As sponsors of the In House Team of The Year award at 2014’s PRWeek Awards, Career Moves will bring you the inside scoop on the nominees.
Up until the event itself, we’ll be releasing interviews with the all of the nominated teams.
Today’s spotlight is on the Aviva In House Team.
Aviva is the UK’s largest insurer with over 14 million customers and one of Europe’s leading providers of life and general insurance.
We spoke to the Aviva Communications team to get an insight into their team and the PRWeek Awards.
What do you think makes an effective and successful in-house PR team?
What makes us a successful in house team is that we have created a single team of specialists, rather than a number of mini departments within a comms team. We embrace the range of communications disciplines – media, digital, social, international communications, film and corporate reputation – and have worked hard to build a single team spirit. We see ourselves as an agency in-house, that bring together integrated specialisms. It’s also about having fun together.
What are the Aviva team’s most notable or major achievements in the last year?
Up until 2013, Aviva had gone through a challenging period. The share price had fallen, leading to our previous Chief Executive leaving and there was a lot of criticism of our financial performance. As a result the group had to cut its dividend and announce the loss of 2000 jobs across the business. From a comms perspective, we lost a third of our team through redundancies.
We set out to rebuild investor confidence and to build some support for a turnaround, including announcing a new senior management team and new Chief Executive, Mark Wilson, and to tell a clear and candid story. Aviva was synonymous with complexities and we wanted to make sure we articulated a simple and clear Aviva story.
We’ve spent a lot of time making sure that the risks to our reputation are considered at the highest levels within the organisation. We have regular and robust dialogue with senior management, and make sure that we are tracking and managing the risks to our reputation and taking the appropriate action. It’s been a step change with how reputation is perceived and is collectively managed within the organisation , and constant dialogue is very important.
To tell our story simply and engagingly we have created interactive communications such as an app for media and investors (that gives an overview of our strategy and management team), and we make sure that we use the latest thinking with regards to digital and graphics. Film is also at the heart of all of our comms and we recently created an interactive corporate snapshot.
Aviva is unique in the UK in that we’re the only major insurer offering a one-stop shop for all insurance products – be that general insurance, life insurance, health insurance or asset management. And because of this leadership position, it’s a priority for us to lead a range of major consumer debates, including addressing the savings gap and reforming motor insurance.
With the other categories and nominees in the PR Week Awards in mind, are there any particular campaigns/teams or people that you are rooting for and why?
If you look at the breadth of awards, there is an impressive diversity in the campaigns that take place across the PR industry. It shows how much the industry has grown over the last 10 years and there has been a huge increase in quality. We’re always especially interested in the Integrated Campaigns too.
Check back in a couple of days, or make sure to follow Career Moves on Twitter for updates on the rest of the entries.