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CIPR Annual Report 2019

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The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) has published its 2019 Annual Report, celebrating its success in a year which helps define its purpose “more clearly than ever before”. 

The report (below) outlines the work of the Institute through the four key areas as outlined in our five-year strategy; leading practice development, building a resilient community, championing lifelong learning, and advocating public relations. 

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CIPR Annual Report 2019

  1. 1. Annual Report 2019 PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS –– cipr.co.uk Strong, resilient, sustainable.
  2. 2. 2 Contents CIPR Annual Report 2019 Foreword 3 Strategy 5 Building a resilient community 12 Leading practice development 7 Advocating public relations 22 Championing lifelong learning 18 Financial Report 32 Governance 29
  3. 3. We have defined our purpose more clearly and this report highlights our four key areas of work President’s foreword 3Back to contents CIPR Annual Report 2019
  4. 4. We have defined our purpose more clearly than ever before. From the vantage point of Spring 2020, my presidential year in 2019 already seems like another world, but perhaps this is all the more reason to reflect on what we were able to achieve during more normal times. Our main achievement from my perspective was agreeing our five-year strategy, involving elected members, volunteers and the wider views of our members and stakeholders. As a result of this work, we have defined our purpose more clearly than ever before and this report, divided into the four key areas of our work, is one of the first tangible results of that effort. In January, we produced a client guide for businesses making use of PR services, and a recruitment guide for those directly hiring PR professionals onto their staff teams. We also carried out and shared interviews with a number of CEOs and business leaders talking about the importance of PR to their organisations. Our public affairs work focused on ethical communications during the general election, and we received a government grant to produce and distribute a series of videos to SMEs about how to prepare their organisations for Brexit. While this was going on, much of our staff time in 2019 we devoted to preparing for a major digital transformation project, replacing most of our existing IT infrastructure with a new integrated system that will serve our members and customers better than ever before. This went live in mid-December 2019 and the benefits it brings will start to become clear during 2020. All of this was possible because our members continued to support our organisation, and our volunteers worked hard to maintain a busy programme of events and activities up and down the country, as well as internationally. I’d like to thank all of them for making a success of the past year, particularly the elected members who have worked closely with me on our Council and Board of Directors. Emma Leech Found.Chart.PR FCIPR President’s foreword 4 CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  5. 5. Our strategy will provide a framework for decisions in the organisation over the next five years 5 Strategy CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  6. 6. 6 In 2019, in consultation with members, we developed a new five-year strategy which outlined the four major roles we play. This document is structured around those four key areas of our work. Leading practice development To ensure that our members have timely access to the most up-to-date resources to take forward their professional practice. Building a resilient community of practice To create the best and most valuable community that practitioners will want to be a part of and contribute to. Championing lifelong learning and the value of chartership To create a streamlined professional development pathway focused on Chartered Practitioner status. Advocating public relations with employers, clients and the wider public To create a better understanding of the standards and services that public relations professionals can offer. How will we deliver our strategy? The strategy will provide a framework for decisions in the organisation over the next five years. Our time and other resources will be committed towards building the outcomes that we have identified in our strategy. We will be more market-led, responding quickly to changes in the working environment for PR professionals. We will also be more plan-led, thinking about medium-term priorities, and ensuring that work undertaken at any time produces sustainable benefit for members and the wider public. Our Board and Council will provide general leadership in delivering this strategic direction, but where possible, decision making will be devolved. This will require us to change and adapt our governance and the way our Council and committees are structured, to ensure that development projects can be assembled, drawing together teams of staff and volunteers as and when needed. CIPR strategy animation developed to engage members in our five-year plan. Strategy CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  7. 7. We published a new guide designed to help public relations professionals prepare for Brexit 7 Leading practice development CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  8. 8. We aim to create a profession that can be sustained in the face of technological, economic, social and political pressure. Challenges such as the mental health and wellbeing of practitioners, the development of a genuinely diverse profession and the sustaining of ethical competence remain at the core of our work. Consistently high professional standards assure the integrity of members’ work and advice. 