DMers Still Hiring Despite Economic Slowdown: Survey

Posted on by Chief Marketer Staff

As the economy continues its downhill spiral, direct marketers are not expected to pull in the help wanted signs.

According to a survey conducted by Bernhart Associates Executive Search, Owatonna, MN, the majority of direct marketing companies plan to hire more employees during the second quarter while 25% report they have initiated a hiring freeze.

Among the 118 companies that responded to the survey, 87, or 74%, said they will be hiring during the second calendar quarter. Among the 31 companies that did not indicate hiring plans, seven said they plan staff cutbacks through either layoffs or attrition, or both.

“The hiring freezes appear to be across the board with respect to industry and supplier versus client, but not surprisingly they are more common among the technology companies and dot coms,” said Jerry Bernhart, president of Bernhart Associates. “The good news is that most indicated they plan to lift their hiring freezes in April or May. Some companies indicated that even when the hiring freeze is lifted, however, it will require added approval to make a new hire during the second quarter.”

Of those to be hired, account management candidates are expected to be in greatest demand. “Anything that has do to with client services is still pretty hot right now,” Bernhart said. “List management and list brokerage is also strong, followed by sales, media planning, art directors, human resources and technical positions.”

The survey is expected to be repeated again in June. Bernhart Associates Executive Search is a nationwide search firm concentrating exclusively in positions in direct marketing.

Methodology: E-Mails were sent to hiring managers and human resource contacts at 346 direct marketing companies that had posted jobs the past two years on directmarketingcareers.com, a direct marketing employment Web site owned by Bernhart Associates. A total of 118 companies responded. The survey was conducted during the week of March 11.

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