The Works Annual Salary Survey – what’s the scoop for HoC’s and agency leaders?

11 May 2016 by Sarah Leembruggen.

Now in its eighth year, our Annual Salary Survey polled 800 PR and Communications professionals in both agencies and in-house. In addition to examining salaries and bonuses, we also looked at job satisfaction and give you an idea of what you need to do to retain our star players. Keep an eye out for more in-depth discussions in the coming weeks including news on the gender pay gap.

Have salaries in the PR industry gone up or down?

The quick answer to this is ‘both’. The survey showed both increases and decreases in average base salaries across the industry. For the most part, the mood is optimistic and some very impressive uplifts highlight the ongoing confidence that remains in the market. Our clients are continuing to create new roles as they expand their teams and look to bring in professionals who will add value to the business over the long term.

Our survey revealed that 62% of participants received an increase in 2015, and 56% are on a base salary of more than £50,000 pa. More and more employers understand the value of offering meaningful salary increases to encourage employee retention.

So what’s the news for Heads of Comms and Agency leaders?

The survey showed a similar pattern in in-house firms. Corporate PR isn’t far behind the financial sector – Global Heads of Communications now bring in an average of £170,000 in Corporate PR, which is just £5,000 short of the average for the same role in Financial PR. Companies clearly see the value in investment at these top levels as they continue to focus on reputation management.

Agency side it is also the financial PR teams that come out on top, with the average salary for a Managing Director reaching £140,000 and Partners receiving £115,000 in base salary. This is closely followed by corporate PR agencies.

In in-house firms, the senior roles fared best when it comes to bonuses: Global Heads of Corporate Communications received an average bonus of £60,000. In the financial sector, this role was rewarded with an average bonus of £70,000.

In the agencies, CEOs and Board Directors/Partners received the most in Corporate Communications, with average bonuses of £30,000. MDs and Board Directors/Partners in Financial PR agencies came away with an average bonus of £50,000.

For full results of the survey, download it here.

Salary Survey 2017 - 2018