One of the benefits offered to members of the Motor Industry Public Affairs Association is a free JobSearch service. This highlights the latest vacancies to members who may be looking for a new challenge as well as enabling members to have their profile featured (in confidence if preferred) when they are in the market for a career move.
Currently, we’re being inundated with hot new job opportunities – ranging from an exciting student placement at Kia Motors as press office administrator, to a press information office role at Škoda UK to a position as a senior account director with a leading consultancy representing Nissan and Infiniti based in Dubai, UAE. And, those are just the opportunities added in the last 24 hours.
Although there is a lot of great talent already working in automotive PR, the new jobs cannot be filled by shuffles alone. So we need to attract new professionals to develop their careers in the motoring world. No longer the preserve of petrol heads and car nuts, working in this industry today requires a wide range of skills and interests.
These opportunities seem to indicate that despite current economic concerns, good public relations professionals (at all levels) are in great demand. There’s probably never been a greater need to communicate effectively with a wide range of audiences.
It’s certainly been a busy introduction for operating committee member, Andy Francis, of Performance PR, who recently took over the voluntary role of managing the behind the scenes co-ordination of JobSearch from the very capable Jeremy Clarke (LawsonClarke).
In addition to the jobs promoted via JobSearch, I’m also aware of new positions coming up within various automotive companies. These are often the result of shuffles created by current practitioners taking up PR posts elsewhere. However, we’re seeing such vacancies increasingly filled in-house by candidates moving from within other functions in the organisation.
MIPAA offers a range of workshops, meet the media events and other ways of helping these PR “newbies” get up to speed on what is involved in working in the profession, as it is not always recognised that there are specific skills and knowledge required in PR.
Although it sometimes appears that the internal view is that anyone can work in PR, it could be seen as encouraging that the discipline is recognised as one which managers increasingly need to have on their corporate career CV.
Provided there are sufficient positions to ensure career opportunities for those with specialist PR skills and experience, then I don’t suppose it hurts to have more generalists get an insight into the profession. Indeed, some might argue that having a grounding in other disciplines or management roles provides a better foundation for building a PR career and improving understanding of public relations itself within organisations.
Either way, I’m definitely getting a feeling that the PR world, at least in the automotive sector, is in a healthy state at present.