46% of students are considering a career in marketing, if employers ‘invest in them’

CIM has highlighted the need for employers to reinvest in their training programs in order to attract the best talent

Almost half (46%) of 16-24-year-olds say they are considering a career in marketing, according to the latest research by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).

In the survey of 1,000 young people, over a fifth said they also perceive marketing as a safe career choice, offering new hope for the future of the industry amid talent shortages in the midst of the so-called ‘great resignation.’

Prior to the pandemic, research by the IPA suggested that a lack of awareness and knowledge about ad agencies among students meant the industry was failing to attract young, diverse talent.

However, Maggie Jones, director of qualifications and partnerships at CIM, said: “We’ve seen two things happening during the pandemic. The first is that young people have recognized the resilient and adaptive nature of marketing and want to pursue a career in this field.

“The second is that many marketing professionals have invested in their own development and have self-funded additional learning and qualifications while being furloughed. It’s clear that people want to thrive in marketing.”

The survey also revealed a rise in the number of students starting marketing courses.

The University of Liverpool Management School reported that demand for its BA Marketing course has been exceptionally high for the year 2021-2022. The establishment attributes this to a variety of factors including a shift in how marketing is perceived as a discipline by business leaders, which they say correlates with the rise in marketing roles being offered.

The qualitative survey also showed that many of the CIM-accredited study centers enrolled saw an increased number of self-funded marketing students while furlough schemes were in operation, signaling the need for robust funding and accessibility scholarships for young people who do not come from affluent backgrounds.

Jones added: “Students and young professionals are coming into the industry after a unique couple of years. To ensure they don’t fall behind through a lack of practical experience, gen Z expects employers to invest in training opportunities to compensate for the loss of skills during the pandemic. This highlights the need for employers to reassess their training programs.”