Communications Director

Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Reporting to the Director, Communications, NEA (Northern Europe & Australia) , this role is responsible for building, driving and delivering the communications strategy for Australia and New Zealand. Based in Sydney, this role is responsible for elevating the Vertex Corporate brand and value story, as well as effectively driving the communications for the approved portfolio products and for the pipeline. The person in this role will work closely to support the Country Manager on communications matters along with the country cross-functional team and the International Communications team.

Key Responsibilities

  • Working with the Australia & NZ Country Manager and the NEA Communications Director, to develop and deliver the Communications strategy for Australia & New Zealand with direction from International
  • Lead on and be the link role to the International Communications team in the Australia to drive strategic internal and external communications projects aligned with International
  • Design and implement strategic Communications programs, including the development of key messages, press releases, media materials, Q&A documents, presentations etc. as required for Australia and New Zealand
  • Represent Communications internally as part of the cross-functional country team and externally with a variety of different stakeholders
  • Coordinate with cross-functional colleagues to ensure alignment and collaboration in strategic priorities and messaging across different stakeholders to support the Australian business
  • Respond to media requests and coordinate interviews with Vertex spokespeople and opinion leader spokespeople as appropriate
  • Support issues mitigation and management
  • Drive any management of local communications agencies

Minimum Qualifications

Knowledge, Experience and Skills:

  • Strong understanding of the Australia/New Zealand pharmaceutical/biotech business model, regulatory and reimbursement processes, communications guidelines and market access environment
  • Experience in developing and implementing external communications plans for medicines at all stages of the life cycle, including the reimbursement process
  • Ability to understand and accurately communicate complex science
  • Demonstrated experience in media relations (traditional and social), issues management; knowledge of healthcare and industry media and reporting trends
  • Demonstrated knowledge of regulations and principles specific to communications for a publicly-traded biopharmaceutical company
  • Experience working successfully with patient organizations
  • Excellent verbal, written and interpersonal communication skills
  • Experience managing multiple projects (timelines, budgets, priorities) simultaneously; flexibility and results-oriented focus are essential
  • Ability to interact with senior management and high-profile experts appropriately, with confidence and ease
  • Strong collaboration, negotiation and influencing skills; strong interpersonal skills; a team player
  • Ability to deliver results with limited direction and guidance and on tight deadlines; a self-starter; curious with a strong learning agility; ability to succeed in a fast-paced environment with multiple, competing priorities
  • A desire to work in the corporate culture of a highly innovative company aimed at redefining health, and transforming lives with new medicines;
  • Team player, flexibility to pitch-in on various projects for other departments
  • Willingness to think creatively and test new and unproven communications and advocacy initiatives, tools, etc.;
  • Operationally excellent and resilient in the context of a rapidly changing environment
  • Organized with systematic approach to prioritization
  • Ability to give formal presentations to internal and external audiences of various sizes
  • Typically requires a degree in communications, liberal arts, business or science-oriented field (or International Equivalent) proven relevant experience, which includes solid healthcare public relations experience
  • PR agency experience or in-house at another pharmaceutical/biotech company required
  • Experience in rare diseases is preferred but not essential
  • Fluency in English, written and spoken

VERTEX Core Values

  • Uncompromising commitment to patients
  • Fearless pursuit of Excellence
  • Innovation is our life blood
  • “We” wins

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