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In 2013, there were more than 260,000 public relations managers and specialists employed in the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). Employment of public relations managers and specialists is expected to grow much faster than the average for all other industries in the coming years—by 12 to 13 percent through 2022—with about 36,300 more PR management and specialist jobs being added to the industry by then. The DOL predicts the job growth will be due to the growing number of organizations that are placing more importance on community outreach and consumer relations as a way to enhance and maintain their reputation and visibility. Anything can happen at any given moment to change the public’s opinion about an organization, its products and services, and its people. Additionally, the Internet and social media have helped speed the spread of both good and bad news, thus companies are now in even greater need of public relations managers and specialists to respond to new developments and keep the organization’s reputation intact. Industry experts also predict job growth to stem from the increased use of social media by clients as well as in the practice of public relations. More clients will need counsel and training in how to use social media most effectively for their businesses. Also, organizations will need more public relations professionals (such as community managers and bloggers) to help create, moderate, and manage the communication between organizations and the public. Public relations professionals will also experience more employment opportunities as organizations respond to the slowed-down economy by contracting out public relations services rather than using or hiring full-time staff when they need additional work.
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