This is the fifth in a series of discussions addressing the issue of why there are so few young people in the market research industry.
In this discussion, Jack Ramsay and Eliza Wood Lyndorff of VisionsLive Online Qualitative Research chat to Liz Norman, an ex market researcher and now the owner of Liz Norman recruitment who specializes in recruiting market researchers and analysts at all levels.
The first point that Liz brings to the fore is that a lot of people do not know about Market Research the visibility is simply not there among the general public what people do and the skills involved. So obviously people do not choose the career and rather fall into the industry.
It is also a retention issue at mid level. Organisation struggle to find and retain employees, maybe due to the fact that people fall into the industry and the skills that are learnt are appropriate to other fields, the salary and the industry does not live up to people expectations. Young people need to bare in mind that jobs are often not as exciting in the beginning. There are many opportunities in the field to set up your own business and the opportunities in terms of technology for young graduates but this needs to be better advertised to young people,
Recognition is also a major issue, both among their peers, externally and internally. We need to do more support, recognize, and encourage young researchers it would help to keep them in the industry. The public perception of market researchers is very poor so people don’t feel recognized.
It is also a manner of identifying where the burden of responsibility lies, with organizations, market researchers, or educational institutions. It is difficult to get everyone together and get one particular plan together. Education is an area where both recruiters and market researchers can impact and raise awareness of the industry through talks at University.
We need to start with recognition among general public before we say it needs to be academics. Potentially we need to re-brand the industry to be more all encompassing. The title does not live up to the diversity of the industry. We need to think about the industry more broadly, that is the potential where the future is, assessing data from a huge variety of sources its not just about going out and asking people questions. We need to show that diversity and what an exciting dynamic industry it is and where the range of opportunities are not simply going in and sending out questionnaires and checking answers there is much more to it than that. .
The new methodologies such as online and mobile and technology has brought in a huge range of things that are exciting. Beyond that we also have data from web analytics, CRM, big data, data from a wide variety of sources not just customer data and all these really need to be considered to see the whole picture. If we just focus on customer data we miss out on information. We don’t promote the opportunities for the industry and therefore the individual.
The marketing and advertising industry has role models but there is a lack of figure heads and role models in the market research industry. In conclusion we need a Market Research spokesman or a Market Research superman to promote the industry.