Review of the year 2020

This year will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. It has been a polarising year for the communications profession. Here's our review.

Review of the year 2020

2020 – a year unlike any other

2020 was always set to be a memorable year. The eyes of the world were preparing to focus on Tokyo for the Olympics, on Dubai for Expo 2020 and on London for a summer of sport including the Euro 2020 final.

And then it all kicked off in Wuhan and 2020 became a year none of us will forget, for all the wrong reasons.

The new normal

There is no sugar coating it: 2020 has been tough for most people on both a professional and personal level.

Lockdown forced everyone to work from home, with the juggle of childcare or home-schooling for many. Zoom – a tool Comms Leaders has been using for years, but previously unfamiliar to many – suddenly became THE way to communicate.

COVID-19 has been polarising for the communications industry. While many professionals were furloughed or made redundant in sectors such as hospitality, leisure and travel, others in food and online retail saw an exponential increase in workload.

This year will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. It has been a polarising year for the communications profession. Here's our review.

Challenges and resilience

The job market reflected the economic challenges, with more applicants than ever competing for a small number of opportunities. The senior end of the market was quiet, as Heads of and Directors of Communications were cautious about moving on in such a volatile market, resulting in fewer opportunities in their wake.

On a positive note, the corporate communications profession is resilient and has proven its value this year. The counsel of corporate and internal communicators has never been more critical and has taken a more central role in businesses alongside HR and the C-suite.

The job market has seen a rise in activity towards the end of the year, particularly at the mid-level and with vacancies focusing on content and channel management.

Predictions are difficult to make during such unprecedented times, but we anticipate there will be more movement once organisations have completed their restructures in late Q1 of next year.

How Comms Leaders has responded

Comms Leaders has been here to support candidates through this difficult period, offering CV reviews, interview practice and other practical help. In December we formally launched a new outsourcing service alongside recruitment, to give candidates the skills and confidence to stand out from the crowd.

Our new brand identity and website reflects this focus on supporting communications professionals to build brilliant and fulfilling careers.

We have held two events this year. Just before lockdown, we hosted a well-attended panel discussion event about future tech and the impact of technology on the communications profession.

And in October we hosted our first virtual event, with our Advisory Board, where Neil Davy facilitated a discussion around organisations’ purpose and whether the Coronavirus pandemic presented us with an opportunity to refine this into something more sustainable and people-focused.

And finally…

We’re sorry not to be able to bring everyone together for our traditional Christmas party this year. We all need to let our hair down and share our experiences now more than ever. Instead, we hope the rules will allow us to celebrate the end of this most challenging chapter next Summer.

Vicki, Andrew and Rebecca wish you all a happy and healthy festive season. We hope you can see your loved ones and enjoy a well-earned break before returning to work with a renewed enthusiasm and optimism in 2021.

Best wishes
Comms Leaders

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