Beames has taken the newly created role of head of corporate comms at the Government's procurement agency. At the Department for Education and Skills she was head of strategic development.
Reporting to director of PR and sponsorship Oliver Hickson and chief executive Alan Bishop, Beames will lead a team of three at the COI. She effectively replaces Janice Collins (neé O'Reilly) who left to relocate to Yorkshire (PRWeek, 16 November 2006).
Beames said: ‘Priorities include raising awareness of the COI's wide range of services, in particular the Directgov website and Government News Network.'While Collins had dual responsibility for corporate comms, PR and sponsorship, Beames will concentrate on corporate activity. PR and sponsorship will continue to be overseen by Hickson.
Beames leaves the DfES after two years, having reported to head of comms strategy and planning Stuart Dickenson, who will recruit for her replacement shortly.Prior to the DfES, Beames worked in the Home Office press office as senior news planner.
She was previously at Munro & Forster Communications, based in the agency's issues and campaigns division.
The COI outsources PR for government departments via its roster of 31 agencies, with an annual budget of around £11m.
It also sources services ranging from advertising and direct marketing to internal comms via the COI ‘framework', which comprises 28 separate agency rosters.
PR and sponsorship spend through the COI continues to grow, despite the fact that government departments are increasingly purchasing their PR independently of the outsourcer (PRWeek, 2 February).