Recruiting and Retaining Senior-Level Creative Talent

September 22, 2022
Hiring Trends

Despite how much companies invest in employer branding, corporate culture, and reputation, a recent survey of employees found that respondents zeroed in on other priorities that mattered to them more when considering a new job offer.

Note that it’s a relatively small survey. That’s partly why we were left asking what do senior to executive-level creative professionals want in a new job today?

What would make them stay after joining?


None of this is to say that your company's employer brand, culture, and reputation aren't important - they still matter. Where they fall in the hierarchy of a candidate’s priorities is a better lens to view them through.

We've written before about highlighting happy hours, ping-pong tables, and other nice perks like "lunch and learns." These are great things to offer, but there are still more pressing needs for employees at all levels.

How can you determine what those needs are? Ask your employees!


Even if you already have your benefits structure set, ask employees what matters most to them.

Including employees in the design of benefits policies provides employers with information they can use to attract and retain top creative and marketing talent.

Junior-level creatives will quite likely have different priorities than mid and senior-level folks.

Still, some benefits are universally desirable: flexibility in where and when employees work, competitive salaries, and skill development opportunities, to name a few.

Note as well that working from home and hybrid work spaces are increasingly proving to be pillars of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging. In a survey of 10,000 workers regarding remote work, “Black people report significantly higher satisfaction with their jobs, including an increase in sense of belonging, a 64% improvement in ability to manage stress and 25% greater improvement in work-life balance.”

Now, at the senior level, creatives tend to look for:

• Equity

• Bonuses

• Child-care assistance, including home aides

• Life insurance

• Long-term care insurance

• Extra or special vacation day allowances

• Retirement plans

• Emergency savings accounts

• Flexible work options

• Job stability

Some companies won't be able to offer all or most of these; some can.

The most important thing  is to listen to your employees and do your best to act on their feedback.

When you can't actualize their suggestions, level with them and see if you can find a middle ground.


Competitive salaries and robust benefits are part of the attraction and retention equation, but there's more to it.

When senior creatives consider a role, there are a few things they'll want to know:

  1. Are they taking over a team that's facing some issue?
  2. Are they going to be building a team from the ground up?
  3. What kind of impact can they have on the organization?
  4. To whom will they report?
  5. Does management/the CMO understand the role of creativity in the organization (if it's not an agency or creative brand)?
  6. Is there a lot of travel involved?

These questions center around the company's culture and the scope of what employees are walking into.


Listening to senior creatives is your best bet when brainstorming benefits and policies that will make them want to stay at the company. Doing so also helps attract these creative professionals to your company.

It is still important to look after your employer brand, culture, and reputation, but give at least equal consideration to compensation and opportunity when pursuing talent.

For senior creatives, above all, remember stability, flexibility, and equity.

Warm regards,