What is a Public Relations Officer?
A Public Relations Officer (PR Officer) is the person in charge of all communications, public relations, and public affairs in a company. He or she leads a team tasked with projecting the right image of the company’s brand to its target audience. The Public Relations Officer, along with his team, is in charge of organising and managing all PR events and media relations for an organisation.
Public relations manage individuals’ and organisations’ brand image by establishing a reputation through the media. This is accomplished through promotional efforts, campaigns, and media relations. Most businesses and organisations are concerned with the public’s perception of their brand. As a result, many companies hire Public Relations Professionals to manage their public interactions and messaging.
A position as a Public Relations Officer may be right for you if you want to work in public relations while also developing your leadership skills. Public Relations Specialists tend to be predominantly enterprising individuals, which means that they are usually quite natural leaders who thrive at influencing and persuading others. They also tend to be artistic, meaning that they are creative and original and work well in a setting that allows for self-expression.
As a Public Relations Officer you will be expected to handle the following tasks:
- Establish communication goals
- Develop press releases
- Assess the companies or clients public image
- Write speeches
- Review marketing material
- Correspond with news media
- Respond to public events and inquiries
According to the National Careers Services UK, salaries for Public Relation Officer in the UK range from £18,000 to £50,000.
On the other hand, according to Salary Expert, the average public relations officer’s gross salary in London, United Kingdom, is £70,810, or £34 per hour. This is £14,140 more than the average Public Relations Officer salary in the United Kingdom. They also receive an average bonus of £7,180.
Working hours are typically 9 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. but may be extended due to the demands of your workload. Because client deadlines are critical, you’ll have to work until all outstanding jobs are completed. Long hours can result from press releases, crisis management, and pitches. Some organisations have a much stronger long-hours culture than others. Working as a self-employed or freelancer is possible, but it is more common for experienced Public Relations Professionals. Career breaks and part-time work are also options. Public Relations Officers may work for private companies, nonprofit organisations, or government and educational institutions. They may also work independently for a public relations firm, providing contract consultation services to their clients.
A Public Relations Officer is a professional who works in a company’s or organisation’s public-facing communications. They frequently hold administrative or executive positions in their organisations and collaborate with a team of Public Relations Professionals. A PR Officer determines how much and what kind of communication their client has with the press and the general public. If their client desires transparency with the public, the Public Relations Officer can devise a strategy for communicating with which media outlets and in what tone. They establish a communication standard that will be used in all future public communications. If the client wishes to improve their public image, the Public Relations Officer can assist them in doing so. A Public Relations Officer can write press releases, which are documents that an organisation distributes to the media to inform the public about its actions or new initiatives. The contents and subject of the press release are at the discretion of the organisation. Nonetheless, it is the Public Relations Officer’s responsibility to choose the wording and tone of the press release to best present the information. To determine the company’s or client’s public image, Public Relations Officers can examine polls, read reviews, and monitor their client’s online presence. When a Public Relations Officer first starts working with a client, he or she may go over previous press releases and public events to see how the client has handled press and public relations in the past. This assessment can help them decide how to approach the media and whether or not to change their public image. Companies are constantly looking for ways to improve brand recognition, and a Public Relations Officer can provide unique insight and recommendations on how to do so. If a client is required to give a speech at a conference or to the press, the Public Relations Officer may write it. The client, like when writing press releases, can choose the topic of the speech. Nonetheless, the Public Relations Officer employs their understanding of phrasing and public perception to write a speech that conveys the client’s desired perception. Furthermore, the Public Relations Officer may decide when a client should give a speech based on shifting public perception. For example, if a client is passionate about a particular cause, there may be a current news event on which they wish to comment in order to bring attention to the cause. With regard to communicating with the public and their clients’ perceptions, public relations and marketing departments have various responsibilities. A Public Relations Representative could collaborate with the marketing group to create marketing collateral that accurately portrays their client. Additionally, they guarantee that all marketing materials support the objectives they establish for their client in terms of public relations. Press releases are given and received by Public Relations Professionals. For instance, the Public Relations Officer may utilise their connections to learn what the news is and when the press wants to release it if there is information about a client that the press intends to publish. They disseminate information that the client wants to share with the public through those same relationships. The Public Relations Officers’ responsibility is to decide which events their clients attend and how to respond to invites they choose to decline. Clients might get invitations or information about public events. The Public Relations Representative may also manage the guest list, send out invitations, and manage attendees during an event for a client. Additionally, they are in charge of handling all press inquiries that the client receives. They choose which inquiries are important and what comments their client should send in response.
A relevant degree is desired, and the majority of graduates entering this field will need an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in a related discipline, such as:
- Public Relations
Studying these topics can help you develop the abilities you’ll need to succeed in this line of work, establish vital connections you can utilise to advance your career, and compile a network of media contacts.
must have skills:
The skills that you will have to possess or acquire in order to become a Public Relations Officer include:
- Communication skills, both verbal and written
- Marketing skills
- Understanding of the way news outlets work and how to work with them most effectively
- Conflict resolution skills
- Attention to detail
- Negotiation skills
- Commercial acumen and thorough familiarity with current events
- Ability to successfully set priorities for jobs and projects.
- Ability to work under pressure
- Organisational and management skills
- Initiative and creativity
As this is a very competitive career, pre-entry expertise in PR, communications, marketing, and media for PR Officers is extremely desirable.
Finding relevant paid experience, though, could be challenging. Experience in one of the following areas can give you a leg up when looking into Public Relations related positions:
- Volunteer work or internship
- Experience in writing for student magazines, radio or university societies.
- Graduate training schemes
- Work placements
By joining the Chartered Institute of Public Relations(CIPR), you can learn about internships and graduate training programs . There is a discounted cost for students. Your membership will also give you access to information on training programs, including those that lead to the designation of Chartered Public Relations Practitioner.
A professional organisation, like the PRCA (Public Relations and Communications Association), can provide networking opportunities, information, resources, and training necessary for those looking for employment within the PR sector.
When looking into PR job opportunities, you can start with experience in an entry-level role to advance as a Public Relations Officer. While pursuing your degree, you can work as an intern to gain some introductory experience in this field. Applying for related positions like event management will help you network and develop the skills necessary to succeed as a Public Relations Officer. You can become familiar with the media and the responsibilities of a Public Relations Officer after a few years of experience. After that, you can consider applying for executive or officer-level roles in public relations.
Check out these companies you could work for:
This two-year, eight-month full-time degree is offered by the University of the West of Scotland London, with students able to choose from a variety of start dates. Throughout their studies, UWS London students have access to industry experts, guest lecturers, and seasoned professionals. Students can participate in the UK’s Public Relations epicentre because this program is offered on the London Campus, in the heart of the United Kingdom.
The University of the West of Scotland in London provides a one-year foundation degree that will prepare you for undergraduate courses and lay the groundwork for a business or accounting related career. This course will introduce you to current research sources as well as practical case studies. Students will learn about important business courses while also improving their English language and study skills. With the knowledge obtained through the Business Foundation Programme, you will be well equipped to go to the undergraduate level with confidence.
This one-year full-time program at the University of the West of Scotland’s London Campus combined MBA and digital marketing components. . The MBA portion of the course examines business practices and operations such as accounting, finance, and human resources, as well as their interrelationships. This course enables students to specialise in digital marketing in a more specific way while also gaining a broad business perspective.