Associate Research Director

Oct 09, 2013
Nov 08, 2013
Human Resources
Full Time
Crain’s Chicago Business seeks an associate research director to join its editorial research team.

The department produces roughly 30 rankings and directories each year covering different facets of the Chicago business community. We’re looking for someone who will maintain our core, existing products as well as help us build out new features as we grow. Primary duties will pertain to managing our existing portfolio of lists, in addition to assisting with other data-driven packages throughout the Crain’s newsroom.

Duties include:

· Researching, surveying and reporting lists and data projects both in print and online, including some of our well-known franchise products like the largest privately held companies list, Who’s Who and Fast Fifty

· Scouring public and private sources for interesting datasets for use in charticles, interactive graphics and special reports

· Ensuring the quality and accuracy of data

· Supervising project-based contract employees

· Conceiving and executing new research projects

· Collaborating with other newsroom departments, especially our graphic and web teams

· Working with outside data vendors and sources

· Assisting reporters with data-driven stories


The ideal candidate is a journalist first and foremost, but this is not a writing position. The job involves mostly researching and vetting data, so we need someone who is comfortable turning raw, complicated data into something that makes sense to our readers. The ideal candidate will have extraordinary Excel skills and a solid understanding of relational database software. Bonus points for proficiency in SQL and/or knowledge of a programming language (e.g. Python) for purposes of web-scraping, calling APIs and/or data-cleaning and analysis. Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university is also required.

Business reporting experience (or a familiarity with the people and places operating in Chicago) is not a requirement, but it helps. Some of our projects have six-month lead times; some of them have just a couple of days. You’ll need to be an expert in something new every week and juggle multiple deadlines at once, so organization and attention to detail are two of the most important requirements of the job.

As an industry leader, Crain Communications Inc. is one of the largest privately owned business media companies with 30 leading business, trade and consumer brands in North America, Europe and Asia. The company’s 850 employees in 11 locations produce exciting publications, digital products, events, marketing services, custom publishing, lead generation and research and data products to help its millions of readers and clients succeed.

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