Conservative Count

Last week, our cover story on the economic slump quoted Dennis Smith, president of PR recruiting firm Spring Associates, saying that 20% to 30% of agency jobs have been lost
due to the weakened economy. Those numbers are grossly exaggerated, counters Jack Bergen, president of the Council of PR Firms. "He is wrong by a country mile," Bergen says.
"That would mean that the industry has dropped about 8,000 employees this year from a workforce of about 26,000. There may be a few firms that have had 30% layoffs, but it is
irresponsible and alarmist to make it look like the industry has been downsized by that amount." The Council's number is somewhere between 9% and 12%, with some high tech PR
firms reaching 20%.