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Help Wanted Ad Offers Rare Glimpse Into Strategic Marketing Gameplan

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A job description for a new position at Servus Credit Union
sheds light on the organization’s strategic priorities in a rare
display of corporate transparency

You can clearly tell what’s on the minds of those around the Servus C-suite. A recruitment ad for the new Senior Manager/Marketing Strategic Initiatives placed by Servus Credit Union reveals the organization’s key marketing priorities in remarkable detail. The new position is being created to tackle an ambitious list of strategic challenges, including an ethnic/multicultural strategy, a massive intranet undertaking and (of course) social media.

You can read the complete, original ad here on page 2 of this article.

Among the new senior manager’s responsibilities, he or she will be expected to “research and develop a social media strategy and potential policy for Servus in fiscal 2011,” and “work alongside the interactive team, HR and other key marketing professionals to articulate a strategy around this growing marketing channel.”

Servus will also be reassessing the strategic role of its corporate responsibility initiatives in coming months. The credit union’s Community Investment Program will be reevaluated while simultaneously ramping up its financial education initiatives and “operationalizing financial literacy.”

The hairiest part of the new position is sure to entail what Servus calls the “Product Optimization Project,” a mission-critical initiative to ensure the credit union’s products are successfully integrated into a new core data system when Servus makes the switch in December 2011. If you’ve ever worked through a system conversion before, you know how painful they can be.

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Implementing the intranet isn’t going to be any cake walk either. Servus is looking to combine the intranets of four separate credit unions into one single system. As intranet project manager, the Sr. Manager of Strategic Initiatives will “fulfill responsibilities laid out in the charter and will work with a project manager, executive sponsor (CMO), Steering Committee, project teams and external vendor to ensure that the project is delivered on time and on budget.” Sounds like a lot of political skills and consensus-building could be involved.

One peculiar aspect of the new position seems to involve a possible expansion of services beyond the credit union’s financial roots. The successful candidate is expected to develop a competitive intelligence white paper on “health and/or wellness as a fourth area Servus may wish to participate.”

Each individual project will be given a start and end date, and last in duration of anywhere between 3-12 months. Servus officially classifies the position as “temporary,” saying it expects the job to last 24 to 36 months. For as many major initiatives the credit union intends to undertake, that seems like an optimistic prediction.

Reality Check: The size and scope of these very challenging projects would swamp most managers.

The job was posted January 30, 2011, although the position may already be filled, as it is no longer listed on the company’s “Careers” page.

With $10 billion in assets, 400,000 members, 2,000 employees and 100 branch locations, Servus Credit Union is one of Canada’s largest financial institutions.

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  1. Wondering how Henry Cavill will be able to fill both jobs at once?

  2. Thank you to The Financial Brand for noticing our merger integration position for Servus Credit Union. We have many new strategies to develop and execute upon, and you are right, we are looking for the best in marketing communication professionals. We pride ourselves in being a transparent brand and for progressively improving upon what we do best – deliver outstanding member service. Not a result of your article yet coincidental in timing, we had reposted this position at the end of January to narrow the focus to social media and project owner of our new intranet. We had a contract person in place for two months who assisted with a few of the other integration projects. So if you know of anyone who is interested in the Senior Manager, Interactive Marketing Initiatives, feel free to connect with me directly.

    Gail Stepanik-Keber
    CMO, Servus Credit Union
    Alberta, Canada

  3. Quite honestly, if I was looking for a job, this is exactly the kind of position I would want. But I’m not sure I’d be able to tackle everything within three years, at least not if I did everything as thoroughly as I’d like. It’s good to hear that the responsibilities have been split into separate positions. Either role would be a great job.

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