PRCA Matchmaker members are encouraged and incentivised to hold the Communications Management Standard (CMS) - the hallmark of PR excellence. CMS combines elements of ‘ISO9001’ and ‘Investors in People’ with criteria specific to a PR and communications consultancy. We introduced CMS in 1998, and updated it for the modern workplace in 2005 and 2012.
The nine core areas consultancies are scored on are:
- Leadership & Communication
- Business Planning
- Business Improvement
- Financial Management & Systems
- Campaign Management
- Client Satisfaction
- New Business
- People Management
How does a PR agency benefit from CMS?
1. It is proof you have a well-run business with all the correct systems and structures in place.
- A well-structured and accomplished senior management team that harnesses an effective internal and external communication system at all levels.
- Clear business goals and objectives that are embraced at all levels. Objectives that are frequently reviewed and compared to performance to ensure continued agency-wide excellence.
- Monthly management accounts have consistent and effective processes for calculating client fees, billing and credit control, and staff time management.
2. It demonstrates to your staff that you have a real commitment to their development.
- Employee selection is based on needs of the position.
- Employment includes an immediate induction, regular formal appraisals, personal development plans and training.
- The company acknowledges the diversity and equality policy which demonstrates best practice and informs the recruitment process.
3. Clients have peace of mind that they are buying a professional service from a PR and communications company that is committed to excellence.
- Client requirements are effectively captured, and used systematically to ensure delivery on client expectation.
- Client satisfaction measurement systems address all elements of the service and implements improvements effectively.
- Client teams such as Procurement and Government departments recognise CMS as a quality assurance.
4. If you are looking to grow your business, CMS is an excellent tool for growth.
- A consultancy has a proactive strategy for business development with effective systems for the management of its enquiries and sales.
- CMS identifies areas of improvement and growth in all aspects of the business.
5. CMS brings new business advantages
- Clients will be informed about the value of an agency being CMS accredited.
- The Matchmaker service, other factors being equal, will prioritise agencies which have CMS accreditation.
- CMS makes an agency eligible to join the Business Development Group.
Read more about the scoring area in our Consultancy CMS brochure, click here to download.