Industry Insights

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Updated Job Change & Tenure Data for Marketing Research & Consumer Insights Professionals

March 24, 2020

This post is contributed by Burtch Works’ marketing research and consumer insights recruiting team.Having current data on how many research & insights professionals are changing jobs, as well as how long they’re staying at those jobs, can be informative for both employers and professionals working in the field.While recent events like the growing COVID-19 response will undoubtedly have an impact on the 2020 hiring market going forward (we’ve written more about the trends we’re already seeing here), we wanted to publish our annual job change research so that the data is available to those who need it.

Average Tenure and Job Change for Marketing Research & Consumer Insights Professionals

Each year we examine a sample of hundreds of researchers in our network to determine:

  1. How many had changed jobs in the previous year (2019)?
  2. And, among those who had changed jobs, how long did they stay in their previous position?

For this research we always focus on professionals who had joined a new company for their job change, and do not include those who received a promotion or made a transition within the same company.

Our research found that 15.4% of marketing research and consumer insights professionals changed jobs in 2019. For those who changed jobs, their average tenure at their previous position was three years.

How This Data Varies Based on Work Experience

As we’ve found in the past, professionals who are earlier in their careers tended to change jobs more frequently and held shorter tenure than those who were in the later stages of their careers. For example, among researchers with 0-10 years’ experience, 18.5% changed jobs and their average tenure in their previous position was 2.6 years. For research & insights professionals with 11 or more years’ experience, we found 13.4% changed jobs and their average tenure was 3.4 years in their previous position. Notably, when we examined the data for client- vs. supplier-side professionals, we didn’t find any significant differences between the two groups.Here at Burtch Works we often advise early career professionals to take advantage of opportunities to gain exposure to many different research tools, skills, and methodologies. This can provide a valuable base of experience from which to draw, and will be especially helpful as you move into new industries, categories, or research specialties down the road. Industry disruption can be difficult to predict, which is why it’s so important to develop a range of experience in different areas early on to build a strong foundation that can be adaptable moving forward.

Implications for the 2020 Marketing Research & Consumer Insights Market

The coronavirus impact is of course top of mind for many. So far we’ve seen that researchers are still in demand, though with recent travel restrictions in place companies are modifying the process, such as converting traditional interview practices and on-site meetings into virtual conversations.

Implications for Employers

With many employers adjusting to more of their teams working from home and other logistical challenges, assignments are still a common part of the hiring process for evaluating research talent. We recommend reviewing some of the best practices we’ve outlined for using assignments, and advise you to be especially cognizant about the time commitment in our current situation!

Implications for Professionals

As our team mentioned in our COVID-19 impact blog, with increased uncertainty in the market we strongly advise research & insights professionals to be ready for change. This means collecting examples of your work, examining your LinkedIn profile to make sure it accurately represents your career and goals, and using our comprehensive MR resume guide to make sure yours is up-to-date.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.

You can also check out our 2020 research & insights salary webinar below, where we shared highlights from our latest research, COVID-19 impacts on the hiring market, and other developing trends for 2021 and beyond.