Data Analysis Skills Gap Identified as Top Challenge for Marketers, Survey Reveals

Data Analysis Skills Gap Identified as Top Challenge for Marketers, Survey Reveals

Survey findings confirm that marketers continue to face a significant skills gap in data analysis and analytics. Despite ongoing efforts to upskill and challenges in recruitment, bridging this gap remains a persistent challenge in the industry.

Marketers have identified data and analytics as the biggest skills gap in the marketing department.

Our Website’s Career & Salary 2024 report reveals that among over 3,000 brand-side marketers surveyed, 36.9% are worried about the lack of data and analytics skills within the marketing function.

Following closely behind, 19.6% expressed concerns about the lack of performance marketing skills, while 18.1% mentioned a need for improved content and copywriting skills. Social media skills were a concern for 14.8% of respondents, and 12.1% highlighted the importance of ecommerce skills.

According to our 2023 data, the biggest skills gap continues to be in data and analytics, at 34.4%. This trend remains unaddressed, despite the growing importance of data analysis in reaching the target consumer.

To address these challenges, companies have adopted various solutions. The most popular approach is to hire external talent, with 34.5% of marketers indicating that this has been their strategy to bridge the skills gap.

Only 11.2% of businesses have conducted a skills audit to find a long-term solution to the problem. Another 33.8% prefer to train existing staff, while 24.5% choose to hire consultancies and freelancers.

It is interesting to note that only 14% of marketers have observed the emergence of a new function to address any skills gaps identified.

Over the past year, upskilling has not been a top priority for many, with 48.8% of respondents stating they were not given the opportunity to enhance their skills to address the skills gap. This is a significant rise from 2023, when only 33.5% of marketers reported not being offered the chance.

When combined with limited recruitment resources and a trend of added responsibilities without extra compensation, as highlighted in Our Website's analysis of the data, a concerning situation emerges.

Up to the task

The majority of marketers (83%) feel confident that they possess the skills that businesses are seeking. However, there is a small percentage (5.3%) who do not believe they have the right combination of skills, while 11.7% are unsure.

A surprising finding from the data revealed that 8.7% of CMOs/marketing directors feel they lack the necessary skills to effectively perform their job. This percentage is twice as high as those in management (4.4%) and even higher than marketers in junior roles (5.5%) who are new to their careers.

Adding to this issue, our survey found that senior marketers are the least likely to receive opportunities for upskilling. 60.7% of CMOs/marketing directors reported not being provided the chance to upskill by their employer, compared to 50.2% of middle management and 38.6% of junior marketers.

Senior leaders shared anonymously why they felt unprepared for their roles. One mentioned lacking enough experience for their current position. Another felt hindered by the bureaucracy linked to the role, which prevented skill development.

Another individual, a marketer who recently returned from a career break, discovered that the demand for digital marketing skills had advanced beyond their knowledge during their time away.

In the upcoming weeks, Our Website will release a collection of special news and articles related to the results of the 2024 Career & Salary Survey. This will include insights on burnout and ageism in the field of marketing. To check out all the content we have already published, click here.

Editor's P/S:

The article highlights the pressing challenge of skills gaps in the marketing industry, particularly in data and analytics. Despite the growing importance of data analysis in reaching consumers, many marketers lack the necessary expertise. This gap is a concern, as it hinders the ability of marketing departments to effectively utilize data to drive campaigns and achieve desired outcomes.

The lack of upskilling opportunities and the trend of added responsibilities without extra compensation further exacerbate the issue. This situation can lead to burnout and dissatisfaction among marketers, potentially hindering innovation and creativity within the industry. It is crucial for companies to address these skills gaps and invest in upskilling their employees to remain competitive and drive success in today's data-driven marketing landscape.