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Article | Beyond Data

Media companies adapt their approach to top digital talent

Stay relevant with growing digitalisation in media companies

Compensation Strategy & Design
Beyond Data

By Nora O’Donovan and Michiel Klompen | May 15, 2020

Digitalisation of the media sector has been driven by changing consumer behaviour and expectations, who now demand instant access to content at anytime and anywhere.

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Digitalisation of the media sector has been driven by changing consumer behaviour and expectations, who now demand instant access to content at anytime and anywhere. The sector faces many obstacles in their attempt to meet the demands of this industry-wide evolution. Success very much depends on how the business responds to trends such as changing demographics, customer preferences, the rise of non-traditional competitors, technology trends and world events.

It’s not surprising that our 2019 Artificial Intelligence and Digital Talent survey identified that over 90% of media companies globally state they struggle to attract and retain digital talent. More recently, given the COVID-19 crisis, the economy has shifted, but the business need for digital skills has not.

Findings from our Artificial Intelligence and Digital Talent survey show that media companies especially, struggle with attracting and retaining talent in technology areas such as Data Science, Cyber Security and Digital Content. The main barrier in recruiting this talent is that many organizations are not recognized as a digital brand, closely followed by the overall scarcity of talent with the required skills and the lack of a well-defined digital strategy.

  1. Not recognized as digital brand
  2. Skills are hard to find
  3. No well-defined digital strategy

Additionally, the workforce with these skills is often younger and has different preferences about prospective employers - such as the ability to impact an organisation more acutely through the work that they do, and having interesting and varied work. They are also more conscientious of the brand that they work for. This therefore presents a challenge to more established companies that may not have a strong digital brand and are also seen as being too large/established to have an impact upon. Another challenge for many organizations is that these employees may choose a nomad-career-style, meaning higher attrition in that talent pool. The Start-Up Experience study, conducted in 2019, showed that 60% of start-ups and scale-ups expect the average employee to stay within their organization for one to three years. Established companies need to review their expectations when hiring for high in-demand digital roles and understand what is happening in the broader market.

90%
of media companies globally state they struggle to attract and retain digital talent, according to our 2019 study.

At a Beyond Data - Getting Compensation Right media sector event in late 2019, almost all attendees stated they pay base salary premiums for digital professionals with ‘hot’ skills, often placing them at the higher end of the salary ranges or anchoring the job base salary at a higher market percentile. These approaches face issues further down the line when a job is no longer ‘hot’ or when its room for development within the salary range is almost exhausted. However, in the study, companies in the media sector said they must pay this premium to ensure they attract and retain this key talent. Media companies need to adapt by providing enhanced pay, offering flexible working arrangements and enhanced learning and development programs which mirrors the findings in our recent 2019 Digital Transformation Practices Report.

What should companies do?

  • Monitor the market and understand best-practices in attracting and retaining key digital talent to remain competitive;
  • Use market data from the other industries and sectors, as well as from the Media sector to compare with organizations you directly compete with, to understand the compensation practices;
  • Review the core digital roles in your organization, and use a skill-based benchmarking solution like SkillsVue to understand the premium associated with digital specific skills;
  • Finally, review and modify existing compensation programs to ensure you are keeping pace with the market trends
Authors

Director – Compensation Surveys

Global Product Lead SkillsVue and Artificial Intelligence and Digital Talent Survey

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