How we can help
There are few issues referred to the IPA which do not impact an agency’s bottom line. The Finance team offers advice on those which are more specifically finance-related than most, such as agency remuneration, procurement, agency KPIs, National Insurance, credit and PI insurance, or agency systems software.
In particular we issue a number of agency benchmark surveys of which the charge-out survey has proved the most popular. As a result of these surveys, we are able to readily advise on such useful market intelligence as appropriate margins, overhead recovery rates, average agency salary bands, the more popular agency management systems,
Through our Finance Policy Group (FPG) we pay keen attention to the issues of the time: The illogicality of TUPE, the tightening of credit insurance, the reinterpretation of zero-rated VAT rules, poor procurement practices and the unilateral extension of payment terms were all first raised by this Group. The topics covered are reported to all the members’ finance heads in a quarterly circular, so that any member can chip in their own view.
Where there are more routine matters to be drawn to members’ attention, such as a tribunal ruling on the application of NI to Celebrities’ work, or the implementation of RTI, the Finance team will issue an alert.
We will make representation on such financial matters that have a direct bearing on our industry, such as the deliberate exclusion of advertising work from the tax relief offered to certain creative productions.
The annual Commercial Conference is run by the Finance team in conjunction with the FPG, and addresses such topics as Performance (2014) as part of the President's Adaptathon series, Measuring Value (2013), The Changing Business Model (2012) or Talent v Technology (2008). While it is first and foremost for the agencies’ finance community, it attracts any senior role-holder who has an interest in the commercial success of their agency.
Among the output of the Finance Policy Group is the recent update to the joint industry best practice guide on Remuneration, and the content of the on-line Commercial Certificate. The latter is a much appreciated addition to the knowledge base of agencies’ account management teams.
Apart from these member-oriented services, we additionally provide an annual census of the agency workforce giving a useful insight into the mix and trends of our employed base. This is the one report that is for public consumption and is made available each December in the year to which it relates.
The IPA has helped support my agency from when it was a start up. They have guided us in terms of business models, best practice and staff development to ensure that although we are a small agency, we reflect the industry standard.
Last updated 03/11/2017