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Position: Senior Research Director

Candidate Qualifications

Smarty Pants only hires leaders or leaders in training. This position is for the former–a strong leader who acts as a true partner and consultant to his/her clients. 

Candidates must collaborate with clients to design, execute, analyze and report on multi-phased (and often global) quantitative and mixed-method initiatives. They must have a deep and wide understanding of old-school and tech-driven methods as well as the youth market.

More specifically, candidates for this position must:

•  Hold a minimum of a bachelor’s degree
•  Have 10 or more years of primary quantitative research experience with an agency, research firm or consultancy
•  Have extensive professional experience with Fortune 500 clients across a variety of categories (entertainment, media,    food/beverage, CPG, toy/game, apparel, retail, etc.)
•  Masterfully conceive, direct and analyze large-scale, custom quantitative initiatives
•  Be an expert in various quantitative and hybrid research approaches and tools
•  Be capable of performing (and providing guidance on) advanced analytics
•  Have the experience to serve as the company’s in-house “quant guru” 
•  Be able to effectively marry trends and secondary data with primary research learning
•  Be an amazing strategic thinker, writer and presenter who impresses clients with his/her methodological, industry and     business savvy
•  Have an ability to lead his/her “own” clients 
•  Have a demonstrated ability to create sizzling-hot, compelling PPT reports/presentations
•  Be an effective manager and mentor to junior/supporting staff
•  Work quickly and independently—demonstrating self-discipline, a strong work ethic, passion, commitment/drive
•  Be able to travel regularly

Smarty Pants also prefers candidates with:

•  An advanced degree in a relevant field
•  Experience in the youth and family space
•  Experience across various survey/software platforms
•  Qualitative research experience


Daily Responsibilities

Specific responsibilities include:

•  Writing proposals and securing clients (~15%)
o   Lead client calls to understand needs, challenges and desired outcomes
o   Create research programs that meet objectives using appropriate and innovative approaches and back-end analytics
o   Create proposals that bring research programs to life and make a strong case for “why Smarty Pants”
o   Build relationships and add value that helps secure/win projects
•  Leading quantitative projects (~40%)
o   Oversee quantitative fielding (manage programming and data processing partners)
o   Questionnaire development & supervision of survey instruments by junior staffers
o   Manage data processing (finalize tab plans, create/review crosstabs)
o   Lead analysis of findings, create story-driven deliverables
o   Manage support team and clients
•  Partnering with qualitative-leaning peers to co-lead mixed-method projects (~25%)
o   Understand the purpose of and make recommendations on proposed methods and analytics
o   Comfortably weigh in on qualitative approaches and tools to be implemented
o   Analyze qualitative learning to understand how it complements quantitative data
o   Co-author final deliverables
•  Storytelling and consulting (~20%)
o   Optimize and refine report outlines created by support staff (in conjunction with qualitative-focused colleagues as       appropriate)
o   Optimize, refine and finalize first drafts of reports/deliverables created by support staff
o   Ensure all learning supports the overall report “story” and client recommendations
o   Add additional knowledge and perspective beyond the research learning to further enhance the overall story
o   Confidently and authoritatively present reports via conference calls, web-based presentations and in-person meetings
o   Provide ongoing guidance to clients on learnings application
•  Managing support staff
o   Work with and teach more junior talent at every step of the process
o   Provide constructive and useful feedback on proposals, surveys, cross-tabs, analytics, report outlines, final deliverables
o   Oversee support team in setting up and managing research vendors and logistics
o   Explain the “why” in addition to the “what” when providing feedback

More Details

This is a full-time salaried position with generous benefits. Salary is commensurate with the level and experience of the candidate.

Candidate location is not important, as the employee will work remotely. East coast hours are 9-5pm; west coast hours are 7-3pm. Smarty Pants is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 


About Smarty Pants

Smarty Pants is a full-service market research and strategic consulting firm dedicated to helping the world’s best product developers and marketers understand and connect with babies, kids, tweens, teens, young adults, parents and grandparents. In short, we are lifestage experts, business consultants and research practitioners.  

Since 2004 Smarty Pants has excelled at gathering game-changing consumer insights and helping our clients translate those insights into smarter products, programs and communications. We now work with and employ only the best and brightest, as is evidenced in our client roster and our team bios.    

As a full-service partner to our clients we:

• Serve as strategic consultants–educating and guiding them on youth and family trends, marketing strategies, best practices,    etc.
• Design rigorous research programs to meet their unique informational needs
• Execute those initiatives with our own industry-leading qualitative and quantitative research professionals
• Carefully aggregate and analyze findings, layering on our collective wisdom
• Create visually-compelling deliverables that energize and inspire
• Help our clients apply the learning to their business challenges

We are a virtual organization that collaborates and functions as a cohesive, tech-connected team. But don’t worry: we regularly get face time with peers at company meetings and while traveling to research and/or clients’ offices.

Working remotely allows us to hire the nation’s best talent and to do what our clients demand–travel, think, write and create. We are lean and highly efficient. We work hard, love what we do for a living, and have strong relationships with the ones we do it alongside. We are a happy, loyal team dedicated to creating happy, loyal clients.  

As our company continues to grow, we need bright minds to help us tackle the day-to-day business of fielding great research for our clients and bringing consumer insights to life. We’re looking for a “doer” with leader potential to join our team.


Next Steps

Serious, qualified applicants should send cover note, resume and work samples/portfolio (links are fine) to Meredith Franck at mfranck@asksmartypants.com

Phone and/or in-person interviews will be a part of the candidate review process, as will written skill assessment and video submission. Lead candidates will also be assigned at least one project-specific challenge to assess research prowess and efficiency.