Once again, The Candidate are extremely excited to announce our latest piece of research. Following on from the Women in Digital research we wanted to further our knowledge of the digital sector by researching the current state of management in the ever growing digital sector.
Our report looks into how managers are ranked for their own abilities and then comparing this to how managers are ranked from an employee’s perspective. To do this we spoke to 150 managers and 150 employees to cover specific areas and from this we’ve picked up on the following results:
- Only 53% of managers in the digital sector ranked their own abilities as ‘good’, ‘really good’, or ‘excellent’, with the rest ranking their abilities as ‘average’ or ‘below average’ – suggesting a lack of confidence in their managerial skills
- Good communication is the quality that both managers and employees working in digital cited as the most important. Approachability was highly valued by 46% of employees, but just 24% of managers agreed
- 27% of employees cited that being highly skilled, was a in the top 3 qualities of being a manger
- Surprisingly 3% of employees started that having a bad manager would have no effect on the team whereas every manager agreed that being a bad manager would affect the whole team
Our very own Brian Matthews states why this research is important for the development of the industry.
‘The industry now employs 1.46m people across the country, and is estimated to grow by 5.4% by 2020. In order to develop the industry successfully and help it grow at its expected pace, we need the help of good managers who can nature the talent’
We’re hoping that our report helps to reveal some issues which may have an effect on the digital sector.
This report looks into the strengths and weaknesses of managers in the digital industry.
• 1.46m people are currently employed in digital companies – Tech Nation Report, 2015.
• Overall, of all of the companies created in the UK during 2013-14, 15% were digital businesses – Tech City
Through doing this research we have found:
• Only 53% of managers in the digital sector ranked their own abilities as ‘good’, ‘really good’, or ‘excellent’,
with the rest ranking their abilities as ‘average’ or ‘below average’ – suggesting a lack of confidence in their
• 1 in 10 digital managers ranked their managerial abilities as ‘below average’.
• 51% of employees in the digital sector ranked their manager’s abilities as ‘good’, ‘really good’, or ‘excellent’,
with the rest ranking their abilities as ‘average’ or ‘below average’.
• Only 5% of those surveyed said their manager’s abilities wouldn’t have an impact on how well a team works.
• Nearly all respondents stated they have, or would, leave a job they liked if they had a bad manager.
• Soft skills such as good communication and approachability are ranked the most important qualities in
a digital manager according to both managers and employees.
• 34% of employees and 25% of managers in the digital industry stated that they believe the quality of
management in the sector is suffering because the majority of training is being saved for technical roles
and not necessarily management roles.
• Just over half of respondents said the digital industry is suffering as a result of the state of management
in the sector.
To develop a comprehensive account of management in the digital
sector, we set out to answer the following questions:
1. What qualities and skills do digital managers feel are most
and least important for their role?
2. What qualities and skills do digital employees feel are
most and least important in their managers?
3. How strong do managers in the digital sector feel their
skills are overall, and how does this correlate with what
their employees think?
4. Are management skills in digital lagging behind? And if so,
what effect is this having on the industry as a whole?
Our research produced some interesting findings –
we hope you enjoy reading!
Good communication (65%)
Good motivator (31%)
Cares about personal
Delegating responsibility (29%)
Passing on knowledge (25%)
Being highly skilled (23%)
Showing empathy (22%)
Good communication (69%)
Good motivator (38%)
Cares about personal
Being highly skilled (27%)
Passing on knowledge (22%)
Delegating responsibility (19%)
Showing empathy (18%)
• The majority of training is being saved for
technical roles and not necessarily
management roles –
Employees 34% Managers 25%
• Because of the fast-paced nature of the digital
industry there isn’t time for training –
Employees 27% Managers 19%
• The shortage of talent and how new the industry
is means people become managers before
they’re ready –
Employees 22% Managers 0%
• Due to the pace of the industry, it’s difficult
for managers to keep up with necessary
skills, as well as applying standard
management practices –
Employees 8% Managers 19%
• Management just isn’t prioritised as much
as in other industries –
Employees 8% Managers 3%