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Background Information: Founded in 2012 by Amit Pandit, Apt Search is the United Kingdom’s first recruitment specialist fully dedicated to the data-driven markets of eDiscovery, Cybersecurity, and Privacy. As a leader in understanding the talent landscape in key European countries including the UK, Germany, and Switzerland, APT Search regularly interviews and surveys eDiscovery hiring managers and candidates to discern the dynamics of employment-centric opportunities, expectations, and salaries. While published almost one year ago, the 2022 Salary Survey from APT Search represents some of the most recent reporting of knowledge gained from systematic interviews and surveys and continues to be profitable for legal, business, and information technology professionals as they staff and support eDiscovery efforts in Europe and beyond. Additionally, APT Search is currently administering its 2023 salary survey. The results of that survey are scheduled to be published in March of this year.
2022 Survey Results
The eDiscovery Forecast: 2022 Salary Survey from APT Search
Report Extract: eDiscovery Talking Points for 2022
A Note From APT Search Founder Amit Pandit
Could those be green shoots? It is certainly a busy time for recruiters. Businesses are starting to regain confidence, invest and expand their teams. If you’re looking for that next opportunity, now could be the time. As you’ll see later on, eDiscovery salaries are moving faster than even today’s high rates of inflation.
That’s not to say that things are returning to normal though. The world of work post-COVID is different in a number of respects. There has been a recognition by employees that flexible hours are something that they demand; and that flexibility brings some real benefits in terms of their family lives and the places that they can choose to call home. Forward-thinking Managers and Partners are seeing the trust they place in flexibly-working employees is rewarded in terms of greater engagement, loyalty and productivity. Both sides win, and it’s great to see.
One of the drivers of our industry is the expansion of where eDiscovery skills are applied. The growth in data privacy work is providing exciting opportunities for those with transferable skills and the confidence to try something new.
The People in eDiscovery
In 2021, we asked our respondents about their experience in commercial eDiscovery and time with their current employer. When we asked them again for this survey, we found that the results were almost identical. That tells us that the industry is mature and stable.
Looking at the composition of our respondents, they are an experienced bunch. Nearly three quarters of them have more than six years of experience, gained in commercial eDiscovery work. However, two thirds of our respondents have been at their current organization for less than three years.
The picture here is clear. Talent is moving from employer to employer as it develops. That suggests that employers might not be offering the range of experiences or development opportunities that their employees are seeking. As the cost of securing, inducting and training new employees is significantly greater than developing in-house talent, there is a message here for employers that they need to think more about how to meet their employees’ desire for growth. It’s what their employees want and it’s not being met to their satisfaction.
Expertise in Depth, Not Breadth
We asked our respondents what certifications they held. The picture here is very similar to what we found last year, with Relativity and Brainspace being the most common certifying companies.
We’ve also taken a look at the number of different certifications held by respondents of different lengths of time within commercial eDiscovery. Not surprisingly, those with less than two years in the industry typically only have one certifying company. Nearly 40% of this group don’t have any certifications at all, perhaps suggesting that some employers don’t yet see the value in using these certifications as an early-years development tool. However, those employers might wish to take note that 70% of this group are already considering their next career move!
More surprisingly, the median number for every group over “0-2 years experience” is two certifying companies. You might expect that the breadth of certifying companies increases as an employee reaches beyond 10 years’ experience, but that is not borne out by our survey. Rather, what seems to be happening is that employees are finding their niche and honing their skills within it, instead of branching out.
How Happy are eDiscovery Professionals?
How important is it that employers recognize this trend? We asked respondents whether they were actively looking for a new role and discovered that many were. We then looked at this in comparison to satisfaction levels.
It’s no surprise that dissatisfied respondents are looking for new roles. What’s interesting is that many respondents that claimed to be neutral or satisfied are actively seeking new roles anyway.
The message here is that employers shouldn’t assume that the status quo is good enough. Those employers that aren’t seeking to understand their employees changing needs and adjust their processes accordingly are likely to see increases in staff turnover in 2022. Candidates aren’t afraid of making a change in 2022, even if their current situation is satisfactory.
Read the complete survey with corresponding graphics and charts.
Read the Complete Report: The eDiscovery Forecast: 2022 Salary Survey (PDF) – Mouseover to Read Embedded Report
APT Search 2022 eDiscovery Salary Survey
The 2023 Salary Survey
Currently being administered by APT Search, the 2023 eDiscovery Salary Survey consists of 18 questions and should take less than five minutes to complete. Take the survey today and check out the 2023 results when they are published in March 2023.
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