The Responsibility department is responsible for defining and driving the corporate strategy related to matters including but not limited to public reporting, social compliance and corporate and supply chain environmental sustainability. It also serves as catalyst and driver for new programs and initiatives that support ascena Retail Group’s long range Responsibility objectives to advance the Company’s brand reputation and purpose-led strategy. The department also drives sustainable practices and awareness raising initiatives to over 64,000 associates encouraging their commitment and participation as well as externally to the communities we serve.
This associate will act as a lead Responsibility department communicator and will be responsible for helping to drive ascena’s Responsibility reporting. This associate will collaborate with key business functions to identify and drive awareness and engagement with Responsibility programs throughout corporate functions through consistent communications. Associate will have primary responsibility to design and maintain a program measurement system to track progress across Responsibility goals, managing data for reporting and survey response. Associate will work in conjunction with the Director to write and execute Responsibility report. Associate will work at both the enterprise, and brand level, to support internal/external communications including website and all inquiries. Associate will work closely with Director and Vice President on Board, Leadership and Committee presentation materials. Associate will manage department-wide Communications calendar and strategy. Associate will be responsible to manage projects from design to launch, liaising with multiple internal business functions, including Legal, Global Supply Chain, Marketing, Procurement, Store Communications, Store Operations and Corporate and Store Facilities, Field Leadership, and Merchandising teams.
- Identify and drive programs that leverage ascena’s sustainability performance; articulate and advance more sustainable practices working in collaboration with Responsibility team, other business functions and external stakeholders.
- Support execution of long term program goals.
- Measure and track performance to long term goals.
- Create and maintain Responsibility performance dashboard.
- Leverage industry network and associations to design and deliver meaningful programs to support the Responsibility long range plan.
- Partner with corporate and brand teams to define client engagement strategies with ascena programs
- Launch programs defined by Responsibility strategy related to Carbon Reduction, Sustainable Materials, Waste minimization and Packaging.
Program Reporting & Analysis
- Design Measurement and Impact framework, developing and managing a systematic, enterprise approach to formal and informal reporting on ascena’s Responsibility strategy progress and results
- Write bi-annual Responsibility Report, and annual Responsibility Highlights, in collaboration with Director
- Calculate impacts and cost savings from projects and provide analysis of results.
- Review options for next-generation solutions for tracking and reporting of sustainability programs and make recommendations regarding viable solutions.
- Create survey tracker and manage survey responses.
- Identify and manage Award and Recognition applications.
Internal and External Communication
- Primary responsibility for program communications internally for associates in the Home Offices and the Field; maintain program information on company intranet updated.
- Manage all external inquiries, in partnership with PR and other functions; maintain ascena Responsibility external website information.
- Work with the Corporate & Store Facilities to promote energy conservation and waste minimization in stores and Home Offices.
- Align with Marketing/social media teams to drive ascena program awareness.
- Represent ascena’s interests with regards to corporate responsibility in trade organizations, working groups and forums.
- Evaluate external conferences and opportunities to share the ascena message.
Research and Analysis
- Use benchmarking and research skills to proactively identify issues, risks and trends that can affect the brand. Provide analysis and make brand-appropriate recommendations.
- Participate in key industry events to benchmark and track leading practices.
- Track developments in environmental laws and regulations impacting the brand.
Drive associate awareness and collaboration
- Partner with Corporate Communications and HR to promote CSR programs internally and drive associate engagement across corporate offices.
- Develop calendar of events to drive CSR engagement internally.
- A passion for using the tools of business to achieve business and societal objectives. Specialized training/educational focus of corporate responsibility issues and sustainability strategy is preferred.
- Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent).
- MBA preferred.
- A minimum of 5-8 years of progressively responsible experience in similar roles; experience implementing similar programs in a corporate environment strongly preferred.
- Technical knowledge and extensive experience with relevant standards and reporting frameworks, including GRI, SASB, IIIRC and others.
- Track record of writing and managing the development and publication of formal corporate responsibility / sustainability reports.
- Understanding of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and experience with evolving approaches to corporate reporting on alignment, prioritization and progress.
- Ability to understand trends in Responsibility expectations, perform assessments of current performance and develop recommendation plans for action. Understanding of the evolving expectations for Responsibility and sustainability among various stakeholders (e.g., shareholders, investors, ESG ratings firms, governments, non-governmental organizations, etc.)
- Exceptional ability to develop positive relationships and lead through influence with internal partners, build consensus and prioritize action and results.
- Outstanding communicator with excellent presentation and strong written and oral communications skills.
- Exceptional project management skills and the ability to structure and manage multiple initiatives simultaneously and drive to completion.
- Ability to work within a complex and often ambiguous environment, to drive rigorous, fact-based recommendations to senior management.
- Team oriented, collaborative, diplomatic and flexible.
- Self-starter with a demonstrated ability to thrive in a team-based environment that is fast-paced and dynamic.
- Strategic thinker able to identify and champion new ideas and approaches.
- Strong writing and communication skills.
- Hyper attention to detail.
- Ability to facilitate meetings with internal and external stakeholders.
- Ability to prepare reports, presentations and recommendations based on a high volume of data.
- Strong PowerPoint development skills
- Technology Skills - MS Word, MS PowerPoint, MS Excel, Internet-research
Equal Employment Opportunity
The Company is committed to hiring and developing the most qualified people at all levels. It is our policy in all personnel actions to ensure that all associates and potential associates are evaluated on the basis of qualifications and ability without regard to sex (including pregnancy), race, color, national origin, religion, age, disability that can reasonably be accommodated without undue hardship, genetic information, military status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other protected classification under federal, state, or local law. We do not discriminate in any of our employment policies and practices. All associates are expected to follow these principles in all relationships with other associates, applicants, or others with whom we do business.