Advanced Union Public Relations

What Union Public Relations Should Look Like

Unions at all levels underestimate the need, and their capability, to engage in public relations.  Whether it is the National Veterans Affairs Council (NVAC) dealing with the recent patient “wait list” controversy, the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) dealing with controversial use of force policy issues, or American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) contending with years of pay freezes and pay cuts, unions have a vested interested in communicating a message.  This communication should not be specifically limited to the membership.  Instead, unions should seek to develop a single message that can be communicated to the public, agency officials, politicians, and union members.  Using this approach, it is less likely conflicting message will be delivered and you will achieve a greater scale of economy.

Take a look at the National Border Patrol Council public relations video.  This video production was done in house using standard consumer grade video and photo equipment (we did some consulting on tech needs for video production). Clearly, the NBPC is doing something right.  In fact, comparatively impressive and very professional.

It is also important to note video alone is insufficient in our opinion.  Union’s must maintain a website for both internal and external use.  Typically, this is the first stop for anyone looking for information on your union or a specific topic you covered.  To provide a full spectrum of communications, union should also utilize Twitter, Youtube (for video), and direct e-mail contact solutions (with robust opt-out options).  We opine services such as Facebook, Instagram, Vine, and the like are not professional means of communicating your message unless your union represents children in the eleven to seventeen year old age group and/or that is the demographic you seek to influence.

Checkout their 5 minute CBA training video!  Notice the introduction graphics.  Same as their PR video.  This is consistent branding.  Notice at the end of the video how the attorney directs viewers to the union website.

Summation

Most unions have failed to embrace technology, especially those in the public sector.  In our experience, most local unions never established an Internet presence or failed to maintain such a presence, arguably worse than never establishing such a presence.  It’s time to change.

Additional Resources

 

 See All Our FAQ’s

Informed Fed provides expert administrative consulting and representational services to federal employees and labor organizations in all labor and employee relations matters including arbitration, grievances, disciplinary and adverse actions,  Unfair Labor Practice Complaints, EEO Complaints, Reasonable Accommodation and Alternative Dispute Resolution matters.
Contact us.  Web: www.InformedFed.com  |  Phone/Text: (202) 642-1287  |  Twitter: @InformedFed  |  Hire a Consultant Here
The material on this website is intended to provide only general information and comment to the public. Although we make our best efforts to ensure information found on this website is accurate and timely, we cannot, and do not, guarantee the information is either. Nor do we guarantee accuracy of any information contained on websites to which our website provide links.  Do not, under any circumstances, rely on information found on our website as legal advice. It should be considered a general guide. Legal matters are often complicated and fact dependent. For assistance with your specific issue or inquiry please contact your local union, personnel office, or attorney. Consultants offered through this website are not attorneys and are not employees of Informed Fed. They are labor and employee relations practitioners. They provide services to clients in their individual capacities through individual agreements with their clients. Though attorneys are not required for representation in administrative matters or proceedings, there are instances in which our consultants may refer you to attorneys or otherwise make such recommendation. In no instance does this site, or consultants associated with this site, infer the provision of legal services.