The personnel market trends in the industry

Managing directors of the personnel consultancy Designerdock, which specializes in the communications industry, sum up the situation and reveal the most important trends for 2017.


The economy is booming, and advertising agencies are desperately seeking personnel. The job market for creative professionals is bursting with jobs and opportunities. What's left, what's coming?

Four important trends can be identified from the past twelve months:

- Agile working, part-time and remote working are becoming increasingly important.

- Good people cost good money.

- Companies score in front of agencies.

- No one can avoid pronounced digital know-how anymore.

Petra Graef, Management Designerdock Munich: "In 2016, it was strongly noticeable that more and more juniors with sound digital knowledge are applying, but there is a shortage of good people in the middle and senior areas. In general, top candidates are faced with more options than ever. Therefore our tip to our customers: It's better to reach out quickly - and sometimes a little deeper into your pocket - before someone else does! We also advise being open to international candidates who are not yet fluent in German, as well as more flexible working hours and part-time commitments."

Ulrike Schwarzenberg, Management Designerdock Frankfurt: "Frankfurt as a location has gained in profile. Since Brexit, the city has been touting itself as Europe's new financial capital. This is fueling the industry: Most agencies in Frankfurt still make their living from the financial services sector. What is really new is the start-up landscape in Frankfurt. The past year has brought an incredible number of young entrepreneurs to the city, who are trying out digital innovations in the financial sector."

Beate Reuther and Maya Schneeberger, Management Designerdock Zurich: "This year and next, it's all about digital skills for us. The advanced training in interaction design that we initiated ( shows how urgently the economy needs qualified personnel. More than ever, companies are placing high profile positions in design, consulting and communications management. Recently, real partners have increasingly been sought as employees. These bring their own clients and are able to think independently and economically. We suspect this trend will continue."

Robert Mende, Management Designerdock Hamburg: "The problem in 2016 was no longer finding a job, but finding the job that really fits and appeals to candidates. Where do I stand? Where do I want to go? Do I need a change? Our consulting is focusing more and more on precise matchmaking. The trend is also to outsource all HR recruiting."

Linda Graze, Management Designerdock Stuttgart: "Generation Y is constantly keeping us on our toes. Our candidates are increasingly looking for part-time solutions (75-80 percent) and our clients also understand more and more that an entire generation is making their decisions based on a good team and improved life-work balance rather than career and salary. We expect this shift in the staffing market to evolve even further in 2017."

Kristin Louis, Management Designerdock Berlin: "Our Berlin candidates are in the comfortable position of being able to choose their jobs for the majority. The UX area has picked up the most in 2016. In the digital area, our clients are also increasingly looking for project managers from the areas of film and storytelling. The trend toward in-house creation, especially in eCommerce, is also on the rise."

Maria Roth, Management Designerdock Vienna: "Flat hierarchies and cross-divisional working are once again the trend in Austria in 2016. Master's degrees and other titles are no longer necessarily the ticket to entry on the corporate side. Professionals with agency experience are in demand, who are used to working on a wide variety of brands at a relatively high pace and can act dynamically and flexibly accordingly."

Designerdock is, according to its own statements, "the most successful personnel consultancy for the advertising and communications industry in the German-speaking world" - with offices in Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt a.M., Hamburg, Munich, Stuttgart, Vienna and Zurich. More than 3000 advertising and multimedia agencies, design offices, large and medium-sized companies trust in the know-how of the 45 industry-experienced personnel consultants. With 20 years of experience in the market, Designerdock consultants place precisely fitting employees from a pool of 40,000 freelance and permanent candidates.

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