The stock of internal comms rose like never before during the pandemic – and our latest Sequel Presents: A Coffee With webinar discussed how IC professionals can benefit.
What skills do you need to land a plum internal comms job in this hot market? And if you’re hiring, what kind of person should you be looking for? Sara Tehrani, Managing Consultant, Internal Communications at leading corporate comms and marketing recruiter VMAGroup, had the answers as she chatted with Nick Andrews, Sequel’s Business Development Director.
They talked about the current state of the market, the kind of roles that are on offer and the skills that IC professionals need to take advantage of job opportunities in this buoyant market.
Sara said that IC used to be seen as the poor relation of corporate comms and PR, but no longer – it now has the recognition (and the pay) of the other functions.
She thinks the upsurge in IC jobs is not a short-term blip. It’s a busier jobs market than before the pandemic because lots of internal comms functions are investing in their people. Other organisations are starting IC function for the first time, having appreciated its importance during the lockdown.
“IC functions did some amazing work during the pandemic and that’s been recognised,” she said. At the same time, the economy is bouncing back.
There are more roles with an emphasis on digital channels and a need for people with strategic skills with business acumen who can represent IC at the top table. Employers also want someone who can build relationships with stakeholders.
Employers don’t necessarily need sector-specific experience, she said: overall knowledge of IC and how it benefits a business is more important. She said employers want creative people but don’t take it as a given, so writing tests, presentations and mock-up mini campaigns are increasingly being introduced at interviews.
Sara had some advice for job candidates: research the company, the industry and what competitors’ IC teams are doing. Bring your personality to an interview and remember that you’re interviewing them as much as they are you – the cultural fit must be right for everyone.
Nick and Sara also talked about qualifications, hybrid working and the value of professional bodies such as the Institute of Internal Communication.
Sara is upbeat about the role of IC: “I’m optimistic about the future of internal comms. It seems that the IC function is going to be heavily invested in for the foreseeable future.”