Cardiff beefs up with comms director post

Cardiff Council has created a director of communications post as it prepares to boost the importance of its comms function and beef up its media team.

It has hired head-hunter KMC International to fill the vacancy as it attempts to reinforce its claim to be ‘Europe’s youngest city’ and build on its recent cultural and sporting initiatives.

The director of comms job is a newly created position that sees communications brought together from its present state of being fragmented across several council departments.

The post-holder will report to Cardiff Council chief executive Byron Davies, and will work closely with council leader Russell Goodway.

Communications staff have hitherto been located within the corporate support area, which covers work such as surveys and council research.

Since the council became a unitary authority, it has not had a standalone communications function, although comms staff numbers have grown in recent months from six to 18.

Qualities sought include brand experience, knowledge of reputation management, campaign creativity, political sensitivity and the ability to relate at senior management level with ‘confidence and toughness’.

The post-holder will also have to face issues concerning inequalities of wealth in the city, and pockets of unemployment, along with transport and social services issues.

The successful candidate will replace interim communications director Jim Crystie, who was hired in July but is not planning to apply for the permanent post.

He said: ‘There is a lot of commitment from councillors and officers for communications. All media, including national press and broadcasters, are on your doorstep.’

Key developments include the Millennium Stadium, a Millennium Arts Centre and a £700m sports village.

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