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117 Wardour Street,
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W1F 0UN

0207 0251 350
info@thephagroup.com
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W1D 5BE

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Hammer House,
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W1F 0UN

0207 0251 350
info@thephagroup.com

Technology’s Smarter working initiative shortlisted for PR campaign of the year

Technology’s Smarter working initiative shortlisted for PR campaign of the year

The PHA Group’s Technology & Innovation team is delighted to have its work recognised in this year’s B2B Marketing Awards – shortlisted for ‘PR Campaign of the Year’.

The Smarter Working Initiative (SWI), which the T&I team first developed in 2016 with long-standing client Powwownow, has been listed alongside eight other PR campaigns, with the winner due to be announced at a gala dinner on 23rd November.

The T&I team worked closely with Powowwnow to develop the inaugural campaign designed to have significant longevity. The brief was to challenge existing perceptions of flexible working and promote the benefits of embracing a working culture that aligns with employees’ personal lives.

As a business with a core ethos of efficiency, productivity, and collaboration, Powwownow’s objective in 2016 was to increase awareness of the benefits of smarter working among UK business leaders and employers. Aware that only 6% of UK businesses proactively offered flexible working to their employees, the team set out to fundamentally change how employers think about smarter working practices.

The SWI was foremost an awareness day: Monday 25th July 2016 – the first day of the school summer holidays. A supporting integrated PR strategy, combining cut-through thought leadership content, data stories, news agenda hijacking and relevant and insightful broadcast interviews for members of the senior management team, helped position Powwownow as a leading authority on smarter working across a range of business sectors.

In the build-up to and following Monday 25th July, the team achieved over 30 pieces of media coverage, reaching a significant business audience across the UK and Europe. MD Jason Downes and FD Andrew Johnson appeared on BBC News ‘Business Live’, Sky News, London Live, talkRadio and Share Radio discussing topics including business efficiency and the rise of technology to facilitate flexible working.

Powwownow FD Andrew Johnson on Sky News

 

The team’s efforts saw Powwownow more than double their initial target of business sign-ups by securing over 120 businesses, including leading UK employers such as Purplebricks.com, RED Driving School and Orebar Brown. Over 100,000 UK employees worked flexibly on the day thanks to the initiative.

The SWI received prominent coverage across online and traditional media. Online, we reached business leaders through thought leadership pieces for MD Jason Downes, CTO Chris Martin and FD Andrew Johnson in a variety of publications including Virgin.com and Real Business. Targeting employees, the team also secured press on consumer-led websites such as Metro and Marie Claire, using unique data stories supported by thought leadership. The initiative was also covered nationally in The Telegraph and The Sun, with a prominent photo story in the latter reporting the social media campaign which ran over the course of a week.

Not only did the SWI reach a far wider audience than originally anticipated, it established positive brand awareness and positively changed assumptions about flexible working. After the initiative, 78 percent of business owners who did not previously offer flexible working to their employees said they would do so in 2017 and beyond – a tangible change in attitudes towards smarter working.

Most importantly, Powwownow were delighted with the campaign and last month the Tech & Innovation team oversaw the SWI 2017, which saw over 200,000 employees from over 200 businesses work flexibly on Monday 24th July, resulting in MD Jason Downes appearing on BBC News.

Powwownow MD Jason Downes on BBC News

Public Affairs Team Double Award Winners

The PHA Group’s Public Affairs Team have been celebrating after getting a double whammy at The Public Affairs Awards last night. The black-tie event, which was hosted by Sky News presenter Adam Boulton, took place at the Park Plaza Riverside and 4 members of the PHA team attended.

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In a room packed with the hottest talent in the public affairs industry, we were delighted to win both of the awards that we were shortlisted for, despite stiff competition in both categories.

For our work with Living and Dying Well, we received the ‘Consultancy Campaign of the Year’ Award in recognition of our work on the campaign that resoundingly defeated the Assisted Dying Bill at Second Reading in September 2015. This campaign demonstrated the value and impact of The PHA Group’s integrated approach, using a powerful combination of public affairs, PR and social media to secure a result for our client. The judges recognised our campaign for its clear strategy and consistent messaging, the creativity of our execution, the profile secured for the client, the sophisticated intelligence data captured, the shift in parliamentary opinion achieved, and ultimately the result when it came to a vote in parliament.

We were also extremely proud to be awarded ‘Party Conference Event of the Year’ for the ‘WOW: Championing Working Women’ event we organised at Conservative Party Conference for Jacqueline Gold, who wanted to move issues affecting working women up the Conservative political agenda. Our fringe was one of the most popular events at the Conference, and the judges singled us out, praising the innovative and professional approach we took as well as the event’s impact beyond the conference. Needless to say, we were thrilled to be recognised in this way.

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For the PHA Public Affairs team, this is a great way to round off an incredible 2015: we have won some significant campaigns, taken on some exciting new clients and doubled the size of our team. We are looking forward to building on this success in the New Year.

The PHA Group wins Media Employer of the Year Award

February 18th 2015 will long be a date that sticks in the mind of The PHA Group employees for all the right reasons.

On a star-studded evening, hosted by Pathfinders at Soho’s Ham Yard Hotel, the company scooped the biggest prize in their ten year history as they claimed the prestigious ‘Media Employer of the Year’ award.

It was vindication of the journey and hard work that the company from the top down have undergone and the ethos that has been established over the best part of a decade.

Credit must also be paid to runners up, Brandfuel, who were extremely magnanimous in defeat as the judges revealed there was little to separate the two companies, who were by far and away this year’s outstanding candidates.

PHA's Director of PR Stuart Skinner collects the award

PHA’s Director of PR Stuart Skinner collects the award

Particular areas of praise included the firm’s staff appraisal process, high retention rate, and consistent ability to convert interns into full time staff, something I have particular experience of.

It is difficult to argue that the award was deserved as I have seen first-hand the work and personable nature of the company on a daily basis. Being just days short of my year anniversary (a date which is naturally in everyone’s diaries) has meant that I have been one of the main beneficiaries of the businesses’ numerous schemes and internship programmes. Yes, this was my first year at the company and we claimed victory but to suggest a correlation would be too much… I was just delighted to be involved in the entry process as my experience has been a wholly positive one.

The PHA representatives celebrate the win.

The PHA representatives celebrate the win.

While ‘Bra packer to Junior Account Executive’ is unlikely to be the title of my impending autobiography, it does highlight the importance that the company place on the person behind the CV. Ensuring the job is done to the best of your ability is of course paramount in any profession but I do believe that the culture of a workplace is equally crucial and can further fuel success. From the approachability of the company partners, to the strong sense of team, right through to Friday massages and drinks…The PHA Group have their staff’s best interests at heart.

It is equally important that this award is not seen as the end of the journey but merely the beginning of it. It is always nice to be recognised in this nature but it is worth pondering why we were victorious and how such high levels of staff satisfaction can be maintained and even improved upon. The accolade is not to be underestimated and while PHA are ruled out of winning the award in the future, we will have great pride in handing the award to next year’s worthy winners. Now in true Ab Fab style, let the champagne flow!

Director of PR, Stuart Skinner, was understandably delighted with the accolade: “We are absolutely delighted and honoured to receive this award. We have won prizes before for commercial growth, and for client campaigns, but this award genuinely means the most. This one is all about the people in the company and they are the most important asset we have and what drives the business forward.”

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