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Survey Research - A Fun, Exciting, Rewarding Career
If you enjoy working with people, numbers, or both, the survey research field offers many exciting career paths. Survey researchers creatively obtain the clues necessary to piece together the big picture. They let us know what the average person on the street likes and dislikes about a certain product or politician, and much more. This fast-growing industry isn't just for statisticians - companies are actively seeking young professionals with knowledge of business, marketing, psychology, sociology, economics, and English, among many other subject areas. Survey researchers work across the globe as international companies look to tap emerging markets.
Careers in Survey Research
Survey research offers a variety of career paths depending upon your education level, interests, and personality. Most jobs are to be found with either research providers (firms that conduct research for clients) or research users (corporations that depend on survey/marketing research for decision- making guidance). Research positions are also available with advertising agencies, non-profit organizations, associations and various branches of government.
Survey researchers are concerned with the potential sales of a product or service. Gathering statistical data on competitors and examining prices, sales, and methods of marketing and distribution, they analyze data on past sales to predict future sales. Market research analysts devise methods and procedures for obtaining the data they need. Often, they design telephone, mail, or Internet surveys to assess consumer preferences. They conduct some surveys as personal interviews, going door-to-door, leading focus group discussions, or setting up booths in public places such as shopping malls.
Tip: Because of the importance of qualitative skills to survey researchers, many researchers have backgrounds in psychology, sociology, and other social sciences.