Salary survey delivers good news for digital and data specialists » Charity Digital News

Salary survey delivers good news for digital and data specialists

Data analyst

Those working in digital and data-related roles in the charity sector perhaps have the most to cheer from Harris Hill’s latest annual salary survey.

The charity recruitment specialist collected the salary information from over 1,100 temporary/interim and contract roles, and over 2,000 permanent positions for nearly 700 charity and not-for-profit organisations that it worked on.


Digital and marketing

While salaries in digital and marketing roles are edging only modestly upwards, the survey suggests there has been significantly more hiring activity than seen for the past few years. Harris Hill says that’s largely being driven by two key factors: the media assault on charity reputations which highlights the need for strong press and PR capabilities, and the increasing importance of digital marketing methods.

The Achilles heel of traditional marketing has always been the difficulty of proving ROI, making roles more vulnerable to cuts than those which have a clearer direct impact on revenue. With the advent of digital and data-led marketing techniques, the impact of marketing activity is far more easily measured and thus more highly valued – leading many organisations to invest in this area.

At the more junior levels, those with digital skills continue to be in the highest demand, as charities seek the content creators, digital strategists and social media savants who can ensure they are taking maximum advantage of the possibilities presented by online channels.


Data and support roles

Another area in the spotlight over the past year has been the use of supporter data; how do charities collect data, and how is it stored, shared and used? With the sector continuing to consider the important questions of best practice and ethical standards, many organisations have naturally reviewed their own practices in these areas, creating new opportunities for those able to plug any gaps in skills and knowledge that may be found.

More broadly, such reviews have also highlighted the need for robust and efficient operational and administrative support systems throughout organisations, keeping demand in these fields buoyant.

In terms of salaries, while most positions are being successfully filled at the advertised rate, the survey results show salary increases across the board for data roles owing to the competition for talent, while those with SQL knowledge are also in high demand.

Data professionals are also ideally placed to benefit from charities’ increased take-up of digital fundraising and digital marketing methods, both of which depend for their success on the smart and effective use of data. As a result, there has been a 26% increase in data roles over the past year, and with skills in short supply, this is one area where previous charity experience is often less of a requisite, since data and CRM capabilities are highly transferable.

Charity sector experience does become more essential, the survey says, when looking at senior operational and programmes roles, which typically require a more in-depth understanding of the sector as a whole.

The full study, including further analysis of the survey findings, can be found here.

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