Effective external communication is critical to the success of any organization. It plays an integral role in ensuring the institution is visible and known at the regional and national levels as a sought-after choice for Indigenous education with a consistent, professional brand.
As a public institution, FNUniv has a responsibility to satisfy public accountability while safeguarding the institution’s brand and reputation. Regardless of the medium being used, employees must ensure that their statements and actions support and positively promote the institution’s reputation and brand.
The institution respects the freedom of academic expression, and this policy is not intended to curb or infringe on individual freedom of expression. The policy clarifies who may speak on behalf of the institution and the ways in which the views of the institution may be represented.
The purpose of this policy is to:
- Provide the framework upon which a solid external communications strategy can be built
- Ensure that the external communications function at FNUniv is well coordinated, effectively managed and responsive to the information needs of its external stakeholders
- Provide clear, regular and timely guidelines for communication to external stakeholders
- Articulate that all external communication by members of FNUniv should reflect the vision, mission, values and guiding principles of the institution and external communications plan
This policy applies to all employees of FNUniv that communicate with the institution’s external stakeholders. External stakeholders refer to current and prospective students and their guardians, alumni, general public, University of Regina, governments and agencies.
The policy states the following:
- All external communications are guided by FNUniv’s vision, mission, values, guiding principles, policies and procedures.
- The Marketing & Communications Team is responsible for planning, facilitating and coordinating all media and public relations for the institution to ensure consistent messaging, accessibility, accuracy and timeliness.
- The Marketing & Communications Team will coordinate media access to institution staff and faculty who may be asked by the media to comment on issues within their expertise.
- Any new media or media inquiries must be immediately shared with the Senior Communications Officer. All media contacts must be referred to the Marketing & Communications Team for coordination and guidance. Authorized spokespersons should consult with the Senior Communications Officer before responding to any media inquiry or request. All news releases and media advisories must be written and/or reviewed and released by the Marketing & Communications Team.
- The Board Chair is the official spokesperson on matters of topics/decisions that reside within the Board. The President, or an approved designate, is the official spokesperson on all matters dealing with the operation and management of the institution. The members of the Executive Team are the official spokespeople on matters dealing with their respective areas of operation, and the Senior Communications Officer is the official spokesperson on day-to-day institution matters. Other employees may be asked to serve as spokespersons where they have specific expertise, a designated role or to provide profile for a program or activity.
- All external communication, regardless of the medium, must follow be transparent, accurate, respectful, careful, responsive and approved.
- All communication sent out on behalf of the institution to its external stakeholders must be Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) compliant. For more information about this legislation visit http://www.fightspam.gc.ca.
- The Marketing & Communications Team will endeavour to develop an annual external communications plan, to be approved by the Vice President, Finance & Administration, prior to the start of each fiscal year. The Team will also create a five-year external communications plan that mimics the timeline for the institution’s strategic plan, for which the annual plans will fall under.
Consequences for Noncompliance
Failure to follow this policy may result in disciplinary action by the institution. Disciplinary actions will be determined by FNUniv’s Executive Team and will consider any applicable provincial and federal laws, as well as institutional policies and procedures. Violations of law will be reported to the appropriate institution and law enforcement authorities and may result in dismissal. Serious violations of this policy that affect the institution’s reputation may result in disciplinary action, which could include dismissal.