Communications Specialist III

King County   Seattle, WA   Full-time     Advertising / Marketing / Public Relations
Posted on August 4, 2022
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Community Health Services (CHS) Division in Public Health is seeking a Term-Limited Temporary (TLT)/Special Duty Assignment (SDA) Communications Specialist III to manage employee communications and support our client-focused services. The role includes working closely with CHS Division leadership and managers, as well as directly with our clinical and field staff.  Our communications specialist will engage our workforce with stories and information that supports their efforts to serve the community, and will create public-facing messaging for multiple programs. Our new Communication Specialist III will tell the story of the CHS services on multiple platforms through the voices of leadership and employees.  
 This position is anticipated to last until Sept. 2024, however, the end date of this position may be adjusted based on funding and program need.
The purpose of CHS Division is to strengthen King County’s safety net services and partnerships to deliver racially just and responsive health care for historically underserved communities. CHS provides direct services through its Public Health Center system (with clinics and other locations across the county), as well as assuring access to quality health-care services through partnerships and regional programs. CHS is a large family, with more than 600 employees, across many roles and services.  
The successful candidate understands racial justice and why racism is a public health crisis, has a high degree of integrity and trustworthiness, and a commitment to quality relationships. They will be skilled at working with directors and other leaders, as well as passionate about representing the voices and interests of employees and the clients they serve. Our workplace is highly collaborative and we welcome applicants with the ability to work independently along with the capability to learn on the fly in a fast-paced environment.

We are looking for candidates with excellent writing skills, along with a variety of communications experiences. Writing for websites and newsletters will be a primary emphasis and demonstrated experience with digital publishing tools is essential. The successful candidate will be able to demonstrate significant professional experience with some or all of the additional skills and qualifications: Written storytelling and editing skills; developing and implementing communication plans; graphics and design skills; creating e-newsletters; experience working in communications in the government or non-profit sectors, preferably related to public health or health care; ability and comfort with oral and written presentations. 

Job Duties

The Communications Specialist III will bring exceptional writing and editing skills, creativity and enthusiasm, and strong interpersonal skills to:

  • Create written content:  Research, plan, write, edit and design various documents in draft and final form, including reports, newsletters, blogs, correspondence, factsheets, education materials, website content and other materials. Help develop graphics as needed. Manage translation of written materials. Collect and develop stories about clients and services.
  • Manage publishing and distribution channels: Create e-newsletters; manage internal communications hubs; collaborate with web-team to publish webpages; create social media content.
  • Communication strategies: Work with subject matter experts to develop communications plans and strategies for various audiences, and lead implementation of those plans.
  • Resources for clients: Provide support for creating flyers, posters, brochures and other content related to special events or new services.  

Experience, Qualifications, Knowledge, Skills

The ideal candidate will have some combination of: 

  • An understanding of and passion for public health and our institutional mission to improve the health and well-being of our residents; experience working in diverse communities.
  • An understanding of and passion for health equity and racial justice, with a commitment to ending racism as a public health crisis.
  • Background in education, communications, journalism, English, marketing, public health, public administration, or a related field or comparable experience, ideally in the government or non-profit sectors.
  • Skills in synthesizing and communicating health and health-care information in writing, orally, and visually to a variety of audiences.
  • Skilled in writing and producing e-newsletters, fact sheets, blogs, presentations, and/or educational materials utilizing Microsoft Office 360 products (including SharePoint and Teams), WordPress and/or other blogging platforms, GovDelivery and/or similar e-newsletter platforms.
  • Demonstrated ability to identify and assess the communication needs of targeted audiences and determine the best communication methods and tools; skills in developing short- and long-range communications plans and/or strategies.
  • Knowledge of communications principles, methods and materials.
  • Demonstrated ability to engage with diverse groups in ways that earn trust.

 The most competitive applicants will also have some of the following desired experiences and qualifications:
  • Experience with websites – creating, maintaining, and or updating pages and creating content designed for web templates;
  • Significant demonstrated ability to create and use graphics and photography for storytelling and to effectively engage audiences in content; experience developing infographics; videography experience;
  • Significant expertise in health promotion via a variety of channels including social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, blogs or other social media tools;
  • Understanding of working effectively with news media; knowledge of and experience working with ethnic media in King County;
  • Bilingual in English and another language spoken by significant numbers of King County immigrant groups is preferred;
  • Science or health education experience; experience synthesizing technical information and presenting it in oral and written formats; and/or
  • Experience and/or education in public communications or journalism or in a related field, preferably in a public health or health-related setting.

