Public Relations, or 'PR', is all about the way organisations communicate with the public, promote themselves, and build a positive reputation and public image.
The way an organisation is represented in the media has a huge impact on how people perceive it. PR professionals try to influence the media to represent their organisation positively and communicate key messages.
Get to know Public Relations!
You can get a better idea of what PR is and involves through the PRCA career guide or hearing current PR professionals' summary. Separately, the Famous Campaigns website features recent PR campaigns, and PR Week is the industry’s trade magazine with recent news stories.
Working in PR
The industry offers a wealth of opportunities. A PR job could see you organising events, participating in conversations on Twitter, writing press releases, placing stories in newspapers and magazines and promoting some of the world’s most exciting charities and brands.
Getting a Job in PR
If you want to get into PR, there are a couple of routes you can take. If you have completed A-levels or equivalent but have not attended university, then you can apply for the PR Apprenticeship. If you have a degree related to PR/Communications, then you can get into PR by doing a graduate scheme or work experience and internships and then applying for junior PR roles.
Many of the largest PR Agencies in London run graduate schemes. These are often year-long programmes where graduates can get their start in the business, moving around different departments and gaining great experience and training.
Although it’s not the ruling element on an application, candidates who have direct work experience in PR or journalism stand out. Start by looking at small PR agencies that are based near where you live. Lots of PR agencies and departments would be happy to receive the help, and it would look great on your CV. It’s likely that they’ll take interns to help them out with administrative duties, at least. Here is the PRCA list of PR and Communications Employers that Pay their Interns.
Is it for me? Here are key PR skills:
- Writing Skills (and good grammar)
- People Skills
- Events experience
- Social Media Experience
- Strong interest, awareness and engagement in the media
- Time management
If you are a strong writer and communicator, interested and engaged in all forms of media, have a creative mind and consider yourself a 'people person' then PR could offer a great career option for you.
Tips on how to strengthen your application:
- Practice and demonstrate your PR skills: Take note of the key skills we look for in PR Apprentices (above) and think about evidence you could use from your personal and professional life to match them. It’s important to come across well over your application, as that’s the first interaction the employer has with you.
- Get a clear idea of what PR is and what it involves: Research and gain an understanding of the industry.
- Get some relevant work experience: Check out companies that pay their interns, or graduate schemes.
- For an apprenticeship, keep checking back to the National Apprenticeship Service website for more PR Apprenticeship vacancies, and of course sign up to our mailing list.