It's been a busy fiscal year for the Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA). Our 120 strong team of volunteers from our National Board, Divisional, and special interest committees, along with our staff, have guided PRIA to a successful position in both financial and professional leadership terms.
Our profit for 2014/15 is currently being confirmed by our auditors and will be presented at our AGM in Hobart. We have good cash reserves, and now that PRIA is back in a strong financial position, we need to prioritise and invest in our member services. We are developing our new strategic plan for your professional requirements and want your input.
All members are invited to attend our PRIA Visioning Workshop during this year's conference (www.pria.com.au/development/event-calendar/about-the-2015-pria-national-conference) in Hobart, from 7.30-8.45 a.m. Tuesday 27 October 2015. This vision session will be chaired by the new PRIA President, to be elected at the AGM, and our new state and territory PRIA leaders. This is your chance to contribute your ideas so you can help shape the PRIA you want in the future.
PRIA, like many membership organisations, has faced and risen to many challenges with the changing business landscape. With your continued support as a member we are able to look back with pride at what we have achieved in recent years and can now look forward to what lies ahead.
Whilst we are visioning the next three years, you might be interested in some of our top achievements in the past year, as these will form the building blocks of our rolling strategic plan:
Organisational Structure and Operations
- Support officers have been engaged in each state to run local services and events for members and local divisions
- The Finance and Risk Committee has revised all reporting and management of finances, especially office accountability and structure
- Membership renewals now roll on commencement date, giving more flexibility and payment options.
Membership Services: Learning, Training and Education
- The PR Central job site has been launched and is generating both jobs and income
- The successful 2014 National Conference in Brisbane will be surpassed by the great plans for Hobart in October 2015
- Successful and informative events are taking place in all states – such as NSW’s Vivid Ideas, ACT’s Armchair Conversation Series, SA’s Lunch ‘n’ Learn Series and VIC’s Breakfast Series
- Our national webinar series continues to provide free training and seminars for all members, with 100+ attendees tuning in every month
- Our membership numbers have steadied in the past 12 months, which is a fantastic result considering the challenges faced by membership organisations today. Previous business models have been disrupted and we are much more nimble
- A pilot relaunch of PRIA’s Mentor Program is taking place in NSW on Wednesday, 18 November 2015, at HSPR in Sydney.
Credibility and Recognition at Home and Abroad
- Our Golden Target Awards for 2015 are breaking records – with more than 170 applications being judged by our 70+ judging panel, across 29 categories
- The federal government has just recognised the PRIA Professional Framework describing key competencies, including digital. This recognition of PRIA’s peak body status resulted from a special PRIA Working Group – supported by our vibrant academic community and professional development think tank participants
- Exclusive PRIA copyright licencing arrangement has been taken up by over 50 leading PR consultancies
- Measurement and Evaluation Committee are updating PRIA’s M&E Model linking to the latest global policies from AMEC
- PRIA signed a friendship agreement with ASEAN PR – a foreign policy initiative supporting PRIA involvement in Global Alliance and International Communication Consultancies Organisation
- PRIA internship guidelines lead the policy and frameworks for all communication sector work experience programs and interns and were updated recently in 2015
- Our voice is being heard with more senior PRIA members than ever are requested for commentary from industry publications on breaking news.
Increased Networks and Connections for you to Engage as a Professional Communicator
- PRIA’s LinkedIn group is the largest of its type in the world, with a community of 10,349. Our social following is strong with 17,800 on the @PRIANational Twitter handle, 7,320 on Facebook, with our daily blog reaching 25,000+ readers at times. PRIA was also ranked in the top 100 of Onalytica’s most influential global PR brands on Twitter for 2015
- PRINKS has been incredibly well supported. PRINKS encourages professionals in media, PR, advertising, social media, marketing and other comms pursuits to connect on and offline with fellow industry colleagues, sharing ideas, experiences and a drink or two every second month.
More Tangible Member Benefits
The National Board meets monthly, tackling issues raised by State/Territory Councils, special interest groups and individual members. It is the views of members, and your priorities, that will shape the rolling strategic plan.
Again, we urge you to come along to Hobart and have your say (or just let your local Division President know your ideas by emailing us on email@example.com).
With the strength of our membership and over 65 years of history behind us, we remain Australia’s peak body for professional communicators.
As a volunteer, member, and Fellow, I thank you on behalf of PRIA for your continuing support and membership.
Mike Watson, FPRIA
Public Relations Institute of Australia