Coloplast – Public Relations

The Who

Coloplast is a global medical devices company with its UK head offices in Peterborough. It is the global market leader in urology and continence care and European market leader in ostomy care.

Coloplast develops, manufactures and distributes a range of medical devices, including ostomy bags, penile implants and anal irrigation systems.

It has a mission to make life easier for those with intimate healthcare needs.

The Why

For Coloplast to be the best at what it does, it needs people that are the best at what they do. It wants to increase the calibre of the job applications it receives and to improve its employee retention rate by ensuring that people know about the company and its ethos before they even apply for a job.

To help it be the best, it uses a marcomms agency which is the best at what it does (modesty never was one of our virtues).

The What

Unlike many clients where our work supports the company’s marketing department, at Coloplast most of our work supports the HR department.

Since 2007 we have provided Coloplast with the PR and communications element of its strategy to increase awareness of the company among potential employees, positioning it as an employer of choice.

Using our unique measurement tool, the media matrix, each year we agree a series of key messages that Coloplast wants to communicate to potential employees. We also agree which media – online, print and broadcast – should be delivering which of the messages, how many times a year. The media matrix is used to help both us and Coloplast track progress and ensure the right messages are getting to the right audience.

With targets set, we put our knowledge of the media to work, along with our writing skills, charm and good looks (or so we would like to think). We produce a regular flow of press releases, each one targeted to deliver agreed messages to particular sectors of the media.

We also identify awards which could showcase Coloplast as an employer of choice (providing it with independent, third party endorsements) and which we feel it has a strong chance of winning. We draft and submit the award entries and work to maximise coverage of awards won.

Although most of our work is to promote Coloplast as a great place to work, by ‘getting under the skin’ of the company and its employees (which is essential at this level of work, thinking the way they think and literally putting words in their mouths), we have become involved in other aspects of its PR and marketing activity.

This organic growth (helped by the HR director recommending us to other areas within the company) has seen us providing PR support to the marketing department during product launches and other events.

The Wow

Our targeted approach achieves a constant flow of coverage in the company’s target media, resulting in an increased awareness of the company and its culture. Since we began working for Coloplast in 2007, its employee retention rate has improved, as has the calibre of potential employees it attracts.

It has achieved third party endorsements for its learning and development programme thanks to winning a key business award two years running, for which we researched, drafted and submitted the entry. As a result of these wins, we are now opening up the award programme to include national learning and development awards as part of an on-going strategy.

Sam Sedwill, Coloplast’s HR director, commented: “At Coloplast we expect our employees to work hard, to be dedicated to their roles and to be knowledgeable and experienced in their field. We expect no less of our marketing communications agency. For more than five years the Metrix team has provided invaluable PR and communications support. They understand our company and how it works, they understand our PR goals and they work hard to help us achieve them.”