Senior Copy Editor at Code for Africa

July 5, 2024
Application ends: July 12, 2024
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Job Description

Calling all master wordsmiths, are you ready to copy edit stories that change lives? Code for Africa (CfA) has an immediate remote vacancy for a Senior Copy Editor to join our Knowledge team to support initiatives across the continent. The ideal candidate will be highly proficient in English and have extensive experience working with a range of content from training presentations and marketing materials to grant proposals and donor reports. Candidates must have a demonstrable track record of professional copy/sub-editing in a journalistic or technical environment. An understanding of technology innovation, or digital activism/democracy topics will be an added advantage. The successful candidate will join CfA’s Knowledge team, which spearheads digital storytelling initiatives and data journalism training partnerships as well as community initiatives. These partnerships include a network of more

than 50 partner newsrooms and 30 partner universities across Africa, as well as CfA communities such as the WanaData women data science/storytelling network, the africanDRONE civic drone community and the sensors.AFRICA sensor journalism initiative. The Knowledge team is also the custodian of other major CfA public infrastructure, such as the continent’s largest open data portal, openAFRICA, and Africa’s largest census data portal, HURUmap.

The successful candidates will work as part of a multinational and multilingual team using digital collaboration tools to create content for a global audience and international media partners.

Required: minimum requirements include

  1. Minimum of 5 years copy/sub-editing experience in a fast-paced newsroom or in digital journalism or non-governmental organisation.
  2. Exceptional command of the English language with impeccable grammar, spelling, punctuation, and syntax.
  3. Demonstrable ability to improve the meaning and clarity of copy through correct grammar, consistency of voice, tone and terminology, factual accuracy, logical sentence and document structure, and readability of the final product.
  4. Demonstrable experience in copy editing a range of content, such as grant proposals, donor reports, presentations, social media content, and blogs
  5. Proven ability to tailor content for a variety of audiences, channels, and formats, always avoiding a “one size fits all” editing mindset.
  6. The ability to work fast, creatively and accurately in a remote fast-paced deadline-driven environment to deliver content that is credible, consistent and always factually correct.
  7. Strong organisational and decision-making skills.
  8. Digital-first workplace skill-sets, including proficiency in collaborative work solutions such as Google Workplace (Google Docs, Slides, Sheets, etc.), Slack (or equivalents such as Teams, etc), and project management tools like Trello (or equivalents such as AirTable, etc)

Location: Remote
Languages: English
Preferred but not required: Arabic, French, Swahili, or other major African languages.

About the Role The successful candidate will join CfA’s Knowledge team which spearheads data liberation or digitisation and analysis for internal programmes at CfA and projects at external partners, including media and universities, assisting with data-driven storytelling or infographics as part of our mission to improve citizen and civic watchdog access to actionable information. You will be the team’s content champion, taking rough copy and shaping into concise, factual, easy-to-read content. You will work closely with a variety of experts and guide them to improve their writing skills to ensure better draft content. You will go beyond checking spelling and grammar, and ensure that content is factually correct, flows logically and is consistent with other content (such as previous reports). You should have solid news judgement and a thorough understanding of the different styles of writing and subject matter relevant to a leading civic technology organisation. You’ll pay close attention not only to the words on the page, but the document structure as well ensuring all products are consistent and neat. This includes paying attention to fonts (type, size and colours), tables (sizing, colour, formatting, borders etc), and the use of images (positioning, captions, size etc).

You must be comfortable with working alongside a number of other experts, including copywriters, researchers, data analysts, designers, and strategists.

Responsibilities

  1. Copy/sub-edit (i.e., correcting format, grammar, syntax, spelling, and style) all content
  2. Verify facts and statistics using standard references sources
  3. Proofread and revise content for logical flow, clarity, consistency and conciseness
  4. Ensure that documents are well structured and neatly formatted
  5. Guide other members of staff on how to improve their rough drafts in order to reduce editing further down the line
  6. Assist in the creation and maintenance of an inhouse style guide