PR News: Industry Grows with the Help of Career-Boosting Programs

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As a person who is employed in the communications area, I've seen the bumpy paths in the industry as well as the smooth streets. The communications field in general has suffered a blow due to the current economy, but many of its industries are still thriving; one of these industries is public relations. According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, 243,000 jobs in 2006 belonged to ''public relations specialists.'' While other areas in the communications arena may be declining, the PR industry seems to have room for positive growth and progress in 2008.

Studies Suggest PR Has a Bright Future

According to a report by Ad Age, even though in December “U.S. media jobs…fell to a 15-year low,” advertising and marketing services, along with other communications and marketing firms, reached a good place as far as statistics go.



People employed in the marketing and advertising sectors have experienced more job security than those employed in other communications areas. The report refers to advertising and marketing services as encompassing a variety of media outlets, including PR agencies. According to the Ad Age Data Center, the field has been moving in a positive direction since 2007.

PR Programs Support and Encourage

Recently, the Institute for Public Relations presented the “Essential Knowledge Project” to PR professionals, which helps PR specialists within the industry. The online guide is intended to help PR professionals with their relationships with clients. The guide speaks about building and managing relationships with “customers, communities, employees, and other stakeholders,” reports the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).

Frank Ovaitt, the institute’s president and CEO, has been quoted by the PRSA as saying that “there is science beneath the art of public relations.” Some of the guide’s available topics are “Crisis Management and Communications” and “Trust and PR Practice,” discussed by specific professors and chairs. Many future topics will focus on corporate PR, other forms of communication with employees, and branding.

The unique program was launched by professors in the communications and business fields, according to the PRSA. The institute wants to support and encourage professional public relations employees in order to facilitate the PR industry’s development. The PRSA website also provides valuable tips to PR professionals to help them progress in their careers, as well as information about accreditation and other programs.

With more programs supporting the industry, it’s no wonder that PR jobs are going to grow 18% by 2016 (starting from 2006), according to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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