salary Grade

Pre-Employment Screening
Education, Identity

EEO Statement
We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by law.