After my last post about what is so great about being a community manager, I started to get an idea that it was something I was interested in for a career path
. However, not being anywhere in the social media ballpark, I started having a hard time looking at what to learn or what skills to build first. I decided then that it might be worth doing some analysis to see what exactly companies looking to hire community managers are looking for when they advertise for an open position. One assumption I made is that because the position is so undefined right now, that I would have a hard time isolating specific skills. This ended up being true to a point, but, some skills and common backgrounds did emerge.
Now, I want to be very upfront with this. This is a HIGHLY SCIENTIFIC study with a sample size of a whopping 20 job postings between LinkedIn, Mashable and Indeed. I believe that there were a few that were listed by the #cmgr community as well.
In order to be considered for this highly scientific study, the job post had to have ‘community manager’ in the title, not be about an apartment or townhouse complex (I had to narrow the criteria to ‘online community manager’ for many postings) and have a detailed desired skills and experiences section.
The following categories were analyzed in this study:
- Education – Was a college degree listed as a requirement and if so, what degrees were mentioned (if any).
- Prior Experience – How many years of Community Management or Social were required for the position.
- Listed Skills – What specific skills were listed. Note: I did need to shoehorn some skills every now and then to avoid duplication.
- Social Networks Listed - What specific Social Networks were listed in the description, if any.
[Click To Zoom]
There seems to be some room for new Community Managers to grow into the field with several entry level positions and several for people with a few years experience. Most of the positions were really in the 2-3 year experience mark. That might need to be narrowed down in future studies.
Is a Degree required?
Yes! 65% of the positions posted required a bachelors degree.
What Degrees are being Considered?
Of those, the top degrees listed were Marketing (7) and Communications(6), PR(3) and Journalism(3)
Perhaps interesting only to myself, as often as social and the web change, there was a lack of required web skills. Perhaps stating for now that a Community Manager does not need to have HTML / CSS skills
Of the 20 positions listed these skills showed up the most:
[Click To Zoom]
- Wearing Many Hats! – being able to deal with cross functional teams was a pleasant surprise making the “wears many hats” a very viable analogy.
- Communications is Key! – The numbers don’t lie. If you’re not writing, start. If your not articulate, join toastmasters. You need to be able to communicate across those same multi purpose teams.
- Content Creation was not as high on the list as many would figure it to be given the high priority of the Communications and Editing skills. Are companies looking to train people up on the generated content, or has the term “Content Creator” not caught on enough for the job posting?
- Analytics – With as much discussion that goes on for Measurement and Social Media ROI, Analytics didn’t show up that often as required experience. Either its not as important as we might think, or, companies are willing to help get experience for those that don’t have it.
Knowledge of Enterprise 2.0 best practices were also mentioned on several posts however no specific skills other then that were mentioned so it was not picked up in the analysis.
Social Networks Mentioned:
Short observation here. While Facebook and Twitter led the mentions, there were not as many as I would have thought. One company was fast on its feet specifically mentioning Pinterest.
It really seems as though many of the Community Manager positions are being marketed to people with not only a Marketing degree, but others such as Journalism and Communication. I would question if this is reflective of the general disconnect between the actual nature of the position and what companies believe the position will do for them.