In-house PR departments at public sector bodies and blue-chips have
replaced agencies as the biggest employer of freelance PROs, fresh
figures revealed this week.
According to PR recruitment firm xchangeteam, briefs from agencies have
slumped from 70 to just 30 per cent of its work in the past six months
as a result of the economic downturn.
Contracts from the public sector and blue-chips have risen from 30 to 70
per cent in the same period.
This turnaround comes on top of a boom in the freelance sector for
xchange-team, which has more than 2,000 freelances on its books, claims
to have had 20 per cent more consultants working in October than in
Charlotte Adams, xchangeteam marcoms manager, said the recession has led
to firms and organisations, in particular charities, looking to recruit
freelances to boost in-house teams, rather than hiring PR agencies to
carry out the work.
She said: 'Agencies are getting less work and are thinning it around
their internal resources to save money.'
Adams added that freelances with specialisms in public sector work,
healthcare, internal communications and crisis management are in
increasing demand rather than those with more general media relations