20 Feb 2024

Director Of Marketing & Communications at Youth Development Labs

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Job Description

Director of Marketing & Communications 




YLabs is an award-winning global design and research organisation working to improve health and economic opportunity for young people 10–24 years old. Founded in 2014 at the Harvard Innovation Lab, YLabs partners with young people in sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and North and Central America to design, test, and advocate for youth-driven solutions that address key challenges to young people’s health and economic opportunity worldwide. YLabs’ desired global impact for youth is improved health and wellness, climate resilience, and increased economic opportunity. Our global teams have worked in 18 countries to date on projects spanning topics including mental health, sexual and reproductive health, HIV, youth entrepreneurship, and climate action. Find out more about our projects here: https://www.ylabsglobal.org/work

Our team of physicians, designers, economists, public health professionals, and educators bring a unique mix of human-centered design, adolescent health, evaluation, economic and health outcome evaluation, behavioural science, and implementation know-how to the global problems facing youth.


We are seeking a Director of Marketing & Communications to lead our Marketing & Communications Department. You will lead the development and execution of YLabs’ marketing and communication strategy organization-wide. This will include but is not limited to public relations, website and social media, brand expression, overseeing content production, and partner communications. You will also provide editorial support to elevate our external communications, including pitch decks, reports, and conference presentations. As the head of the Marketing and Communications department, this position reports directly to the CEO. It is supported by three additional staff, who are based in Kigali, Rwanda.


This is a full-time, fully benefited position that requires the ability to work with our global team with 10-15% international travel for meetings and conferences.   


YLabs adheres to Project Fair’s principles and standards to establish equity in pay with the overriding principle of “equal pay for work of equal value” outlined in the Sustainable Development Goals. All salary ranges are based on level within the organization and are competitive to regional and national salary benchmarks, based on the respective office location.


The pay range for this position is gross RWF 65,000,000 – RWF 76,250,000 per year, commensurate with experience. This range is regionally benchmarked for a Director-level position in the Rwandan and sub-Saharan African region. YLabs pays all full-time staff salaries in the local currency of the staff member’s permanent work location.


Marketing and Communications (75%)

  • Leads the development and implementation of YLabs’ communications strategy, including our social media strategy
  • Leads storytelling about YLabs mission and work across all media channels, collaborating with executive leadership and all project teams
  • Oversees and contributes to the curation, production, and dissemination of internal and external content via all marketing channels
  • Develops and grows YLabs media relations capacity, building media relationships/media database and securing media coverage to amplify YLabs’ work and impact
  • Supports the CEO with the development of key strategic communications, including newsletters, donor communications, and media inquiries
  • Collaborates closely with our communications design team to ensure high-quality of external deliverables and assets
  • Works with the Growth and Partnerships team to develop clear, brand-aligned communications with external partners and funders and work to build and maintain key relationships
  • Trains and supports all staff to be effective, consistent, and impactful in their external communications about YLabs
  • Develops and executes targeted marketing and paid advertising strategies to elevate YLabs’ visibility and engagement, leveraging data analytics to optimize ad spend and ROI across digital platforms.
  • Implements a system for monitoring YLabs marketing channels, creating comprehensive reports to assess engagement, impact, and areas for improvement.

Departmental Leadership and Management (10%)

  • Provides executive direction, guidance and leadership to YLabs and the the global marketing team
  • Sits on YLabs’ Global Leadership Team providing input on strategic decision making and contributing to internal management initiatives
  • Develops structures, systems and working practices that support the department to deliver high quality deliverables on time, consistently.
  • Champions the development and tracking of departmental OKRs, delegating effective to team members

Strategy and Impact (10%)

  • Work with the Impact Working Group to conceptualize creative impact reporting techniques that utilize both quantitative data and qualitative storytelling
  • Work with individual project teams to identify and craft promising impact stories for further development
  • Direct the creation and dissemination of compelling impact narratives that align with and advance YLabs’ strategic objectives across multiple external communication channels and deliverables

Events (5%)

  • Work in collaboration with the Growth & Partnerships team to develop strategic engagement plans for events, including conferences, fundraising events, and working groups
  • Work with the CEO and Growth & Partnerships team to conceptualize, plan and execute events with support of key operations staff
  • Provide strategic communications support for international and regional events where YLabs staff are presenting our work 


  • Passionate about improving the health and opportunity of young people globally
  • Committed to operationalizing equity in our work and decolonizing global health
  • Entrepreneurial, flexible, and excited to help grow a dynamic, creative organization
  • A bold, creative, and compelling story-teller with a vibrant and compelling point of view
  • Equally able to roll up your sleeves to craft brilliant content and zoom out to craft an ambitious strategic vision for YLabs and your department
  • An enthusiastic trainer, mentor, and cheerleader for a motivated, multi-disciplinary team
  • Committed to building trusting, convivial working relationships that support wellness, creativity, and collective joy
  • A thoughtful manager and delegator, managing your time and commitments well
  • Willing to work flexible hours to accommodate evening calls with staff in other timezones
  • Adaptable and optimistic when faced with changing circumstances and challenges
  • Excited about growing YLabs’ presence in the world, representing innovations that have already reached over 1 million youth in 18 countries


  • Minimum of 10 years’ experience in relevant roles; we welcome applications from those who have worked in diverse roles and sectors, including non-traditional backgrounds
  • Strong commitment to YLabs’ mission, vision, and values
  • Exceptional writing and editorial skills with high attention to detail; the ability to effectively tailor the style and voice to the intended audience
  • Exemplary communication skills and cross-cultural awareness
  • Previous experience drafting press releases, corporate statements, executive communications, and internal communications
  • Experience in media relations and building an organization’s media profile
  • Exemplary project management skills with the ability to oversee multiple projects in a fastpaced environment
  • A high degree of digital fluency using online communications tools in a remote environment
  • Expertise in social media strategy and content management
  • Experience with vendor and consultant management, especially in working with designers
  • Strong experience with email marketing software/platforms (preferably Mail Chimp) 


  • Experience in Adobe Creative Cloud (InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, etc.)
  • Additional language skills
  • PR agency experience


This is a hybrid or remote role, ideally based in a timezone to support collaboration with our team in sub Saharan Africa, with preference for the following countries: Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana, Nigeria.

YLabs has an office in Kigali, Rwanda; if the candidate is based in Kigali, Rwanda, this is a hybrid role, with an expectation to work from the office at least 1-2 days per week and attend in-person team events.

Method of Application

To apply, send a resume, cover letter and link to your portfolio to [email protected] with the subject line: Marketing & Communications Director. All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.

This posting will be open from February 20th to March 27th.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis by our Hiring Committee. YLabs recognizes the effort that goes into submitting an application; all applications received during the posting period will be reviewed, and all candidates will be notified of their application status once the hiring process begins.

All YLabs offers of employment are conditional on satisfactory background check and criminal record clearances.

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