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IPA 2015 Census highlights three key agency employment trends

The IPA’s 2015 Agency Census, published today (28th January 2016), reveals the marked growth of personnel within media agencies, the increase in women in senior positions and the marginal rise of BAME representation within the industry – the growth of which is led by the IPA’s biggest agencies.

28/01/2016

The annual survey is the definitive view of employment trends in media, advertising and marketing communications agencies. 

Marked growth of media agency personnel 

The latest figures reveal the overall 1.9% growth of the industry, from 23,231 to 23,662 in 2015, has been driven by media agencies: 

  • The employed base in creative and other non-media agencies declined by 0.7% from 14,885 to 14,780. The employed base in media agencies has grown by 6.4% from 8,346 to 8,882.
  • Over the last five years the number of individuals employed in creative agencies has increased by 12.5%, while over the same period the number working in media agencies has increased by 42.4%.
  • The estimated number of first-year trainees and apprentices in member agencies increased year-on-year from 986 to 1,210, with two-thirds of these (66.9%) being found in media agencies.
  • The estimated number of temps and freelancers being used by member agencies grew from 1,562 to 2,511, a year-on-year increase of 60.8%. The vast majority (89.7%) are found in creative and other non-media agencies, while 10.3% are found in media agencies. 

Increase in women in senior positions 

There has been a further increase in the rise of women in senior positions. This trend mirrors the IPA’s survey of its biggest agencies announced earlier this month. The slightly higher percentages in bigger agencies* indicate they are paving the way. 

  • Females account for 27.3% of those at senior executive management level (Chair/CEO/Managing Director or Partner) and 37.6% of other executive management positions, up from 25.6% and 37.1% respectively in 2014.
  • Females account for 23.8% of those at senior executive management level in creative and other non-media agencies, while they account for 35.3% within media agencies.
  • These figures compare to 30.5% of women overall at senior executive management level (25.7% in creative agencies/37.5% in media agencies) and 31.3% women within other executive management positions within the IPA’s biggest agencies*.  This was reported in a separate IPA survey earlier this month.
  • Coupled with these figures, the latest Census shows that 771 individuals, 3.3% of the employed base, work for their agencies at home on a regular basis, up from 410 in 2014. 

Marginal growth in ethnic diversity representation: 

  • The proportion of employees who are from a non-white background has increased from 13.0% in 2014 to 13.1% in 2015.
  • Individuals from a BAME background account for 12.5% of employees in creative and other non-media agencies and 14.2% of those in media agencies.
  • Whilst some agencies did not provide an ethnicity breakdown by levels of seniority, those that did showed that BAME employees accounted for 12.5% of junior levels, 13.0% at middle management level, 6.4% at senior/head of department level and 5.5% at executive management level.
  • This overall BAME representation of 13.1% is the same as found in the IPA’s biggest agencies - 12.3% in creative agencies and 14.5% in media agencies. This was reported in a separate IPA survey earlier this month. 

Says Paul Bainsfair, IPA Director General: “It is always good to see overall numbers up, driven by media and its ever increasing remit. And while the figures for gender and BAME are also up, they could and should be better. Greater diversity creates stronger, more successful businesses. This is why IPA President Tom Knox’s diversity targets, and our initiatives to help achieve these, are so important for our industry to get behind.” 

For further details on the profile of the employed base by agency type, gender, age, ethnic diversity and department time, as well as working practices and staff turnover, read the full 2015 Agency Census here.

Notes to editors (not contained in Census): 

*The IPA’s biggest agencies constitute those who either have a gross income above £20million or more than 200 employees.

IPA Diversity goals, announced on 14 January 2016:

  • By 2020 women will hold 40% of senior positions within all agencies, and at each stage of the career ladder (Executive/Assistant, Middle Manager, Head of Department, Director/Other Executive Management and C-Suite).
  • On ethnic diversity, the goal is that at least 15% of people in leadership positions in the IPA’s biggest agencies* will be from a non-white background in 2020.
  • This is in addition to the IPA’s existing commitment to help the industry recruit 25% of new joiners from BAME backgrounds by 2020.

Overall figures for creative/media agency employed base over past 10 years: 

 

 

Creative

Media

Total

2005

 

11,424

4,327

15,751

2006

 

12,712

4,655

17,367

2007

 

13,759

5,318

19,077

2008

 

14,582

5,548

20,130

2009

 

13,339

5,296

18,635

2010

 

13,159

5,684

18,843

2011

 

13,134

6,238

19,372

2012

 

13,710

6,781

20,491

2013

 

14,593

7,122

21,715

2014

 

14,885

8,346

23,231

2015

 

14,780

8,882

23,662

 

 

 

 

 

% Change

2005-2015

 

+30%

+110%

+50%

 

 

 

 

 

2010-2015

 

+10%

+60%

+30%

Women in senior positions including Chair, CEO, MD and other executive management positions – for past 10 years 

 

 

Chair/CEO/MD

Other EM

 

 

%

%

2005

 

15.1

26.8

2006

 

14.7

29.1

2007

 

16.2

28.4

2008

 

16.0

23.6

2009

 

17.8

21.0

2010

 

17.0

25.5

2011

 

13.5

27.3

2012

 

21.5

28.2

2013

 

22.2

30.0

2014

 

25.6

37.1

2015

 

27.3

37.6

 

Last updated 28/01/2016


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