Business

CIM and CIPR urges Irish business leaders to invest in staff development

The marketing and PR industries are moving so quickly that you need to ensure you have access to training and development to keep up
Chris Gilroy

THE Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) is urging business leaders across Ireland to invest in the development of their staff in order for them to become chartered professionals in their respected field, in particular within the marketing and public relations industries.

The call comes after new research from the CIM and the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) found that respect amongst chartered professionals in the marketing and public relations industries has improved in the last decade, with communication to the public more important than ever.

‘The Value of Chartership' report, which explores the views of 300 surveyed chartered members, found two-fifths (39 per cent) believe respect for chartership in PR and marketing has increased. However, the majority (72 per cent) of respondents feel it is less respected in comparison to other chartered professions such as accountancy or engineering.

Lawyers, engineers and accountants must go through a whole series of professional qualifications, without which they cannot practice. Their professional chartered status and earning power their qualifications bestow has been the source of some envy from marketing and PR people.

To bridge this disparity, to gain chartered status within the marketing and PR profession, continuing professional development is a vital tool for marketers and PR professionals. The study explored the importance of continuing professional development (CPD), with 72 per cent of respondents arguing that regularly upskilling is crucial to progress their career.

And there's the key point, you can't afford to stand still any more. The marketing and PR industries are moving so quickly that you need to ensure you have access to training and development to keep up. In particular the digital landscape is changing rapidly, what was cutting-edge know how five years ago is now out of date.

The practice of marketing and public relations is now far more complex than ever. There are few generalists left and increasing demand for specialists who are properly qualified in their field.

What's more, clients want to know they are getting the right advice. Chartered status gives them the confidence that they are dealing with a qualified professional who has taken the time to ensure they have developed their skills and qualifications to a high standard.

Both the CIM and CIPR have worked hard to professionalise the sector by becoming organisations that can award chartered status to their members (the clue is in the name). This has also been reflected in the development of a range of marketing and PR degree courses offered by universities.

The report finds becoming chartered can provide a competitive edge for marketing and PR professionals:

? Over four in 10 (43 per cent) argue it is very important for careers;

? Three in 10 (31 per cent) state being chartered provides them with an edge to win new business; and

? 81 per cent said it helped demonstrate their experience and success.

Both CIM and CIPR offer a wide range of qualifications and I encourage you to look at what's available and consider investing in training and development of your workforce.

And yes, it can take several years to become chartered but making a start on the journey can only benefit your workforce's career progression, their confidence and in turn, having skilled employees that can deliver value to your organisation.

For business leaders who may already have many qualifications, why not take the extra step and get chartered and lead the way in the professionalisation of your industries.

:: Chris Gilroy is the Chartered Institute of Marketing's Ireland chair

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