White Paper Release:
“The advertising industry: Should I stay or should I go?”

The European Institute for Commercial Communications Education (edcom) and the European Association of Communications Agencies – EACA, with the support of the World Advertising Research Center (WARC), have released “The advertising industry: should I stay or should I go?” White Paper. The initiative is based on the results of the surveys with the same name, aimed at final-year marketing communications students and industry recruiters.

The first questionnaire measured the appetite for pursuing a career in a creative, media or digital agency of 200 European students and enquired about their lived experiences during their university years. Simultaneously, the other survey addressed 200 European recruiters in the agencies. It focused on revealing those skills that are in demand the most and identifying where the difference between the two groups’ expectations lies.

The subsequent White Paper, co-authored by Paul Springer, former edcom President and Dean of Academic Strategy at the University of Arts London, and Laura Vingan, Communications Manager at EACA, further explored and illustrated the common themes that arose from the surveyees’ replies. These new and actionable insights will help bridge the gap between the freshly-graduates and the companies looking to hire them, as well as open the door to more research in the area of talent.

“The timing of this White Paper makes the findings even more intriguing: post-pandemic and during a global economic crisis, the survey of students and recruiters from across Europe surfaces the overlapping circumstances and current issues that impact both employers and educators. These include the changing nature of advertising work, the rise of #WFH and health & wellbeing”, said Paul Springer.

“If you asked our members what are the main pain points within their companies or national associations, you would hear that recruiting and retaining people is at the forefront”, added Laura Vingan“Understanding why this happened and how come, after investing years and resources in their communications studies, students are considering other paths is what we wanted to uncover. This White Paper answers questions some recruiters did not know they had in the first place.”

“This first-ever done study amongst recruiters and students also puts the spotlight on the advertising industry as a place where people can have an impact on the world and enjoy a creative and flexible career. In the talent war we’ve all been facing, it is vital that we steadily advocate these benefits to the newer generations who have begun to question their career choices more and more. There is no other industry where the power of ideas can influence and have a positive impact, at the same time, on brands, business agendas, citizens and consumer behaviours”, continued Christian de la Villehuchet, Global Chief Integration Officer at Havas and President of EACA.

Catherine Driscoll, Commissioning Editor EMEA, WARC, said: “Finding and retaining diverse new talent is a priority for all sectors of the advertising industry. This research sheds light on the expectations and motivations of Gen Z graduates and will be invaluable in enabling agencies to connect with the next generation of advertising talent.”