Sunday, March 07, 2010


Five Questions for Industry Analysts

Throughout my career, I have had many conversations with industry analysts on a variety of topics ranging from enterprise architecture, identity management and software security and have become intrigued with the profession. Likewise, I have had many interactions with industry analysts virtually including but not limited to: Ricard Veryard, James Governor, Alex Fletcher, Heidi Biggar, Nick Gall, Elemental Links, Guy Creese and others. I figured I would ask a few questions of industry analysts in the blogosphere in hopes that I may gain further insight...

1. Analysts frequently complain about travel but haven't shared the characteristics? I would think there is a difference between frequent day trips vs traveling every Monday morning and not returning until Thursday/Friday like many management consulting firms. So, how much time do analysts spend sleeping in their own beds vs a hotel?

2. Some analysts come from a journalism background while others come from an industry practitioner background. Do analyst firms have a preference for one over another? Does it vary by area of coverage or other factors?

3. Another frequently found complaint is that analysts believe they don't get paid enough but haven't provided a sense of what is enough. For analysts that have made the transition from corporate backgrounds either as Enterprise Architects or other management-level roles, are they getting a pay raise, taking a pay cut or staying on par?

4. This profession seems to offer work/life balance but is it just defined in the ability to work from home or is it also in the number of hours worked?

5. There are lots of analysts who previously worked for traditional corporations. Are there people who were industry analysts that transitioned to traditional corporations? My limited search on LinkedIn only uncovered one employee. Why is this so rare?

6. Gartner seems to have the highest retention rate amongst large analyst firms. What are they doing right that other analyst firms aren't doing?

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