How 1284 evidences commitment to professional quality

George Oliver

Jan 21


min read

‘The ability to establish, grow, extend, and restore trust is the key professional and personal competency of our time.’

So wrote Stephen R. Covey, US business educator and author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

It’s vital that would-be clients can trust the professionalism of a potential partner in any business.

But how can this demonstrated in an industry - such as Public Relations - which has no barriers to entry and where outcomes can be difficult to quantify?

1284 does so through:

  • Annual renewal of CIPR membership and associated evidencing of CPD
  • Adhering to the CIPR Code of Conduct and Professional Standards Panel
  • Completing a stringent assessment process in order to gain Chartered status
  • Entering industry awards to be judged against our peers by industry experts.

CIPR membership

One way of demonstrating professional standards is through membership of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR).

The CIPR is ​​the world's only Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners. 

It has nearly 11,000 members, all recognised PR professionals. They work with the CIPR to set, maintain and advance standards.

Leicester PR agency 1284 has been a member since being founded in 2020.

In order to renew membership annually, members must evidence Continuing Professional Development (CPD) against a central points-based system.

George Oliver gained CIPR Chartered status in March 2022 (Credit:CIPR)

Code of Conduct

All CIPR members are bound by its Code of Conduct. Their to the Code is renewed annually when they renew their membership.

The CIPR provides members with a legal and ethical hotline to help members to work within the Code.

It means all CIPR members agree to:

  • maintaining the highest standards of professional endeavour, integrity, confidentiality, financial propriety and personal conduct;
  • dealing honestly and fairly in business with employers, employees, clients, fellow professionals, other professions and the public;
  • respecting, in their dealings with other people, the legal and regulatory frameworks and codes of all countries where they practise;
  • upholding the reputation of, and do nothing that would bring into disrepute, the public relations profession or the CIPR;
  • respecting and abide by the Code and related Notes of Guidance, and ensuring that others who are accountable to them (for example sub-contractors) do the same;
  • encouraging professional training and development among members of the profession in order to raise and maintain professional standards generally.

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Chartered PR status

The CIPR is working to build a predominantly chartered public relations profession.

Its aim is to ensure PR practitioners demonstrate high standards and operate on an equal footing with colleagues in other strategic management disciplines, such as law and finance.

It aims for practitioner’s work to be recognised and valued at the highest levels.

Chartered status demonstrates breadth of experience, strategic and leadership capabilities, and commitment to ethical practice. 

It is a badge of professionalism that your colleagues, clients and the public understand and trust.

1284’s George Oliver and Amy Orton are both qualified Chartered PR professionals. Each is registered in the CIPR directory.

In October 2023 there were only 629 such chartered practitioners among almost 100,000 professionals in the UK.

This is despite research showing that 71% of the public would trust a chartered practitioner more. 

1284 won a Silver Award at Midlands PRide 2023 (Credit: CIPR)

CIPR awards

The CIPR stages two sets of awards each year: the regional PRide Awards in the autumn and the national Excellence Awards in the summer.

Each year the awards recognise the work of hundreds of PR agencies, in-house teams, campaigns, and practitioners by shortlisting and judging their work.

The CIPR Excellence Awards are the PR industry’s leading awards.

In 2023, 1284 founder George Oliver received the Mark of Excellence for Independent PR Practitioner of the Year.

The PRide Awards run across 20 regions. 1284 has twice won the Silver Award in the Midlands region:

1284 focuses on CPD - such as George's Level 7 diploma in Public Affairs

Professional Standards Panel

Anyone can bring a complaint against a CIPR member under the Code of Conduct. 

It has a complaints process run independently of the organisation itself, which includes a Professional Standards Panel and separate Appeals Panels.

CIPR members of the panels are all experienced, senior practitioners in public relations.

Panels also contain lay members, people experienced in holding disciplinary or professional standards hearings in other organisations or institutions.

12 CIPR members and six lay members available to be chosen for hearings.

In addition, the complaints process is managed by an independent Regulatory Consultant who acts as an honest broker between the complainant and the member. 

The consultant’s first duty is to seek mediation or conciliation between the parties.

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