Last July we launched, along with the monthly XM Journal, and the XM Professionals Network, which collectively served as the public debut of Qualtrics XM Institute. Please join me in celebrating what amounts to be XM Institute’s first birthday. I’m proud of the great (initial) progress we’ve made towards achieving our mission…

To create a thriving global community of Experience Management (XM) Professionals who are empowered and inspired to improve human experiences.


Looking Back at an Action-Packed First Year

The previous year has been challenging for just about everyone, as we all tried to stay safe and adapt to ever-changing environments at work and at home. During these difficult times, the XM Institute team focused on building an incredibly valuable platform for XM professionals. Here are some of the highlights of what we’ve been able to accomplish:

  • Created the world’s most robust XM Library. More than 16,000 people have interacted with XM Institute content, including 11,000 subscribers to the monthly XM Journal from over 120 countries. Our XM Library contains almost 600 unique assets, and we publish about two new pieces every week. Check out some of our top content.
  • Engaged a global community of XM pros. The XM Professionals Network has over 3,700 members from more than 75 countries. Over the year we’ve engaged nearly 500 people during 23 Virtual Meetups, matched 250 XM professionals with peer buddies in our “Pro-to-Pro” program, and engaged 75 professionals in our newly launched “Active Learning Groups,” an innovative collaborative educational program. Check out the latest update from the community.
  • Launched the XM Professional Certification. XM professionals are a uniquely talented group, and their expertise needs to be recognized and acknowledged. That’s why we launched the XM Professional (XMP) Certification, creating the premier credential in the field. There are currently more than 40 “XMPs” around the world. We’ve decided to extend the 20% launch discount through the end of September.
  • Evangelized the XM discipline. XM Institute faculty have spoken in over 160 events around the world. We’ve helped leaders better understand XM, and provided insights and best practices to XM practitioners.

To keep up with the latest on our content, community, and certification, subscribe to the monthly XM Journal.


State of the XM Profession

As I reflect back on XM Institute’s initial year, it seems appropriate to discuss XM professionals, since they represent the core focus of our efforts. I’m happy to report that the state of the XM profession is strong! Here are some highlights from a recently published report, State of the XM Profession, where we surveyed more than 400 XM professionals:

  • XM Professionals are satisfied. Eighty-four percent of respondents are satisfied being an XM Professional, which is more than 10-times those who are dissatisfied. More than two-thirds of XM pros are satisfied with their opportunity for career advancement and their current level of compensation. XM managers and leaders are a bit more satisfied than Individual contributors.
  • XM Professionals want to help. When we asked XM pros about what motivates them the most in their career, they most frequently selected “helping your organization succeed” and the second most chosen item was “improving people’s lives.” At the bottom of the list was “getting promoted.” And when we asked them what they most enjoy about being an XM pro, they chose “helping other people use experience insights.”
  • XM Professionals are strong with insights, weak with design. Sixty-eight percent of respondents rate themselves as strong at “enlightening their organization with insights,” which was the most common component of respondents’ roles. The least common component of their role was “disrupting the status quo with design,” and only 29% rated themselves as being strong in this area. 
  • XM Professionals want to get better at leading change. Forty-eight percent of XM leaders say that “leading multi-year transformation” is a significant component of their role, compared with 35% of individual contributors. However, both groups of XM pros selected this skill as the most important area for them to expand their personal expertise. 


Anatomy of a Satisfied XM Professional

In the report, we compared XM professionals who were extremely satisfied with other XM professionals. This analysis showed that extremely satisfied XM pros are more likely than their peers to:

  • Have more experience in XM, work in smaller organizations, be a part of larger full-time XM teams, and be leaders versus individual contributors
  • Have backgrounds in strategy and customer service, and less likely to have backgrounds in operations and product management
  • Feel that their senior leaders appreciate the value of XM professionals and less likely to look for a new job outside of their current organization
  • Be motivated by improving people’s lives and are less motivated by expanding their knowledge and skills
  • Enjoy driving change across their organizations and are less likely to enjoy doing research and analyzing data
  • Be stronger across all of the XM activities we listed, with the largest gap in “activating the organization for change” and the smallest gap in “managing XM technology”
  • View “developing an experience-centric culture” as a significant area of professional growth and less likely to view “responding to insights with action” in the same way


The bottom line: XM Institute continues to build a thriving community of XM professionals

Bruce Temkin, XMP, CCXP, is the Head of Qualtrics XM Institute