Supplemental Information

Forbes recently named King County as one of Washington State's best employers.

Together, with leadership and our employees, we're changing the way government delivers service and winning national recognition as a model of excellence. Are you ready to make a difference? Come join the team dedicated to serving one of the nation's best places to live, work and play.

Guided by our "True North", we are making King County a welcoming community where every person can thrive. We value diversity, inclusion and belonging in our workplace and workforce. To reach this goal we are committed to workforce equity. Equitable recruiting, support, and retention is how we will obtain the highest quality workforce in our region; a workforce that shares and will help advance our guiding principles--we are one team; we solve problems; we focus on the customer; we drive for results; we are racially just; we respect all people; we lead the way; and we are responsible stewards. We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans.

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement
King County Executive Branch employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If you are the successful candidate for the position you applied for, the County will send you a conditional offer letter.

As a condition of employment, prior to a final offer of employment, you will be required to:

  • submit proof of vaccination, or
  • have an approved request for medical or religious exemption and an approved accommodation. Philosophical, political, scientific, or sociological objections to vaccination will not be considered for an exemption or accommodation.
People are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 two weeks after receiving the final dose of a vaccination approved by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The Executive Branch includes employees in the Executive branch, the Assessor's Office, Elections, the King County Sheriff's Office, and the Executive Office.

King County is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer
No person is unlawfully excluded from employment opportunities based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation and pregnancy), age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or other protected class. Our EEO policy applies to all employment actions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, selection for training, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation. 

To Apply
If you are interested in pursuing this position, please follow the application instructions carefully. If you need this announcement in an alternate language or format, would like to request accommodation or assistance in the application or assessment process or if you have questions please contact the recruiter listed on this job announcement. 

Who May Apply: This Term Limited Temporary (TLT)/Special Duty Assignment (SDA) position is open to all qualified candidates. To be considered as a Special Duty applicant, you must be a current King County employee who has successfully passed probation. This position is anticipated to last until July 2024, however, the end date of this position may be adjusted based on funding and program need.

Application Process: To be considered for this position, the following items must be completed:
  • NEOGOV/Government Jobs on-line
  • Resume
  • Submit a Cover Letter/Letter of Interest 
  • Answer the supplemental questions. These answers will be reviewed to determine competitiveness.
  • Please do not use "see resume" in your application or answers to supplemental questions as these will be considered incomplete.
Primary Work Location: 
This position is based at the Chinook Building in downtown Seattle at 401 Fifth Avenue, Seattle, WA, 98104. Some travel to locations throughout King County will also be required, ranging from 2-6 days per month. (Please see also telecommuting note below)
Work Schedule:
This position is designated exempt from the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and is not overtime eligible. This is a full-time position, and the typical work week is Monday – Friday. Work schedule will be determined at time of hire, may vary based on operational needs, and may occasionally include evening and weekend hours.
At Seattle/King County Public Health we strive to be accessible to those we serve and our partners. This position may require flexibility to accommodate different work schedules and work locations.

The work associated with this position will be performed through a combination of teleworking complemented with onsite work and meetings as needed. Employees will have access to shared workspaces at various King County facilities. Employees must reside in Washington state and within a reasonable distance to their King County worksite to respond to workplace reporting requirements.
 Employees will be provided with a County issued laptop and must maintain a workspace with an internet connection (access may be supplemented in some situations) where they can reliably perform work and remain available and responsive during scheduled work hours. Please note that when an employee conducts work that is likely to bring them in contact with another individual, safety precautions are required, including the wearing of masks in some situations. King County is doing its part to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and remains committed to reducing our carbon footprint.
 King County has a robust collection of tools and resources to support working remotely. The individual selected for this opportunity will be joining an innovative and progressive team that is redefining how we work as we transition to the department's hybrid environment.  

