On 26 July 2016, VMA Group launched ‘SING for VMA’. This new initiative has been created to support interim communicators throughout their careers. Julia Meighan, CEO of VMA Group, stated, “The newly launched senior interim networking group, SING, allows senior interims to network and share their expertise through their industry peers. Being an interim is often a challenge and this network will allow interim communications professionals a space to network.”
34 people attended the exclusive networking drinks to launch the new initiative. In addition to Meighan, also speaking were Lucinda Moores, Andy Macleod and guest speaker, Suzy Cross; communications and change leader for Cancer Research UK and business mentor at The Prince’s Trust.
The evening focused upon the importance of interim and the opportunities around it. In the past, companies employed interims for the purpose of gap management, with maternity and paternity covers in 2016 constituting over a third of all interim roles. However, the expert knowledge of interims is now increasingly sought to facilitate organisational change. The digital era has meant that businesses are rapidly growing and expanding meaning that there is a consistent need for external expertise from a qualified interim.
Some feedback from those in attendance was that it was more critical than ever to continue to educate clients on the value of interim contracts. With many organisations now introducing internal communications roles, many of our interims were very positive about the introduction of a new degree from Kingston University on internal communication management, highlighting the growing need for this in the market. With the communications industry continually shifting and growing, interim professionals are uniquely placed to help facilitate these transitional changes for companies.
Some key points that came out of the evening:
- The key factor is trust when hiring an interim – for a recruitment agency, when finding the right fit for the role, it is more about having human connections than anything you can gather online from a CV
- Education, education, education – many clients are still not informed about the great benefits of interims to assist companies through periods of transformation, such as a digital shift, for example
- Growth – with market information and the latest data soon to be released through our ‘Bridging The Gap’ senior interim management survey, SING for VMA’s network will remain firmly at the forefront of the industry
This event gave VMA Group the opportunity to talk directly to the SING members, and gain a full perspective on the challenges that many interim professionals face within the market.
Through the development of the ‘Bridging The Gap’ survey and further events to come within this series, we will be collating an expert knowledge base that will be beneficial to both our clients and candidates.
If you would like to find out more about the details of interim contracts, or to join SING, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.