2019 HIGHLIGHTS The biggest national conference in more than a decade On 13 November, a sell-out audience of more than 200 public relations and business professionals gathered at the British Library in London for our biggest annual National Conference in more than a decade. The Conference, ‘Preparing for the Digital Future’ – chaired by Rachel Royall Chart.PR MCIPR – explored the opportunities and challenges faced by PR professionals in the face of rapid technological advances. We published three podcasts recorded from the sessions, led by Tony Langham (Chief Executive and co-founder of Lansons), Peter Cheese (Chief Executive, Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) and Dr Stephanie Hare (researcher and broadcaster) which are all available on Soundcloud. A range of behind-the-scenes video discussions with speakers from the day were produced and can be found on YouTube. New crisis management & terror related events guidance We partnered with the government’s Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) to deliver best practice communications guidance on the preparation and management of threats from hostile actors. The guide features a communications toolkit designed to help PR professionals mitigate the harmful effects of a terrorist incident on brand and business reputation, value and continuity. It highlights the importance of employing strategic communications as an effective measure in helping to deter a terrorist incident in the first instance. Leading practice development Rachel Royall, Chair of CIPR Health, and Joanna Blackburn, Government Digital Services at #CIPRConf19. 8 CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  9. 9. BBC Presenter Jeremy Vine celebrates with CIPR Excellence Awards attendees. The CIPR presentation in regard to crisis management was amazing. Dealing with various elements in the realization of a terror situation and the actions to be taken. It is at this stage you realise the importance of an action and training plan when dealing with these situations. Also ownership and delegation of important tasks will be key to success. All this information was backed up with collateral which was extremely professional. Thank you for this presentation – very inspiring. John Hennessy, Club and Operations Manager St. James’s Hotel and Club Our #AIinPR panel collaborated with Southampton Data Science Academy CIPR’s Artificial Intelligence in PR (AIinPR) panel issued several research papers and guides on the use of AI within the profession. In April, the panel worked with the Southampton Data Science Academy to publish two new webinars to help members understand the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning in business and public relations. Research suggests currently, 12% of PR skills can be complemented or replaced by AI and this could increase to as high as 38% in five years. The CIPR Excellence Awards In June, the CIPR Excellence Awards returned, showcasing diverse talent and the impact the profession is having on business and society. The Awards – hosted by BBC Presenter Jeremy Vine – celebrated the stand-out agencies, teams and individuals from the last 12 months in front of a packed audience of more than 600 PR professionals at The HAC’s Artillery Garden in London. The awards featured 31 categories, including two new accolades for ‘Best Use of Influencer Relations’ and ‘Outstanding New PR consultancy’. State of the Profession 2019 PR’s most statistically robust survey was published in April. For the second year running this was delivered in partnership with Chalkstream, an agency with a research specialism, led by a Chartered PR Practitioner. 9 LEADING PRACTICE DEVELOPMENT CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  10. 10. The report focused on three new areas: • The numbers of practitioners who attended a fee-paying school • Exploring details of professional qualifications • The sharp rise in reported mental health issues from the previous year’s survey. The report highlighted the continuing lack of ethnic and social diversity within the profession. It found more than a quarter (28%) of the public relations workforce are privately educated – four times the national average. These privately-educated PR professionals secure more senior roles, earning an average of £13,000 more per year than state-educated colleagues. 92% of PR professionals described themselves as white compared to 88% in 2018 and 90% in 2017. The nature of PR work is identified as contributing directly to poor mental health amongst practitioners, according to the report. More than a fifth (21%) of respondents said they had a diagnosed mental health condition and over half (53%) said work contributed highly to their diagnosis, with unrealistic deadlines and unsociable hours cited as common causes. The report revealed a significant number of line managers fail to address mental health concerns when raised by employees. Almost a quarter (23%) of respondents who discussed concerns about their mental health with a manager said that nothing happened as a result of those conversations. CBI Leadership Development Day In October 2019, we partnered with the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) to deliver an exclusive leadership programme workshop for members. This allowed senior members the opportunity to better plan and prepare for external changes that will impact their business success. This one-day workshop focused on the key strategic issues that companies and organisations face in the year ahead, the challenges and opportunities organisations may face from political change and how to better anticipate and manage these risks. State of the Profession 2019 report. 10 LEADING PRACTICE DEVELOPMENT CIPR Annual Report 2019 STATEOF THE PROFESSION 2019#StateOfPR cipr.co.uk Back to contents
