- 11 May 2018
FOI reference: FOI/18/01143
Date received: 11 April 2018
Date responded: 9 May 2018
1. The number of full time press office/news desk/media relations staff employed by the Scottish Government during the years 2015, 2016 and 2017.
2. The total wage bill of the above staff, broken down by year.
3. The number of contracts awarded to external public relations/marketing companies/individuals by the Scottish Government, broken down by date, company/individual, purpose of contract, length of contract and value of contract.
1. The number of full time press office/news desk/media relations staff employed by the Scottish Government over the years in question is available at Scottish Government website: https://beta.gov.scot/publications/foi-18-00939/
Numbers of FTE staff vary throughout the financial year and the figures represent staff numbers on just one day of each year, March 31st. This means that these figures are a 'snapshot': they do not represent either a total number or average number of staff employed in the year. Figures for 2017-18 are still being processed and will be available within 12 weeks. These figures are based on a financial year, as opposed to calendar year in your request.
2. The cost of frontline communications staff/press officers in the last three years to the most recent financial year is available at Scottish Government website: https://beta.gov.scot/publications/cost-of-frontline-communications-staff/
We intend to publish the costs for 2017-18 on the Scottish Government website within 12 weeks.
3. The number of contracts awarded to external public relations/ marketing companies/ individuals by the Scottish Government, broken down by date, company/ individual, purpose of contract, length of contract and value of contract. While you have not specified a time period, we have taken this from Q1 for the period covering 2015-2017:
|Contract||Agency||Date Awarded||Contract Value|
|Tram Inquiry - PR||3x1||30-Jan-15||£50,000|
|Safer Roads – PR||Smarts||10-Jun-15||£125,000|
|Safer Communities - PR||Consolidated||15-Jun-15||£150,000|
|International - Digital||Whitespace||07-Sep-15||£150,000|
|Healthier – Digital||Union||09-Sep-15||£300,000|
|Safer Marketing Cluster - Research||TNS||04-Nov-15||£350,000|
|Smarter Cluster - Research||TNS||30-Nov-15||£200,000|
|Media Planning, Buying and Associated Services - Wealthier & Fairer, Safer, International||Republic of Media||10-Feb-16||£2,500,000|
|Parental Audience - Research||TNS||15-Feb-16||£100,000|
|Media Planning, Buying and Associated Services - Healthier, Greener, Smarter||Carat||28-Apr-16||£4,600,000|
|Smarter Wealthier & Fairer 2016 - PR||BIG||19-May-16||£200,000|
|Healthier Scotland 2016 - PR||Consolidated||01-Jun-16||£300,000|
|Greener 2016 - Digital||Whitespace||03-Jun-16||£250,000|
|Health Improvement 2016 - Advertising||Story||08-Jun-16||£600,000|
|Smarter Wealthier & Fairer 2016 - Advertising||The Gate||28-Jun-16||£500,000|
|Safer 2016 - Digital||The Gate||21-Jul-16||£450,000|
|Safer 2016 - Advertising||Leith||24-Jul-16||£650,000|
|Healthier Scotland 2016 - Field||Kommando||03-Aug-16||£200,000|
|Smarter 2016 - Digital||The Gate||13-Aug-16||£500,000|
|Healthier Scotland 2016 - Partnerships||Union||04-Sep-16||£250,000|
|CEHP 2016 - Advertising||Leith||07-Sep-16||£750,000|
|Parental Audience - Advertising||Union||29-Sep-16||£100,000|
|Parental Audience - Digital||Union||06-Oct-16||£50,000|
|International - Research||TNS||25-May-17||£20,000|
|International – PR|
|Parental Audience - PR||Stripe||14-Sep-17||£80,000|
|Parental Audience - Creative Services||Union||15-Sep-17||£600,000|
|Parental Audience - Digital||Union||28-Sep-17||£600,000|
|WW100 – PR||Smarts||03-Oct-17||£60,000|
|Migration – PR||Pagoda||16-Nov-17||£50,000|
|Contract Value total:||£14,910,000|
For further information on what these contracts were utilised for, please consult the following:
You asked for "The number of contracts awarded to external public relations/marketing companies/individuals by the Scottish Government" as a whole.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the costs of locating, retrieving and providing the information requested would exceed the upper cost limit of £600. The reason for this is that to locate and retrieve that information we would need to conduct a search of all of the records of the Scottish Government. It may help if I explain that we file our information according to the subject matter, not by reference to the names of organisations with whom we have corresponded. Under section 12 of FOISA public authorities are not required to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying would exceed the upper cost limit, which is currently set at £600 by Regulations made under section 12.
You may, however, wish to consider reducing the scope of your request in order that the costs can be brought below £600. For example, you could specify the subject matter(s) of the correspondence you are interested in or restrict your request to a specific business area of the Scottish Government, as this would allow us to limit the searches that would require to be conducted. You may also find it helpful to look at the Scottish Information Commissioner's 'Tips for requesting information under FOI and the EIRs' on his website at:
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House