Communications Director Job Facts

Communications directors are responsible for overseeing public relations activities for a company. To find out information about earnings, educational requirements, and professional responsibilities, read on. Schools offering Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is a Communications Director?

Communications directors manage public relations staff in an organization, overseeing their efforts to cultivate a positive public image for their employer. Is is their job to strengthen communication with different groups that affect the company, such as vendors, the public, and the government, through strategies such as advertisement, press releases, speeches, and more. Many jobs may be delegated to staffers, such as hosting events. Successful communications directors are charismatic, creative, and level-headed with good leadership skills. In the table below, you can find out some more details about this career:

Degree Required Bachelor's
Education Field of Study Public Relations, Communications
Key Responsibilities Create a good public image for a company or organization, write press releases, design logos, manage a company's communication activities
Job Growth (2014-2024)* 7% (for all public relations and fundraising managers)
Median Salary (2015)* $104,140 (for all public relations and fundraising managers)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Are the Job Duties of a Communications Director?

A communications director may also be called a public relations manager. Your job revolves around coordinating, managing, and developing communications within a company and with external sources such as vendors, government agencies, and the public. Your main job is to create a good public image for your company through writing press releases, developing media kits, implementing communication plans, designing logos, advertising, managing the communication budget, and giving speeches.

You will be in charge of a public relations staff that helps you to run the public relations department. You'll assign, oversee, and manage the work of your staff. You may appoint people to handle specific public relations projects such as charity events, fundraisers, or marketing campaigns.

What Education is Required for This Career?

Most employers require a bachelor's degree in communications. Some programs may offer a concentration in public relations. In a communications program, you may study topics such as laws and regulations in communications, mass media, public relations writing, advertising, leadership, and negotiation.

Work experience in public relations is typically needed before you could be promoted to a communications director position. The Public Relations Society of America offers seminars, continuing education events, and other opportunities for you to gain experience and advance your skills in the field (www.prsa.org). The International Association of Business Communications also offers educational opportunities and services to help you advance your career (www.iabc.com). Membership in one of these organizations may also provide opportunities for networking and accreditation titles, including the Accredited Business Communicator or Accredited in Public Relations designations.

How Much Can I Earn?

In February 2017, Salary.com reported the national median salary for communication directors was $136,948. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the median annual wage for public relations and fundraising managers as of May 2015 was $104,140 (www.bls.gov).

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Market research analysts study the economy to identify market trends, hoping to find new products and services the public wants that their company can provide. Public relations specialists work independently or in teams (potentially working under communications directors) to help improve and maintain a good image for their company. Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers attempt to create interest in the products and services sold by their company using advertisement campaigns, promotional deals and buying incentives, and calculated marketing strategies, respectively. Each of these careers will require a bachelor's degree.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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