The Charlotte Observer is looking for an ambitious and creative reporter to join McClatchy’s NC Investigations Team. With reporters based at The Observer and The Raleigh News & Observer, this team focuses on accountability journalism and is a fearless watchdog to powerful institutions.
Excellent Charlotte Observer investigative reporters are hungry to find and publish exclusive news of importance to our community. They like to produce quicker-turnaround reports as well as deeper dives. They are skilled at developing sources, attracting tips and regularly obtaining public records. They love to collect and analyze data.
They are ambitious storytellers who understand that deep reporting and creative sourcing is vital to good storytelling. They are self-starters who are always ready to collaborate on the team and across the newsroom. They are committed to fairness and accuracy, in fact and in tone, and bring a strong grounding in journalism ethics.
The best candidate for this job is also insatiably curious about what is important to readers in Charlotte and in North Carolina, and is driven to use all tools, as well as digital metrics and social media, to draw more audience to our vital journalism.
This reporter will:
- Be hungry to produce exclusive accountability reporting that our audience will want to read.
- Have a knack for finding fresh, compelling story ideas, with a clear focus on topics and issues of keen interest and relevance to local readers.
- Find and use data from a wide range of sources to deepen reporting and storytelling.
- Develop broad sources representing the racial, ethnic, economic and political diversity in North Carolina.
- Write stories that are complete, fair and provide context for readers, even on tight deadlines.
- Use judgment in determining best digital tools and platforms for conveying news to readers in varying circumstances.
- Engage the public: Present events, news coverage and enterprise/public service reporting in a manner in which readers understand the need for action/involvement.
- Help formulate departmental goals and actively seek to meet them.
- Participate in training sessions and seek out learning opportunities to keep skills updated in a continuously evolving industry.
- Be a master of social media – both as a news-gathering tool and as a way to push the news out quickly and build our audience, as well as your own brand.
Education and knowledge:
- College degree required.
- At least two years of digital journalism experience is preferred.
- Background in accountability journalism, video and online media preferred.
This reporter also must have:
- Fluency in SEO, and the art and science of readership and engagement.
- Enthusiasm for learning new skills and technologies.
- Strong interpersonal skills, including empathy and the ability to take and give constructive criticism.
- Comfort with a job that will be demanding, fast-paced and constantly evolving.
- Fluency in Spanish is highly desirable.
- Spot local, regional or national trends and find ways to make them relevant to Observer readers.
- Commitment to accurate, ethical journalism.
- Understanding of audience metrics – which stories are resonating with readers and which are not? And the desire to mine that data for guidance on how to build and engage an audience.
- The ability to regularly enhance stories with third-party video, embedded tweets, documents and links.
- Must have reliable transportation. Must have a valid driver’s license and vehicle insurance required (at least minimum insurance required for the state in which the employee works).
Applications should include a cover letter, three references and links to writing samples. Applications without cover letters will not be considered.
What we’ll bring: As a journalist at McClatchy, you will join a supportive, flexible, collaborative team. McClatchy strives to be an employer of choice, and our benefits package is made with this goal in mind. With a focus on well-being and daily life, our package options includes healthcare coverage for employees and their families, financial protection from expected and unexpected expenses, multiple no-cost wellness resources and even coverage for four-legged friends.
Our overall benefit package also includes a 401(k) with employer match, competitive paid time off and corporate holidays, and a variety of mental health benefits. For more information on McClatchy's benefit plan, please visit McClatchyLivewell.com.
About McClatchy: Our impact is growing every day. We have 30 growing news markets. Over 65 million monthly readers. 56 Pulitzer Prizes. A strong portfolio of dynamic partnerships and smart investments. Our award-winning journalism, digital reach, and commitment to innovative growth have never been stronger.
As a member of the McClatchy family, you are part of an exciting culture dedicated to creating a work/life balance and consistent opportunities for growth—a place where you have a voice and the ability to impact our future. It’s an exciting time to be here. Our company is experiencing the most transformative period in its history. We’re growing rapidly in the digital space and delivering award-winning journalism in innovative ways.