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This post is contributed by Karla Ahern and Kit Nordmark, Burtch Works’ marketing research and consumer insights recruiting specialists.

The results of our recent hiring flash survey showed many teams are looking to hire research & insights professionals and our recent salary report showed compensation increases for researchers last year, so we wanted to take a look at some other measures of market activity! The number of people changing jobs within the industry is another indicator of a healthy market.

Employers may look to these numbers to evaluate recruiting and retention strategy, and for research & insights professionals, it can also be helpful to understand the average tenure within the industry, whether you’re currently considering making a transition or planning your long-term career in the field.

 

Average Tenure and Job Change Incidence for Research & Insights Professionals

To gauge the activity of the hiring market for research & insights professionals, we looked at a sample of our network to determine:

  1. How many had changed jobs in 2018?
  2. And among those who had changed jobs, how long had they stayed in their previous position?

For this research we focused on professionals in the industry who had actually changed companies for their job change, and did not include those who had received a promotion or otherwise changed positions within the same company.

Overall, our research found that 20.7% of researchers in the field changed jobs in 2018. Of those who made a change in 2018, the average tenure for their previous position was 3.1 years.

 

Job Change Varies Based on Experience Level

As one might imagine, professionals who are earlier in their careers tend to change jobs more frequently than those with more experience. If you’ve established career progression within a company, hold a leadership position, or even personal circumstances (i.e. you bought a house, have kids in school, can’t leave the area, etc.) all may contribute to this difference.

To illustrate this, we divided the sample by years of research experience using the decade-mark as a point of reference. Of those researchers with 10 or fewer years’ experience, we found that 27% changed jobs in 2018, compared to only 17.8% of those with 11+ years’ experience.

And this also impacts tenure. We found that researchers earlier in their careers (0-10 years’ experience) had stayed at their previous position 2.7 years on average, while those with 11+ years’ experience had stayed an average of 3.4 years.

Implications for the 2019 Research & Insights Market

With hiring off to a strong start and salary increases that support our perception of an active market, it will be interesting to see where things land with our 2019 report! Until then, here are some of our thoughts on what an active market means for both employers and researchers.

Implications for Employers

With one in five researchers changing jobs, it’s a good time to assess your talent strategy to make sure you’re optimized for the active market! Last year we wrote about a few of our top tips for hiring marketing researchers, including everything from your hiring process to your offer packages to how to insert personal touches to seal the deal.

Implications for Professionals

If you’re a researcher, we always recommend keeping your resume up-to-date. We recently posted a comprehensive resume guide tailored for marketing researchers — it includes all our best advice on ideal formatting, highlighting industry or category expertise, showing the impact of your work, and much more. The process may seem daunting, but putting in the effort now means you’re ready to go when the right opportunity comes your way!

 

We hope this information was helpful! If you’re looking to hire marketing research or consumer insights talent, or looking for new opportunities, be sure to connect with us on LinkedIn (Karla Ahern and Kit Nordmark).
 

Interested in our salary research on marketing research and consumer insights professionals? Download our studies using the button below.

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