  11. 11. ‘Influence’ won best Association Magazine The PR industry’s premier publication, Influence, was awarded ‘Best Magazine for a Professional Association or Membership Organisation with a circulation of under 20,000’ for the third year running at the 2019 Memcom Awards. Our exclusive member magazine – delivered in partnership with Think Publishing – saw off competition from the likes of the Market Research Society and the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, to claim the award. Influence has now won eight accolades since its inception in 2016. The magazine continues to resonate with the PR industry, attracting praise for its brave design and astute ability to assess contemporary issues through a PR lens. The Creative Shootout by Launch PR In January, the Creative Shootout returned. The event, hosted by Corporate Affiliate member, Launch PR, celebrates the best creativity across the public relations and marketing professions. Nine agencies were briefed by charity ‘A Plastic Planet’ and were given four hours to produce a compelling and creative campaign. PR agency, Wire, emerged victorious and, together with their new brief, won support from discovery and native advertising platform, Outbrain, broadcast specialist agency, markettiers4dc, and creative comms agency, Launch. We were proud to support The Creative Shootout once again, along with other associations including CMA and IAB UK. ‘Brexit – A Practical Guide for Members’ Brexit dominated the political and economic conversation in the UK during 2019. In February we published a new guide designed to help public relations professionals prepare for Brexit. The guide delivers information relevant to the profession on matters such as data protection, copyright law and travel. It also highlights the role public relations professionals can play in helping businesses prepare for every eventuality, particularly if the UK leaves the EU with no deal. The practical guidance was published amid growing political uncertainty, ahead of the UK’s scheduled exit from the European Union and alongside our monthly Brexit reports.   Rachael Clamp, Influence Editorial Board and Rob Smith, Editor of Influence on stage at Memcom 2019. We published a new guide designed to help public relations professionals prepare for Brexit 11 LEADING PRACTICE DEVELOPMENT CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  12. 12. Our regional and sectoral groups and networks provide a vital platform 12 Building a resilient community CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  13. 13. CIPR membership provides access to a professional community sharing ideas, inspiration, encouragement and expertise; enabling members to learn from and support each other whilst fostering a resilient community. A culture of sharing and mutual support offers the best prospect for everyone to respond to challenges such as AI and digital communication. Our regional and sectoral groups and networks provide a vital platform to sustain this collaborative culture. 2019 HIGHLIGHTS CIPR Corporate Finance In 2019, the Corporate Finance group committed to professional development by providing ample learning opportunities through regular lunchtime talks, connecting members with national and international speakers. CIPR East Anglia In 2019, the East Anglia group hosted their annual conference, which brought more than 60 practitioners together to discuss professionalism in communications, wellbeing, building brands and influencer marketing. The group also collaborated with the Association for Project Management to deliver a workshop exploring the impact of good stakeholder engagement. The event hosted more than thirty communications professionals and project managers and covered topics including: • Planning engagement, identifying risks and making sure engagement delivers • Delivering engagement, how to do it, what to consider and measurement • Tools and techniques to support change with effective stakeholder engagement. Building a resilient community 13 CIPR Annual Report 2019 Jenni Field Chart.PR MCIPR talking at the CIPR East Anglia Best PRactice conference on comms in 2019 beyond. Back to contents
  14. 14. CIPR Greater London The Greater London group shone a light on the value of PR during London Technology Week at a gathering of more than 40 people to discuss whether London is the global centre of excellence for PR and comms for the technology industry. Their annual charity pub quiz also raised £1,000 for iprovision, CIPR’s benevolent charity. On World Mental Health Day, the group proudly collaborated with Birkbeck, University of London to evaluate ways that PR professionals can manage a key challenge within the industry: the ‘always on’ culture which can be detrimental to our mental health. CIPR Health 2019 was a productive year for CIPR’s Health group. Following a relaunch earlier in the year, the group delivered a skills guide and webinar aimed at improving the understanding of mental health and wellbeing amongst practitioners working in public relations. The skills guide was endorsed by mental health charity, Mind. The guidance is designed to help employers build a working environment that supports positive mental health and advises practitioners on how to take care of their mental wellbeing. The member-only, half-hour webinar features health experts, professionals in health communications and those with experiences of living with a mental health condition, discussing how to take positive action on mental health in the profession. The resources followed the research from the State of the Profession survey – which revealed the link between the nature of PR work and poor mental health amongst practitioners. The results show that 21% live with a diagnosed mental health condition whilst almost a quarter (23%) of respondents who discussed concerns about their mental health with a manager said that nothing happened as a result of those conversations. CIPR Inside CIPR Inside group hosted their #ChangingTheConvo 2019 Conference. 