Jakarta, 14-15 Dec 2022: In conjunction with the Golden 50th Year Anniversary of the Indonesian Public Relations Association (PERHUMAS), allied public relations professional organizations gathered at The Ballroom Djakarta Theater, Jakarta, Wednesday (14/12/2022).
In a panel discussion session entitled “Inspiration for Indonesia to Move Together” moderated by the Chair of PERHUMAS Boy Kelana Soebroto, each organization conveyed its role for the industry and public relations profession in the country. This event is also a forum for collaboration to answer current and future public relations challenges.
The public relations professional organizations included the ASEAN Public Relations Network (APRN), the Public Relations Association (IPRAHUMAS), the BUMN Public Relations Forum (FH BUMN), the Association for Higher Education in Communication Sciences (ASPIKOM), the Hotel Public Relations Association (H3) Jakarta, and the Association of Indonesian Communication Scholars (ISKI).
The event, which was part of a series of Indonesian Public Relations Conventions (KHI), was also attended by the Director General of Public Communication Information (IKP) of the Ministry of Communication and Informatics Usman Kansong. On that occasion, he previously worked as a journalist and highlighted the two public relations challenges in government.
First, there is still a lack of collaboration in the public relations environment. According to him, the important thing that must be done by government public relations in carrying out its role in communicating government programs is to cooperate with professional public relations outside of government public relations. Usman’s statement was agreed by the Chair of the Jakarta Hotel Public Relations Association (H3) Yulia Maria. Usman Kansong also believes the importance of expanding networks and collaboration beyond the scope of hospitality. An extensive network is also believed to be able to make public relations work more agile.
While the second challenge, said Usman, is the ability of public relations to expand its network overseas. According to him, one of the things that should be regretted in holding the G20 Summit in last mid-November 2022 is that public relations has not been able to reach tier 1 media abroad. “It’s time for public relations to get involved in reaching out to the media and the international community,” he continued.
Prita Kemal Gani, the Founder and President of APRN, agreed. According to the founder and CEO of the LSPR Communication and Business Institute, this nation must believe in Indonesia’s public relations capabilities if it wants to reach the international sphere.
Usman added that effort was needed as much as possible, which was by providing experience and training to public relations professionals. Experience can be done by giving the widest space to be creative while training can be carried out by providing Digital Talent Scholarships and Digital Leadership Academy as programs conducted by KOMINFO.
Meanwhile, the Chair of IPRAHUMAS, Thoriq Ramadani summarized three priority competencies that public relations professionals must have at this time; which are the competence to draw up strategic patterns, social media analysis, and writing skills. IPRAHUMAS’s strategy to hone this competency is to hold competitions and give appreciation to outstanding members and agencies, including choosing IPRAHUMAS ambassadors and encouraging the ability to write about public relations institutions by regularly publishing books.
Chair of ASPIKOM Bekti Istiyanto emphasized the same thing. According to him, equal distribution of public relations competence throughout Indonesia should be a common concern. The development of this competency must be supported by alignment of practice and theory. For this reason, he hopes that this event can be a momentum for allied associations to be able to jointly assist academics in advancing even distribution of competence in the field of communication.
Another challenge faced by the public relations in the SOEs, according to Chair of FH BUMN Aestika Oryza Gunarto, as a state-owned company, BUMN companies cannot be separated from the public’s attention. For this reason, SOE public relations has a strategic role, especially in conveying corporate economic and social values. This value then must be amplified in society. “The role of allied organizations can be a link (hub) so that information can be more widespread,” he said.
Chair of the Association of Indonesian Communication Scholars, Dadang Rahmat Hidayat agrees. According to him, collaboration might create a common understanding. “In the end we can achieve a bigger goal. Namely, being a public relations officer for this nation,” he said, who greeted KHI participants virtually that day.