COI pitch costs UK PR agencies almost £2million

I have seen an article on the front cover of PR Week this morning which has got me pretty annoyed.

At Wolfstar we applied to be included on the COI roster, in the hope that we could offer our services to the public sector. Now I should stress this roster is very important having dolled out £29.3million on PR and sponsorship in 2007-08. I have pitched for the roster before when I worked for Trimedia and we were lucky enough to be successful and we secured an extensive amount of work from it which made it very worthwhile.

So when we got the opportunity to go for this at my new company, I agreed that we should clear the decks and submit a good robust application.

After an extensive amount of work, we sent it off and waited for a response. We received an email from the COI saying that we were invited to submit for the second stage. We thought great – we have got through to the second stage. However, on closer inspection we noticed that the COI had surprisingly invited ALL agencies to apply for the 2nd stage for some of the lots. What the hell is the point of that? What was the first stage for then?

The first application took days to complete and the second promises to take even longer. PR Week has said companies are claiming it will take more than a week to complete with in excess of 250 agencies having already submitted for this, that equates to more than £1,750,000 worth of pr companies’ time wasted.

My calculations:

  1. Average agency day rate between £700-£1500
  2. Number of days 7 for first + 7 for second = 14
  3. 14 x £700 x 250 (companies) = £1,750,0000

I think there should be an enquiry into this whole process as quite frankly it has been a joke.  The COI should hang its head in shame.

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