The PRCA has very kindly agreed that we can release some of the data from its annual benchmarking survey. The presentation below amounts to a useful barometer of the state of the UK's PR consultancy industry during 2010 and entering 2011, polling more than 200 agencies in the country. There is plenty of interesting stuff in the slides, but findings that jumped out at me included:
  • Both average profit and average margin at PR agencies saw modest increases in 2010 versus 2009.
  • Over-servicing appears to be on the decline, but appears to be a particular problem when it comes to matching actual and timesheet hours at board/partner level.
  • Salary cuts have stabilised, but agencies seem more comfortable tempting employees to stay via bonus and entertainment benefits. Do staff parties count as a retention strategy?
  • The percentage of firms making redundancies has, thankfully, dropped substantially. Hiring plans are cautiously optimistic.
  • Of more concern, many people are leaving the agency industry altogether. 19% going in-house and 15% opting for a complete career change.
  • A shortage of skilled consultants is becoming a more pronounced threat, behind continued concerns over economic growth and fee pressure.
PRCA benchmarking data
View more presentations from ArunSudhaman.