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As the new year begins, the talent marketplace in data science, analytics and digital marketing – hotbed areas that touch virtually every industry and business – will be on fire. Top-performing pros have the luxury of choice, now that the recession is history. As an employer, if you fail to snag your preferred candidate today, they’ll be working for your competition tomorrow.

Here’s an overview of where the critical talent gaps will be in 2015, so you can work with your recruitment partner to address them.

Big Data Continues to Be Big Business

Industry research has noted that data creation and replication will increase fourfold next year, reaching 1.8 zettabytes. The capability to analyze and unlock data insight is critical for businesses to make timely, informed decisions to boost efficiency, profitability and competitiveness. The problem is: Pundits also predict a continued talent shortage in the data analytics arena.

  • By 2018, the U.S. alone may face a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 professionals with deep analytical skills. More than 85 percent of Fortune 500 companies will be unable to effectively use Big Data by the end of 2015.
  • More than 75 percent of executives surveyed said staffing and training issues were the main barriers to making the most of Big Data. While the majority (58 percent) believe finding the right technology is their biggest business challenge, more than half (56 percent) of IT decision makers stated that finding the right staff was an even bigger challenge.
  • The right skill set is needed. The ideal candidate will be capable of both creating queries and analyzing results. Needed are developers who understand both the statistics and their business. Teamwork and communication are as important as math and statistics.
  • The largest shortages are around data scientists. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts a 24 percent increase in demand for these professionals over the next eight years.

Digital Marketing on the Rise

Most (68 percent) senior executives believe that their teams are not equipped to handle today’s lightning-paced changes in digital marketing. This has heightened industry demand for CMOs, chief creative officers and chief digital officers.

  • Both generalists and specialists are needed. Many organizations continue to look for broad digital marketing skills at management levels and higher. But as the industry matures, it is separating into specialty areas including content management, SEO/SEM, analytics and social media.
  • SEO isn’t just about getting your website found. Digital marketing managers need people with a deep understanding of both customer relations and technical elements such as sitemaps. In order to succeed, these superstars must be passionate about SEO and genuinely interested in keeping a close watch on the constantly changing digital landscape.
  • Pay-per-click executives are in hot demand. Their role is to try and get their company’s website to the highest Google ranking possible. PPC experience is still in hot demand within industries and agencies.
  • The importance of content marketing is skyrocketing. With every Google update announced and new social media algorithm created, the value of content marketing becomes clearer. Demand has surged as quality content development feeds into the many essential elements of the digital marketing mix including email, social media and SEO strategy.
  • Demand for technical skills remains high. User Experience (UX) designers are a prime example. More and more businesses are recognizing their importance as consumers continue to demand better products and more efficient experiences.

It Starts with Research Analysts

Where would businesses be without market research analysts? These consumer-focused professionals fully understand supply, demand and purchasing preferences. They use their expertise to collect timely, pertinent data and then analyze it and present their findings to senior leadership and/or clients.

  • The demand for data to create effective marketing strategies will continue to implode. Experts estimate growth of more than 36 percent in this area by 2022. This encompasses research companies, colleges, government agencies and a wide range of industries.

The recruitment and search consultants at BrainWorks have their fingers on the pulse of market intelligence to help you fill the skills gaps that form the basis of your 2015 business strategy. Contact us today to learn more.


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