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Become A Communications Editor

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Working As A Communications Editor

  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $56,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Communications Editor Do

Editors plan, review, and revise content for publication.

Duties

Editors typically do the following:

  • Read content and correct spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors
  • Rewrite text to make it easier for readers to understand
  • Verify facts using standard reference sources
  • Evaluate submissions from writers to decide what to publish
  • Work with writers to help their ideas and stories succeed
  • Develop story and content ideas according to the publication’s style and editorial policy
  • Allocate space for the text, photos, and illustrations that make up a story
  • Approve final versions submitted by staff

Editors plan, coordinate, and revise material for publication in books, newspapers, magazines, or websites. Editors review story ideas and decide what material will appeal most to readers. During the review process, editors offer comments to improve the product, and suggest titles and headlines. In smaller organizations, a single editor may perform all of the editorial duties or share them with only a few other people.

The following are examples of types of editors:

Copy editors review text for errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling and check for readability, style, and agreement with editorial policy. They suggest revisions, such as changing words and rearranging sentences and paragraphs to improve clarity or accuracy. They also may carry out research, confirm sources for writers, and verify facts, dates, and statistics. In addition, they may arrange page layouts of articles, photographs, and advertising.

Publication assistants who work for book-publishing houses may read and evaluate manuscripts submitted by freelance writers, proofread uncorrected drafts, and answer questions about published material. Assistants on small newspapers or in smaller media markets may compile articles available from wire services or the Internet, answer phones, and proofread articles.

Assistant editors are responsible for a particular subject, such as local news, international news, feature stories, or sports. Most assistant editors work for newspaper publishers, television broadcasters, magazines, book publishers, or advertising and public relations firms.

Executive editors oversee assistant editors and generally have the final say about what stories are published and how they are covered. Executive editors typically hire writers, reporters, and other employees. They also plan budgets and negotiate contracts with freelance writers, who are sometimes called “stringers” in the news industry. Although many executive editors work for newspaper publishers, some work for television broadcasters, magazines, or advertising and public relations firms.

Managing editors typically work for magazines, newspaper publishers, and television broadcasters, and are responsible for the daily operations of a news department.

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How To Become A Communications Editor

A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, or English, combined with previous writing and proofreading experience, is typically required to be an editor.

Education

Employers generally prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, or English. They also prefer candidates with mass- or cross-media experience.

Those with other backgrounds who can show strong writing skills also may find jobs as editors. Editors who deal with specific subject matter may need previous related work experience. For example, fashion editors may need expertise in fashion that they gain through formal training or work experience.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Many editors start off as editorial assistants, writers, or reporters.

Those who are particularly skilled at identifying good stories, recognizing writing talent, and interacting with writers may be interested in editing jobs. 

Other Experience

Editors also can gain experience by working on high school and college newspapers, and for magazines, radio and television stations, advertising and publishing companies, or nonprofit organizations. Magazines and newspapers also have internships for students. For example, the American Society of Magazine Editors offers a Magazine Internship Program to qualified full-time students in their junior or senior year of college. Interns may write stories, conduct research and interviews, and gain general publishing experience.

The ability to use computers is necessary for editors to stay in touch with writers and other editors and to work on the increasingly important digital media or online side of a publication. Familiarity with electronic publishing, graphics, Web design, and multimedia production is also important, because more content is being offered online.

Advancement

Some editors hold management positions and must make decisions related to running a business. For them, advancement generally means moving up to publications with larger circulation or greater prestige. Copy editors may move into original writing or substantive editing positions, or become freelancers.

Important Qualities

Creativity. Editors must be creative, curious, and knowledgeable in a broad range of topics. Some editors must regularly come up with interesting story ideas and attention-grabbing headlines.

Detail oriented. One of an editor’s main tasks is to make sure that material is error free and matches the style of a publication.

Good judgment. Editors must decide if certain stories are ethical or if there is enough evidence to report them.

Interpersonal skills. In working with writers, editors must have tact and the ability to guide and encourage them in their work.

Writing skills. Editors must ensure that all written content has correct grammar, punctuation, and syntax. Editors must be able to write clearly and logically.

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Communications Editor Career Paths

Communications Editor
Communications Manager Communications Director Marketing Director
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Marketing Director
Director Of Marketing & Development
9 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Owner Marketing Director
Director Of Digital Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Editor Owner Communications Director
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Editor Owner Marketing Vice President
Vice President Of Marketing & Communications
12 Yearsyrs
Senior Editor Founder Public Relations Director
Media Relations Director
5 Yearsyrs
Communications Consultant Public Relations Manager
Manager Of Corporate Communications
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Consultant Public Relations Manager Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Communications Consultant Marketing Manager Creative Director
Digital Director
9 Yearsyrs
Marketing Communications Manager Manager Of Corporate Communications
Internal Communications Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Marketing Communications Manager Social Media Manager
Manager Of Digital Media
5 Yearsyrs
Marketing Specialist Digital Marketing Specialist
Online Marketing Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Marketing Specialist Marketing Manager Social Media Manager
Content Director
7 Yearsyrs
Marketing Specialist Freelance Marketing Consultant Web Developer
Web Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Office Manager Marketing Manager Marketing Manager/Project Manager
Communications Project Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Managing Editor
Publications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Managing Editor Content Manager
Senior Content Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Managing Editor Public Relations Specialist
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Manager Of Corporate Communications Marketing Manager/Project Manager Social Media Manager
Digital Communications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Manager Of Corporate Communications Marketing Manager/Project Manager Content Manager
Digital Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Communications Editor?

