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Public Relations Representative

Public relations representatives help organizations achieve their objectives by facilitating 2-way communication with the audiences they wish to reach.

Also Known As

Communications Officer, Community Relations Specialist, Copywriter, Information Specialist, Public Affairs Officer, Public Information Officer

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Professional Occupations in Public Relations and Communications (5124) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Professional Occupations in Public Relations and Communications (F024) 
  • 2011 NOC: Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations (1123) 
  • 2016 NOC: Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations (1123) 
Interests & Abilities

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2006 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Professional Occupations in Public Relations and Communications
2006 NOC : 5124

Interest Codes

Interest Codes for This NOC Group
INNOVATIVE

Interest in co-ordinating information to prepare and oversee preparation of reports, briefs, bibliographies, speeches, presentations, Web sites and press releases, and to develop and organize workshops, meetings, ceremonies and other events for publicity, fund-raising and information purposes

METHODICAL

Interest in gathering, researching and preparing communications material for internal and external audiences, and in assisting in the preparation of brochures, reports, newsletters and other material

SOCIAL

Interest in persuading to initiate and maintain contact with the media, and to arrange interviews and news conferences; and in co-ordinating special publicity events and promotions to internal and external audiences

Your Interest Codes

To identify or change your interest codes, complete the Interests Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 

It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective, and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes for this NOC group is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn About Interests

Abilities

Typical ability expectations for this NOC group
Your abilities

To fill in or change the values for your abilities, complete the Abilities Exercise in CAREERinsite.

Mental Abilities

General Learning Ability

Verbal Ability

Numerical Ability

Visual Abilities

Spatial Perception

Form Perception

Clerical Perception

Physical Abilities

Motor Coordination

Finger Dexterity

Manual Dexterity

Understanding Abilities

A Quick Guide

You are born with abilities that help you process certain types of information and turn it into action. These abilities influence which skills you can learn more easily.

The abilities or aptitudes shown for this NOC group come from the General Aptitude Test Battery (GATB). The GATB measures 9 aptitudes. It groups them into 3 categories: mental, visual, and physical.

The abilities scores range from 1 to 5, with 5 being stronger.

Learn About Abilities

Duties
Updated Mar 31, 2022

Duties and responsibilities vary from one position to another. In general, public relations representatives:

  • Create and maintain public awareness of their organizations’ policies and actions
  • Maintain relationships with key internal and external stakeholders
  • Foster good community relations by acting in the public’s best interest
  • Facilitate communications within the organizations between employees and management
  • Research, analyze, implement, and evaluate strategic communications programs
  • Act as media relations contacts for their organizations
  • Conduct research through, for example, surveys of public opinion and sentiment, and use results to inform communications activities
  • Prepare speeches, news / media releases, brochures, audio-visuals, advertisements, reports, articles, newsletters, and websites for defined audiences
  • Identify the interests and concerns of key groups their organizations serve
  • Coordinate special events and promotions for internal and external audiences
  • Manage crises related to their organization
  • Consult with management about communicating with target groups
  • Oversee marketing and social media
  • Monitor the internal and external environment for issues that may affect the organization

Junior employees handle routine work. They:

  • Respond to public requests for information
  • Research and write copy for specific projects
  • Write news releases and pitch story ideas to the media
  • Track media and issues
  • Assist senior PR staff with projects or programs
  • Plan events
  • Maintain distribution lists
  • Collaborate with colleagues
  • Contribute content to company blogs and pages on social media

Senior employees may:

  • Develop key messages and provide media training to spokespeople
  • Identify trends and issues and determine strategies for implementing public relations programs
  • Collaborate within the organization to ensure business objectives and audience needs align
  • Integrate goals and objectives from the organization’s business plan into public relations programs and strategies
  • Advise leaders about how communications and perceptions affect business issues and decisions

Once a program concept is approved, the public relations team implements the program. They monitor the project budget, and manage / evaluate the results.

Working Conditions
Updated Mar 31, 2022
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg

Work schedules for public relations representatives often are irregular. They generally work on several projects at a time. Progress on one project is often interrupted as priorities shift. Meeting project deadlines may require overtime work. Travel may be needed.

Traits & Skills
Updated Mar 31, 2022

Public relations representatives need:

  • Relationship-building skills
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Creativity
  • Initiative
  • Sensitivity
  • Self-confidence
  • Oral and written communication and presentation skills
  • Persuasion skills
  • Organizational and time-management skills
  • The ability to analyze problems and find practical solutions
  • The ability to deal with frequently changing priorities
  • A strong sense of ethics

They should enjoy coordinating information and finding innovative ways to handle problems, taking a methodical approach to gathering, researching, and editing information, and persuading people.

