Of researchers with the opportunity to learn and grow at work, 45% conducted research in a market that was new to them, 42% used a technology that was new to them, and 41% attended training. About three in ten had the opportunity to manage a larger project than they had before or to use a methodology that was new to them. Only a quarter had the opportunity to take a class (as opposed to attend training).

North American researchers were just more than half as likely to be able to attend training as those elsewhere: 31% to 56%. EU researchers were more than twice as likely to use a methodology that was new to them as researchers elsewhere in the world (44% vs. 21%).

Company-provided in-house training (42%) and formal schooling (39% of respondents[1]) are the most common ways that researchers learned their market research skills. For formal schooling, 16% of respondents learned research as part of their undergraduate major and 27% through a graduate degree (4% took both). Three out of ten obtained their skills by reading on their own.

The industry is not providing sufficient onboard training. Only 28% of those who have worked in market research for less than a year had received employer-provided in-house training as compared to 48% of everyone else.

Of those who planned for a career in research from college, 56% learned the skills they needed from a graduate degree in contrast to 18% of other respondents.

Reflecting the fact that Millennials are more likely to have planned for careers in research than old researchers, Millennials are more likely to have learnt the skills to be a market researcher in college: 34% with graduate degrees vs. 15% of older researchers, and 22% with undergraduate majors vs. 6% of older researchers.

For more details on the survey, please download our report, https://www.georgiacenter.uga.edu/courses/market-research-report Market Researchers and the Love of Learning.

[1] 16% with undergraduate major + 27% with graduate degree – 4% who took both = 39%