Corporate Affairs Manager

As a Corporate Affairs Manager you are responsible for managing the company's public relations and government affairs strategies. You will work closely with internal stakeholders to develop and implement policies that align with and enhance the company's brand and reputation.

Role Description

You will play a key role in your organisation’s decision-making process helping it navigate major transitions and manage its public image by building a communication strategy that effectively announces change to all stakeholders and shapes how it is received. This means that the role must always have an eye on changing government relations, sales projections, marketing initiatives, external stakeholder engagement, and company morale.

Main duties and responsibilities

The role requires an ability to merge sales, marketing, industry, and regulatory affairs into one clear message and disseminate this to leaders and decision-makers. You will need to be a strategic thinker, effective communicator, and skilled relationship builder to succeed in this role.

  1. Develop and implement a comprehensive corporate affairs strategy, budget and plan that raises the public corporate reputation. Activities may include drafting communications for external audiences, writing Q&As and fact sheets, lobbying, event sponsorship, and industry association memberships.
  2. Manage external agencies, PR professionals and consultants to support corporate affairs initiatives, including public relations and government affairs to effectively manage crisis situations. This could involve writing press releases, arrange press conferences, and assisting in a strategic plan to navigate sales, marketing, and operations choices during the crisis.
  3. Monitor and analyse sales trends, industry trends and events, and regulatory developments, advising executive and internal stakeholders on the choices and potential impact on the company's operations. Ensuring marketing campaigns and key decisions are legal and favourable for the company's goals and ensuring compliance with relevant laws and regulations, including those related to environmental sustainability and responsible marketing practices.
  4. Provide guidance and support to senior executives on reputational and regulatory issues, shaping the public story and measuring social media impact. This may involve highlighting a company's corporate social responsibility to sustainability, labour laws, fair trade, and transparent spending.
  5. Build and maintain relationships with key stakeholders, including government officials, industry bodies, and trade associations.
  6. Build and maintain relationships with internal employees, teams and stakeholder to manage authentic, consistent and inspiring messaging of company-wide communications, announcements and leadership changes, that build employee understanding, belief, and pride in line with strategic directions of the company.
  7. Represent the company in public forums and engage with relevant media outlets to promote the company's brand and products.

Skills and experience

Typical skills and experience required for a Corporate Affairs Manager include:

  1. Excellent communication skills, including written and verbal communication, active listening, and the ability to articulate complex information clearly and concisely. You should have experience in developing and executing communication plans for various stakeholders. Ability to write press statements, annual reports and online articles related to the operations, events, and initiatives in the company.
  2. The ability to think strategically and develop a clear vision for the company's corporate affairs function. This requires experience in developing and implementing strategies that align with a company's goals and objectives.
  3. Proven corporate branding and communication experience. Demonstrable experience driving ideas and implementation. Familiar with CSR initiatives and event management. Ability to guide designers from concept to implementation for a wide range of image requirements, documents, online posts, ads and video messaging.
  4. A good understanding of the UK's political and regulatory environment, including relevant laws and regulations. You should have experience in managing relationships with government officials and trade associations.
  5. Skilled in building relationships with a diverse range of stakeholders, including government officials, industry bodies, and trade associations. With a proven track record of building and maintaining strong relationships.
  6. Ability to liaise with the press, online media groups, and media channels to ensure company communication and message goals are met. Confident at building presence and positioning of the company online and via media channels. Ability to plan and schedule postings with the appropriate content to meet the organisation’s key messaging and positioning.
  7. Strong analytical skills for monitoring and analysing industry trends and regulatory developments. You will need to synthesise complex information into clear and actionable recommendations.
  8. Experienced in managing multiple projects simultaneously, setting priorities, and delivering projects on time and within budget.
  9. A deep knowledge of the Scotch whisky industry, including industry trends, market dynamics, and key players.
  10. A team player with a collaborative approach. You should have experience in working cross-functionally with teams, including marketing, legal, and regulatory affairs.