King County provides our employees with a free transportation pass (good on most transit systems throughout the Puget Sound region, including the Sounder). We offer a benefits package that includes competitive medical, dental and vision benefits for the whole family and domestic partner, competitive vacation, sick, holiday and executive leave plans, and participation in the State's Public Employees Retirement Plan (PERS), as well as the option of participating in the County's deferred compensation plan (a 457 plan).
 Additional Information
 The selected candidate will be required to pass a thorough background investigation.
 This selection process may include but is not limited to: evaluation of application materials and supplemental questions, testing and interviewing. For more information on our selection process, please follow this link:
 Public Health relies on office automation (Microsoft Office) and web-based enabled tools, therefore candidates must be proficient and comfortable with computer use to perform functions associated with on-going work.
 Employees are required to adhere to OSHA/WISHA guidelines including but not limited to completing their mandatory trainings on time and obtaining required immunizations.
 Regular and reliable attendance, effective communication skills, and development of effective working relationships are requirements of all Public Health positions.
 Employees are required to protect the privacy and security of protected health information as defined in State and Federal Law.
 If you need a disability accommodation in the application or testing process, please call the contact number listed on the job announcement.

Union Affiliation: This position is not represented.

If you need this announcement in an alternate language or format, would like to request accommodation or assistance in the application or assessment process or if you have questions please contact please contact: Alexis Owens, Human Resource Analyst, at

King County offers a highly-competitive compensation and benefits package designed to meet the diverse needs of our employees and support our employees' health and well-being.  Eligible positions receive the following benefits and have access to the following programs:

  • Medical, dental, and vision coverage: King County pays 100% of the premiums for eligible employees and family members
  • Life and disability insurance: employees are provided basic coverage and given the opportunity to purchase additional insurance for both the employee and eligible dependents
  • Retirement: King County employees are eligible to participate in a pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems and a 457(b) deferred-compensation plan
  • Transportation program and ORCA transit pass
  • 10 paid holidays each year (plus 2 personal holidays)
  • Generous vacation and paid sick leave
  • Paid parental leave, family and medical leaves, and volunteer leave
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Wellness programs
  • Onsite gyms and activity centers
  • Employee giving program
  • Employee assistance programs
  • Flexible schedules and telecommuting options, depending on position
  • Training and career development programs
For additional information about employee benefits please visit our Benefits, Payroll, and Retirement Page.

This is a general description of the benefits offered to eligible King County employees, and every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy.  If any information on this document conflicts with the provisions of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), the CBA prevails.  Also, in the event of any incorrect information in this document, applicable laws, policies, rules, CBAs, or official plan documents will prevail.
NOTE:  Benefits for Term Limited Temporary (TLT) or Short Term Temporary (STT) positions, including leave eligibility and/or participation in the pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems, will vary based upon the terms and details of the position. Short Term Temporary positions are not eligible for an ORCA transit pass.
For inquiries about the specifics of this position, please contact the recruiter identified on this job posting.

Do you have experience developing and communicating complex information, including human services, health and science information, in writing to a variety of audiences, in a clear and concise manner?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered yes to Question 1, please describe your experience developing and communicating complex information to multiple audiences in a clear and concise manner. Please limit your response to 1 - 2 paragraphs. If you answered no, then type N/A.
Do you have professional experience creating and publishing newsletters, blogs, webpages, SharePoint sites or other types of digital publishing to share stories about the work of other people?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered yes to Question 3, please describe your professional experience creating and publishing newsletters, blogs, webpages, or other publishing platforms to share stories about the work of other people. If you answered no, then type N/A
Do you have demonstrated skills in producing communications plans and/or strategies?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered yes to Question 5, please provide a description of a communication plan/strategy you developed or managed, including a brief description of the process and goal. If you answered no, then type N/A.
King County has transformed its work on equity and social justice from an initiative to an integrated effort that applies the principle of "fair and just" intentionally in all that the county does in order to achieve equitable opportunities for all people and communities. What is the most important equity or social justice issue to you?
Are you applying to this position as an eligible current or previous King County Employee Priority Placement Program Participant? Is this position the same or lower percentage of full-time when compared to the position held at the point of the notification of layoff? Do you possess the skills and abilities to qualify for this position?
  • Yes, I was given a layoff notice from my role at King County and I am within two years of the effective date of my layoff. Additionally, the position I was laid off from was the same or a higher percentage of FT status when compared to this one.
  • No.
If you answered yes to the question above and you are applying for this position as a Priority Placement Participant, to be considered, you must provide the following three pieces of information in the space provided: 1. The title you held when you received your layoff notice 2. The department you worked in 3. The effective date of your layoff

Required Question