160 Internal Communications practitioners attended to analyse practical solutions to raise the credibility of internal communications. The conference was supported by a new report – Measurement and ROI for Internal Communication – in partnership with the Institute of Internal Communication, which reveals the importance of internal communications by encouraging communicators to demonstrate, by effective measurement, how they can make a significant impact in their organisation. CIPR International The CIPR International Group continue to have a wide number of nationalities represented on their committee, through whom they published flyers and blogs to all members (one third of whom are based overseas). They organised many events on subjects including fintech, mental health and AI, as well as their 14 BUILDING A RESILIENT COMMUNITY CIPR Annual Report 2019 CIPR Health’s ‘Understanding Mental Health and Wellbeing’ skills guide was endorsed by Mind. This guide is worth 5 CPD points Understanding Mental Health and Wellbeing Skills Guide PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT – cipr.co.uk Back to contents
  15. 15. annual lecture, given in 2019 by Dr David Landsman, a former UK Ambassador to Greece and Director of Tata Ltd. In order to reach a wider community they have edited podcasts of all events and promoted these to members. Due to their large cohort of members in Africa, the Group supported professional learning and development in that continent and developed a new group in Mauritius, which attracted 20 new CIPR members on the day of its inauguration. CIPR Midlands The new year kicked off with the first ever #PowerandInfluence Live event debating the idea that ‘everyone is entitled to PR representation’. The group attended the annual Midlands PR Conference: The Business of Communications. The conference – hosted at Birmingham City University – examined the role PR plays to make organisations effective at engaging with their audiences, externally, internally and across the digital landscape. Mental health played a key role in shaping the group’s activities in 2019 and in July – in collaboration with the PRCA – they hosted the ‘Resilience, Agility and Flexibility in PR’ and ‘Creative Services Mini-Conference’; an event hosted in response to the current mental health epidemic our profession faces. CIPR North East Our North East group held a successful #GetChartered Assessment Day with all attendees achieving chartered status. The group were also active in advocating the importance of PR in business for management and strategic growth at the Newcastle Start Up Week. CIPR Northern Ireland The Northern Ireland group delivered a seminar – hosted by Maud Davis – on how to achieve better client relationships. The event highlighted the value of PR whilst engaging with those working in-house and in consultancy. Later in the year they hosted an event on the benefits of chartership with CIPR President, Emma Leech and local Chartered Practitioners. At the PRide Awards in October Translink, Northern Ireland’s main public transport provider, were the big winners of the night, taking home four Gold Awards for their PR campaign to launch the country’s first-ever Rapid Transit Service – Glider. 15 BUILDING A RESILIENT COMMUNITY Jo Hooper, Founder of the Mad and Sad Club, gives a lightning-talk at the CIPR Inside #ChangingTheConvo conference 2019. CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  16. 16. CIPR Not-for-Profit In June, we relaunched the Not-for-Profit group – a group which works with charities, social enterprises, associations and local government. The group kicked off with a ‘meet the journalists’ event to equip PR professionals with skills to engage with reporters. CIPR Scotland In September, CIPR Scotland’s Future Leaders Forum launched ‘Inspiring Future Leaders’, a series of inspirational and thought-provoking events where influential communications industry leaders, entrepreneurs, and other top professionals shared personal stories and learnings from their careers. Alex Aiken, Executive Director of Government Communications, was the inaugural speaker at the event in Edinburgh, which was attended by over 50 young professionals. CIPR Wessex CIPR’s Wessex group strengthened relationships with local universities by hosting a ‘Meet the Professionals’ event in collaboration with Bournemouth University; an event which provided networking opportunities for PR students with local business owners, agencies and other CIPR members. They also harnessed local talent by sponsoring the Universities ‘Best Student Dissertation’ Awards. Nine members became chartered at the first Chartership Assessment Day in the North East. The event was hosted by nesma. Nine members achieved chartered status at the first Chartership Assessment Day in the North East 16 BUILDING A RESILIENT COMMUNITY CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  17. 