Abbey National is creating its first dedicated internal relations
department and a community affairs programme, as a result of a
restructuring by new director of corporate affairs Nick Chaloner.
Hired in May from Hill and Knowlton Greece, Chaloner has also
established three new media relations teams.
These are: mortgages and banking, lifestyle savings, and charity and
corporate. Chaloner will add an internal relations team next year as the
group steps up its internal activity.
Abbey National will relaunch its in-house magazine as Abbey View, which
will be delivered quarterly to the home addresses of its 23,000
Staff will also be invited to Kilroy-style events where they can take
the floor and question top management.
From next year, Abbey will also trial a nationwide community affairs
programme for the first time. This will focus on local branches working
with schools on environmental projects.
Chaloner has brought in three extra media relations officers, bringing
the total to seven. His department comprises 80 people, most of whom are
customer relations staff.
He said: ’We have adopted a totally different approach to PR. We are
more proactive, our internal communications has been re-launched and we
are working more closely with the retail marketing team.’