NEWS13 June 2023

Market research job satisfaction driven by colleagues, innovation and learning

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US – Almost two-thirds ( 63%) of research professionals surveyed by Market Research Institute International report that they are ‘very’ or ‘completely’ satisfied with their job, with colleague relationships and freedom to innovate and learn the most satisfying factors.

group of employees chatting in an office

The study, ‘For the Love of Learning: Career Development in a Changing Market Research Industry’, produced by MRII and the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education, found that the most satisfying aspects of market research practitioners’ jobs are their relationship with colleagues ( 79%), freedom to innovate ( 65%) and opportunities to learn and grow ( 61%).

The least satisfying factors for respondents were opportunities for advancement available ( 40%); the level of communication received from executive management ( 48%); and their company’s executive management in general ( 53%).

Job satisfaction in research was also higher among men ( 67% said they were highly satisfied) compared with women ( 59%), according to the research.

MRII fielded the online survey between 21st February and 6th March, and research partner QuestionPro collected almost 500 responses from market researchers. The survey was open to responses from around the world.

Of those who were less than satisfied, 28% said they were ‘moderately satisfied’, 6% said they were ‘slightly satisfied’, and 3% were ‘not at all satisfied’, according to the results.

Data visualisation emerged as the area that respondents felt they would benefit most from development and training in, with over half ( 56%) agreeing, followed by AI/machine learning ( 51%), advanced analytics ( 51%), text analytics/NLP ( 45%) and generative AI ( 45%).

The study also found that only 17% of market research professionals planned on it as a career before entering the industry. The largest percentage of respondents ( 39%) took a position in market research as their first job and have remained in the field, while one in five entered the industry via a mid-career pivot, either transferring from another role in their company ( 13%) or taking on a research role when it was introduced into their organisation ( 6%).

Ed Keller, executive director, MRII, said: “The research shows an industry that is highly engaged with their profession and eager to grow and innovate. Throughout the study, we see the importance that researchers place on opportunities to learn.”

“With the demands being placed upon market research and insights development, and the rapid change underway in the field, that bodes well for the industry as motivated practitioners will be up to the challenge of learning and mastering the skills that will be needed.”