17. Race in PR research The findings from our State of the Profession Report 2019 revealed that ethnic diversity within the PR industry hit a 5-year low – 92% of PR practitioners described themselves as white. The industry widely acknowledges that diverse teams are more creative, insightful and effective, however, the figures show we are becoming less diverse year-on-year. In 2019, CIPR began work – in partnership with Jungle Green Market Research Agency – on a qualitative research study conducted with 17 BAME practitioners which explores the lived experiences of BAME PR professionals. Commenting on the findings from State of the Profession, Avril Lee MCIPR, Chair of our Diversity and Inclusion group commented: “The PR industry agrees that diversity is important for attracting the best talent to bring fresh thinking, creativity and insights into new audiences, but our actions speak louder than our words. And our actions are building a profession of White British public school alumni; we are less diverse than we’ve been for the past five years, with 92% of our industry being White British (compared to 88% in 2015) and nearly one in three practitioners (28%) coming from fee-paying schools, compared to only 16% in 2015.” DODS Women in Communications conference and the BME PR Pros conference In April 2019, we supported the DODS Women in Communications Conference to examine the barriers currently facing female professionals and future leaders in communications and learn how to overcome them and raise the visibility of women as senior leaders in communications. According to our State of the Profession research, just over two-thirds (67%) of the public relations industry is comprised of women, but the number of women occupying board and director-level positions remains stubbornly low. In November, we supported the inaugural BME PR Pros conference – ‘Comms in a Post-Mainstream World’. The sold-out event provided an opportunity to share knowledge, reflect on changes within the profession, and discuss how the profession is evolving with sessions on ‘Black Twitter’, ‘Reporting Truth in a Fake News World’ and ‘Why Credibility is the Real Currency’. BUILDING A RESILIENT COMMUNITY CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents 17 Our actions speak louder than our words
  18. 18. Maintaining a competitive advantage in a rapidly changing world 18 Championing lifelong learning CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  19. 19. Maintaining a competitive advantage in a rapidly changing world requires a commitment to lifelong learning. CIPR membership enables this through MyCPD – an online platform which makes it easy for members to learn, gather and share resources, book events and record everything they do to develop themselves. Chartered status is the normal aspiration of those entering the profession, while many also complete formal qualifications or training. This learning opens career paths into senior roles both within the public relations sector and beyond. 2019 HIGHLIGHTS Good Governance Institute’s Festival of Governance 2019 President Emma Leech addressed the Good Governance Institute’s ‘Festival of Governance’ – urging businesses to put public relations at the heart of strategic decision making and highlighting the importance of a highly skilled public relations professional when key issues arise. The speech preceded a panel discussion exploring how public relations can support governance by strengthening relationships and challenging leadership. Various high- profile ethical collapses in 2019 highlighted the greater need for businesses to prioritise the role of public relations in corporate governance. CPD completions Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is the route to professionalism in PR. In an industry that never stands still, CPD enables practitioners to proactively develop the knowledge and skills they need to stay relevant. CPD completions over the past four years: • 2018/2019 – 2,241 • 2017/2018 – 2,225 • 2016/2017 – 2,280 • 2015/2016 – 1,894 Championing lifelong learning 19 CIPR Annual Report 2019 CIPR President Emma Leech addressed senior practitioners at an exclusive Good Governance Institute event. Back to contents
  20. 20. 300th Chartered Practitioner September 2019 saw the 300th public relations practitioner gain chartered status, following an assessment day looking at skills, knowledge and competencies in ethics, strategy and leadership. Chartered Practitioner status is the highest level of professional accreditation in public relations and our research projects continue to highlight the career benefits of chartership for our members. At the end of 2019, 323 members were Chartered PR Practitioners. New Digital Diploma In April, we launched the CIPR Specialist Diploma in Digital Communications to equip PR professionals with a strategic understanding of social and digital communication. The Digital Diploma – taught at postgraduate level – explores social media community and stakeholder engagement, the legal and ethical implications of digital communications and the impact of digital technologies on business and society. CIPR qualifications Each year hundreds of PR practitioners undertake CIPR professional qualifications to boost their careers. 2019 saw a 26% increase in the number of students completing CIPR qualifications, with 574 students from countries around the world becoming CIPR qualified. Students from as far as Kenya and Quatar came to celebrate their success with family and friends at our 2019 Graduation Ceremony, hosted at Ketchum’s Southbank Office in July. The event was attended by more than 150 guests from around the UK and overseas. 20 CHAMPIONING LIFELONG LEARNING CIPR Annual Report 2019 Paul Howlett-Davy Chart.PR MCIPR became the CIPR’s 300th Chartered PR Practitioner. Back to contents
  21. 21. New training courses To support the profession to adapt to new and existing challenges, as well as strengthen our training offering, we developed nine new training courses. Our State of the Profession survey 2019 identified the changing social and digital landscape as the biggest challenge facing the industry, so we focused on providing more digital and social training courses to help practitioners improve their technical and tactical ability. The survey also highlighted that crisis and issues management was becoming a more commonly undertaken activity, so we launched a new ‘social and digital crisis management’ course. New training courses in 2019: • Coding: Essentials for PR • High performing PR leadership • Introduction to digital photography • Introduction to market research • Introduction to podcasting • LinkedIn for PR professionals • Paid media management • Personal branding masterclass • Social and digital crisis management We focused on providing more digital and social training courses to help practitioners improve their technical and tactical ability 21 Delegates on our ‘How to create video content’ course in November 2019. CHAMPIONING LIFELONG LEARNING CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  22. 22. 22 Collaborating on common issues and demonstrating the value we bring 22 Advocating public relations CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  23. 23. Employers and clients are the primary beneficiaries of professionalism in public relations. A key driver behind the growth of professionalism in PR is the perception that it contributes value to recipients both directly and indirectly. We actively engage with business and the sectors, collaborating on common issues and demonstrating the value we bring. 2019 HIGHLIGHTS The Government’s Professional and Business Services Council In 2019, we joined the government-sponsored Professional Business Services Council (PBSC). Our remit spans across the PBSC Working Groups with a focus on ‘Skills and inclusion’, ‘Importance of place’ and ‘PBS communications’. Joining the PBSC provides us with an opportunity to help shape the future of the professional business community, represent the public relations profession and use our voice to communicate the sector as a global success story. DODS Public Affairs conference In January 2019, DODS invited us to become an official partner of the Public Affairs Conference. The conference focused on delivering public affairs in a changing world and explored the role of public affairs professionals having to face increased uncertainty in their roles related to political, economic, social and technological insecurity. Marketing in Construction conference The construction industry faced a series of negative headlines in 2018; severe safety problems, quality issues, executive pay and high-profile business failures were key examples which have damaged the sectors’ reputation. Advocating public relations The conference focused on delivering public affairs in a changing world 23 CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  24. 24. Partnering with the Marketing in Construction conference enabled us to hear key case studies from our peers and to reflect on the lessons learned, and it offered an opportunity to discuss ways to improve the sector’s reputation. After the successful conference in February, our Construction and Property Sector Industry Group (CAPSIG) were invited to the Marketing in Construction Summit in February 2020 to present the CIPR’s Crisis Management for Terror Related Events guidance. Data Science Foundation’s Data Science Awards Together with our AIinPR Panel, we supported the inaugural Data Science Foundation’s ‘International Data Science Awards’ in Silicon Valley. The awards – judged by an esteemed panel of international experts – recognise excellence and innovation in data science, artificial intelligence and advanced analytics. World Energy Congress CIPR’s Energy Leadership Platform (ELP) attended the 24th World Energy Congress (WEC) in Abu Dhabi this year, where they spoke on the importance of strategic public relations to global leaders.The event followed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between H.E. Eng. Fatima Al Foora Al Shamsi, of the World Energy Congress, and the CIPR’s former Deputy CEO, Phil Morgan Chart.PR MCIPR. The Panel were featured in a discussion on ‘Refuelling the Talent Pipeline: The energy professional of the future’ which concluded the importance of communication and that public engagement is central to the future of the energy industry. The discussion highlighted the growing relevance of “soft skills” within the energy sector and the value of public relations in delivering and communicating social value, particularly on issues such as climate change and talent retention and attraction. H.E. Eng. Fatima Al Foora Al Shamsi, of the World Energy Congress, signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the CIPR. 24 ADVOCATING PUBLIC RELATIONS CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  25. 25. The Times Higher Education Conference We were represented by President, Emma Leech, at the Times Higher Education (THE) Conference in July. During the conference, Emma sat on a panel reflecting the important role PR plays in a period of heightened challenge for the higher education sector. In the discussion, she highlighted the key role marketing plays in ensuring universities can continue to compete for students. This challenge offers higher education an opportunity to focus on its core strengths: the quality of student experience and the authentic personalised approach – public relations can play a key role in securing this. Call to NHS leaders to value and protect PR Comms In January 2019, our Health group published an open letter welcoming the focus on public engagement in NHS England’s published ‘Long Term Plan’. The group called for “consistent, open and transparent conversations that help to drive improvement and address the real issues that affect our communities”. In the letter, the group advocated the value of public relations by highlighting the importance of our relationships with the public. To sustain and strengthen these relationships we must engage “communication teams from the beginning in the development of their plans.” The Cairncross review We welcomed a proposal to create a new Institute for Public Interest News to protect high-quality journalism and prevent the collapse of the local news industry. The Cairncross Review report warned that a lack of resource for investigative journalism and democracy reporting, covering discussions at local councils and magistrate courts, poses a threat to the long-term sustainability of democracy. The recommendations suggest the new Institute could operate similarly to the Arts Council by conducting research, building partnerships with universities and improving accessibility and readership of quality online news. 25 ADVOCATING PUBLIC RELATIONS CIPR Annual Report 2019 The work delivered by your communications and PR teams should be valued, and truly be at the heart of the planning, implementation and delivery of the NHS Long Term Plan CIPR Health Group Back to contents
  26. 26. DCMS call to tackle fake news In February 2019 we welcomed a Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) report on tackling fake news. The report concluded the fabric of democracy is threatened by disinformation and data misuse and called for a mandatory Code of Ethics for social media companies to be enforced by an independent regulator. President Emma Leech welcomed the report declaring “Fake news and disinformation have far-reaching consequences for our industry and wider society. We should be bold in our condemnation of these tactics.” Lords report on regulation in the digital world We welcomed a House of Lords Select Committee on Communications report, calling for greater regulation of tech companies to be overseen by a new, overarching regulatory framework. The ‘Regulating in a Digital World’ report – published in March – calls for a new Digital Authority to regulate the digital environment. It points to the failures of self-regulation by big tech companies, as well as “out of date” regulatory mechanisms which, it argues, have failed to recognise the increased role digital plays in society. The Digital Authority, to be overseen by a new joint committee of both Houses of Parliament, would be guided by 10 principles. These are designed to make “the internet a better, more respectful environment which is beneficial to all”. They include ensuring businesses are open to scrutiny, that the internet remains open to innovation and competition and that ethical consideration puts users and society at the centre of services. Government paper to tackle online harms We responded to a joint Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Home Office report calling for an independent body to regulate digital companies, with powers to impose fines on those that breach their duty of care. The Paper calls for digital companies to outline measures they are taking to ensure a duty of care, through signing up to a code of practice as well as a series of proposals to tackle the prevalence of harmful content, including “false or misleading information”. These measures include social media companies having to submit annual ‘transparency reports’ report on the levels of this content on their platforms. Designed to make the internet a better, more respectful environment 26 ADVOCATING PUBLIC RELATIONS CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  27. 27. Call to respect Wikipedia rules We called on creative professionals to respect the rules of Wikipedia, after it emerged that an advertising agency working on behalf of North Face edited photos on the company’s Wikipedia page. We worked with Wikipedia to provide guidelines for practitioners on engaging with the Wikipedia community. The guidance – first published in 2012 – has become the global standard for brands and organisations working with Wikipedia. Oxfam’s approach to reputation management We echoed the concerns raised by the Chair of the Charity Commission about the conduct of Oxfam in their handling of allegations against members of staff operating in Haiti. The Charity Commission report says that senior executives believed that encouraging and facilitating the resignation of the Country Director was the best way manage the reputational risk to the organisation and minimise the disruption to its humanitarian programmes, instead of making them subject to formal disciplinary procedures. CIPR AI in PR Panel – Public Standards Review Our Artificial Intelligence (#AIinPR) Panel called on the government to prioritise data privacy, claiming it is vital that the public is made aware of how their data can be used to power AI-enabled services. In a written response to the Committee on Standards in Public Life’s AI and Public Standards Review, the Panel urged the government to adopt a best-practice approach to data privacy, by ensuring all public sector contracts were only awarded to businesses that meet public standards on data and artificial intelligence. Preparing for a no-deal Brexit In the summer we launched a series of short videos and supporting infographics advising businesses on communicating effectively in advance of a potential no-deal Brexit. The initiative was financed by the government’s Business Readiness Fund. The 13 videos featured public relations practitioners providing advice for small and medium-sized PR agencies as well as small businesses across a range of sectors, to support PR professionals with the basic details to ensure they operate in the event of a no-deal Brexit. No-deal Brexit video series aimed at small and medium sized businesses. 27 ADVOCATING PUBLIC RELATIONS CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  28. 28. Recruiting for PR roles We launched a new Client Advisor Service to guide businesses through the process of hiring public relations support. The service connects businesses considering hiring PR staff or agencies with experienced CIPR Client Advisors. The Advisors – all of whom are Chartered PR Practitioners – can help businesses identify their needs and provide support by preparing job descriptions or briefs and joining interviews or pitch panels. The service coincided with the launch of two new CIPR guides sharing best practice advice on how to recruit PR staff and select PR agencies. The guides promote the breadth of public relations’ capabilities and feature practical advice and case studies. ‘Recruiting for public relations roles’ – produced in partnership with Reuben Sinclair – offers advice on how to conduct a successful recruitment process when hiring in-house PR staff. It features information on average salaries and what to include in a job description. ‘A guide to selecting PR agencies and independent practitioners’ shares insight on how to prepare a brief and invite pitches from PR consultancies. PR Pays Launched in 2018, our #PRpays campaign aims to highlight the strategic value of public relations to the business community through a series of exclusive video interviews with senior business leaders. The interviews showcase how public relations contributes to organisational success. The campaign seeks to shift perceptions of PR from a tactical offering to a strategic discipline. The #PRPays video playlist can be found here. Vicki Davis, CEO, Danske Bank speaks to us as part of our #PRPays campaign series. 28 ADVOCATING PUBLIC RELATIONS CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  29. 29. Representing the members and upholding our charter 29 Governance CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  30. 30. Board of Directors All acts undertaken by the officers and staff of the Institute were in the name of, and with the authority of, the Board of Directors. The Board met six times over the year and focused on the overall strategy for the Institute. Day-to-day responsibility was delegated to the Standing Committees and Chief Executive. Council Council’s role is to debate important points of strategy or principle, to provide guidance and perspective to the Board of Directors, and to raise issues of concern for the Board of Directors to pursue. Council met five times over the year. Standing committees In 2020, we will create the new Coordinating Committee with the purpose of overseeing the delivery of the 2020 CIPR workplan and its associated projects. Increased flexibility and resilience Following our move from Russell Square in late 2018, our income fell as a result of no longer having subtenants and room hire. Expenditure likewise fell as budgeted, due to reduced property costs. We had one-off redundancy and recruitment costs in the first half of the year as we restructured the staff team to meet changing operational requirements. The move from Russell Square has increased our flexibility and resilience, allowing us to invest more in our services. It has also enabled us to invest in new IT infrastructure, which went live in the middle of December 2019. This infrastructure will ensure that staff are able to work entirely remotely, that members can communicate directly with each other and form groups of interest on their own, and that our website and database are fully integrated – providing a more personalised and digitised membership experience. We anticipated that membership income would fall in 2019 as Brexit uncertainty caused organisations to delay their commitment to renew, and this indeed proved to be the case. The Awarding Body (qualifications) performed well, and the apparent drop in income shown in these accounts arises from moving Chartership and Client Services into a different accounting line this year. Training income increased in another healthy year of growth. While revenue for the Excellence Awards grew, PRide income reduced, although in line with its normal cyclical pattern. Income raised independently by our national, regional and sector groups remained steady year on year. While the Institute’s reserves have grown for the last three years, the Board recognises the importance of strengthening them rapidly. The budget for 2020 therefore provided for a surplus of £145,000, although in the light of the COVID crisis this will not be achieved. Governance 30 The move out of Russell Square has increased our flexibility and resilience, allowing us to invest more in our services CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  31. 31. Thank you to the volunteers who led the organisation in 2019: 2019 Board of Directors Stuart Bruce Lindsey Collumbell Shirley Collyer (appointed 24 January 2019) Jenni Field (President 2020) Sarah Waddington (President 2018) Ronke Lawal Avril Lee (appointed 24 January 2019) Emma Leech (President 2019) Eva Maclaine Mandy Pearse (President 2021) Steve Shepperson-Smith 31 GOVERNANCE 2019 Council Andrew Bartlett Paul Beckford Michael Blowers Nicola Brown Lindsey Collumbell Jenni Field Daniel Gerrella Andy Green Sarah Waddington Peter Holt Laurian Hubbard Hayley James Shamma Kelly Avril Lee Emma Leech Trudy Lewis Clare Parker Mandy Pearse Chris Pollock Rachel Royall Deb Sharratt Kerry Sheehan Jenifer Stirton Andras Sztaniszlav Chris Taylor Gary Taylor Alison Tobin CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  32. 32. CIPR audited accounts for 2019 32 Financial Report CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents
  33. 33. Financial report Financial report Our audited accounts for 2019 were issued in May 2020 and can be found here. 2019 2018 2017 Income £4,167,924 £4,324,570 £4,308,187 Pre-tax expenditure £4,121,837 £4,293,254 £4,157,725 of which staff costs £1,419,518 £1,339,907 £1,270,216 Pre-tax surplus £46,087 £31,316 £150,462 CIPR Annual Report 2019 Back to contents 33