Latest Hays jobs report show widespread gaps in marketing and digital skills

Recruitment firm's report into Australian marketing employment shows content skills going in-house and digital and data skills missing for most

Marketing leaders are seeking to bring more content managers and writers in-house with an understanding of user experience in online, while bumping up temporary and contract staff to assist with digital projects, a new report claims.

The latest Hays Jobs in Demand report for July to December 2018 found 34 per cent of employers in the marketing sphere expect permanent staff levels to rise in the next year, even as 30 per cent also predict an increase in their use of temporary and contract marketing staff.

The complementary 2018-2019 Hays Salary Guide also suggested temporary and contract staff hiring remains a regular and ongoing practice, with 17 per cent of employers now actively engaged in such an approach. A further 50 per cent said contract staff will be employed for special projects or workloads.

The reasons are pretty obvious: There’s a big skills gap across many aspect of modern marketing. According to Hays, demand remains high for digital project managers specifically for contract roles, while content managers and writers, as well as content producers with an understanding of UX for online channels are high on the list for permanent positions.

Another gap is data insight management and analysis, and the recruitment company cited a shortage of both technical and soft skills in the market, and those who not only craft a story out of insights, but can also relay it back to stakeholders.

Other skills in demand are hybrid marketing managers, senior marketing managers and digital marketing managers who again blend generalist marketing skills with digital nous. Specific areas of focus include creating and implementing strategies, using data for decision making, SEO and SEM, team leadership and an ability to prove ROI from strategy. Hays stated digital marketers who can implement a full marketing strategy are in short supply.

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Marketing automation and campaign marketing management also remain on the wishlist, and ecommerce was another making an appearance on what is a very broad range of skills now needed in marketing functions.

Despite these demands, Hays found most marketers can only expect pay rises of no more than 3 per cent, and 11 per cent of employers didn’t expect to increase salaries at all. Just shy of one in five could receive an increase of between 3-6 per cent.

“With the convergence of marketing and technology, the phenomenal opportunities offered by customer data, and the power of digital and social channels to engage with audiences, the role of marketing has never been more in the spotlight than it is today,” the report stated.  

According to Hays’ 2018-2019 Salary Guide, a marketing director in Sydney or Melbourne can now expect to earn an average salary of $200,000 per year excluding super, $195,000 in Perth, $170,000 in Canberra, or between $130,000 - $140,000 in Brisbane, Adelaide or Darwin.

A digital strategy manager, meanwhile, can expect an annual salary of $150,000 in Sydney or $140,000 in Melbourne, while a digital analyst is earning about $120,000 per year in Sydney or $110,000 in Melbourne.

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