News story

Learning industry work and salary survey 2009

UKLearning NewsBlue Eskimo

Blue Eskimo, the specialist recruitment company for training, learning and e-learning professionals, has published its 2009 work and salary survey. It shows that learning professionals are working harder than before and are being paid less but there are signs that the worse may now be over.

The intention of the survey is to gather and publish information about key aspects of employment within the learning industry. Over 500 learning professionals participated during the fourth quarter 2009.

Average salaries in the learning industry were largely static during 2009, with 65% seeing no increase compared with 44% the year before. Benefit packages were hit during 2009 across all categories, with fewer people receiving company pensions or pension contributions, occupational sick pay, bonus schemes, private medical insurance, life assurance and critical illness insurance, share options and company cars, and those without any employment benefits at all rose from 13% to 25%.

The number of people that say their job has become a lot harder rose to 29% from 18% the year before. As with the previous year the majority of people are working unpaid hours and whilst there were only marginal increases in the number of unpaid working hours, 2009 showed that a greater number of people now work unpaid hours.

The number of people that are considering changing jobs during the next twelve months rose to 63% from 55% the previous year. Of these, more people want to move into e-learning (32% up from 22%) with a reduction in those wanting to find a role in management and soft skills training (22% down from 33%). This trend to e-learning jobs also reflects Blue Eskimo's experience - the company has seen a large increase in the number of e-learning jobs that it is advertising.

Overall, the vast majority of learning professionals like working in the learning industry, but the figures for this year were down with 80% currently either liking or loving their job versus 89% the previous year.

"The data refers to the whole of 2009, so it's no surprise that we found many learning professionals feeling the pinch over the last year," said Blue Eskimo's Nick Jones.

"However, the learning industry is showing some encouraging signs; there was an increase in the number of job vacancies during the second half 2009 with a significant increase during the last three months and if this is sustained we would deduce that the worse effects of the recession may be over. We now expect that employers will start to increase salaries and benefits packages to retain their talent. We saw an increase in the number of contract positions throughout the whole of 2009 and, recently, a corresponding increase in contractor daily rates. Over the last year we've also seen growth and a more focused approach, in the recruitment of instructional designers, indicating that the learning industry is placing greater importance on the quality of learning than before."

The 'Training, e-learning and technology work and salary survey 2009' was compiled by Blue Eskimo, a training and e-learning recruitment services provider, using data collected from 500 learning professionals during the fourth quarter 2009. The full survey is available for download, free of charge, from Blue Eskimo's Web site: download the free Work and Salary Survey 2009.