Most businesses measure and value creative work based on its impact to the business, according to the 2018 In-House Creative Management Report from in-house creative org InSource and creative workflow solutions firm inMotionNow, which queried 400 marketing and creative professionals.
While businesses say creatives perform important work, most are highly dependent on small teams serving a large and complex ecosystem of stakeholders.
For example, the majority of respondents said the top three ways their organization values creative work are as follows: 1) business impact (55 percent); 2) audience feedback (51 percent); and 3) internal stakeholder satisfaction (48 percent). At the same time, it’s not uncommon for a team of fewer than 10 creatives to support the demands of 50-plus stakeholders in businesses with $500 million or more in revenue.
“The level of dedication and performance these creative teams present is remarkable and generally under-recognized by marketers, especially in light of the results they help businesses achieve,” said inMotionNow CMO Alex Withers, in a news release. “Creatives provide an essential fuel business must have to propel their often large and highly automated sales and marketing teams forward.”
Other key findings included the following:
Volume, velocity and variety of creative work mushrooms
The volume and velocity of work were identified as the top challenges facing creative today; variety of work—accommodating the plethora of new creative specifications across digital channels and social media—ranked among the top five challenges.
Creative briefs and project intake lead the list of process challenges
The creative brief and project intake—the first steps in the creative process—are also the biggest challenges in creative workflow (42 percent). Some 67 percent of respondents said obtaining the necessary information just to begin work was difficult or very difficult.
Making time and headspace for creativity is squeezed by administration
Most respondents (46 percent) said they spend between 3-7 hours per week on administrative tasks; about one-quarter (24 percent) said they spend seven or more hours per week on admin tasks. That’s about one full day every week, or 20 percent of creative time spent annually.
“We are very much running a creative agency within the company we work for, accountable to business goals like any other business unit; kind of a business within a business,” said Andy Brenits, president of InSource in an introduction to the survey report. “As we begin to master our operations, we have also seen that there is more time to be creative.”
The full report explores five key findings and illuminates the data with commentary from a wide range of thought leaders from across the industry. Download the full report here.
In addition, the research partners will host a complimentary 30-minute webinar to review the data in depth. The webinar will be held on March 28, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. Register here.