Survey: Digital Talent in Greatest Demand

New York — July 19

Company executives struggling to attract and retain top talent may find that the challenge is even greater than they fear, according a new survey.

The third-annual 24 Seven Job Satisfaction and Salary Survey found that a majority of creative industry employees soon could be on the move as a result of declining job satisfaction and increased expectations for salary growth.

With loyalty extremely low, two-thirds of these employees plan to make some change in their career in the next year, the survey said, either within their company or externally. Nearly one in four plans for the career change to include working for a new company. Of those, Millennials, Gen Xers and creative talent are especially open to changing companies.

The survey queried more than 5,000 professionals across the United States in creative business industries, including digital, fashion, retail, beauty, design and marketing.

Compensation topped the list of job satisfaction drivers and is also the primary reason employees make a career move, the survey said. Non-traditional benefits that help employees achieve work-life balance were the most highly regarded — summer hours, comp days and flex-time/telecommuting — while besides medical insurance, no other traditional benefit was particularly valued.

Employees cited a lack of career direction as the top concern keeping them up at night. The survey found that there is a huge perception gap between executives, managers and talent in the area of “career pathing.” Talent said that executives don’t place enough importance on helping employees define career paths, and managers think they are doing a better job of helping guide careers than talent perceives.

The majority of executives identified finding and attracting game-changing talent as the most challenging talent issue their organizations face, with four out of five executives feeling under the same amount of pressure or more to attract and retain talent, compared to a year ago.

Only a fifth, however, have formalized talent management strategies in place. Of those that do, a personalized strategy for each top performer is most frequently implemented.

Executives perceived talent in the design and creative, digital and interactive and sales functions as the most in-demand and hardest to recruit. Digital and account roles had the biggest median salary increases at 5.6 percent and 5.4 percent, respectively.

The survey found that the longer one works as a freelancer, the less likely they become to accept traditional employment with a single company. Most freelancers said they chose the freelance work style because of the freedom and flexibility it offers, even those who initially turned to freelance work after being laid off by their companies. Freelancers have a similar level of satisfaction with their current positions as traditionally employed staff, but are significantly more likely to be optimistic that their satisfaction will increase over the next year, the survey said.

Source: 24 Seven Inc.