Nearly three- quarters (73 percent) of corporate communications professionals across Asia expect that their function will increase in influence over the next two years, according to The Pulse, an annual survey by specialist recruiter VMA Group. Almost half (44 percent) expect their total communications budget to grow with a further 47 percent predicting that it will remain the same.

As a result, communications teams are expanding rapidly: 37 percent of internal communications functions grew in size over the last 12 months and 28 percent expect to grow again in the coming year. However the most significant area of expansion was digital: three quarters of digital teams took on more staff over the past year and over 40 percent expect to add extra headcount in 2015/2016.

Forty percent of practitioners in mainland China are forecasting team growth compared to just 25 percent in Singapore and 31 percent in Hong Kong.

In terms of strategic importance, there is a roughly even split in Asia, with 51 percent of communications functions having a seat on their organisation's executive team, a slight increase on last year's results (48 percent).