Jobs in marketing
What kinds of jobs await for the students of undergraduate/master degrees in marketing?
This research intends to further the understanding and definition of new jobs in marketing as well as the expertise, knowledge, and skills required in the Italian job market for newly Bachelor’s degree and 1st and 2nd level Master’s degree graduates.
Particular attention is paid on the subjects of digitalization and internationalization of businesses in order to understand their evolutionary trends happening today and the impact that those changes have on the process of research and selection of personnel.
The study has been performed in the two classic phases of desk and field. In the desk phase the activities and expertise required by the businesses have been defined, start-up companies have been identified, and the training offered by the university at the post-graduate level has been mapped. In the phase field, a questionnaire in CAWI mode has been administered to a sample of businesses selected from the database IlFAC owned by the TBS group.
The emerged results can be summarized in six points. 1. The marketing function does not appear to be in crisis and, at its core, the position of Brand/Product Manager has a central role. The training offered by the post-graduate courses, with 18 Master’s degrees and 20 Master programs dedicated to marketing, could be considered sufficient for building the background knowledge necessary to handle this job.
2. In selecting newly-graduates in marketing, the businesses prefer the soft skills (teamwork, rather than flexibility, problem solving, ability to present themselves and to give a presentation) and, even in the hiring phase, the soft elements are the dominant ones.
3. The digital world is establishing itself forcefully. It is entering the marketing field heavily and is requiring specialized expertise and skills. The university courses must consider all this by adjusting their offer with specialized courses of much higher level, aligned with the needs of high digital and greatly internationalized businesses. The digital professions are important employment opportunities also in start-up companies.
4. From the post-graduate university offer’s perspective, the communication appears to be an area relatively rich compared to the businesses’ needs. Companies do not seem to be interested in hiring many graduates with degrees in communication; nonetheless, universities offer a very high number of options to students, perhaps too many options.
5. The sectoral aspect does not seem to be a factor able to influence the selection of candidates by companies. In fact, the sector’s knowledge has a value of 4.8 on a 1 to 7 scale while cross-sectoral skills are definitely preferred. The post-graduate university offer may be relatively too abundant of specialized courses (almost 50%), especially at the Master’s level.
6. Commercial/sales? This sector seems to be completely neglected by the university world despite the fact that it offers the highest number of employment opportunities in business. If on one hand this is not a new profession, on the other hand this is almost always the commercial function that, even before marketing, manages one of the most valuable company resources: the customers. Beyond the classical roles, we can catch a glimpse of some great opportunities, also in terms of new professions.