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IPA publishes 2005 Agency Census

The annual census of IPA membership from 2005. The Agency Census has become the definitive survey of employment trends in media, advertising and marketing communication agencies.


The IPA today (25th January 2006) published the 2005 Agency Census, the definitive survey of media, advertising and marketing communication agencies which shows that there were 15,751 people employed in 240 IPA member agencies at 1st September 2005. This compares with 15,190 in 234 member agencies at 1st September 2004, a rise of 561 employees.

The highlights of the Census are:

· The average agency size is up to 65.6 employees (from 64.9)

· The average size of a media agency has risen to 72.1 employees compared to 68.6 in 2004. The average size of a creative, full-service and other non-media agency has decreased marginally from 63.7 in 2004 to 63.5 in 2005.

· 75.5% of the employed base is in London and has increased by 637 from 11,259 in 2004 to 11,896 in 2005. The average agency size in London has increased from 82.8 in 2004 to 87.5 individuals in 2005. The average size for out-of Lon-don agencies has fallen from 41.4 to 37.6 employees.

· By agency type 73% (11,424 people in 180 member agencies) are to be found in creative and full-service agencies of which 1,346 individuals are employed in 13 direct marketing agencies, 379 in 11 digital/ interactive agencies and 146 in 6 healthcare agencies. The remaining 27.5% (4,327 employees) are to be found in 60 media agencies.

· An estimated 21.1% work in account management, 17.8% in media planning or buying, 13% in creative (including digital), 8.5% in creative services (studio, production) and a further 8.5% in finance functions.

· An estimated 3.1% (481 people) work on a part time basis while an estimated 1.7% (273 people) regularly work from home

· 2.5% are first year trainees

· 3.2% are temps or freelancers (40.8% being used by creative departments)

· The average age is 33.4 with 48.1% of the workforce being under the age of 30, 33.4% aged between 31-40, 13.6% over 40 and 5% over 50. In media agencies the bias towards younger employees is more pronounced with 64.1% aged 30 or under.

· Women continue to make up approximately half of the agency work force, and at the highest level of seniority  (Chair, CEO, MD) account for 15.1%. This fig-ure has risen from 7% in 1998, 11% in 2003 and 14% in 2004. At the broader senior management level female representation is 26.8%.

· 86 agencies (out of 125) provided information on their ethnicity.  93.2% of employees are of white origin, 2.4% Asian, 2.4% black, 1% mixed origin and 1.1% from other backgrounds. This ‘non white’ figure of 6.8% compares to 5.1% in 2004 (92 agencies) and 6.2% in 2003 (88 agencies).

Said John Oldfield, IPA Membership Director: “The growth of the employment base was driven by the buoyancy in the media and digital sectors which reflects the increase in specialist agencies and diversification in the IPA membership. A good 2004 resulted in the expansion of agencies into 2005 however there are signs of a downturn, indicated by the latest Q4 2005 Bellwether Report, which suggests that agencies may contract during 2006.”

To view the full report, please click here.


Note to editors:
The first Agency Census was published in 1998, to view them please click here.

The IPA is the industry body and professional institute for UK advertising, media and marketing communications agencies. It was established in 1917 as a servicing body and to negotiate on behalf of its members with media bodies, government departments and unions. Its 245 corporate members represent the major part of the advertising agency business, handling advertising with an estimated value of some £13,000 million per year (over 80 per cent of advertising placed by agencies) on behalf of their client companies and organisations nationwide. (note this figure is based on 2005 Advertising Statistics Yearbook figures and excludes classified and television production costs).

For further information:
Ian Finlayson, IPA Finance Director tel: 020 7201 8215
Roger Ingham, Author of Census, IPA Finance Research Consultant tel: 020 7201 8213
Hamish Pringle, IPA Director General tel: 020 7201 8209
John Oldfield, IPA Membership Director tel: 01845 597878
Tessa Gooding, IPA Director of Communications  020 7201 8211
Issued by: IPA Press Office  
Press Office tel:: 020 7201 8261

Last updated 22/01/2009

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