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The PRCA 2016 PR Census Results: The Gender Pay Gap Continues

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Women in PR were asked by the PRCA, to help collect the views of senior women in the PR Industry, and the results aren’t pretty. You can view the full census here

Our President, Mary Whenman, comments on the findings:
“The results of the 2016 PRCA PR Census are extremely disappointing. They reinforce the findings of other industry surveys published over the past 12 months that women working in the PR industry continue to face pay discrimination with a gender pay gap of £9,111. In 2016, this is simply unacceptable. Taking a closer look at PR agencies, while it is good to see progress being made at account executive and account manager level, the PR Census shows that women in senior roles continue to be paid less than their male colleagues. It is also disappointing to see that in an industry with such a high intake of women, it is still dominated by men at board level with 64% of board directors and partners being men. However, the good news is the female pipeline looks strong with women outnumbering men 3:1 between account executive and associate director. This is where initiatives such as the Women in PR and PR Week Mentoring scheme can help by reducing the number of mid-career women who drop out of our industry and mentoring them to secure senior roles.”

But it’s not all bad news, as the census reveals that more women are in senior in-house roles.
Nicola Green, Women in PR Committee member, Director of Communications and Reputation at O2, explains:
“It’s promising news that for the first year we are seeing the gender split reversed for women in senior in-house communication roles, since the 2013 figures were released. I believe that only now can we tackle the pay debate. We can’t and shouldn’t rest on our laurels. The only way to realign the gender gap once and for all is for employers to focus on building up and supporting a pipeline of female talent from within the business. That starts from the moment they walk through the door, to the point at which they decide to leave. I am fortunate to be part of a company that takes the issue seriously, but more needs to be done across the board. Women can also play an important role in supporting other women – that’s why dedicated programmes like the PR Week Mentoring scheme are so crucial. Only by making a concerted effort will we ensure there is no cause to even be having this conversation in years to come.”


Francis Ingham MPRCA, Director General, PRCA, said:

“Clearly we need to do a lot more work to improve these disheartening agency figures. However, I take great satisfaction in the clear improvement in senior representation in-house. It shows that change is possible, and indeed that change is happening. We need to redouble our efforts to make that change the rule rather than the exception. We have a mandate to pursue this agenda, and we will do so via disclosing our own gender pay figures, providing even more thought leadership, and engaging even further with the Government on this vital issue.”


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