Creative director – one year maternity cover contract

Job posted: 8 January 2020
Closing date for applications: 4 February 2020
Start date: March 2020
Salary: Dependent on experience

We are looking for an experienced creative director to lead the design team in our busy Whitechapel studio. This is a one year fixed-term maternity cover contract with the potential to extend. 


About you

You are a confident and accomplished designer. You thrive on providing creative leadership to other designers – setting them high standards and giving them the support and guidance they need to deliver. And you are an experienced manager, accustomed to running teams and organising work to ensure that it makes its way through your design agency in a timely and efficient manner. 

You have a passion for the craft and the intellectual challenge that goes with truly excellent design, and pride yourself on the quality of your own work. You have particular strengths as an editorial and brand designer, but you are also comfortable reviewing designs for websites and other digital outputs. You keep up to date with current trends and innovations in design, and you are always looking for opportunities to learn new things. 

You communicate clearly and you use this skill to get to the heart of what clients want to achieve when they commission design work – and then to explain what you have done in order to meet this brief. 

You may not have worked with think tanks, charities or universities much – or at all – in the past, but you are interested in what they do and you relish the opportunity to use your skills to help organisations that want to make the world a better place.

Finally, you have permission to work in the UK at the start of your employment.   


About us

We’re a design and digital communications agency focused on ideas that matter. We work with many of the world’s leading think tanks, charities and research organisations. Our main services include publication design, digital design and development, branding strategy and design, information design, and film and animation.

We are a close-knit, hard-working and ambitious agency with a growing roster of clients around the world, including Chatham House, Imperial College London, UNICEF and many more. We have well-established studios in London and Bath, and a start-up office in Washington, DC.

We look after our people and they tend to stay with us – our creative director has been with us for 10 years. She’s about to go on maternity leave and we need someone to fill her shoes while she’s away. This temporary position will be based at our London office, which is in Aldgate and has been fitted out to a very high standard, with a large kitchen and views across the City on one side, and out to Canary Wharf on the other.  


About the job

The creative director role at Soapbox involves a combination of creative leadership and practical management skills. You must ensure that the design work produced by the studio meets our exacting standards, while ensuring that it is delivered on time and on budget. 

We are busy, with each designer juggling multiple projects at various stages of completion at any given time. You must be comfortable working in a fast-paced environment, and maintaining a high level of responsiveness. 

But we also have a strong team of senior designers, each with their own team, who report to the creative director and help you keep everything running smoothly. 

Your role will also be to challenge the design team always to deliver the best results – to strive for innovation, craft and to think strategically about how their work can be effective in the real world. As well as line managing five senior designers, you’ll provide mentoring and on-the-job training to more junior members of the team, ensuring that they take advantage of development opportunities that arise. And you will lead by example, consistently delivering excellent work in the projects you take on yourself. 

We pride ourselves on excellent customer service, so direct client interaction is a big part of this role. The creative director is expected to cultivate partnerships and discuss work with clients to ensure we truly understand what they’re looking for, so that we are then able to surpass expectations with creative delivery.

Reporting to the CEO, you will also work closely with other members of the senior management team. You’ll also work with colleagues in operations and business development to understand client briefs, helping to quote and pitch for new work, and allocating incoming projects to the most suitable designers. 

An appreciation of the importance of what our clients do – if not always a full grasp of the detailed subject matter – is essential for all our employees. 

We are looking for a new colleague who is excited about shaping content and finding creative design solutions to communicate complex information and ideas.


What we offer

We offer a competitive salary and a good benefits package with some great perks, including:

  • 25 days annual holiday plus the festive break
  • Cycle-to-work scheme and tech loans
  • Flexible working around core hours
  • A calendar of regular social events

On the rare occasions when you’ll have to work overtime, we’ll make sure you get the time back.


How to apply

Please email your CV, portfolio and covering letter to by 3 February 2020.