Edelman Austin Agency Tour Recap

edelman1By: Alyssa Neilson

Edelman is known for being the world’s largest independently owned PR firm with 65 global offices and over 5,000 employees worldwide. On October 28, our chapter got the privilege to tour Edelman’s Austin office and have a Q&A session with some of their AE’s and Senior Account Executives.

When we first got to their office, we were stunned by the amount of openness and killer interior design. It was such a creative space where all of their employees could be comfortable while working together on accounts.

Our Q&A session was led by Abby Van Uum, a proud Texas PR grad and former UT PRSSA member. “I chose to work at Edelman because it is simply the best PR firm in the world.” The Austin office has a little under 30 employees and adds about two or three more every couple of months, and just five years ago there were only about 10 people total in the office. Edelman’s Texas offices are comprised of Austin, Dallas and Houston and are seated in their southwest region. We learned about how each Edelman Texas office is different than the next and Austin is reputably the “funkiest” and the second largest of the three. Edelman Houston is smaller as it was formerly Vollmer Public Relations before Edelman purchased it in 2010 as well as its employees.

edelman3At Edelman Austin, employees are encouraged to take work breaks in the office’s lounge area (complete with a kitchen and some good books). In our Q&A with some of the youngest account executives there, we received some very good advice about pursuing a corporate PR role at Edelman. “I knew I wanted to work at Edelman right away, so I kept looking on the website for Austin openings until there was one,” Abby said. “The best way to get your foot in the door for an internship here is to have us on your radar so we can have you on ours, before you apply. Send us your resume so we have it on file, we actually go through them when we are looking to hire immediately when we pick up a new client in the office.”

Edelman only hire graduates for their internship program, and the office typically only hires one intern per semester, but interning with Edelman is bound to end in a full-time offer upon successful completion of your internship – four out of six of the AE’s we met with started as Edelman interns while UT students.

“Definitely, focus on your writing and use your writing classes to your advantage. We write more in this job than I ever thought I would,” she added.

Edelman also has lots of employee incentives that make the company so favorable for people that work there. There’s an Edelman exchange program that the AE’s said is kind of like foreign exchange in your career. In this program, Edelman lets you apply to be able to switch offices for a few months in another city or country to get a different experience. Applying is open to all employees around the world, so sometimes the Austin office hosts Edelman employees from other cities and other parts of the world. Edelman is also flexible when it comes to letting employees move offices and cities, permanently.