Qualifications Required

To be successful in this role you are likely to have a minimum of 5-7 years’ experience in corporate affairs, public relations, or government affairs, preferably in the food and beverage industry, with a proven track record of success in developing and implementing corporate affairs strategies. You should have a bachelor’s or master’s degree in a relevant field, such as communications, public relations, or political science. In addition:

  1. At least 5-7 years of experience in corporate affairs, public relations, or government affairs, preferably in the food and beverage industry.
  2. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, with the ability to build relationships with diverse stakeholders.
  3. Strong analytical and strategic thinking skills, with the ability to synthesize complex information into clear and actionable recommendations.
  4. Knowledge of relevant laws and regulations, including those related to alcohol and environmental sustainability.
  5. Experience managing budgets and external agencies.
  6. Proven track record of successful advocacy campaigns and issue management.
  7. Ability to work independently and as part of a team, with a flexible and collaborative approach.
  8. Self-management and proactive in execution of tasks and strategy
  9. A team player and able to engage diverse stakeholders.
  10. Able to influence a culture of compliance and best practices among all staff in the organisation.
Did you know?
  1. The Scotch whisky industry is a major contributor to the UK economy, generating over £5 billion in revenue annually and supporting over 40,000 jobs.
  2. The role of the Corporate Affairs Manager is critical in managing the industry's relationship with government and other stakeholders, as well as promoting the industry's reputation and ensuring compliance with regulations.
  3. The Corporate Affairs Manager works closely with other internal teams, including marketing, legal, and regulatory affairs, to ensure consistent messaging and alignment of objectives.
  4. In addition to managing relationships with government officials and industry bodies, the Corporate Affairs Manager may also be involved in lobbying activities to promote the interests of the industry.
  5. The Corporate Affairs Manager may also be involved in managing crisis communications, such as responding to negative media coverage or product recalls.
  6. The Corporate Affairs Manager plays an important role in promoting environmental sustainability within the industry, ensuring compliance with regulations, and developing initiatives to reduce the industry's environmental footprint.
  7. As the Scotch whisky industry is a global one, the Corporate Affairs Manager may also work closely with global corporate affairs teams to align strategies and messaging across different markets.
  8. The Corporate Affairs Manager may also be involved in promoting responsible drinking practices and developing initiatives to reduce alcohol-related harm.
  9. As the industry continues to evolve and face new challenges, such as Brexit and changing consumer trends, the role of the Corporate Affairs Manager is likely to become even more critical in shaping the industry's future.
  10. The Corporate Affairs Manager may have the opportunity to taste and learn about different types of whisky, attend industry events, and meet key industry players, making the role an exciting and rewarding one for those passionate about the industry.

If you are interested in pursuing a career as a Corporate Affairs Manager, there are several resources that you can use to develop your skills and knowledge:

  1. Pursuing a degree in communications, public relations, political science, or a related field can provide you with a strong foundation for a career in corporate affairs. You can also consider pursuing professional development courses and training in areas such as strategic communication, government relations, and crisis management.
  2. Joining industry associations such as the Scotch Whisky Association and the Wine and Spirit Trade Association can provide you with access to networking opportunities, industry events, and training programs.
  3. Seeking internships and work experience opportunities with companies in the Scotch whisky industry can provide you with valuable experience and help you build a network of contacts in the industry.
  4. Building a professional network by attending industry events, joining professional associations, and connecting with industry professionals on social media can help you learn about job opportunities and gain insights into the industry.
  5. Reading industry publications such as The Spirits Business, Drinks International, and just-drinks can help you stay up-to-date on industry news, trends, and developments.
  6. Researching company websites of Scotch whisky producers and distributors can provide you with information on job opportunities, company culture, and corporate affairs functions.
  7. You can also consider taking online courses or tutorials in relevant skills, such as social media management, content creation, and media relations, to enhance your skills and knowledge.
Related Case Studies
Sonya Ferguson
I work really closely within a small team of Analytical Scientists, and as Deputy Manager, I have line management responsibilities, so I help the team manage their workloads effectively.
Read More
Samira Cabello
I hope to further improve my approach to customer service and progress my career within the company.
Read More
Caitlin O'Donnell
Our main remit is to protect the geographical indication of Scotch Whisky
Read More

The Scotch Whisky Association

Edinburgh HQ:
Quartermile Two, 2 Lister Square, Edinburgh EH3 9GL
homemap-markerchevron-downquestion-circle linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram