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How PR employers can become a workplace of choice, with Alice Weightman, founder of Hanson Search

Welcome to the PRmoment Podcast. On the show this week it’s the third of our mini-series we’re doing on 'PRs Hybrid Future'.

If you want to catch up with the other podcasts in the series, have a listen to the first one with Imogen Osborne, founder of The Pulse Business, about a research project she has undertaken into face-to-face and virtual working environments post-COVID.

In the second of the series, we spoke with Rebecca Taylor-Cottle, head of communications, Northern Europe at Citrix about the potential for flexible working to change the landscape of how, and where, people work in PR.

Today we talked to Alice Weightman, founder of Hanson Search about its Future of the Workplace Report.

Some headlines from the report:

  • 30% of marketing and communications employees question whether their current career is right for them, and are considering alternative paths

  • 45% rank ‘team, people and culture’ as most important, followed by flexible working (39%) over competitive salary and bonus as the most important elements of a job package

  • 15% of PR employees looking to be able to work abroad

The PRmoment webinar caravan continues. Check out for the following sessions:

Top Tips for Tiktok Marketing!

The intersection of Digital PR and SEO

And What are the most popular KPIs in PR?

Here’s a summary of what Alice and PRmoment founder, Ben Smith, discussed.

3 mins Alice talks us through the topline findings of Hanson’s Future of the Workplace Report, including an insight into what PR employers and PR employees are currently thinking!

3.30 mins The lockdown paradox: 58% of PR people believed their productivity had increased during lockdown but 65% believed their mental health deteriorated.

4 mins 58% of PR people have missed face-to-face collaboration with their colleagues.

6 mins Why 30% of PR respondents to the survey were looking at a complete career change.

6.30 mins Only 3% of PR people want to work from the office full time and 41% of PR employees want to decide where they work, week by week.

7 mins 62% of PR employees who are thinking of going freelance are female.

7.30 mins Culture, team and working benefits are more of a priority than salary for PR employees at the moment.

10 mins To what extent has remote working meant PR employees have had to put their career progression on hold?

11 mins Why are 30% of PR people considering a total career change?

14 mins Is PR’s business success during lockdown one of the main reasons its people have experienced increased mental health challenges?

17 mins Is PR about to become a freelance, contract dominated employment market?

18 mins Why, when demand outstrips supply in an employment market, the next phase is a big increase in freelance markets.

21 mins How do PR employers become a workplace of choice?

22 mins The shift in benefits from office-based benefits to lifestyle based benefits.

24 mins Does virtual working mean a company slowly erodes?

28 mins Is culture really more important than salary when people are making an employment decision?

29 mins What is the current normal signing-on bonus for PR employees?

30 mins Is the number of people PR firms need to recruit currently an impossible task? Is it partly because of Brexit, partly because of the growth the sector is going through and partly because of COVID?

31 mins Will this all end up in the off-shoring of PR talent?

32 mins What is the current returning to office plan in PR?

33 mins Is there any consistency in PR’s approach to time in the office?

34 mins The power in PR currently rests with the candidates, and that’s not going to change any time soon!

35 mins Alice talks about how PR salaries have increased by 20% in the last two years.

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