Third of PRs fail to measure their comms activities, report finds

Measurement has been identified as the top skills gap in communications for the second year running, according to a report by the PR Academy.

Research carried out by the training and education provider found more than a third (35 per cent) of respondents did not measure their comms activities.

In terms of skills gaps, budget management came second, cited by 44 per cent, followed by crisis management (37 per cent) and digital comms (35 per cent).

The research showed that digital comms is the number one skills gap that respondents would like to address in the next 12 months.

PR Academy director Kevin Ruck said: "The need for communicators continually to learn and develop skills is a recurring theme, but it is for a very good reason. Communication skills can rarely be learned once because they are in continual development or emergence. Digital communication skills are a case in point and in turn they have implications for measurement and crisis management skills.

"What our research indicates is where there are changes in students’ training needs and priorities based on their professional experiences."

This year’s study also asked whether respondents perceived senior managers as understanding that communication management is not just a tactic – more than a third of respondents thought they did not.

The survey revealed that senior managers were thought to be better at external than internal communications.

More than a third of respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed that their senior management team was good at internal communication (37 per cent), listening to employees (37 per cent) and employee engagement (35 per cent).

Meanwhile, three quarters believed holding a professional qualification had led to career progression or were confident it would. More than half of (52 per cent) saw their careers developing down a specialist path.

In addition, the number of respondents who have funding for qualifications available through their employer has increased this year to a five-year high of 76 per cent.

The results of the survey are based on 123 responses of past and present students at the PR Academy.

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