Communications Editor Demographics

Gender

Female

59.6%

Male

31.9%

Unknown

8.5%
Ethnicity

White

63.0%

Hispanic or Latino

13.6%

Black or African American

11.4%

Asian

8.3%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

43.5%

French

20.3%

Chinese

5.8%

Russian

5.8%

Italian

5.8%

Portuguese

2.9%

Greek

2.9%

German

2.9%

Mandarin

1.4%

Slovak

1.4%

Hindi

1.4%

Tagalog

1.4%

Korean

1.4%

Arabic

1.4%

Hmong

1.4%
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Communications Editor Education

Schools

Syracuse University

11.8%

New York University

11.8%

San Jose State University

5.9%

Northern Illinois University

5.9%

George Mason University

5.0%

University of Nebraska - Lincoln

5.0%

Oregon State University

5.0%

University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire

4.2%

Michigan State University

4.2%

Ohio State University

4.2%

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

4.2%

University of Southern California

4.2%

University of Memphis

4.2%

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

4.2%

University of Alabama

3.4%

University of California - Berkeley

3.4%

University of North Texas

3.4%

Northwestern University

3.4%

Auburn University

3.4%

University of Maryland - College Park

3.4%
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Majors

Journalism

26.1%

English

16.2%

Communication

16.0%

Writing

5.9%

Business

5.1%

Public Relations

4.6%

Agricultural Public Services

3.1%

Marketing

3.1%

Psychology

2.2%

Graphic Design

2.2%

Political Science

2.0%

Law

2.0%

General Education, Specific Areas

1.8%

Elementary Education

1.7%

Photography

1.5%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.5%

Fine Arts

1.3%

Education

1.3%

Liberal Arts

1.3%

Philosophy

1.1%
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Degrees

Bachelors

53.8%

Masters

25.8%

Other

13.4%

Doctorate

2.9%

Certificate

2.8%

Associate

1.4%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$56,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$34,000
Min 10%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$56,000
Median 50%
$90,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Amazon
Highest Paying City
Arlington, VA
Highest Paying State
District of Columbia
Avg Experience Level
3.0 years
How much does a Communications Editor make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Communications Editor in the United States is $56,186 per year or $27 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $34,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $90,000.

Real Communications Editor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Communications Editor-Cosmetics, N.A. William Reed Business Media Inc. New York, NY Jan 16, 2012 $85,000
Internal Communications Editor Morgan Stanely & Co. LLC New York, NY Nov 07, 2011 $75,000
Editor-Rating Communications Moody's Shared Services, Inc. New York, NY Mar 14, 2011 $75,000
Editor-Corporate Communications LVMH Fragrance Brands Us LLC New York, NY Dec 01, 2011 $70,000 -
$80,000
Membership Communications Editor Friends of The National Zoo Washington, DC Jan 25, 2016 $65,000
Editor-Rating Communications Moody's Investors Service, Inc. New York, NY Jul 17, 2009 $63,049
Communications Editor Humanscale Corporation New York, NY Jan 15, 2015 $60,000
Editor and Communications, International Audience Demand Media, Inc. Santa Monica, CA Sep 10, 2015 $55,000
Blog and Communications Editor Betterment Holdings, Inc. New York, NY Feb 25, 2013 $53,000
Communications Editor East West Bank Pasadena, CA Sep 11, 2015 $50,000
Communications Editor Jelfin LLC New York, NY Nov 15, 2011 $48,000
Communications Editor East West Bank Pasadena, CA Aug 28, 2014 $47,000
Business Communications Editor Namco Bandai Games America Inc. Santa Clara, CA Jan 02, 2010 $47,000 -
$65,000
Communications Editor Grand Supercenter, Inc. Lyndhurst, NJ Oct 01, 2012 $45,225
Communications Editor Grand Supercenter, Inc. Lyndhurst, NJ Oct 01, 2009 $45,225
Communications Editor Dehel, Inc. New York, NY Sep 07, 2010 $43,827
Communications Editor Dehel, Inc. New York, NY Oct 16, 2010 $43,827
Communications Editor CEAD Slainte Inc. New York, NY Oct 01, 2010 $43,000
Communications Editor CEAD Slainte, Inc. New York, NY Oct 11, 2010 $43,000
Communication Editor Smigin LLC New York, NY Mar 09, 2016 $42,909
Communications Editor Fanbridge, Inc. New York, NY Nov 08, 2010 $42,241
Communications Editor Kalman Management Beverly Hills, CA Nov 25, 2014 $42,000
Communications Editor National Acoustics, Inc. New York, NY Sep 15, 2013 $41,740
Communications Editor Tzell Travel LLC New York, NY Sep 09, 2010 $41,500
Communications Editor Tzell Travel LLC New York, NY Sep 22, 2010 $41,500
Editor, Multimedia Communications Link Media, Inc. San Francisco, CA Oct 01, 2012 $40,676

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Top Skills for A Communications Editor

  1. Web Application
  2. Online
  3. Press Releases
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Led the development of online user interfaces and related user documentation for cutting-edge online payroll and employee self-service applications.
  • Composed and distributed online press releases to generate interest in developments.
  • Created Adopt-A-Pet tool by partnering with local animal shelters to feature animals available for adoption increasing site visitation.
  • Investigated and reported news stories in education, business, public safety, health and enterprise for an online publication.
  • Maintained company Facebook and Twitter accounts.

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Top 10 Best States for Communications Editors

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Massachusetts
  3. Rhode Island
  4. Virginia
  5. Connecticut
  6. New York
  7. California
  8. Delaware
  9. New Jersey
  10. Washington
  • (197 jobs)
  • (190 jobs)
  • (16 jobs)
  • (265 jobs)
  • (76 jobs)
  • (547 jobs)
  • (731 jobs)
  • (22 jobs)
  • (92 jobs)
  • (115 jobs)

Top Communications Editor Employers

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Jobs From Top Communications Editor Employers

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