IPA census shows growth in media agencies at expense of others

Charlie Spargo's picture
by Charlie Spargo

According to the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising's (IPA) Agency Census, the number of people employed by media agencies is growing while creative and non-media agencies' employee bases continue to contract.

900 individuals, or 5.1%, departed non-media agencies in 2018 - marking a second year of declining numbers. However, media agencies in 2018 took on around 700 employees to reach a total of 10,985 - a growth rate of 7.1% year-over-year.

The proportion of staff at IPA-affiliated media agencies was 43.7% in 2018, up from 40.6% the year before. However the same statistic for IPA agencies not operating within media dropped to 56.3% - a huge difference from 2014's figure of 64.1%.

The Agency Census also took a look at diversity within the sector, finding that the number of women working in C-suite positions was up to 32.7%. However, more people are working part-time or on reduced hours than last year - with 87% of that number being women.

13.8% of the workforce - as opposed to 12.9% in 2017 - come from BME backgrounds, but on the other hand only 5.5% of C-suite workers are non-white.

The data was collected from a total of 224 IPA agencies, who shared their employment statistics with the organisation.