Communications Specialist (Graphic Design)


About Us:

W.W. Grainger, Inc. is a broad line, business-to-business distributor of maintenance, repair and operating (MRO) supplies and other related products and services. More than 3.5 million businesses and institutions worldwide rely on Grainger for products in categories such as safety, material handling and metalworking, along with services like inventory management and technical support. These customers represent a broad collection of industries, including commercial, government, healthcare and manufacturing. They place orders online, on mobile devices, through sales representatives, over the phone and at local branches. Approximately 5,000 suppliers provide Grainger with 1.6 million products stocked in the company’s distribution centers (DCs) and branches worldwide. Grainger employs 25,000 team members across the globe.

Position Details

Communications Specialist (Graphic Design)
Northern Illinois
Lake Forest, IL

Primary Function:

The interpretation of a message is more than 50% visual. The Communication Specialist focuses on conveying messages to Grainger’s internal and external stakeholders through visuals and graphics. The responsibilities include developing creative designs for email, intranet, social media, careers sites, SharePoint and events. A portion of the individual’s time will also execute social media campaigns.

The Communications Specialist works with fellow communicators and business partners to ensure team members understand the company strategy and are motivated to bring their best selves to work. The role supports the development, management and dissemination of timely and captivating graphics and communications to promote team member advocacy across the global organization. The Specialist recommends and supports the effective use of communications channels, including social media, intranet and mobile, to enhance team member engagement. The individual can use their creative abilities to convey the right messages that best represent Grainger’s branding and culture. This passionate person is a key contributor to the Communications and Public Affairs function fulfilling its vision of being an essential business partner.

Principal Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Works cross functionally and globally to mine and create content (written, visual, audio) in support of Grainger’s business objectives across all internal channels including, but not limited to, company intranet; email; live forums; mobile platforms; and digital signage. 
  • Executes the timely creation, writing, editing, translation, publication, distribution and marketing of all team member internal stories across channels to reach wired and non-wired employees. 
  • Calibrates with business partners on the relevancy of content and identifies and makes adjustments as needed. 
  • Makes technology recommendations to optimize the effectiveness of internal communications; encourages team member use of collaboration communication tools. 
  • Technically proficient in creating and developing graphics and other visual content pieces. 
  • Uses continuous improvement methodology to develop and maintain communication processes and create standardized work.

Preferred Education & Experience:

  • BA/BS degree in Communications/Public Relations, Journalism, English or related field 
  • 1-3 years of in-house communications or agency experience 
  • Previous success in relationship building and influencing without direct authority 
  • Proven success in working in a matrix environment 
  • Exceptional communication skills (written, verbal, new media, etc.) 
  • Technical competencies with mainstream social media, videography, visual & audio platforms 
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail 
  • Results and deadline oriented 
  • Ability to grasp, synthesize and communicate complex business information in clear and concise manner 
  • Proficient in Adobe Creative Suite, especially Photoshop and Illustrator, SharePoint and Microsoft Office, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

Work Environment:

  • Must be able to travel within and outside the United State; up to 15%, depending on business need.


  • Investigation and selection of communications channels to meet business need. 
  • Technology recommendations. 
  • Continuous improvement focus/prioritization. 
  • Productivity focus and operating metrics. 
  • Role will act as a strategic content developer on ‘all team member’ communications, as they relate to a variety of business matters (to enable Grainger’s growth and protect/ advance Grainger’s reputation). 
  • Role will act as the subject matter expert on internal communications for the company (digital assets, intranet, video, new media, etc.) 
  • Purpose and strategic direction of Grainger will be understood by team members. 
  • Team members aligned on business strategy and their role in executing

Working Relationships:

External Partners:

  • External research/benchmarking organizations (evaluate best practices and determine how such practices can be implemented at Grainger); vendors; internal communications networks.

Internal Partners:

  • Global communications network, business and functional partners at all levels, CommsPA teammates.

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