Media & comms manager at the National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NABIS)
Starting salary/salary band for the job?
Band D police staff – starting salary £27,519. I earn enough to keep me in gluten free cake!
What qualifications do you need?
Degree-level education and experience of a comms environment. I originally trained as a newspaper journalist (NCTJ) and worked on a local paper in Sussex before moving to the West Midlands Police press office.
After several busy years I joined West Mercia Police and became media relations manager. I have been with NABIS since March 2014.
What level of experience do you need?
Experience of handling media enquiries and speaking to police officers of all ranks, as well as liaising with partner agencies, such as the Home Office and lawful shooting groups.
I write press releases, set up media events, organise documentary filming, update the NABIS website and Twitter account; as well as carry out internal staff comms and media monitoring.
Is previous experience in a public sector comms role necessary/useful?
Yes it is definitely useful; the police use lots of abbreviations and acronyms. It’s also important to know the latest legislation, be able to prioritise your workload and keep up to date with national issues and what police forces are doing.
What are the main day-to-day challenges?
Being a Jack of all trades and juggling different projects. NABIS is a small national organisation and we don’t have a comms team – it is just me and officially I only work 20 hours a week.
What is the best part of the job?
Firearms and the science of ballistics is such a specialist area and there is always more to learn. It is great to know that our forensic experts help tackle gun crime and bring offenders to justice.
What is the most unusual fact you know as a result of this job?
That forensics for firearms is like ballistic fingerprints and each firearm leaves unique markings on the bullet. And I got to meet Jeremy Kyle!
If you get an interview, do say?
I promise to work hard and make sure more people know all about the amazing work NABIS experts carry out to fight gun crime.
If you get an interview, don’t say?
Ballistics and an HQ office in Birmingham? I bet it’s just like an episode of Peaky Blinders working there, will I get my own gun?
If you’re good at this job you might also be well-suited to?
Herding cats! My ideal job would involve a beach-front location (see pic) – maybe PA to Hugh Jackman.