Public relations officers plan, develop, put into place and evaluate information and communication strategies that present an organisation to the public, clients and other stakeholders. They also promote good information flow within their organisation.
To become a public relations officer you usually have to complete a VET qualification in public relations. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you complete a degree with a major in public relations. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education with English. Most institutions in Australia offer relevant degrees. Institutions have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information.
Public relations officers may perform the following tasks:
Public relations officers may have to work in the evenings or on weekends, and may be required to travel for business.
Public relations officers work for a variety of organisations, including large industrial or commercial firms, government organisations, tertiary institutions, industry associations, retailers, financial institutions and not-for-profit organisations. They can also work on a freelance basis or be employed by public relations consultancies that offer a range of public relations services or specialise in particular fields (fashion, for example). Public relations officers usually work in cities where media services and other communication facilities are available and where many organisations have their head offices. However, even local councils in regional or remote areas need to communicate with the public and local businesses and may require public relations services. There is strong competition for positions offered in this field, but people with experience and formal educational qualifications are generally in demand.
A publicity agent promotes, represents and finds employment for individuals and groups in occupations such as acting, music and sport.