Assessment Piece – Rationale Beattie Communications

Item – Press Release

Client – NEC Contractors (Magnox Limited)

Date – 18.03.2014

Company – Beattie Communications, Leeds

During my placement at Beattie Communications I have worked on many different accounts. A notable Business-to-Business account was the NEC suite of contacts.

A particularly challenging but (learned from) piece was a press release, the content of which was an announcement that NEC3 had been chosen by Magnox Limited as the chosen supplier for the decommissioning of some of the UK’s Power Stations. The subject was difficult to sell to journalists, as it was an announcement rather than a story. As well as this, Energy was a previously unknown market to me, a market that at times I found confusing.

My duties when working with this client included assisting in the production of press releases with a senior colleague. I then went on to make a media list using Gorkana, which included the names, telephone numbers, emails and postal addresses for trade publications.

Once I had completed the media list, I was responsible for making connections over the telephone and then going on to ‘sell’ the press release to journalists. I then sent the press release via email. The following week I made follow up calls to all of the journalists that had expressed interest in the press release.

Because the press release was particularly niche it was challenging to pitch. Trade journalists who can perhaps be notoriously impolite and short had to be slowly convinced of the point of the release. These reasons contributed to my feeling of achievement when I managed to gain coverage for the client.

Following this first experience of the Energy market I once again followed the same protocol when creating and pitching a different press release. The second press release was the announcement that NEC had been chosen as the preferred contactor for The Coal Authority’s programme to clean water that has been affected by the effluent from abandoned ironstone mines in Saltburn. Many trade publications showed great interest in the story and coverage is looking very hopeful for future


18 March 2014

Press release                                                                                                                                      

NEC3 contracts at the core of UK’s Magnox stations

NEC has been selected as the preferred contract supplier for Magnox Limited for its decommissioning programme of some of the UK’s nuclear power stations on behalf of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.

The NEC3 suite of contracts has become a cornerstone of the Magnox programme and has been used to great effect, from raising contract management performance standards to driving a cultural change. These contracts allow Magnox to work with suppliers over a period of time rather than for single specific projects.

In 2010 Magnox rationalised its supply chain using common NEC3 terms of engagement. The aim was to improve performance by reducing complexity and duplication. It also strived to improve clarity of purpose and establish shared goals with suppliers. Magnox chose to draw on the collaborative approach of NEC3 contracts rather than operating ‘turnkey’ projects that tend to be remote and cut off from organisational learning.

Rekha Thawrani, general manager for NEC, comments: “Following the government’s decision last year to grant EDF Energy planning permission for the first of its proposed two new nuclear power plants, Britain’s nuclear sector looks set to become one of the biggest users of NEC3 contracts. The NEC3 contract suite is already being widely used on the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority’s £3 billion a year programme to clean up the UK’s older nuclear sites, leading some in the industry to describe it as the ‘nuclear engineering contract’.

“The NEC3 suite of contracts has become synonymous with the nuclear decommissioning industry and it fully supports the principles of NDA’s supply chain development strategy. The clarity and cooperative nature of the NEC3 suite of contracts has played a crucial role in Magnox’s desire to attract the best from its supply chain and become a client of choice”.

Peter Walkden, Commercial Director at Magnox Limited, comments: “NEC3 has raised our contract management performance standards and coupled with the transparency offered through the early warning process, helped our management teams through the complex task of decommissioning sites safely and cost-efficiently.

“The integration of suppliers through common NEC3 terms of engagement delivers value for both the company and the UK taxpayer. Perhaps most significantly, it also promotes a shared culture of continuous improvement, which in turn encourages timely and safe practices – both of which are prerequisites in the nuclear industry”.

NEC3 contracts have also fostered better communications at meetings, formal or informal, and via the web and presentations for Magnox. A further benefit of the integrated supply chain and strategic NEC3 frameworks has been the ability to have ‘shovel ready’ projects on the shelf whenever priorities change or funding becomes available.

For further information on NEC visit www.neccontract.com.

ENDS


 

 

Magnox pic 1

Magnox pic 2  – Energy Times Coverage, please click image to enlarge.

Word count 798

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