Top 10 Skills Employers Are Looking For

Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations

NOC code: 1123

This chart shows which job skills are currently in highest demand for this occupational group. It was created using this occupation's 100 most recent Alberta job postings, collected between May 20, 2022 and Jul 04, 2022.

Review these skills to learn:

  • Whether or not this occupation matches your skill set
  • What training you may need to get these skills
  • What skills to highlight in your resumé, cover letter, and interview.
Answer written and oral inquiries
Develop, implement and evaluate communication strategies and programs
Assist in the preparation of brochures, reports, newsletters and other material
Gather, research and prepare communications material
Co-ordinate special publicity events and promotions
Personal Suitability: Organized
Personal Suitability: Effective interpersonal skills
Advise clients on advertising or sales promotion strategies
Personal Suitability: Team player
Prepare or oversee preparation of reports, briefs, bibliographies, speeches, presentations, Website content and press releases
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2022
  • Minimum Education 2 years post-secondary

Employers generally prefer to hire applicants who have post-secondary education related to public relations (PR) or communications. Many employers require a combination of qualifications such as a degree in communications or journalism and a diploma in public relations.


To expand or narrow your search for programs related to this occupation, visit Post-Secondary Programs.

Completing a program does not guarantee entrance into an occupation. Before enrolling in an education program, prospective students should look into various sources for education options and employment possibilities. For example, contact associations and employers in this field.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2022
  • Certification Not Regulated

Certain professional titles or duties within this occupation are protected by provincial legislation. Requirements vary if you use these titles or perform these duties.

The related legislation is shown below. If there are multiple related legislations, select a certification heading to learn about each one.

Employers may require applicants to be members of, or eligible for membership in, a professional organization such as the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) or the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC).

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2022

Public relations representatives work for:

  • Corporations and consulting firms
  • Government departments
  • Professional organizations and trade associations
  • Health authorities
  • Schools and post-secondary institutions
  • Regulatory bodies
  • Marketing and communications agencies
  • Financial institutions
  • Political and social organizations
  • Industry organizations
  • Non-profits and not-for-profit organizations
  • Private businesses

Freelancing and consulting are common in this profession.

Industry Concentration

This section shows the industries where the majority of people in this occupation work. The data is based on the 2016 Census.

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups.

In the 1123: Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations occupational group, 78.2% of people work in:

Employment Outlook

Employment outlook is influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • Time of year (for seasonal jobs)
  • Location in Alberta
  • Employment turnover (when people leave existing positions)
  • Occupational growth (when new positions are created)
  • Size of the occupation
  • Trends and events that affect overall employment, especially in the industry or industries from the previous list

In Alberta, the 1123: Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 308 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Note
NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Source: Alberta Regional Occupational Demand Outlook

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Related Alberta Job Postings
Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2022

In Alberta, this occupation is part of 1 or more 2016 National Occupational Classification (NOC) groups. If there are multiple related NOC groups, select a NOC heading to learn about each one.

Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations

2016 NOC : 1123
Average Wage
$36.24
Per Hour
Average Salary
$69,165.00
Per Year
Average Hours
36.6
Per Week
Average Months on Payroll
11.9
Survey Methodology Survey Analysis

Source
2019 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey

NOC 1123 Wage Profile

Unless otherwise noted, the data shown here is for all industries and all regions in Alberta.

All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production), and other forms of compensation.

To see the full survey data for this NOC group, visit the wage profile.

Other wage sources
To make an informed wage and salary decision, research other wage sources [pdf] to supplement this data.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top

Hourly Wage

For full-time and part-time employees
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $15.00 $46.15 $28.73 $27.18
Overall $17.50 $70.05 $36.24 $31.79
Top $20.00 $128.21 $46.68 $36.58

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

Pay brackets for hourly wages

  • Starting pay: average pay offered for entry-level positions
  • Overall pay: average pay across all employees in this occupation
  • Top pay: average pay offered to top-paid employees

Industry Information

Oil & Gas Extraction
Transportation and Warehousing
Public Administration
Finance, Insurance, Real Estate, Leasing
ALL INDUSTRIES
Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
Construction
Educational Services
Other Services (Repair, Personal Services and Related)
Manufacturing
Wholesale Trade
Information, Culture, Recreation
Health Care & Social Assistance
Business, Building and Other Support Services
Accommodation & Food Services
Retail Trade

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years
48%
48%)
Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties
14%
14%
Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months
3%
3%
Vacancy Rate
2%
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
  • Communications
  • Social Sciences, Law and Religious Studies
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 31, 2022

Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) website: www.cprs.ca

International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) website: www.iabc.com

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 31, 2022. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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