September 13, 2011 | last updated May 31, 2012 9:11 pm

Hiring brightens for Web, social media skills

Creative and marketing professionals can expect their hiring prospects to rise a bit in the fourth quarter, with Web design/production, account services and social media skills in greatest demand, a survey says.

One quarter of executives interviewed said they plan to add full-time staff in the next three months, and 5 percent forecast reductions in personnel according to the most recent The Creative Group Hiring Index for Marketing and Advertising Professionals.

The resulting net 20 percent of executives anticipating hiring is up one point from the third-quarter forecast.

The national study was developed by The Creative Group, a specialized staffing service providing interactive, design and marketing professionals on a project and full-time basis, and conducted by an independent research firm.

It is based on more than 500 telephone interviews -- approximately 375 with marketing executives randomly selected from companies with 100 or more employees and 125 with advertising executives randomly selected from agencies with 20 or more employees.

Fifty-seven percent of executives said it's challenging to find skilled creative professionals today, up 15 points from the previous quarter.

Eighty-nine percent of marketing and advertising executives are confident in their companies' growth prospects for the fourth quarter, a two-point increase from the third-quarter projection.

"As more business is conducted online and via mobile devices, companies are moving quickly to promote their products and services using a variety of channels," said Donna Farrugia, executive director of The Creative Group, based in Menlo Park, Calif. "Experienced web designers and developers, and marketing professionals with proven success executing innovative social media campaigns, are sought by organizations of all types and sizes."

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