Director of Qualitative Research

Hanover Research

Share Share Share Share Share

Director of Qualitative Research 
Hanover Research

The Role:                                                                                     
The Qualitative Research Manager (QRM) will lead and supervise the qualitative research team across all Hanover Research practices and will serve as Hanover’s leading expert for qualitative research methodologies, to include phone-based in-depth interviewing (IDI), synchronous and asynchronous online focus groups, and other methods such as journaling studies.

The QRM will work across Hanover’s education and market research practices, requiring expertise conducting research among numerous respondent populations, including business and education professionals and myriad consumer groups. Further, the QRM will serve as an active champion of qualitative research, overseeing the growth of the qualitative research function and maximizing its impact on clients’ research needs.

The QRM will lead a large and growing team of qualitative researchers with varying levels of experience. The QRM will represent the qualitative research function and its researchers within the broader Hanover Content division, taking responsibility for their development and growth. Further, the QRM will represent Hanover externally to current and prospective clients to represent and build confidence in our qualitative research capabilities.

The QRM will be responsible for ensuring compliance with Hanover standards and practices as well as legal requirements for qualitative research. The QRM will develop and implement new standards and practices as needed in order to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of Hanover’s qualitative research and will keep abreast of legal or regulatory changes that impact qualitative research.

About Hanover
Hanover Research is a global research and analytics firm that provides high quality, custom research through an annual, fixed-fee model for clients in the corporate, education, and healthcare sectors.  Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, Hanover employs high-caliber market researchers, analysts, and account professionals to deliver a robust service infrastructure that is revolutionary in its combination of flexibility and affordability. The core capabilities that drive Hanover’s research engine include primary research, secondary research, data analysis, and grant development. By enthusiastically fostering an environment of respect, encouragement, and support, we empower our clients and employees to seize opportunities for growth, impact, and advancement.

As the second fastest growing market research firm worldwide, Hanover has been recognized as a 2017 American Marketing Association Gold Top 50 Firm and Gold Global Top 50 Firm and a 2015 Washington Business Journal 50 Fastest Growing Company.

The duties incumbent upon the QRM will include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Research Management
    • Research Process: Provide ongoing guidance to both qualitative research staff and client managers in support of methodological validity, recruitment success, and data integrity, balanced with high quality client service
    • Quality Assurance: Audit research interviews, research instrument designs, and analyses; identify team-wide or individual development areas and address with actionable development plans
    • Resource Management/Staffing: Distribute the qualitative team’s project load in support of efficient project completion while safeguarding engaging and satisfactory working conditions for researchers; provide hands-on support for the implementation of more complex studies
    • Client Management & Revenue Support: Foster positive client relationships by supporting client managers in scoping conversations and research design to ensure data validity and quality of insights for clients; support revenue staff during calls/meetings with current/prospective clients in the capacity of qualitative research expert
    • Portfolio Management: Adequately represent Hanover’s existing qualitative methodologies, including drafting and distributing descriptive collateral to client managers
      • Furthermore identify new qualitative research methodologies and related technologies that may be appropriate to adopt, then supervise the implementation and execution thereof


  • Personnel
    • Conduct and manage recurring training sessions related to qualitative researcher job functions, developing training modules as necessary
    • Manage several qualitative researchers as direct reports and conduct formal and informal performance reviews; provide clear guidance to other personal managers on the team
    • Lead staffing decisions related to the qualitative research team; support qualitative researcher candidate recruitment and conduct interviews
    • Foster a positive and inclusive team culture that engages both on-site and remote staff


  • Compliance
    • Ensure compliance with all legal and ethical standards for qualitative research, and maintain ongoing awareness of relevant regulatory changes
    • Monitor the qualitative research team’s compliance with Hanover’s established standards and processes, and contribute to the enhancement thereof


  • Other
    • Identify, investigate, and implement new tools and practices to support and supplement Hanover’s qualitative research capabilities
    • Perform general functional administration
    • Serve as the functional head for Hanover’s qualitative research practice, representing the function within Hanover across departments when called upon

Required Experience

  • A master’s degree in Anthropology, Sociology, Communications, Economics, Psychology, Political Science, Journalism or a related discipline
  • 10+ years of experience as a qualitative research practitioner; proven experience designing and executing in-depth interviews, synchronous and asynchronous focus groups, journaling studies, UX studies; experience with additional methodologies (in particular digitally-based ones) a plus
  • 5+ years of experience supervising qualitative primary market research; experience supervising quantitative research studies a plus
  • Proven experience managing third-party vendors (such as recruiters and focus group moderators) strongly preferred
  • Proven experience managing internal process improvements and fostering compliance with internal guidelines and policies
  • Demonstrated understanding of legal and ethical requirements relevant to qualitative (market) research
  • Experience with B2B and B2C qualitative research projects strongly desired; experience with qualitative research in the Education sector a plus
  • Experience executing quantitative research methods a plus
  • Experience working directly with clients to develop qualitative research plans;

Desired Skills & Attributes:

  • Excellent organizational skills and meticulous attention to detail;
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills;
  • Extremely strong and demonstrable work ethic coupled with a solutions-oriented attitude;
  • Strong command of qualitative primary research methodologies and related technologies, including IDI and CATI;
  • Willingness to tackle complex, often unfamiliar research requests;
  • Ability to work collaboratively with analysts, client managers, and revenue staff;
  • Ability to work under pressure and multitask in a fast-paced environment;
  • Proven ability to make quick and informed decisions under very tight deadlines;
  • High comfort level with Microsoft Office applications, such as MS Excel and MS Word
  • Working knowledge of Qualtrics a plus

Arlington, Virginia


  • Base salary
  • 401(K) employer matching program
  • Comprehensive health and dental benefits package
  • Advancement and management opportunities
  • Community service opportunities

If you are interested in the prospect of working for a dynamic, growing company, we encourage you to submit your cover letter, resume, and a relevant professional writing sample (consisting of no more than 8 pages on a research or business related topic, preferably) at:

Hanover Research is an Equal Opportunity Employer, providing equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local law. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, compensation, training, promotion, transfer, leaves of absence, and termination.

Return to Job Listings