Account Executive

Job Description

The Account Executive, and wider account management team, manage the relationship between the client and the agency.

Account Executive

Also known as...

Account Handler; Client Services Executive. And sometimes (semi affectionately) as a ‘Suit’.
Often a Graduate Trainee or Apprentice entry-level position.

The role in brief...

The Account Executive, and wider account management team, manage the relationship between the client and the agency. Account Executives are responsible for ensuring the smooth running of client accounts within the agency. They need to develop effective working relationships with client contacts, and all the key functions that go into creating the agency’s advertising output, including with the media agencies who are supplying media schedules. They will get involved with solving problems, attending meetings, drafting internal and external communications, and documenting progress on a variety of agency projects.

Working with...

  • Internal: Agency account team, including planners/strategists; Creative teams and directors; Creative services and production staff; Finance/accounts; New Business
  • External: Client marketing team; Other agencies on their Client's roster e.g. Media, Public Relations etc; Regulatory bodies.
  • Account Executives will usually report into an Account Manager or Account Director, depending on the size of the team/agency.

Responsible for...

  • Building good working relationships with client and agency contacts.
  • Managing the day-to-day administration of the client account, including issuing of invoices, timing plans, estimates and client contact notes.
  • Organising a variety of meetings, including room bookings, catering, technology, transport and personnel required.
  • Attending client briefings and gathering relevant data to support the development of communication strategies and creative briefs in response.
  • Preparing materials for presenting and selling creative work.
  • Supporting the development of creative work by documenting client feedback and attending creative review meetings.
  • Monitoring project deadlines and budgets, identifying and communicating potential changes that may be required.
  • Maintaining accurate records of meetings, decisions and next actions.

Those who succeed are...

  • Interested in advertising, business and communications.
  • Personable and persuasive, and able to work effectively with a variety of different people.
  • Organised, with strong attention to detail and time management skills.
  • Effective communicators, both verbally and in writing.
  • Able to manage multiple projects, budgets and events.
  • Flexible, and able to solve problems.
  • Curious about the clients’ business and sector.
  • Able to deal positively with setbacks
  • ‘Assume’ nothing
  • Keen to get involved with new and organic business opportunities

Where they come from, and where they go...

Account Executives are usually recruited as graduates from a wide variety of degree subjects, which include many non-vocational subjects, as well as Marketing, Advertising, Media and Business courses. At larger agencies this is done via formal graduate recruitment schemes, typically on an annual basis. Account Executives can also be taken on by agency apprenticeship schemes where there is no requirement for a degree, although A-Levels, or equivalent, are still expected, for example The Advertising and Media Executive Apprenticeship.

Account Executives can then go on to become Account Managers and Account Directors, before progressing into agency management roles. These promotions will come as a result of delivering excellent work for the client, managing effective relationships, finding and pitching for new business, and demonstrating a passion for the role. They need to have an interest and curiosity in their client’s sector. Some Account Executives transition into other agency disciplines such as Account Planning.


Last updated 10 November 2021