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SHRM Manager, Public Relations & Publicity in Alexandria, Virginia


The Communication Department is responsible for informing all of SHRM’s audiences on SHRM’s thought leadership, mission and activities in a positive, consistent and credible manner. The Communication Department is also responsible for publicly protecting and defending SHRM’s reputation and brand. Typically, this means working directly with news organizations and journalists responsible for producing the news and features in mass media. In other instances, it means utilizing social media to exchange information about SHRM directly with the press, key audiences and influencers. The Communication Department encompasses Brand, Media Relations, Social Media Engagement and Corporate Communications. The collective team engages in a variety of work related to managing SHRM’s reputation and brand image among SHRM’s members as well as elevating the reputation to business leaders and policy makers on a broader, global scale.

Reporting to the Director of Corporate Communications, the Manager, Public Relations & Publicity, leverages earned media to position SHRM as the voice of all things work. The publicist role is at the forefront of strategy and engagement with SHRM executives, specifically SHRM’s CEO, and works to position the CEO and SHRM as the go-to resource for all things impacting work, workers and the workplace. The role is responsible for achievement of assigned goals and business objectives that coincide with the goals and business objectives of SHRM via thought leadership, executive visibility and brand reputation in media. Plays a key role in setting the earned media and PR strategy with a specific focus on external visibility of SHRM’s leadership.


Your Day:

  • Strategize earned media plans and tactics supporting brand activations.

  • Proactively position SHRM and its leaders as thought leaders and experts.

  • Reactively respond to breaking news to piggyback on stories.

  • Quickly and flawlessly handle breaking news and crisis with the SHRM brand out to the media.

  • Maintain, strengthen and create relationships with the media on an on-going basis.

  • Generate and manage publicity with a focus on the US market and also with an eye toward the global news marketplace.

  • Create and maintain a favorable public image of SHRM by communicating across our five messaging pillars and by using in-house proprietary data.

  • Shape media stories based on audience and desired outcome.

  • Engage with broadcast, print and online members of the media.

  • Be aware of breaking trends for storytelling, news media, press rooms, etc.

  • Ghost write ongoing columns in top tier media outlets.

  • Write and/or edit media releases and media content.

  • Design a story from beginning (working with research to commission a new survey) to end (writing the report, creating the infographic, getting it placed, etc.).

  • Leverage important assets such as new books and scholarly pieces to book national media tours.

  • Engage media onsite at SHRM-hosted and other industry events.


Must Haves:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations, English, Communications, Journalism, Marketing or a related field.

  • A minimum of 8 years of relevant experience

  • Experience pitching, engaging and securing long-term engagements and partnerships with the media. Understanding of media landscape and changing evolution of reporters and influencers.

  • Experience booking spokespeople on national news shows and in top tier media, as well as securing media in B2C and B2B publications.

  • Working knowledge of AP Style, journalistic principles.

  • Ability to lead a team of media relations professionals in a fast-paced environment with a diverse workload in a demanding and dynamic workplace.

  • Experience with media analysis and reporting more than just the number of hits.

  • Deep understanding of how earned media is a crucial channel to brand campaigns and marketing efforts

  • Project management and organizational skills with meticulous attention to detail.

  • Analytical and problem-solving skills.

  • Strong written and oral communication skills required, including excellent writing, grammar, proofreading and editing skills.

  • Experience managing cohesive brand alignment in all deliverables, with specific focus on developing organization-wide PR campaigns.

  • Ability to prioritize, plan and execute responsibilities independently.

  • Ability to multitask and reprioritize throughout the day.

  • Experience with and comfort in providing clear, concise reporting to stakeholders and executive management.

  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work with all levels of staff and members.

  • Effective collaboration and team-playing skills.

Let us know if you also ha ve:

  • Master of Strategic Communications.

  • PR agency experience.

Physical Demands

Regularly required to sit; talk and hear, use hands to type, file, handle or feel. The employee is frequently required to reach with hands and arms. Occasionally required to stand; walk and stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl. Visual acuity to use a keyboard, prepare and analyze data and figures; transcribing, viewing a computer terminal; extensive reading. Light lifting is required. Exerting up to 20 pounds of force occasionally, and/or up to 10 pounds of force frequently, and/or a negligible amount of force to constantly move objects.

Work Environment

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Work is regularly performed in a professional office environment and routinely uses standard office equipment. This job requires occasional travel 0-10%.

The Society for Human Resource Management is an equal opportunity employer (Minority/Female/Disabled/Veteran).

ACCESSIBILITY NOTICE: If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the employment process due to a physical or mental disability, please send an email to: or TDD (703) 548-6990.

Job Locations US-VA-Alexandria

Job ID 2019-1420

Category Communications